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Aug 8, 2014

ASUS ROG Crossblade Ranger FM2+ Motherboard




The Republic of Gamers brand is one that ASUS applies to only its best motherboards, peripherals, monitors, PCs, and PC accessories. Never before, however, has an FM2+ motherboard carried the brand.

Part of it is owed to the fact that the FM2+ socket is pretty young and was preceded by the normal FM2, which was around for quite a while. The other part was because ASUS just hadn't gotten around to making a truly overkill AMD-based platform, as AMD's hardware in general is not as geared towards overkill as Intel's anymore. Still, it's perfectly possible to build a strong gaming PCs around an AMD APU, so Gigabyte made it easy to do just that.

Case in point, the new ROG Crossblade Ranger has SupremeFX audio with exclusive Sonic SenseAmp and Sonic SoundStage technologies, LANGuard technology, Auto Tuning technology, Sonic Radar II (overlay that shows what opponents and teammates are up to in an FPS shooter), and various other things. I could spend ages listing the technical specs, but they're about the same as you might expect from an overpowered board like this, so you're better off reading the neat list in the press release below. The ASUS ROG Crossblade Ranger motherboard will ship with a free ROG mouse soon. No ETA or price have been provided though. 

ASUS ROG Press Release:
ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced Crossblade Ranger, the first AMD FM2+ motherboard to carry the revered ROG brand and packed with exclusive ROG technologies and game-boosting features for an AMD-based gaming powerhouse that's beyond compare.
Crossblade Ranger's core benefits deliver the best gaming networking, with Intel Gigabit Ethernet, GameFirst III and LANGuard, the best gaming audio from SupremeFX 2014, the best gaming interface with KeyBot and the best gaming performance with exclusive Auto Tuning technology to unleash the true power of AMD accelerated-processing units (APUs).
Best gaming networking
Crossblade Ranger is fitted with state-of-the-art Intel Gigabit Ethernet that delivers better throughput with lower processing power for superior speed and increased efficiency.
The new motherboard's networking capabilities additionally benefit from ROG-exclusive GameFirst III technology for no-delay gameplay. This advanced network-optimization software assigns top priority to game-data packets, allocating them more bandwidth to ensure the best online-gaming experience and clear, stutter-free online team-chat - all controlled with ROG's usual intuitive flair.
ROG has even reinvented the RJ45 socket, with LANGuard technology. Advanced signal-coupling technology and premium surface-mounted capacitors improve throughput, while surge-protected and electrostatically-guarded components (ESD Guards) protect against lightning strikes and static-electricity discharges.
Best gaming audio
Flawless audio is essential for immersive gaming, so Crossblade Ranger is engineered with SupremeFX 2014. Cutting-edge isolation technologies minimize electromagnetic interference (EMI), while premium ELNA audio capacitors and eight-channel gold-plated audio outputs provide precision-engineered audio that's as great as a dedicated soundcard.
SupremeFX 2014 also features exclusive Sonic SenseAmp and Sonic SoundStage technologies. Sonic SenseAmp automatically detects analog-audio front-panel (AAFP) headphone impedance and adjusts the built-in amp accordingly, while Sonic SoundStage applies the best audio settings for popular game genres - just one click is all it takes to generate the perfect sound for first-person shooter (FPS), racing, combat and sports games.
Crossblade Ranger's gaming-audio credentials include Sonic Radar II technology. Designed for first-person shooters (FPS), Sonic Radar II displays a stealthy overlay that shows what opponents and teammates are up to. Players see the precise direction and origin of in-game sounds such as gunshots, footsteps and call-outs, enabling them to hone enemy-pinpointing skills. Exclusive audio enhancement further improves in-game sound for superb hearing awareness, and the all-new Sonic Radar II includes a redesigned control panel with customizable game list.
Best gaming interface
Crossblade Ranger includes KeyBot, a clever tool that lets users instantly 'upgrade' an existing keyboard simply by attaching it to the dedicated USB socket.
Once connected, the KeyBot microprocessor is activated and the user is able to use their current keyboard to control multimedia playback, launch favorite applications or assign macros to specific keys - just perfect for automating complicated in-game key sequences.
Best gaming performance
ROG's Auto Tuning technology enables Crossblade Ranger to unleash the true power of AMD APUs with just few clicks. Enabled by the TurboV Processing Unit (TPU), Auto Tuning adjusts the CPU frequencies and ratios to offer precise voltage control and advanced CPU-performance monitoring, efficiently enhancing system performance with the most stable overclocking profile - so gamers enjoy superb stability and high speeds while playing.
Crossblade Ranger is also compatible with ROG's brilliant Front Base dual-bay gaming panel. When added to Crossblade Ranger, Front Base enables one-click performance boosting and real-time system monitoring to make gaming experiences even more enjoyable.
Crossblade Ranger even comes with a ROG mouse mat completely free of charge. The plush feel and stylish design enables gamers to flaunt the awesome power of Crossblade Ranger.
SPECIFICATIONS
    Processor/CPU socket
    AMD FM2+ Socket for AMD A-series / Athlon Series processors
    Chipset
    AMD A88X FCH (Bolton-D4)
    Memory
    4 x DIMMs, up to a maximum of 64 GB, DDR3 2666 (O.C.)
    Supports AMD Memory Profile (AMP) memory
    Expansion slots
    2 x PCI Express 3.0*/2.0 x16 slots (red, single x16 or dual x8/x8 mode)
    1 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 slot (black, maximum x4 mode)
    2 x PCI Express 2.0 x1 slots
    2 x PCI slots
    Graphics (VGA)
    Integrated AMD Radeon R/HD8000/HD7000 Series Graphics in the A-Series APU
    Multi-VGA output support: HDMI/DVI/RGB port
    Supports HDMI with maximum of resolution 4096 x 2160 at 24Hz and 1920 x 1200 at 60Hz
    Supports DVI-D (DVI) with maximum resolution of 2560 x 1600 at 60Hz
    Supports RGB (VGA) with maximum resolution 1920 x 1600 at 60Hz
    Maximum shared memory of 2 GB
    Supports AMD Dual Graphics technology
    Multi-GPU
    AMD 3-way CrossFireX technology
    Storage
    8 x SATA 6Gbit/s connectors with RAID 0, RAID 1,RAID 5,RAID 10 and JBOD support
    Networking/LAN
    Intel Gigabit Ethernet with GameFirst III and ASUS LANGuard
    USB
    6 x USB 3.0 ports (4 on back panel, 2 mid-board)
    8 x USB 2.0 ports (2 on back panel, 6 mid-board)
    Audio
    ROG SupremeFX Formula 2014 8-channel high-definition audio
    SupremeFX shielding technology
    ELNA premium audio capacitors
    Content protection for full-rate lossless playback of DVD Audio, Blu-ray DVD, and HD-DVD audio content
    Jack-detection, multi-streaming, front-panel jack-retasking
    Optical S/PDIF-out port on back panel
    Dimensions / form factor
    ATX, 12 x 9.6in (30.5 x 24.4cm)
Image gallery below, click for larger image.






ASUS ROG Crossblade Ranger
Images credits to ASUS

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