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Maximus Formula to Rampage conversion. Plus Vdrop mod.

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Johan45

Benching Team Leader Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Recently I managed to flash an ASUS Maximus Formula x38 to a Rampage Formula x48. What this does is aid in FSB and Memory overclocking. It also expanded the CPU compatibility library. The whole process is quite easy and if you have flashed through DOS in the past even simpler. For those that haven't used a DOS tool I'm going to make this easy. just follow the commands. To accomplish this you're going to need to make a bootable USB and add some files to it which I will include in this post. The beauty of the bootable USB is that you can hve more than one program on it for flashing boards and cards it'll work for any of them. You just need the right commands to start the .exe of your choice. The one we're going to be using is an engineering version of AFUDOS. This one is the key to changing the board ID.

First you'll need to download and extract this folder.

View attachment USB Flash Stuff Rampage.zip

Now, to make a bootable usb

Extract all of the files
Open up the Windows 98 Archive you downloaded and extract it to a folder.
Open up the HP Format tool. Make sure you select the drive you want to make bootable, and that FAT32 is checked.
Check the "Create DOS Startup Disk box, and link it to your extracted windows 98 folder.
Format the drive. It should be bootable now.


Prep USB for flashing
Copy the AFU236U application and 0803.ROM bios file to the USB. Just a note on BIOS version. Anything newer than this version will not work.
Plug in the USB
Start the board you are flashing and go to the bios. Select optimixed defaults and set the HDD priority to the USB that you are using.
Restart.

Flashing the board.
IF all goes right you should be greeted with a DOS command prompt, type the following to flash to the Rampage Bios

Code:
AFU236U /iRF0803.rom /pbnc /n
Note the "/i" that comes before the bios filename, this is required for any flash with AFUDOS. And note the extension on the bios file in use, you'll need to use this too.

That's it just restart the PC when prompted. I did have a slight scare here since after the re-boot , all I had was a black screen. I left it for a couple minutes like that then reset and it booted to the new ROG logo. :thup:

e8400.JPG



Next up is a simple pencil mod that fixed the Vdrop/Vdroop I was getting with this board. Before mod setting 1.4v would give me about 1.34v under load. After it was 1.4v to 1.388 drastic improvement and very simple all you need is a pencil. Softer ones work better but I did this with just your everyday school pencil.

1. locate the EPU chip (between CPU socket and RAM slots)
2. look for the first resistor, top right corner, adjacent to the CPU socket (see pic)
3. use 2B or 4B pencil (soft lead are better), do 2 strokes pencil in the resistor. Until it gets dark. Make sure you don't touch any other resistors beside it.

vdroppencilmod.jpg
 
Last edited:
OP
Johan45

Johan45

Benching Team Leader Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
I should have added that it works on the P5e as well I guess you need to shut off some sensors in bios to stop error messages. I think that's the only difference. I wanted to get this all in one spot since a lot of the original links are gone so it took a bit of searching.
 

MaddMutt

Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2015
I'm not sure if I'm the first to use your guide and convert my Asus P5E into an Asus Rampage Formula :)
If I am then WOOOHOO :thup:
SCREEN SHOT

E5700 OC & BIOS Update.jpg
 
OP
Johan45

Johan45

Benching Team Leader Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Way to go MM, wasn't that hard now was it?
Glad it worked for ya!
 

funsoul

Senior Member
Joined
May 3, 2004
Location
NJ, USA
Awesome write up dude! Outstanding! Going to have to look around for mine now (been saving it for 771 benching).

Good job MaddMutt!!!! Congrats on the new board! :)
 

MaddMutt

Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2015
Way to go MM, wasn't that hard now was it?
Glad it worked for ya!

I ended up making it harder than it needed to be. I followed your guide on formatting and installing software onto the USB. When you format it to make it bootable, Win98 only places 3 files on it. I copied the entire Win98 to the USB and ran it that way :( The additional files that I added, made the USB work and look like Win98. The program AFU236U needs to run in a pure DOS MODE, it will not work under a command prompt in windows.
 
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Johan45

Johan45

Benching Team Leader Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Yep that's why you link it to the files, but at least you got it sorted out
 

JLK03F150

What have I done! Member
Joined
May 17, 2005
Location
Georgia
A little tip for those who've never dealt with DOS, long file names don't work. The BIOS file can only be a maximum of 8.3 characters like 'bios1234.rom'.

I'll have to resurrect my Maximus Formula SE and try the droop mod. Gotta find another video card that'll earn a few points folding first.

Will the same vdrop mod work on an actual Rampage Formula too? Thanks Johan!
 
OP
Johan45

Johan45

Benching Team Leader Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
That I don't know for sure but if it's the same setup??? From what I have seen the board layouts are really similar across the whole line.
For my X38 it really levelled it out nice and it was so easy.
 

MaddMutt

Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2015
On my P5E, the VMod put it within .0250 of what was set in the BIOS :thup: Before the mod, the voltage would be off by more than 0.100.

Following suggestions, I removed the QX6850 and put in my E5700. I lowered the CPU multi and increased the FSB multi. I borked the board when I had to modify the NB HS hold down setup :(
I verified multiple times that my FSB multi will not reach 350 without freezing the computer:(
Last night I purchased a Asus Rampage Formula to replace the P5E for benching
 
OP
Johan45

Johan45

Benching Team Leader Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
That's a good board but still better for dual/single than quads
 

Aleslammer

Registered
Joined
Dec 28, 2014
Works on the P5E Deluxe also and if using a real soft pencil little scotch tape helps hold the graphite in place.