|ASUS P8Z68V PRO Motherboard|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Motherboards|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Tuesday, 10 May 2011|
Page 15 of 15
ASUS P8Z68-V Pro Conclusion
Although we strive to be as objective as possible, any review will reflect to some extent the perceptions and biases of the reviewer. Also, keep in mind that the computer market is very volatile, and that today's killer super product can easily become yesterday's also-ran as the market competition changes. Don't base a purchase decision solely on this review, but use it as part of your research.
ASUS is a name high on the list of many enthusiasts, and products like the ASUS P8Z68-V Pro are why. This isn't even one of ASUS' "high end" boards, and it's stuffed with so many features that there wasn't time to review them all. (But I cover Lucid Virtu and Intel Smart Response technologies in detail separate articles.) I could go on for pages more about the details of ASUS' EPU and TPU, or the BT Go! feature, or how well the various automatic overclocking mechanisms work. But although I couldn't cover them all, trust me when I say that they do work, and work very well indeed. Back in the dawn of personal computing, one magazine reviewed Apple's "MacPaint 2.0" software and concluded that it was a "work of art for artists", and although it may seem silly to rhapsodize about a motherboard, that's what came to mind when I sat back after days of benchmarking and working with of this board.
The performance of this board was excellent. It was fractionally faster at stock clock speeds than the similar ASUS P8P67 board, and I was able to take my Core i7 2600K processor 200MHz higher than I could with the older board.
Appearance is always a subjective matter. The P8Z68 Pro doesn't have the in-your-face colors and throbbing LED-lit logos of ASUS "Extreme", "Maximus", or "Formula" motherboard lines; its somewhat fanciful heat sinks are its concession to bling. But with excellent component layout and attractive colors, it'll look good in any windowed case.
Although this was a pre-production board, there was nothing on it to indicate that it was anything other than a standard model. All the electronic components lined up neatly and the silk-screened lettering was sharp and clear. The multi-phase digital power system might seem like overkill (do we really need 12 phases?), but that's what lets you reach those amazing overclocks with high stability.
Functionally, this board is a standout. ASUS reserves some features for its top-end boards, but voltage measuring points, dual BIOS chips, chipset fans and the like really wouldn't add anything useful to this board's smorgasbord of features. I'd prefer ASUS use DIMM sockets with retaining latches on both sides, and a POST code display would be nice, but that's about all I can think of to add.
At a price of $209.00, this board is about $30 more than ASUS' equivalent P67 Express-based motherboard. If that's enough money to make a difference for you, skip a few meals and get this board instead. This price represents an excellent value.
If you've bought a P67 or H67 board, the very existence of the P8Z68-V Pro might frustrate you (perhaps you can sell your existing motherboard). If you're in the market for a Sandy Bridge motherboard, this is about the best you can get right now, although I'm sure we'll see a P8Z68 Extreme or something like it soon.
+ Can use integrated Sandy Bridge video and a discrete video card
- Single-latch DIMM sockets. I hate those.
Final Score: 9.2 out of 10.
Excellence Achievement: Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award.
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