ASUS ROG Rampage V Edition 10 Motherboard
A few weeks ago, a neatly packed corrugated box embraced the doorstep of iLLHeadquarters. We are used to receiving tons of hardware here, but this one was different. It was special. When we hastily unpacked the box to reveal the contents, an ASUS X99 ROG Rampage V Edition 10 motherboard, in an understated bullish box was sighted.
Let me give you a little introduction about why this is a special board. This is literally the baap of all motherboards i.e. there is nothing that comes above it, in terms of features, specifications etc. But that’s not what makes it special. When I removed the board from its box, held it in my hand and did a quick visual scan, I was gladly taken by the sheer master’s touch in the craftsmanship of this motherboard. To be absolutely honest, before witnessing the ROG Rampage V Edition 10, I had never ever seen a motherboard put together so damn well. It has its sheer weight too, because of the countless features embedded right into the chipset. I couldn’t wait to take this on a test drive.
Specifications and Features
Let us get done with the formalities first. Here are the official specifications, taken from the ASUS website. This list is pretty comprehensive and gives all the details you would need before buying a motherboard. USB ports, PCIe slots, bandwidth, SATA slots, M2/U2 support, USB3.1 support, USB Type-C, Type-A, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Full-spectrum LED lighting, super-intelligent BIOS low-level control, auto fan optimisation, one-click overclocking, (I could go on and on). If there’s a feature you can think of, 99.99% the Rampage V Edition 10 already has it.
Intel® Socket 2011-v3 Core™ i7 X-Series Processors
Supports Intel® 14 nm CPU
Supports Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 3.0
* Refer to www.asus.com for CPU support list
8 x DIMM, Max. 128GB, DDR4 3333(O.C.)/3300(O.C.)/3200(O.C.)/3000(O.C.)/2800(O.C.)/2666(O.C.)/2400(O.C.)/2133(O.C.) MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory
Quad Channel Memory Architecture
Supports Intel® Extreme Memory Profile (XMP)
* Hyper DIMM support is subject to the physical characteristics of individual CPUs.
* Refer to www.asus.com for the Memory QVL (Qualified Vendors Lists).
- Multi-GPU Support
Supports NVIDIA® 4-Way SLI™ Technology *1
Supports NVIDIA® 3-Way SLI™ Technology
Supports NVIDIA® 2-Way SLI™ Technology
Supports AMD 4-Way CrossFireX Technology *1
Supports AMD 3-Way CrossFireX™ Technology
Supports AMD 2-Way CrossFireX Technology
- Expansion Slots
4 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (x16, x16/x16, x16/x8/x8, x16/x8/x8/x8 or x8/x8/x8/x8 mode with 40-LANE CPU; x16, x16/x8 or x8/x8/x8 mode with 28-LANE CPU) *2
1 x PCIe 2.0 x4 *3
1 x PCIe 2.0 x1
New Intel® Core™ i7 X-Series Processors :
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M Key, type 2260/2280/22110 storage devices support ( Supports PCIE SSDs only)*4
1 x U.2 port, support PCIe 3.0 x4 NVM Express storage*4
Intel® X99 chipset :
10 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s),
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10
Supports Intel® Smart Response Technology*5
Intel® I218V, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s)
Intel® I211-AT, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s)
Dual Gigabit LAN controllers- 802.3az Energy Efficient Ethernet (EEE) appliance
ROG GameFirst Technology
- Wireless Data Network
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Supports dual band frequency 2.4/5 GHz
Support ASUS Wi-Fi Go! Utility
Up to 1300Mbps transfer speed
ROG SupremeFX 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
– Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
Audio Feature :
– SupremeFX Shielding™ Technology
– DTS Connect
– Optical S/PDIF out port(s) at back panel
– Audio amplifier: Provides the highest-quality sound for headphone and speakers
– Premium Japanese-made audio capacitors: Provide warm, natural and immersive sound with exceptional clarity and fidelity
– Sonic Studio II
– Sonic Radar II
- USB Ports
Intel® X99 chipset : *3
4 x USB 3.0 port(s) (4 at mid-board)
Intel® X99 chipset : *6
6 x USB 2.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, black, 4 at mid-board)
ASMedia® USB 3.1 controller :
2 x USB 3.1 port(s) (2 at back panel, black, Type-C)
ASMedia® USB 3.1 controller : *3
2 x USB 3.1 port(s) (2 at back panel, red, Type-A)
ASMedia® USB 3.0 controller :
4 x USB 3.0 port(s) (4 at back panel, blue)
- ROG Exclusive Features
1 x DRAM channel switch
– Aura Lighting Control
– Aura RGB Strip Headers
Extreme Engine Digi+ :
– IR3555 PoweIRstage®
– MicroFine Alloy Chokes
– 10K Black Metallic Capacitors
ROG Extreme OC kit :
– ReTry button
– Safe Boot button
– Start button
– Reset button
– Slow Mode
– LN2 Mode
– PCIe x16 Lane Switch
– One-click Overclocking
– Power On
UEFI BIOS features :
– O.C. Profile
– GPU.DIMM Post
– Tweakers’ Paradise
– ROG SSD Secure Erase
– Graphic Card Information Preview
- Special Features
5-Way Optimization by Dual Intelligent Processors 5
– 5-Way Optimization tuning key perfectly consolidates TPU, EPU, DIGI+ VRM, Fan Xpert 4, and Turbo Core App
ASUS Wi-Fi GO!
– Wi-Fi GO! Function: Cloud GO!, Remote Desktop, Remote Keyboard & Mouse, File Transfer
ASUS Exclusive Features :
– AI Suite 3
– Ai Charger+
– USB 3.1 Boost
– Media Streamer
ASUS Quiet Thermal Solution :
– ASUS Fan Xpert 4
ASUS EZ DIY :
– ASUS CrashFree BIOS
– ASUS EZ Flash 3
– ASUS USB BIOS Flashback
– ASUS UEFI BIOS EZ Mode
– Multi-language BIOS
– Push Notice
ASUS Q-Design :
– ASUS Q-Code
– ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
– ASUS Q-DIMM
– ASUS Q-Connector
Overclocking Protection :
– ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)
- Operating System Support
Windows® 10 , 64bit
Windows® 8.1 , 32bit/64bit
Windows® 7 , 32bit/64bit
- Back I/O Ports
1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse combo port(s)
2 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
2 x USB 3.1 (black)Type-C
2 x USB 3.1 (red)Type-A
4 x USB 3.0 (blue)
2 x USB 2.0 (one port can be switched to USB BIOS Flashback)
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
5 x Audio jack(s)
1 x Clear CMOS button(s)
3 x Wi-Fi antenna port(s)
1 x USB BIOS Flashback Button(s)
- Internal I/O Ports
1 x Aura RGB Strip Header
2 x USB 3.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 4 USB 3.0 port(s)
2 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 4 USB 2.0 port(s)
1 x M.2 Socket 3 for M Key, type 2260/2280/22110 storage devices support ( Support PCIE SSD only)
1 x TPM header
10 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
1 x CPU Fan connector(s)
1 x CPU OPT Fan connector(s)
3 x Chassis Fan connector(s)
1 x Power Fan connector(s)
1 x Thunderbolt header(s)
1 x 24-pin EATX Power connector(s)
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
1 x 4-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
1 x SLI/CFX switch (2/3-WAY adjustments)
1 x Front panel audio connector(s) (AAFP)
1 x MemOK! button(s)
1 x Slow Mode switch(es)
9 x ProbeIt Measurement Points
1 x Thermal sensor connector(s)
1 x EZ Plug connector(s) (4-pin Molex power connector)
1 x Power-on button(s)
1 x Reset button(s)
1 x BIOS Switch button(s)
1 x 5-pin EXT_FAN(Extension Fan) connector
1 x Water Pump header (4-pin)
1 x LN2 Mode jumper(s)
1 x ROG extension (ROG_EXT) header(s)
1 x Safe Boot button
1 x ReTry button
1 x U.2 connector
1 x System panel connector
1 x DRAM channel switch
1 x PCIe x16 lane switch
SupremeFX Hi-Fi Kit:
– 1 x SupremeFX Hi-Fi
– 1 x SupremeFX Hi-Fi cable
1 x 2-Way SLI bridge(s)
10 x SATA power cable
1 x M.2 Screw Package
2 x CPU installation tool
1 x ASUS 3T3R dual band Wi-Fi moving antennas (Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac compliant)
1 x Fan Extension Card (3 x 4-pin fan out)
1 x Fan Extension card screw pack
1 x 3-Way SLI bridge(s)
1 x 4-Way SLI bridge(s)
1 x Q-connector(s) (1 in 1)
1 x 12 in 1 ROG Cable Label(s)
ROG Fan Label
1 x 5-pin to 5-pin cable
1 x Extension Cable for RGB strips (80 cm)
3 x Thermistor cable(s)
1 x USB drive with utilities and drivers
1 x I/O frame
2 x ROG coasters
128 Mb Flash ROM, UEFI AMI BIOS, PnP, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 3.0, ACPI 5.0, Multi-language BIOS, ASUS EZ Flash 3, CrashFree BIOS 3, F11 EZ Tuning Wizard, F6 Qfan Control, F3 My Favorites, Quick Note, Last Modified log, F12 PrintScreen, and ASUS DRAM SPD (Serial Presence Detect) memory information.
WfM 2.0, WOL by PME, PXE
- Form Factor
Extended ATX Form Factor
12 inch x 10.7 inch ( 30.5 cm x 27.2 cm )
*1 28-LANE CPUs can only support up to 3-Way SLI™/ 3-Way CrossFireX™
*2 The PCIEx8_4 slot shares bandwidth with M.2 and U.2.
*3 The PCIEx4_1 slot shares bandwidth with front USB3_34 ports and back USB3.1_EC1_EA2 ports. If a X2 device is connected to the PCIEx4_1 slot, the front USB3_34 ports will be disabled. If a X4 or higher device is connected to the PCIEx4_1 slot, both front USB3_34 and back USB3.1_EC1_EA2 ports will be disabled.
*4 These ports share bandwidth with PCIEx8_4 slot.
*5 These functions will work depending on the CPU installed.
*6 2 x USB2.0 port at mid-board shares with ROG extension (ROG_EXT) port.
With the packaging of the Rampage V Edition 10, it is clear that ASUS wanted the unpacker to feel what they’re in for before assembling the motherboard. The box of the motherboard is on the heavier side, it is clearly making the statement that this is a flagship product. Opening the box up, you are first graced with the motherboard itself. This was the most exciting part for me. When I held the motherboard in my hand and gave it a quick visual inspection, I could clearly say that this is ASUS’ best job ever done on a motherboard. The sheer quality of how this board was put together, each and every capacitor, IC, port, slot, is of the finest quality.
Further opening up the box, we are greeted with a bunch of add ons and accessories. The full list of accessories is given in the Specifications section above.
Here is a video by ASUS illustrating the features offered in the motherboard.
The ROG Rampage V Edition 10 offers four USD 3.1 ports. These ports are 50% faster than USB 3.0. You get ASUS’ Extreme Engine Digi+ technology, which includes high-grade alloy chokes, ICs and capacitors to give you the best possible power management, voltage control and overclocking headroom, while ensuring safety and stability. The Wi-Fi offered on the chipset supports 801.11 ac 2.4/5 Ghz. This wifi module can reach transfer speeds of up to 1300Mbps.
SupremeFX DAC Audio and Sonic Studio II
Now here is the most exciting feature to me on the Rampage V Edition 10, the SupremeFX ESS ES9018K2M digital-to-analog converter (DAC). This is a separate unit that comes with the motherboard, that installs in the front panel of your cabinet. This DAC alone is worthy enough to buy the motherboard, whether you’ll use the other features or not. It uses dual Texas Instruments LM4562 op-amps and TPA6120A2 headphone amp. These are high quality op-amps, that will ensure audiophile grade sound, and drive even the most demanding 600-ohm impedance headphones.
The motherboard gives enough value to audiophiles even if the included DAC and audio circuitry were the only reasons the buyer was buying the board. The audio components on the board are isolated from the rest of the board’s circuitary by a SupremeFX shield which block electromagnetic interference from the rest of the motherboard. You also get high quality Nichicon capacitors.
ASUS’ updated Sonic Studio II has plentiful features. If you’re familiar with ASUS’ Xonar sound cards, you would feel right at home with Sonic Studio. Dolby Surround, Emulated 7.1 surround, different sound modes for movies, music and games, are common additions. What really appealed to me the amount of streaming features that Sonic Studio offers. “Casting Enhancer” improves the audio quality in your streams by reducing artifacts and stabilising overall voice volume. There is a feature that allows cleaner microphone conversations. Sonic Suite II works as advertised.
The ROG series is primarily geared towards gamers and overclockers. The Rampage V Edition 10 offers a sleuth of overclocking features to make the process easy, even if, like me, you’re terrified at the thought of overclocking your processor. You get DIMM switches. These switches can deactivate a DIMM RAM slot of your choice without removing the memory module. I have learnt from experience that removing/attaching your RAM module multiple times during the life of your PC slowly damages both the module and the slot. These switches remove the need to remove modules during the overclocking process. Ofcourse, you will have to remove the module if you intend on replacing the stick completely.
Just like the DIMM switches, you also get four PCIe x16 activate/deactivate switches. This again, removes the necessity of removing graphics cards, something that is a task in itself, especially is your motherboard is populated with a lot components. Reaching the slot lock for a PCIe lane can be quite a challenge, given the limited space.
One really handy feature I found was the Safe Boot Button. Tapping this button powers off your system and restarts it into Safe Mode. A boon, especially on Windows 10, where booting in Safe Mode isn’t as straight forward as it used to be. This is also handy when Windows isn’t booting. You get a “ReTry” Button that immediately boots your system. This comes in handy when your system fails to move beyond POST (power-on self-test). The generic MemOK! button, that syncs incompatible RAM according to your motherboard’s supported frequency is present too.
The Rampage V Edition 10 board has six onboard fan headers. All fan headers are 4-pin and support PWM/DC fans with Auto Detection. One of these fan slots supports high-speed high-current fans which require up to 3 Amps of power. If you’re using more than six fans, which is normal if you’re building on this motherboard, ASUS has gone all the way to provide a Fan Extension Header Card. This is a separate PCI card with extra 4-pin fan headers if you’d like to fit in three more fans, apart from the six headers provided directly on the motherboard. A separate water pump header, which offers full control of PWM/DC water pumps is provided too.
The motherboard has five thermal sensors located through the motherboard. One in the CPU slot, one above, one just above the first PCIe X16 slot, one in the motherboards heat sink, below the ROG branded cover, and the final one on the bottom right zone of the motherboard, near the cabinet jumper connections. The included Fan extension card provides three additional sensors. Each header can be set to monitor and react up to 3 multiple thermal sensors.
Aura RGB Lighting
The Rampage V Edition 10 is hands down, the ultimate motherboard that offers the most LED lighting zones in a motherboard. All the LED zones support the full spectrum of colours, and can be fine tuned in ASUS’s Aura software. The motherboard is a spectacle to look at when the LEDs are fading in and fading out, all synchronised together. There are a total of 15 LED lights, split into five sections. ASUS’ Aura software has a number of exciting lighting presets that you can use to exploit the full-range LED lights. “Breathing” is an effect in which all the lights fade in and fade out in a colour of your choice. There’s also a preset which matches the lights according to the music you are playing on your computer. One preset I really liked was the “CPU Temperature” preset. This preset changes the intensity of the lighting according to CPU load. Exciting, aint it? ASUS has also provided a 4-pin RGB strip header. This header supports standard 12V RGB strips, and can be controlled from the Aura program.
Advanced UEFI BIOS
Before I begin talking about the features the Rampage V Edition 10’s UEFI BIOS provides, let me just say that this is the most comprehensive and easy-to-use BIOS I have ever come across. And while being easy-to-use, you can control a whole lot of aspects of your computer assembly. ASUS has really gone all the way with the motherboard. They have assured that the user gets the best experience, and that they have all the tools to keep their system running optimally.
The BIOS can do a speed test on all your fans and reach optimal fan speed, according to temperatures. This is why I loved using the “Silent” feature in the BIOS. My system was the quietest even under moderate load. I am using an Antec 120mm fan attached to the Antec Kuhler H100 water cooler. In the front of the case I have a Corsair ML120 and ML140 magnetic levitation fans. There’s a CoolerMaster 140mm fan on the rear too. The BIOS did a quick run of all the fans, calculated their minimum and maximum rpm (rotations per minute), and synchronised them with the sytem temperatures. Amazing! If auto-optimisation isn’t your thing, which is a shame because the Rampage V Edition 10 handles this specific aspect really well, you can always manually adjust every single fan in your system.
You also get the 5-Way Optimization feature, which is a one-click overclocking tool, common in ROG motherboards. This mode keeps you away from tinkering low level settings, like voltage and power, and manages it itself. It works pretty well, I for one never experienced any problems with it. It did a considerable overlclock to my CPU, and stayed stable during stress tests. Another common ROG feature included is the EZ System Tuning Wizard. Here, you can select your usage scenarios and the BIOS sets the best possible settings and/or overclock for you. This feature also works with RAID configuration for faster data transfer speeds. There is a “My Favourite” tab where you can add the settings you frequently tinker with. This tab also lists your most used settings.
Having discussed the headlining features, let us know talk about the other salient features of the Rampage V Edition 10.
The motherboard uses ESD guards, a circuitry on the LAN port. These ESD guards have a greater tolerance to static electricity, and offer greater protection against surges (up to 15KV). All the components in the LAN port are surge protected, making it extremely secure and stable.
The board’s onboard WI-Fi is no joke either. This Wi-Fi assembly can take home many high end external wireless routers too. The Wi-Fi supports the latest 802.11ac Wi-Fi, with 3×3 dual-band 2.4/5Ghz antennas, which support upto 1300Mbps. I tested how this works. I was able to get a full signal on my Macbook Air 2013 in a room about 15 meters away from the router. There were many walls and furniture interfering with the signal, but I still got four bars. On my Beetel router, the one I use regularly, I barely manage one bar, with countless drops. I use a 50mpbs internet connections, and the download speeds I got using the Rampage V Edition 10’s router was about 6MBps. It’s the highest I have ever received when sitting this far from the wireless router. This motherboard is a true all-in-one package, and what makes it special is it excels in all its aspects. There is no cutting corners over here.
Some features you would expect from a motherboard of this stature. You get two of latest reversible USB 3.1 Type-C slots on the back panel, along with two USB 3.1 Type-A slots. USB 3.1 is about two times faster than USB 3.0. On the board, you also get the latest U.2 and M.2 connectors, the fastest connectors right now for SSDs. These connectors have a massive transfer speed of 32Gbit/s. ASUS has been generous enough to provide a whopping ten SATA sockets too.
The Rampage V Edition 10 fully supports CrossFire and SLI. It supports 2-Way, 3-Way and 4-Way graphics cards. You also get the 2-Way, 3-Way and 4-Way SLI cables, that support GeForce GTX 10xx or Pascal series of graphics cards. ASUS has introduced a new, patent pending technology for this motherboard, called “SafeSlot.” This is a slight modification to the PCIe slot, which uses material with superior retention and shearing resistance. These slots are manufactured in a single step using new insert-molding process. These ports, ASUS claimes to have 1.6X retention force and 1.8X stronger Shearing Test. compared to other motherboards.
By jove! Where do we begin. The ASUS ROG Rampage V Edition 10 in one word, is overwhelming. What I mean is, the first time I held the motherboard in hand, I could feel my heart thumping. This isn’t a joke, this is for real. When they talk about a person or an entity going “ALL IN”, I guess this is what “ALL IN” means for ASUS. This is a great motherboard, hands down. Each and every feature, each spec, is done with utmost quality and finesse, with performance, long term usage and safety in mind.
You get both U.2 and M.2 slots, excellent onboard audio, a separate SupremeFX DAC, a personal favourite addition, you get not one, but two USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-A and Type-C ports. You can fast charge your phones with these ports too. There is support for ten SATA drives, 3/4way SLI/CrossFireX, six 4-pin fan headers and a fan extension card, all of which support PWM/DC fans. Not to mention, a great BIOS with enough features to do justice to the motherboard. This is a great example of how a BIOS system should keep up with a motherboard.
Then comes the LED lighting features, which again, is one of the best I’ve seen on a motherboard, ever. There are 15 LED lights that support the full spectrum of RGB colours. the Aura Lighting Control software works perfectly in the way it manages the lights.
Now, lets come to the most important part of the review. How much does the Rampage V Edition 10 cost, and, is it worth it? Currently retailing at around ₹49,000 including taxes, this by means is a cheap motherboard. You can build an entire system with that money. Heck, you can build a nice system and buy a flagship graphics card for that money. Yes, the price is an overkill, most definitely. Although, is it fair or not, that is the main question. We think it is. It is more than fair. The amount of features offered are right up there. There is no competition to this motherboard. I know people who would buy this motherboard for the DAC alone. For PC enthusiasts, this is the real deal. If money is not an issue, you can buy this motherboard with your eyes shut.
+Clinical build quality in every aspect of the motherboard
+An astonishing array of features
+SupremeFX DAC is a delight to use
+Incredible AURA LED lighting system
+Four USB 3.1 ports!
+Bundled Wi-Fi router works great
+Built to last
-There are no negatives
-The position of the U.2 slot is a little intrusive