eSATAII (aka external Serial ATA)
support is one of the most exciting features to pop on motherboards recently.
When it comes to external mass storage, bandwidth has always been an issue,
and Serial ATA makes even IEEE 1394b's 800Mbps bandwidth look paltry by
comparison. The P5B Deluxe/WiFi-AP has one external SATA (eSATA), and one Firewire port at the
This connection uses a slightly modified
SATA cable (not included), which is better suited to external connections. Standard internal
Serial ATA cables are sufficient for internal connections, but SATA-IO governing body decided a while back
that the external version should be a somewhat different format, thus creating the eSATA standard.
SATA hard drives are widely available, and the great thing is that hard drives
connected over this standard are just as fast as internal devices. The
connectors are hot swappable, so it makes adding and removing an massive external
hard drive about as complex as plugging in a USB memory key. For anyone who as
ever had to move Gig's of data over a USB cable, eSATA is simply awesome.
Accessories included with the board
The Asus P5B Deluxe/WiFi-AP motherboard is a high end motherboard and thus comes with everything
but the kitchen sink. In the box we find a stereo SoundMAX Superbeam microphone.
It comes with some Velcro patches which allow the microphone to attach your
monitor. If that's not your style, the microphone cable is 183 cm (6 feet) long,
so it can be put just about anywhere.
The Q-Connectors are little jumpers that
make connecting front panel I/O, USB or IEEE 1394 headers a snap. Since the
standards are different per manufacturer, cases often come with front panel
connectors broken down to one pin per line.
If you're a tweaker, this makes removing
the motherboard from a case a tedious task. With the Asus Q Connector, you
can connect all the case front panel pins to the proper Q connector then connect that
to the motherboard when you're ready.
motherboard to do some maintenance? Simply remove the Q Connector from the board
and plug it back in when you're set. Asus even labels the individual pin values
from ground to power and data.
The Asus P5B Deluxe/WiFi-AP motherboard uses a standard omni directional dipole antenna which
can be placed up to 40 cm away from the
computer, that should give you enough slack to put the antenna in a good position.
As we mentioned, the antenna has a magnetic base so it will stick to steel
Passive Copper heatsinks for the Chipset
The Asus P5B Deluxe/WiFi-AP motherboard has a
large passive copper heatsink on the processor VRM, connected by heatpipe
to the fanless northbridge heatsink.
The Intel P965 Express chipset generates a good deal
of heat, but in this situation it is a heatpipe that conducts the heat over
to a 28 fin copper heatsink which is cooled by exhaust airflow from the CPU
heatsink fan. The ICH8R Southbridge gets away with a low profile passive
The finned copper heatsinks the power MOSFETs requires active cooling
if a passive CPU thermal solution is used. The quiet squirrel cage fan bundled
in with the Asus P5B Deluxe/WiFi-AP motherboard is used in these
The fan attaches to the
heatsink directly, and draws power from a nearby 3-pin header, so it doesn't
interfere with the 4-pin PWN fan header for the CPU heatsink
The Intel P965 Express chipset gets hot, but the Asus
cooling system does a good job at dealing with the heat
up PCSTATS will be running through the basic features and capabilities of the Intel P965 Express chipset, and
how it stacks up before diving into overclocking and plenty of office oriented
and gaming benchmarks... but first a look around the Asus P5B Deluxe/WiFi-AP