Good quality motherboards are a fairly rare these days, with the large amount of competition and prices that are dropping, many manufacturers are trying to save as much money as they can. It may be saving a few cents on a few capacitors, or not having the same quality control or many other cost saving ventures, but this can lead to a wide variety in quality of the motherboard.
With Intel's release of its dual core processors they also released two new chipsets, the 945 series and the 955 series of chipsets. Much like the 915 and 925 before the 945 is the consumer chipset, while the 955 is the high end chipset designed for the utmost performance.
Asus has been an Intel partner for quite a while, and always seems to release boards based on the latest Intel chipsets. They are also known in the enthusiast community as a maker of high quality motherboards that overclock well and perform very well as well. Today we will see if that is still true with their latest offering.
Asus P5LD2-Deluxe WiFi-TV Edition
Asus sent us their high end 945P based motherboard, which is part of their AI Life series of motherboards. For the specifications of this motherboard please go to . We will be looking at most of the details in the review, but lets first take a look at a few pictures of the motherboard and accessories. We will take a look at the WiFi-TV card in a separate review.
We can see that quite a bit comes with this motherboard. This is the standard items that come with the non-WiFi-TV edition. Lets take a look at an itemized list of what comes with this board as standard.
- Quick install guide and manual
- 5 * SATA cables
- 3 * 4 pin to SATA power cables
- 2 * IDE cables
- Floppy cable
- Comm port
- Game port and 2 * USB connector
- Firewire cable
- Driver/application CD
- WinDVD Suite CD
Looking at the motherboard we can see that it has a few interesting features to it. It has two physical PCIe x16 slots, three PCI slots and one PCIe x1 slot. The board itself has a dark coloring to it which stands out when compared to the bight colors of most of the rest of the slots.
Moving to the back of the motherboard we see a variety of connectors. Of course there is the standard two PS/2 connectors and the parallel connector. There is also four USB 2.0 ports, a Gigabit RJ45 connector, one IEEE1394a connector and a fairly common sight among most newer boards these days, the block of six input/output connectors for the onboard sound card. What isn't as common on most boards is the optical and digital sound outputs and a very rare external SATA connector, which I haven't seen before on a motherboard.
As we mentioned before there are two physical PCIe x16 slots though one of them is only a x2-x8 slot, depending on what the needs are. At x8 on this slot the x1 slot is disabled as all the PCIe lanes are in use. The distance between the two PCIe x16 slots means that you can have two multi slot video cards working together without airflow problems. Moving on to the IDE area we see quite a bit is located there. Looking at the IDE connectors, we see that there are three IDE connectors on the motherboard with the primary connector being put parallel to the motherboard. There are four SATA headers in this picture two red and two colored black. On the bottom left of the motherboard there is the color coded front panel connectors to make it 'easier' to put the connectors on. Along that same edge we see the serial port header, two USB headers and a IEEE1394a header as well.