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Review: ASUS enthusiast AM2 motherboard duel

by Steve Kerrison on 3 September 2006, 10:10

Tags: ASUSTeK (TPE:2357), AMD (NYSE:AMD)

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qagob

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Introduction

Socket AM2 has seen AMD transition smoothly from trusty old DDR RAM to the newer (but not exactly greenhorn) DDR2. With AMD recently unleashing Socket F on the server and workstation market, and with partners quick to announce Socket F products, that sees Intel's rival complete its socket refresh for the time being.

We've seen in recent reviews that AM2 doesn't currently hold a huge performance benefit at the budget-end of the market. However, it will be around after Socket 939 drops off the radar, making it worth consideration.

However, the real battle for AMD right now is at the other end of the market, up where the Athlon 64 FX CPUs once reigned supreme; back in the day, when Intel's CPU ran hot and not so fast. Oh how things have changed.

Socket AM2, coupled with the introduction of new chipsets to go with it, give manufacturers of AMD-based mainboards an opportunity to poke a new wave of enthusiast products on to the market. AMD is no doubt counting on its partners producing some killer boards that'll help it hold on to its market share.

Enter two new enthusiast boards from ASUS, the CROSSHAIR and M2N32-SLI Deluxe, that just might be a pair of such killer boards. They certainly dish our their share of features and LEDs, so let's see exactly what ASUS is offering up, as we take both boards for a spin.