There haven’t been many reviews on our site lately that were dedicated to solutions based on Intel’s latest offering for LGA775 platform – Intel P45 Express chipset. And there was a good reason for that. The thing is that our first experience with mainboards based on the today’s most advanced chipset wasn’t that successful at all. Those few mainboards that we checked out didn’t reach any new performance heights and didn’t help us achieve any new overclocking records. Moreover, the solutions from ASUS, MSI and Gigabyte that we have already discussed seemed a little raw, had a few bugs in the BIOS and actual hardware thus making not the most favorable impression.
Hopefully the situation has changed by now. Intel P45 Express based mainboards should be getting more mature BIOS versions free from early-stage problems and using the potential of the new chipset to the full extent. So, it seems to be the right time to resume testing these products.
We picked ASUS P5Q Pro for our new round of experiments. It is not a top product, but a solution from mainstream price segment supporting DDR2 SDRAM and featuring two PCI Express x16 slots. We believe reviewing top high-end solutions may not make that much sense any more. Those computer enthusiasts who strive for maximum performance will hardly be satisfied with an LGA775 system on Core 2 Duo or Core 2 Quad processors at this time. They are anxiously awaiting the new Core i7 processors that should be announced within the next few weeks. As for Intel P45 Express based boards, they should be of primary interest to those users who need not just speed, but the optimal combination of speed and price. This is where ASUS P5Q Pro looks pretty promising. It boasts great functionality, but is not overloaded with features. Moreover, ASUS marketing team seems to have decided not to focus their efforts on P5Q Pro, so it doesn’t have any useless “decorative” additions.
In other words, if ASUS P5Q Pro also works the way all high-quality solutions with ASUS logo should, then it has every chance to get our best recommendations. So, our today’s review will be devoted to checking out how good ASUS P5Q Pro mainboard is in real life.