up
en ru ua
menu


chieftec_ban_160.gif

logo minifile

::>Motherboards > 2015 > 02 > ASUS H81-GAMER

Print version
Republish review

01-02-2015


rss

Motherboard ASUS H81-GAMER: review and testing

ASUS continue to expand its relatively new line of devices ASUS Gamer, which is positioned as a more affordable alternative for gamers than the top-end ASUS ROG. In previous articles we have already got acquainted with a number of motherboards in this series, namely ASUS Z97-PRO GAMER, ASUS H97-PRO GAMER and ASUS B85-PRO GAMER. At this same time we will talk about ASUS H81-GAMER, which is the youngest (at the time of reviewing), the model in this lineup, made on the basis of chipset Intel H81. Let's compare it with the previously discussed boards:

 

ASUS Z97-PRO GAMER

ASUS H97-PRO GAMER

ASUS B85-PRO GAMER

ASUS H81-GAMER

USB 3.0

External/internal

4/2

4/2

2/2

2/2

USB 2.0

External/internal

2/6

2/6

4/4

4/4

RAM

(frequency)

4 x DIMM

Up to 32 GB

(800 – 3200 MHz)

4 x DIMM

Up to 32 GB

(800 – 1600 MHz)

4 x DIMM

Up to 32 GB

(800 – 1600 MHz)

4 x DIMM

Up to 32 GB

(800 – 1600 MHz)

PCIe x16

x16

x8+x8

x8+x8+x4

x16

x16+x4

x16

x16+x4

x16

 

PCIe x1

2

2

2

3

PCI

2

3

3

3

Video outputs

HDMI

DVI-D

D-Sub

HDMI

DVI-D

D-Sub

HDMI

DVI-D

D-Sub

DVI-D

D-Sub

Аudio outputs

6
Optical S/PDIF-out

6
Optical S/PDIF-out

6
Optical S/PDIF-out

5
Optical S/PDIF-out

SATA 6 Gb/s

4

4

4

2

SATA 3 Gb/s

No

No

2

2

SATA Express

1

1

No

No

eSATA

No

No

No

No

M.2 (NGFF)

1

1

No

No

Thunderbolt

No

No

No

No

LAN

Intel WGI218V

Intel WGI218V

Intel WGI217V

Intel WGI218V

Wi-Fi

No

No

No

No

Bluetooth

No

No

No

No

Power phases

8

8

8

4

Format

ATX

ATX

ATX

ATX

Estimated cost

$195

$175

$140

$110

As you can see, along with the low cost the new product combines the very interesting features, such as high-quality audio subsystem based on the codec SupremeFX and high network controller from Intel. Also note the presence of high-speed interfaces SATA 6Gb/s and USB 3.0, which are an integral part of the modern system.

ASUS H81-GAMER

And now let's go straight to the review of trends in more details and explore all of its features. The specification of motherboard ASUS H81-GAMER:

Producer

ASUS

Model

H81-GAMER (rev 1.02)

Chipset

Intel H81

CPU socket

Socket LGA1150

CPUs supported

Intel Core i7 / Core i5 / Core i3 / Pentium / Celeron of 4th gen

Memory frequency

1600 / 1333 / 1066 MHz

Memory support

4 x DDR3 DIMM- slots with support of memory up to 32 GB

Expansion slots

1 x PCI Express 2.0 x16

3 x PCI Express 2.0 x1

3 x PCI

Disk subsystem

Intel H81 chipset supports:

2 x SATA 6 Gb/s

2 x SATA 3 Gb/s

LAN

1 x Intel WGI218V (10/100/1000 Мb/s)

Sound subsystem

Codec SupremeFX

8-channel sound

S/PDIF Out

Power connectors

24-pin power socket ATX

8-pin power socket ATX12V

Fans

1 x CPU fan connector (4-pin)

2 x system fan connectors (4-pin)

Cooling

Aluminum radiators on chipset

Aluminum radiator on power subsystem elements

External I/O

1 x DVI-D

1 x D-Sub

1 x LAN (RJ45)

2 x USB 3.0

4 x USB 2.0

1 x Optical S/PDIF out

5 x audio jacks

2 х PS/2 (mouse or keyboard connection)

Internal I/O

1 x USB 3.0 with support of two USB 3.0 (19-pin)

2 x USB 2.0 each with support of two USB 2.0

1 х socketTPM

1 х socket COM

1 x CMOS

1 x connector of audio output to front panel

1 x set of front panel connectors

BIOS

64 Mb Flash ROM UEFI AMI BIOS

PnP, ACPI 5.0, SM BIOS 2.8, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0

Form-factor

user manual

warranty card

disk with drives and documents

2 x SATA cables

1 х interface panel plug

Dimensions

ATX

305 х 214 mm

Producer website

ASUS
Updated versions of BIOS and drives are available at support page

Packaging and content

ASUS H81-GAMER

Motherboard ASUS H81-GAMER is shipped in a cardboard box with a traditional branding ASUS Gamer in black and red colors. The front side, in addition to the name of the manufacturer and model of the device, includes the logo, which indicates about the support OS Windows 8.1.

ASUS H81-GAMER

The reverse side of the box, in addition to the image of the motherboard and a short list of its features, also contains the integration of several technologies:

  • SupremeFX - preset audio codec offers support of eight channel audio, and provides audio playback with a ratio signal/noise at the level of 115 dB. In order to avoid interference caused by electromagnetic interference, the audio codec shielding technology is used, and to maximize the sound quality audio capacitors ELNA are applied. We also note the amplifier TI R4580I enabled headphones with an impedance of 300 Ohms.
  • DRAM Over-current Protection - special fuses protect the memory modules against the damage caused by excessive amperage or short circuit.
  • Stainless Steel Back I/O - interface panel is made of high quality stainless steel withcoated chromium oxide. It has a high resistance to oxidation, making it three times more susceptible to breakage.
  • 10K Black Metallic Capacitors - the circuitry of motherboard uses exclusively Japanese solid capacitors Nichicon GT with increased up to 10 000 hours of life and 20% increase in thermal resistance.
  • ESD Guards - special fuses for added protection against electrostatic discharges are applied.

ASUS H81-GAMER

In the box with the ASUS H81-GAMER we found quite a standard set of accessories:

  • CD with drivers and utilities;
  • User Guide;
  • two SATA cables;
  • the interface panel plug.

Design and features

ASUS H81-GAMER

Like all the previously reviewed model of series ASUS Gamer, the novelty is executed on the black ATX PCB size, which is characterized by a reduced width (305 x 214 mm).

Due to the reduced width, mounting holes on the right side of the PCB there are absent, which means that you should observe some caution when connecting the main power cable and remote panel with ports USB 3.0, as excessive force may damage the board. For the rest, it is worth noting quite competent layout, including the fact that DIMM-Slots are equipped with latches on one side only for the greater convenience of building.  

ASUS H81-GAMER

On the back side of the motherboard is the usual base plate processor socket. Do note different ways to mount the radiator: chipset cooler is fixed with screws and the radiator on the elements of the power subsystem is fixed to the plastic clips.

ASUS H81-GAMER

At the bottom of the board there are the following connectors: front panel audio leading-in socket, COM and TPM ports, CMOS and front panel connection module. Also here are two modules for additional ports USB 2.0. Total number of USB 2.0 sockets is eight: four internal and four on the interface panel.

ASUS H81-GAMER

The possibility of organizing a disk subsystem is presented by two SATA 6 Gb/s and two SATA 3 Gb/s ports. All interfaces are realized by chipset Intel H81.

ASUS H81-GAMER

Main board ASUS H81-GAMER is equipped with four DIMM-slots for memory modules DDR3, which are equipped with latches on one side. RAM can operate in dual channel mode. To implement it the modules must be installed either in the first and third or second and fourth slots. Modules operating at frequencies from 1333 to 1600 MHz in nominal mode are supported. Maximum memory capacity may be up to 32 GB which is enough for almost any tasks.

Additionally note the module for connecting remote panel with ports USB 3.0. The total number is four: two external and two internal. Since Intel H81 chipset only supports two ports USB 3.0, then the operation of the two internal interfaces is implemented by the controller ASMedia ASM1042a.

ASUS H81-GAMER

ASUS H81-GAMER

Cooling system of the product includes two aluminum radiators: one is used for heat removal from chipset Intel H81, while the other covers power elements of the CPU. 

In the process of testing the following temperature indices were fixed:

  • radiator for chipset cooling – 38.2°C;
  • radiator for power elements of the CPU cooling – 52,7°C.

The obtained results clearly show a high efficiency of cooling system, indicating the proper selection of materials and design.

ASUS H81-GAMER

ASUS H81-GAMER

Processor power supply is performed via 4-phase scheme for computational cores and additional joints. Converter is based on a digital PWM controller ASP1252 with integrated power consumption control subsystem DIGI+ VRM. All power components of CPU have high reliability level: Nichicon GT solid capacitors, as well as chokes with ferrite core. Basic 24-pin and additional 8-pin connectors are use for power feeding.    

ASUS H81-GAMER

To extend the functionality the motherboard ASUS H81-GAMER has seven slots:

  1. PCI Express 2.0 x1;
  2. PCI Express 2.0 x16 (х16 mode);
  3. PCI Express 2.0 x1;
  4. PCI Express 2.0 x1;
  5. PCI;
  6. PCI;
  7. PCI.

As you can see, despite the presence of seven expansion slots, only one of them us used for installing the graphics card. It is PCI Express 2.0 x16 which is connected to the processor and always uses all 16 lines of the standard PCI Express 2.0. Recall that the Intel H81 chipset does not support any distribution lines between slots or work with a standard PCI Express 3.0, but its capacity is sufficient for the gaming system of primary or secondary level with a single graphics card, because the difference between PCI Express 3.0 and PCI Express 2.0 in this case is insignificant.

ASUS H81-GAMER

Since the chipset Intel H81 doesn’t support bus PCI, the functioning of the three respective slots is implemented by the bridge PCIE-PCI, based on the controller ASMedia ASM1083.

ASUS H81-GAMER

Multi I/O capabilities are based on NUVOTON NCT5538D chip which controls the operation of system fans, ports COM and PS/2 and provides the monitoring.

ASUS H81-GAMER

To support network connection there is gigabit LAN-controller Intel WGI218V.

ASUS H81-GAMER

Sound subsystem is based on HAD codec of 8-channel sound Realtek ALC887 that supports 2/4/5.1/7.1 sound systems and has several proprietary features. It presupposes the existence of a special audio amplifier TI R4580I with support of headphones with impedance up to 300 Ohm and high-quality audio capacitors ELNA. The codec is protected by special housing against magnetic pickups.

ASUS H81-GAMER

Do note that the area of sound subsystem is shielded by protective strip with red LED-lightning.

ASUS H81-GAMER

Interface panel of ASUS H81-GAMER model contains the following ports:

  • 1 x DVI-D;
  • 1 x D-Sub;
  • 2 x PS/2 for mouse and keyboard connection;
  • 1 x LAN (RJ45);
  • 2 x USB 3.0;
  • 4 x USB 2.0;
  • 1 х optical S/PDIF out;
  • 5 x audio ports.

This layout can be considered as very successful, since it has a convenient connection of multi-channel speakers, a sufficient number of ports USB, as well as the ability to put the COM port on the rear panel with the appropriate connector on the PCB. As for the absence of HDMI, for gaming motherboard its presence is not critical, as likely, the system will have a discrete graphics card.

ASUS H81-GAMER

ASUS H81-GAMER

ASUS H81-GAMER has quite standard features for organizing cooling system inside the case. There are three 4-pin fan connectors, one of which serves to cool the CPU, while the other two are designed for system fans.


Социальные комментарии Cackle
Site Search
facebook vk YouTube
google+ twitter rss
top10

vote

Голосование