Some of NVIDIA's recent mobo chipsets haven't been that clever.

The nForce 780i is a case in point. Despite the 7 Series moniker, it was little more than a rehash of the 680i chipset with PCI Express 2.0 unconvincingly glued on.

An enticing package

The 780i also carried over the 680i's hot-running silicon. The result was pants overclocking, particularly for a high-end chipset. But that's all history with the 790i.

Its C73 northbridge packs native PCI-e 2.0, runs much cooler, while overclocking headroom is much improved.

As for Asus' take on the 790i, it's the total solution, complete with triple-way SLI support, exceptionally high-quality digital audio and a northbridge heatsink that comes pre-plumbed for water cooling.

Nice, but just look at the price!