Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z motherboard review and notes

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Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z motherboard review and notes

Postby Sethioz » Wed Jun 12, 2013 5:05 am

crosshair-v-formula-overview.jpg


I recently ordered this motherboard (Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z) and it arrived about 10 hours ago, so i've spent like 10 hours on messing with it and im so frustrated. don't get me wrong, its a good board with tons of features, but maybe that's the problem.

Since Asus always makes good stuff, i first bring out bad things, because most is good, but those bad things really can piss the shit out of you. anyway, here's the list:

1. by default, HD audio is disabled, i could not figure out why the fuck i can't get audio working, read on forums and stuff and someone said "i somehow disabled it when overclocking" .. but i never did any of that, i went thru bios quickly to check that common stuff is ok (temps ..etc), but never changed shit, well i changed HDD/SDD boot order and that's about it. so yeah .. its disabled by default and its under some idiotic category, onboard devices or something. and on top of that, the default installer wont install the audio, you have to go into "driver" folder and install it form there, the "setup.exe" wont do jack shit. audio panel wont boot with it.

1.1. audio panel is crap .. it doesn't even have "speaker fill". so when listening to music, it outputs to stereo only, there's some lame "DTS connect" but when i put this to wide spread, then it loses bass completely ... i mean WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THAT??? who's bright idea was it to make such retardic audio panel in first place????????? ghaaa that pisses me off so bad. i could not find solution to this, so instead i found "VL audio" plugin for winamp, this allows me to output to any speaker that is connected to PC, that fixed the music issue ...

2. USB3.0 is disabled by default, yet another annoyance...i did not understand why my 3tb external hdd aint working .. but then i realized that usb3.0 was turned off in bios by default + lot of other stuff.

3. i thought it was suppose to be "smart" motherboard .. but apparently it isnt or maybe i just managed to produce some "elite" error. i wanted to set my CPU clock from 3600mhz to 3800mhz .. but when i exited bios and saved settings, pc powered off .. powered back on and motherboard showed "FF" error code ... which ofcourse was NOT in manual, well it was, but it says "reserved for future AMD models"...duuuhhhh wtf?!
- fix - i powered off machine completely, went into bios and it started spamming me with "invalid value" ..everytime i closed the dialog it popped up as fast as it closed ... so i couldnt even move around in bios, but i was spamming "left arrow" real fast while pressing enter, so i got off of that screen and using same method i managed to undo the clock change .. not touching it again until i know for sure how it works.
i only tried, because it was told to be smart motherboard that doesn't get stuck like that and wont kill your hardware, instead it shows what is going on, but guess not ..

4. has no IDE, but i guess its outdated anyway, i just have some IDE HDDs and would like to use them, but i don't really consider this as downside, never the less i mentioned it.

5. no PCI slots, but again, not really a downside, since no one really uses PCI, well you can get some excellent USB cards into PCI, like 5 - 7 port USB cards, but again they're for PCI-E 1x too and they're faster. i just have lot of old pc parts that are still perfect in new PCs, like usb card i mentioned or attitional Ethernet / LAN card, which i do use a lot, so i can have 2 connections, 1 internet and 1 local (i use wifi, but its connected via LAN, so i need 2 LANs really and could use PCI port, but not too important)

6. boots up slower than my AsRock m3a770de did .. not sure what's up with that. well i set a bios pass, so first thing that comes on monitor is password, it won't show any screens or nothing, that might slow things down, but it "hangs" on the logo screen bit longer or maybe its just my imagination, either way its not a big deal, maybe 3-4 seconds longer? or maybe im wrong .. since im really tired of that audio issue.

7. MOLEX power input on motherboard is in very idiotic place (its on video review too). im not sure if you even have to connect it, but i connected it anyways. in manual it says it is to power graphics cards, but huh ?! i thought GPUs take their power from the PCI-E power cables 6 and/or 8 pin ones. maybe for older graphics cards ... but who is idiot enough to put some old junk video cards onto this motherboard???? i don't understand these things at all, but it was in bad place and very hard to reach it with MOLEX, without pulling the cable over everything.

Well those are only downsides i could find, everything else works great and board looks really excellent.

It has built-in Start and Reset buttons and bunch of other stuff too, like enter bios instantly ..etc. also flashing bios is very easy, it has a built in file manager in bios, its really great feature.
so you can put your bios upgrade onto hdd/ssd and select it via bios's file manager.
also it allows you to change logo in bios, but it only applies when you flash, it has a tool so you can edit the bios before flashing and put your own logo in there (havent tried it yet).
8 channel HD audio / sound card and it's not just hardware, it has great visual on motherboard, it has a "glowing" red line/connector running on motherboard, from audio jacks to audio chipset, it really gives it nice futeristic look :)

SLI and CrossFireX support, motherboard itself came with 2-way SLI bridge + 3-way SLI bridge + CrossFireX bridge.

Motherboard also includes 6x black SATA2/3 cables

Reset/Power/LED ..etc pins have a big connector, which makes it a lot easier to install them. you don't have to follow the manual or anything, you just take that big connector, then follow the cables from your PC case and connect them to that connector, then plug the connector to motherboard (it only fits one way and into one certain place, no room to go wrong). Usually connecting those pins/cables can be annoying, but not on this one.

It also has 4x + 8x CPU power cable connectors, i still don't know what is the difference between 8-pin and 4-pin CPU power cables, my CPU was working fine using 4-pin CPU cable and it works fine using 8-pin CPU cable too, my old PSU had only 4-pin CPU connector and cpu performace was same as with 8-pin .. so no idea what the difference is .. or WHY would this motherboard have 4 and 8 ??? since you can connect 4-pin PSU cable into 8-pin one too ..lol no idea why it would have 2, maybe for easier access?? since they're in different places.

SLI works great now, since it has full SLI support, on my old motherboard i had to use HyperSLI hack to enable SLI, but on this it works by default, i don't think it improves performance, but it is yet to be tested. on my old mobo one slot was only 4x pci-e, this is 16x pci-e, both slots.
also 2-way SLI is designed so you have huge cap between graphics cards (can fit another card between them), so it solved my heat issue that bottom card heated up top card.


Don't let those bad sides fool you, it's a great motherboard. those annoyance occur only once .. maybe twice. once you figure them out, you're good to go, well except that idiot audio panel, i don't like it, but i found a "bypass" so i guess its good ..

I like the looks of it and BIOS looks great too, allows you to change so much. One of the best AMD motherboards for sure.
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Re: Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z motherboard review and notes

Postby KEN » Wed Jun 12, 2013 7:35 am

Sethioz wrote:It also has 4x + 8x CPU power cable connectors, i still don't know what is the difference between 8-pin and 4-pin CPU power cables, my CPU was working fine using 4-pin CPU cable and it works fine using 8-pin CPU cable too, my old PSU had only 4-pin CPU connector and cpu performace was same as with 8-pin .. so no idea what the difference is .. or WHY would this motherboard have 4 and 8 ??? since you can connect 4-pin PSU cable into 8-pin one too ..lol no idea why it would have 2, maybe for easier access?? since they're in different places.


Are they not next to each other? I mean 4+4.. or is it 4... and then some distance away another 4 ?
some cpu draw more power and so another 4 is required. Just like GPU some use 1x6 pin connector and some need 2x6 pin and some need 1x 6+2.
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Re: Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z motherboard review and notes

Postby Sethioz » Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:54 pm

WHAT are you talking about Ken?
I'm not talking about 8-pin that is compatible with 4-pin PSU (psu that has 4-pin CPU cable only), im talking about 8-pin + 4-pin (total of 12 pins, but in different places).
here's a pic:
fksdjalfda.jpg



i also uploaded pic of mobo to first post, so people know how it looks like.
what confuses me, why would it need 8 + 4 pins ??? if PSU has only 4-pin connector, then it can be connected to 8-pin one .. i know it, because my last motherboard had only 8-pin and my previous PSU had only 4-pin CPU power. so if i have psu with 4-pin, it goes into 8-pin lol, that's why its so confusing ... it's like that 4-pin is there for no reason.
Well my PSU has both actually, it has 8-pin and also 4-pin, what would happen if i connect both?? its confusing, i might just contact Asus and ask.
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Re: Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z motherboard review and notes

Postby KEN » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:00 pm

Ah this mobo has an extra it seems.
Your PSU should have 2 x 4 pins and just a 4 pin one for the etx 12V .

Some PSU like my old Zebronics one only have 1 x 4 pins for etx 12V since it is old and is a bad psu. It can't power much stuff.

What Asus has done is they gave 2 options, if your cpu only needs 1 x 4pin, you can just use the slot on the RIGHT hand side and leave the 2nd connecter from your PSU behind the case for less cables in front. If it uses 2 x 4pins then just use the one on the LEFT hand side of the mobo with both the 4 pin cables(8 pins total) from the PSU.

I think this is the case but yeah contacting asus should be a good idea.
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Re: Asus Crosshair V Formula-Z motherboard review and notes

Postby Sethioz » Wed Jun 12, 2013 11:55 pm

no, my PSU has 8-pin and 4-pin. 8 one is not 4+4, it is not seperateable, it's one piece. i know some PSUs have 4+4 that can be used either as 4 or 8, but mine has seperate, so i could fill up both.

yeah i sent them question regarding this, also that MOLEX connector on motherboard doesn't make much sense, in manual it says something that its for graphics cards .. huh? since when graphics cards take power via pci-e slots? they have seperate power.
some ancient ones don't take power via seperate cable, but who would buy this motherboard and then use some ancient graphics cards LOL ?
+ those ancient ones work just fine without the extra MOLEX, so i asked about that too.
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