This board differs from P4PE in design and accessory pack: this is again ASUS's stylish mainboard with a well-known name. The austere black-silvery design of the box and board (like in CUSL2-C Black Pearl) is replaced with the design of a piratical style. The box looks like a treasure box; users guides are like old maps showing a way to the treasures; the board and a flash drive supplied symbolize black and pink pearls.
The layout is not that bad, except maybe the audio-ins which are placed in front of the PCI, and connectors along the left side. It's not difficult to reach jumpers when the board is already installed. Their functions are shown on the textolite.
The 2-channel switching voltage regulator incorporates 5 capacitors of 1500 uF and 3 of 1200 uF. Also, there are voltage regulators for the AGP and memory buses.
ASUS POST Reporter (reports about problems during booting),
ASUS MyLogo2 (for displaying your images when the system boots),
ASUS EZ Plug (allows using a power unit which doesn't comply with the ATX 2.03 standard),
ASUS Q-Fan (auto fan speed control) and
ASUS EZ Flash (for flashing new BIOS versions directly from BIOS Setup)
+5 V supplied in the StandBy mode is indicated with the green LED. If a 3.3V card is inserted into the AGP slot the red LED will warn you that it's incompatible (it's impossible to turn on the computer even with the Power button).
Non-unsoldered connectors: FireWire and IDE/SATA RAID controllers and their connectors.
System monitoring is supported by ASUS ASB100-A Bach. It controls:
There are 3 connectors for adjustable connection of fans.
Brief board's characteristics: memory slots - 3 DDR SDRAM; expansion slots - AGP/ 6 PCI; I/O ports - 2 COM/ LPT/ 2 PS/2/ 6 USB 2.0; dimensions - 305x230 mm.
We used the BIOS 1002 as the latest available version.
The model has a unique design and a good pack of accessories, but its functions are not so rich as in the basic version (P4PE). Its speed characteristics, overclocking potential and adjustability are still high.
Dmitry Mayorov (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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