ASUS (ASUSTeK) always has several options to hit different price-points for each motherboard chipset and they supplied us with a P8P67 Pro to test their mid-tier offering. Since it is aimed at the middle of the market, it is missing some features from the more expensive competitors while adding a few that the cheaper ones don’t have. Luckily for us (overclockers), the parts that get value-engineered off the board are generally just PCI-e slots and SATA ports so the performance of the board will be similar to the rest of those in the family.
Not surprisingly, the P8P67 Pro comes with the majority of features you’d expect to see on a motherboard with Intel’s current flagship P67 Express chipset.
- Aluminum heatsinks, no heatpipe
- USB 3.0
- Gigabit LAN
- Optical and Coaxial SPDIF
- 8-Channel Audio with DTS
- DDR3-2200 support
- 1x Power E-SATA
- Solid capacitors
The Pro model also has a lot in common with the other boards in the ASUS P8P67 family. That being the case, it can be hard to decipher exactly which board is right for you. So, I compiled a brief comparison table to highlight some of the differences and similarities between them. The main thing to notice for overclockers is that the PRO is missing the on-board Power, Reset, and ClearCMOS buttons, so this isn’t as convenient on a benching station as other boards. You’ll need to jump to the slightly more expensive EVO for them. The EVO also jumps up to using a heatpipe on the VRM and PCH heatsinks.
|P8P67||P8P67 PRO||P8P67 EVO||P8P67 DELUXE||P8P67 WS Revolution|
|AMD CrossFireX Support (2x)||AMD CrossFireX Support, NVIDIA SLI Support (3x)||AMD CrossFireX Support, NVIDIA SLI Support (3x)||AMD CrossFireX Support, NVIDIA SLI Support (3x)||AMD CrossfireX Support, NVIDIA SLI Support (4x)|
|1x PCIe 2.0 x16||2x PCIe 2.0 x16, 1x PCIe 2.0 x16 (@ x4)||2x PCIe 2.0 x16, 1x PCIe 2.0 x16 (@ x4)||2x PCIe 2.0 x16, 1x PCIe 2.0 x16 (@ x4)||2x PCIe 2.0 x16, 2x PCIe 2.0 x16 (@ x8)|
|1 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (@ x4)||2 x PCIe 2.0 x 1||2 x PCIe 2.0 x 1||2 x PCIe 2.0 x 1||3 x PCIe 2.0 x 1 (@ x1)|
|2 x PCIe 2.0 x1||2 x PCI||2 x PCI||2 x PCI|
|3 x PCI|
|Marvell® 9120 SATA3 controller||Marvell® 9120 SATA3 controller||Marvell® 9120 SATA3 controller||Marvell® 9128 SATA3 controller||Marvell® 9128 SATA3 controller|
|JMicron® JMB362 SATA controller||JMicron® JMB362 SATA controller||JMicron® JMB362 SATA controller*|
|Realtek® 8111E , 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller||Intel® 82579 Gigabit LAN||Intel® 82579 Gigabit LAN||Intel® 82579 Gigabit LAN||1 x Intel® 82574L GbE LAN ,1 x Intel® 82579 Gigabit LAN – Support teaming function|
|Realtek® 8110SC Gigabit LAN||Realtek® 8111E Gigabit LAN|
|Bluetooth V2.1 + EDR||Bluetooth v2.1 + EDR||Bluetooth v2.1 + EDR||Bluetooth v2.1 + EDR|
|Realtek® ALC892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC||Realtek® ALC892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC||Realtek® ALC892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC||Realtek® ALC889 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC||Realtek® ALC889 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC|
|VIA® 6308P controller||VIA® 6308P controller||VIA® 6308P controller||VIA® 6315N controller||VIA® VT6315N controller|
|ASMedia® USB 3.0 controller||NEC USB 3.0 controllers||NEC USB 3.0 controllers||NEC USB 3.0 controllers||NEC USB 3.0 controller|
|Internal I/O Ports|
|1 x Mem OK! button||1 x Mem OK! Button||1 x Mem OK! Button||1 x Mem OK! Button||1 x Mem OK! Button|
|1 x Clr CMOS switch||1 x Clr CMOS switch|
|1 x TPU switch||1 x TPU switch||1 x TPU switch||1 x TPU switch|
|1 x EPU switch||1 x EPU switch||1 x EPU switch||1 x TPM connector|
|1 x Power-on switch||1 x Power-on switch|
|1 x Reset switch||1 x Reset switch|
|Up to 4 NVIDIA Tesla GPUs|
|ASUS Workstation Special Features|
|4 PCIe x 16 slots|
|G.P. Diagnosis Card bundled|
|Quick Gate:2 vertical USB 2.0 on board|
|ASUS SASsaby series Cards support|
|ASUS WS Diag. LED|
|ASUS WS Heartbeat|
These features are typical to all of the P8P67 family of motherboards and you may notice some of them from previously released ASUS boards as well. Of course, the product page is riddled with marketing jargon so I’ll try to simplify their meanings here.
ASUS uses a digital signal and a microchip to sense how much power the CPU needs. Incorporating this with a 12+2 power design means more power and cleaner power for more stability when overclocking.
This processor on the board allows for quick and easy autotuning of the system. This can be turned on and off with a switch on the board and can be controlled with the included software.
This is a power saving chip that detects how much power all the plugged in devices need and limits the power accordingly. Like the TPU, this can be controlled with an on board switch or the included software.
The P8P67 Pro has Bluetooth built into the motherboard which allows for all of the regular Bluetooth functions like file transfer, but also allows you to control some aspects of the AI Suite software from your phone.
EFI BIOS with EZ Mode
The new EFI BIOSs have a lot to offer besides support for hard drives over 2.2 TB in size. A lot of manufacturers are incorporating GUI designs that let you select and set options with your mouse instead of only having keyboard access like the old days. ASUS went a step further and created an EZ Mode for those who want to quickly and easily tune their system for maximum performance or maximum power savings. Of course, there is still an advanced mode for the rest of us who like to get our hands dirty and manually tweak every last setting.
AI Suite II
With this release of their AI Suite software, ASUS combined all of the functions into one easy to use GUI. All of you voltages, FSB settings, Fan speeds, TPU settings, and EPU settings are all located in one place now.
These are specially designed PCI-e and DRAM slots that make it slightly easier to plug-in and remove hardware.
There is a tiny button next to the RAM slots that, when pressed, will automatically set the BIOS to use the proper settings for any sticks you plug-in. This is convenient because it lets you reset the RAM settings without clearing the whole CMOS when you overclock too far. There is also a little LED to let you know the RAM is OK.
Except for the missing ClrCMOS, Power, and Reset buttons, the P8P67 Pro was great for overclocking my i7 2600k. The EZ-Mode in the BIOS as well as the Advanced menus were extremely easy to navigate. Under load, the Vcore (core voltage) was extremely stable allowing my to run benchmarks at 5.0 GHz with only 1.47 V set in the BIOS (1.456 V shown in Windows). By comparison, I had to stay at 4900 MHz on the Biostar board to complete all the benchmarks. For FSB, I was able to hit a maximum of 105.6 MHz which is just a touch higher than the 105.1 MHz I obtained on the Biostar TP67XE. Unfortunately, my processor isn’t the best clocker so I was limited to the same 5.3 GHz wall as I was on the Biostar board.
The main thing to note here is that the P8P67 Pro did not run the i7 2600k at 3400 MHz as the stock speed. Instead, the processor ran at 3800 MHz when all settings in the BIOS are set to default. ASUS says this is because the Intel specifications for Turbo mode are not set in stone. They then take advantage of their superior build construction and feature set to push the processor further. As a result, you’ll notice that all of the stock results I obtained beat the Biostar TP67XE which ran the 2600k at 3400 MHz. I decided to go ahead with this even though the two weren’t at the exact same stock speed because it better illustrates exactly what you will get out of the box. Also, as I stated before, I was able to run at 5000 MHz for all of the benchmarks while the TP67XE only let me run at 4900 MHz.
- Processor: Intel i7 2600k
- Motherboard: ASUS P8P67 Pro
- Heatsink: Zalman CNPS9900LED
- Power Supply: NZXT HALE-90 850W
- Graphics Card: PowerColor HD 6870 PCS+
- Hard Drive: OCZ Revodrive X2
- Memory: Patriot Inferno Viper II 2×2 GB @ DDR3-2133 cas9
Overall, the ASUS P8P67 Pro is a great motherboard for a desktop workhorse or gaming rig. It lacks the ClrCMOS, Power, and Reset buttons that you’d want on a benching motherboard, but it is extremely stable when overclocking and has a good mix of features to make most people happy. The three PCI-e x16 slots allow for a lot of options like running dual graphics cards in conjunction with a PCI-e SSD. It is retailing for $180 right now at Newegg which is squarely in the mid-range price segment for P67 boards. The price, features, and overclocking ability put this board above the Biostar TP67XE so you will need to be your own judge if the extra money is worth it for your next build. One thing is for sure, though, and that is the P8P67 Pro is Overclockers Approved.