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ASUS Crosshair III Formula & OC Station 5870CF

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Asus sent over their Crosshair III Formula & OC Station for some overclocking loving. After my intial testing I felt I didn't have the proper graphics hardware to show capability of this very solid board. With the release of AMD's HD5000 line I quickly purchased two Sapphire 5870's so I may complete the task.
Here's a look of the rich features of this board as copied from Asus website:


CPU Features
Phenomâ„¢ II/Athlonâ„¢ II/ Sempronâ„¢ 100 Series Processors (AM3 CPU)
This motherboard supports AMD® Socket AM3 multi-core processors with unique L3 cache and delivers better overclocking capabilities with less power consumption. It features dual-channel DDR3 1333 memory support and accelerates data transfer rate up to 5200MT/s via HyperTransport™ 3.0 based system bus. This motherboard also supports AMD® CPUs in the new 45nm manufacturing process.

Chipset Features

AMD 790FX Chipset

AMD 790FX Chipset is designed to support up to 5200MT/s HyperTransportâ„¢ 3.0 (HT 3.0) interface speed and quad PCI Expressâ„¢ 2.0 x16 graphics. It is optimized with AMD latest AM3 and multi-core CPUs to provide excellent system performance and overclocking capabilities.

Memory Feature

Native DDR3 1600(O.C.) Support
This motherboard supports native DDR3 1600(O.C.) that provides faster data transfer rate and more bandwith to increase memory computing efficiency, enhancing system performance in 3D graphics and other memory demanding applications. * DDR3 1600(O.C.) is supported by AM3 CPUs only. Refer to www.asus.com for the supported CPU models.

Graphics Feature

PCIe 2.0 support
This motherboard supports the latest PCIe 2.0 devices for double speed and bandwidth which enhances system performance.

ATI CrossFireXâ„¢ Technology
ATI’s CrossFireX™ boosts image quality along with rendering speed, eliminating the need to scale down screen resolution to get high quality images. CrossFireX™ allows higher anti-aliasing, anisotropic filtering, shading, and texture settings. Adjust your display configurations, experiment with the advanced 3D settings, and check the effects with a real-time 3D-rendered previews within ATI Catalyst™ Control Center.

ROG Exclusive Features

MemOK!
Any memory is A-OK!
Memory compatibility is among the top concerns when it comes to computer upgrades. Worry no more, MemOK! is the fastest memory booting solution today. This remarkable memory rescue tool requires nothing but a push of a button to patch memory issues and get your system up and running in no time. The technology is able to determine failsafe settings that can dramatically improve system booting success.

Pin Fin Thermal Module
Profession grade OC instantly
Compare with traditional stacked-fin heatpipe solution, the new generation pin-fin thermal design result in better thermal performance, which enlarges the “heat-exchange†surface area surface and breaks the "Boundary-layer" phenomenon for effective airflow. The Pin-Fin Thermal Module is the most efficient thermal system there is on the motherboard.



External LCD Poster
Debug and read system problems with an new external look!
The new LCD Poster now posts critical POST information in an ever friendly and flexible external display. When system malfunction occurs, the LCD Poster automatically detects device failure and translates the errors on the LCD during POST.

Voltiminder LED
Friendly reminder on the intentional madness
In the pursuit of extreme performance, overvoltage adjustment is critical but risky. Acting as the "red zone" of a tachometer, the Voltiminder LED displays the voltage status for CPU, NB, SB, and Memory in a intuitive color-coded fashion. The voltiminder LED allows quick voltage monitoring for overclockers.

Loadline Calibration
Optimal power boost for extreme CPU overclocking!
Maintaining ample voltage support for the CPU is critical during overclocking. The Loadline Calibration ensures stable and optimal CPU voltage under heavy loading. It helps overclockers enjoy the motherboard´s ultimate OC capabilities and benchmark scores.

ASUS Q-Connector
Make connections quick and accurate
The Q-Connector allows you to connect or disconnect chassis front panel cables in one easy step with one complete module. This unique adapter eliminates the trouble of plugging in one cable at a time, making connection quick and accurate.
CPU Level Up
A Simple click for instant upgrade
Ever wish that you could have a more expansive CPU? Upgrade your CPU at no additional cost with ROG´s CPU Level Up! Simply pick the processor you wanted to OC to, and the motherboard will do the rest!
See the new CPU speed and enjoy that performance instantly. Overclocking is never as easy as this.



iROG
Intelligent multiple control at hand
The iROG is a special IC which enables several ROG highlitghted functions that gives users full disposal of the motherboard at any stage! This design allows advanced user control and management to be processed purely at a hardware level. iROG greatly increases fun during overclocking for PC enthusiasts and it offers system maintainence and management with more control and efficiency.

Extreme Tweaker
One stop performance tuning shop
Extreme Tweakers is the one stop shop to fine-tune your system to optimal performance. No matter if you´re looking for frequency adjustment, over-voltage options, or memory timing settings, they´re all here!



COP EX
Maximum OC with confidence with burn proof protection to chipsets and CPU!
The COP EX allows overclockers to increase chipset voltages without the worries of overheating. It can also be used to monitor and save an overheating CPU. The COP EX allows more freedom and less constraint for maximum performance achievement.

Onboard Switch
No more shorting pins or moving jumpers
With an easy press during overclock, this exclusive onboard switch allows gamer to effortlessly fine-tune the performance without having to short the pins or moving jumpers!

Sound with Clarity

SupremeFX X-Fi
Listen with Absolute HD
Play in extreme fidelity !
SupremeFX X-Fi delivers an excellent high definition audio experience to the gamers of ROG. The SupremeFX X-Fi features unique audio innovations for gamers to spot enemes in 3D environment during game play. SupremeFX X-Fi also provides gamers a special tool to emphasize human voices in games to help make dialogues clearer and more audible.

Noise Filter
Eliminate background noise while recording
This feature detects repetitive and stationary noises like computer fans, air conditioners, and other background noises then eliminates it in the incoming audio stream while recording.

Rich Software Bundled
Kaspersky® Anti-Virus
The best protection from viruses and spyware
Kaspersky® Anti-Virus Personal offers premium antivirus protection for individual users and home offices. It is based on advanced antivirus technologies. The product incorporates the Kaspersky® Anti-Virus engine, which is renowned for malicious program detection rates that are among the industry´s highest.
Futuremark® 3DMark®06 (Advanced Edition)
The Gamers´ Benchmark
3DMark is the most popular and authoritative 3D benchmark application used by professionals around the world. The 3DMark06 is the latest version in the popular 3DMark series, including advanced SM2.0 and HDR/SM3.0 Shader graphics tests and now including single, multiple core and multiple processor CPU tests as part of the 3DMark score! The accurate performance and image quality diagnostic tool, designed for DirectX®9.0c, provides you with all the information you need to make all other competitors look bad.

Other features
Q- Shield
Easy and Comfortable Installations
The specially designed ASUS Q-Shield does without the usual "fingers" - making it convenient and easy to install. With better electric conductivity, it ideally protects your motherboard against static electricity and shields it against Electronic Magnetic Interference (EMI).
C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)
When the system hangs due to overclocking failure, there is no need to open the case to clear CMOS data. Just simply restart the system, the BIOS would show the previous setting and then users can amend the CPU setting again.
MyLogo3
Personalize your system with customizable boot logo
The ASUS MyLogo 3 is the new feature present in the motherboard that allows you to personalize and add style to your system with customizable and animated boot logos.
SATA on the Go
The motherboard supports the next-generation hard drives based on the Serial ATA (SATA) 3Gb/s storage specification, delivering enhanced scalability and doubling the bus bandwidth for high-speed data retrieval and saves. The external SATA port located at the back I/O provides smart setup and hot-plug functions. Easily backup photos, videos and other entertainment contents on external devices.
O.C. Profile
Conveniently store or load multiple BIOS settings
Freely share and distribute favorite overclocking settings
The motherboard features the ASUS O.C. Profile that allows users to conveniently store or load multiple BIOS settings. The BIOS settings can be stored in the CMOS or a separate file, giving users freedom to share and distribute their favorite overclocking settings.
EZ-Flash 2
Simply update BIOS from a USB flash disk before entering the OS
EZ Flash 2 is a user-friendly BIOS update utility. Simply launch this tool and update BIOS from a USB flash disk before entering the OS. You can update your BIOS only in a few clicks without preparing an additional floppy diskette or using an OS-based flash utility.
Stack Cool 2
Effective and zero-noise heat dissipation
Stack Cool 2 is a fan-less and zero-noise cooling solution offered exclusively by ASUS. It effectively transfers heat generated by the critical components to the other side of the specially designed PCB (printed circuit board) for effective heat dissipation.
IEEE 1394a interface
IEEE 1394a interface provides high speed digital interface for audio/video appliances such as digital television, digital video camcorders, storage peripherals & other PC portable devices.





Quite the long list of features I'd say. Surpisingly I use everyone of them in some form or fashion. I even tried the virus protection for a day or two. No on to some pictures and benchmark reults.














Test Setup

AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition w/TRUE 120
Asus Crosshair III Formula
2 X Sapphire 5870's CF @ Stock
2GB Kit Corsair DDR3 1800 @ DDR3-1600 7-7-7-20 1T
Microcool Banchetto 101
Corsair 850HX 850W PSU
Asus OC Station

All overclocking was done using the OC Station panel which actually was more reliable than AMD Overdrive once things got extreme.

Pic of Air Test Bed




Air Results

Everest Stock



Max stable OC Default volts was 3.8GHz on air so this was used for benchmarks.
















Max Prime stable overclock was 3.9GHz 1.45v



Mounted The Dragon F1 and Tried some LN2 Action







I spent too much time trying to find Max 3DMark Stable cpu clock and well things got a little cold and wet with this already humid rainy day.



The system is now crashing as soon as vantage loads so I'm gonna let things dry out overnight and then complete the extreme benchmarks.

In conclusion Asus has a real winner here. The board is very solid overclocks smoothly especially under extreme cold. It does not exhibit any of the clock generator cold bug behavior the ASUS M4A79T Deluxe suffers from. This will be the AMD board of choice once 5870X2's are released. The OC Station is a nice add on. It even acts as a fan controller capable of controlling 4 fans. For an extreme overclocker it's a very useful tool as it allows overclock on the fly while benching.
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Intel i7 2600K 3103B306 Asus Maximus IV Extreme-Z Asus Matrix Platinum GTX 580 SLI 4GB Corsair Dominator GT 2000 
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post #2 of 7
This is incredible ! OMG liquid nitrogen cooling I love to see this type of stuff !


Edit: Where can I get the OC station ?!!
Edited by epitek - 10/24/09 at 6:29pm
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD PII 955BEC3 Asus Crossfire III AM3 790FX EVGA GT 640 Crucial Ballistix 4GB 1333MHz 
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WD Caviar Black 750gb 32mb LG 22x DVD Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Acer 21.5'' 1080P 5ms 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech Wave Corsair 750WTX Antec Illusion 300 Logitech Mx 518 
Mouse Pad
steelseries clotch 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5-3570k ASUS Maximus V FORMULA MSI 7870-2GD5T/OC GHZ Corsair Vengance 8GB 1600MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 PRO 128GB(OS+2Games) WD 1TB Caviar Black(Games) Hyper 212 Evo Windows 7 Home x64 
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24'' Insignia LED  Logitech Wave Rosewill Capstone Modular 650W MX 518 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD PII 955BEC3 Asus Crossfire III AM3 790FX EVGA GT 640 Crucial Ballistix 4GB 1333MHz 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
WD Caviar Black 750gb 32mb LG 22x DVD Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Acer 21.5'' 1080P 5ms 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Logitech Wave Corsair 750WTX Antec Illusion 300 Logitech Mx 518 
Mouse Pad
steelseries clotch 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5-3570k ASUS Maximus V FORMULA MSI 7870-2GD5T/OC GHZ Corsair Vengance 8GB 1600MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 PRO 128GB(OS+2Games) WD 1TB Caviar Black(Games) Hyper 212 Evo Windows 7 Home x64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerMouse
24'' Insignia LED  Logitech Wave Rosewill Capstone Modular 650W MX 518 
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SteelSeries 
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post #3 of 7
Nice work, very informative
    
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post #4 of 7
Nice review. Saw this post on XS. Great job!
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post #5 of 7
nice (for higher performance u can up NB clock)
with AIR 1.45V and 3913 MHz is very good!
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2x320 GB + 1x 500 GB+1x 750GB+1x 90GB SSD 18x DVD-RW Samsung Corsair H100 win XP 32-bit and Win 7 64-bit 
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lucky Vishera
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2x320 GB + 1x 500 GB+1x 750GB+1x 90GB SSD 18x DVD-RW Samsung Corsair H100 win XP 32-bit and Win 7 64-bit 
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post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by epitek View Post
This is incredible ! OMG liquid nitrogen cooling I love to see this type of stuff !


Edit: Where can I get the OC station ?!!
It is available on Newegg

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Duke View Post
Nice work, very informative
Thank You
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bleached View Post
Nice review. Saw this post on XS. Great job!
Still Working with it. Got 5850's up next
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlanK3r View Post
nice (for higher performance u can up NB clock)
with AIR 1.45V and 3913 MHz is very good!
Tried working NB as you probably already know, Thinking of picking up a C3 revision now.





Praetor
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 2600K 3103B306 Asus Maximus IV Extreme-Z Asus Matrix Platinum GTX 580 SLI 4GB Corsair Dominator GT 2000 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Corsair Force180 SSD, WD Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1 Win7 64bit DELL 30 Corsair AX1200 
Case
Corsair Obsidian 800D 
  hide details  
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Praetor
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel i7 2600K 3103B306 Asus Maximus IV Extreme-Z Asus Matrix Platinum GTX 580 SLI 4GB Corsair Dominator GT 2000 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Corsair Force180 SSD, WD Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1 Win7 64bit DELL 30 Corsair AX1200 
Case
Corsair Obsidian 800D 
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post #7 of 7
This is epic, My maximus II is good also, can you crack the magic 6ghz?
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