Thursday, May 20th 2010

ASUS Gives Rampage III Extreme 4-way SLI Capability with ROG Xpander

ASUS has come up with a Frankenstein solution which enables 4-way SLI on the Rampage III Extreme motherboard with full PCI-Express 2.0 x16 bandwidth, called the ROG Xpander. The device is a daughterboard that sits on the motherboard with connections to its PCI-E 2.0 x16 slots. While it might not fit into cases, it is intended to work on test-benches. The two PCI-E x16 connections from the motherboard are wired to two NVIDIA nForce 200 bridge chips, which give out two x16 links each, driving the four x16 slots on the daughterboard. It takes input from one 6-pin PCI-E power input, and three 4-pin Molex inputs, though not all may be required.

The ROG Xpander ideally would draw 12W of power per nForce chip, and with its own power inputs, will not draw any power from the motherboard for the four PCI-E cards. The point of using this device is that ASUS did not give 4-way SLI capability to the Rampage III Extreme from the factory, even though it already has four PCI-E x16 slots (x8 each when all are populated). A fan seated on the Xpander ensures components on the motherboard under it aren't suffocated of cool air. ASUS ran a 4-way SLI test of four GeForce GTX 480 graphics cards on 3DMark Vantage, where the Core i7 980X @ 6 GHz powered setup scored P52422 points.

And now for the price. For now it's not known, but considering that the two nForce 200 chips and 4-way SLI license from NVIDIA cost close to US $100, this device won't be cheap. Ideally expect it to be under $200, which is still not a bad value proposition considering other 4-way SLI capable motherboards such as the Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD9 cost around US $700, while the Rampage III Extreme goes for "just" $380.

Source: NordicHardware
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47 Comments on ASUS Gives Rampage III Extreme 4-way SLI Capability with ROG Xpander

#1
HammerON
The Watchful Moderator
Interesting - but very wierd:)
Posted on Reply
#2
A Cheese Danish
Yes, very weird. Seems like it will mainly be used on tech-benches instead of cases.
Which turns me away
Posted on Reply
#4
HammerON
The Watchful Moderator
I have a tech station and wouldn't mind trying it out if anyone wants to lend me the motherboard, Xpander and 4 GTX 480's:laugh:
And another PSU...
Posted on Reply
#5
A Cheese Danish
I mean it's a great idea, don't get me wrong. I just wouldn't buy it.
Posted on Reply
#6
arroyo
Thst's just sick! They have created brand new standard from ATX --> Frankenstein TX.
I hope case builders like Antec, Coolermaster and others don't catch that idea as a proper solution.
I've had Dell GX150 once and it has similar PCI expander that make two PCI slots from one, but it was PCI and not PCI-E
Posted on Reply
#7
tigger
I'm the only one
Definately a frankenstein solution.Wonder how many people will mod their cases to fit this in.Would be a problem screwing the cards in though.
Posted on Reply
#8
a_ump
fucking A, i wanna see 4xGTX 480:
-Crysis
-Stalker:call of pyprat
-GTA4
-Age of Conan
-MS Flight Sim X
-World in Conflict
-Metro 2033
-BF BC2
think thats bout it XD
Posted on Reply
#10
kaneda
i still want to see 4 HD5970's, i refuse to accept nobody has had 4 cards(8 gpu's) in a single machine yet.
Posted on Reply
#11
Kitkat
u know thats cool dont even FRONT :roll:


so im ATI camp and its still cool comon. very cool lol hahaha


edit its ugly as hell but comon they never stop thinking thats so cool hahahhahaha


reminds me of "The Big Hit" ... someone will always have a TRACE BUSTERBUSTERBUSTERBUSTERBUSTER!!!! hahahha
Posted on Reply
#12
DriedFrogPills
by: kaneda
i still want to see 4 HD5970's, i refuse to accept nobody has had 4 cards(8 gpu's) in a single machine yet.
i don't think anyone would have that as crssfire only goes up to 4 gpu's that and the 5970 only has one crossfire finger. So even if you did have 4 5970's in one machine only two cards would be talking to each other in CF
Posted on Reply
#13
Easo
Very fugly, BUT THE POWAH!!!
Posted on Reply
#14
crow1001
Stupid IMO, it's only for noobs that like to bench vantage because that's all 4-way SLI supports, games will see no benefit. :wtf:
Posted on Reply
#15
Marineborn
i am honestrly thinking about buying this and getting 2 more 5850's lol
Posted on Reply
#16
chaotic_uk
by: a_ump
fucking A, i wanna see 4xGTX 480:
-Crysis
-Stalker:call of pyprat
-GTA4
-Age of Conan
-MS Flight Sim X
-World in Conflict
-Metro 2033
-BF BC2
think thats bout it XD
very modern and mature reply there :shadedshu
Posted on Reply
#17
roast
Thats crazy. Innovative, interesting, but crazy. I still dont get why the board wasnt designed to support it in the first place. Seems to me that Asus shouldnt go overboard on the price, for that reason.
Posted on Reply
#18
brandonwh64
Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!
how do you fit the Video card inside the case with the PCIex slots higher than the normal board?
Posted on Reply
#19
roast
by: brandonwh64
how do you fit the Video card inside the case with the PCIex slots higher than the normal board?
I dont think you can. I think its purely for test benches.
Posted on Reply
#20
Bravo2Zero
Has anyone tried nvidia on this board

Has anyone tried nvidia cards on this board yet in a 4 way sli ?
Posted on Reply
#21
kenkickr
The only way you could fit this with 4 cards or whatever would be to severely modify a case for it or run in a tech station. Who in their right mind would run 4x 470/480 in a case anyways, unless H2O cooled.
Posted on Reply
#25
yogurt_21
ah the daughterboard, I thought that had gone by the way side, latencies through the roof, etc. not to mention the nightmare of case mounting. oh well I guess it was easier than launching a new board.
Posted on Reply
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