Asus Republic of Gamers Rampage III Gene review

So just how much can you fit onto a micro-ATX motherboard?

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Asus rog rampage iii gene

The basic specs set the Rampage III Gene off to a good start. It's as good as it gets with an X58 chipset that supports triple-channel memory and both Crossfire and SLI multi-GPU set-ups.

It also looks good, with contrasting red and black porcupine heatsinks on a red PCB.

What's going to justify the cost, though, is the quality of the extra intelligence added in by Asus.

CPU Level Up and TurboV EVO work together to add performance on demand that goes over and above Intel's own Turbo technology built into the Core i7, while an 'Energy Processing Unit', or EPU, works to maintain efficiency and lower the power draw.

All of them are fully customisable to a frightening degree, but can also be set to Auto to let the motherboard decide on the optimal settings by monitoring a range of on-board sensors in realtime.

As well as a comprehensive BIOS, there's also a handy Windows app that opens all of the settings on the desktop, although changing some will require a reboot anyway.

Round the back of the Rampage III Gene there's an impressive nine USB ports. Two of them, coloured blue, are compatible with 4.8Gbps USB 3.0. One of the remaining seven can be used for RoG Connect – a unique feature that enables you to connect a laptop to the port and change BIOS settings from a different PC.

It's a killer feature if you're planning on spending a weekend with the Rampage III Gene and a flask of liquid nitrogen, but unlikely to be used by most.

What you are going to appreciate, though, is the CMOS Clear button that sticks out of the rear panel and the power and reset buttons mounted on the motherboard itself. They're exceptionally convenient if you're tweaking with the case off.

Perhaps the most universally beneficial bonus is the SupremeFX X-Fi 2 audio processor that comes with THX Studio Pro certification for surround sound.