ASUS has added another string to its motherboard bow with the inclusion of Wi-Fi capabilities via a plug-in module on its K8V Deluxe motherboard.
Based on the 802.11b standard, the Wi-Fi module plugs straight into the board and utilises a manoeuvrable (and removable) aerial to provide good wireless performance for the home and small office. In the Test Centre we received very good signal strength across a 10m radius and achieved reliable throughput when accessing broadband and sharing files between systems. The module can be configured to work either as a soft access point that forms the base and distribution point of your network for up to 31 clients, or as a node in an already established wireless network. 802.11g modules are also available.
Apart from the Wi-Fi module, the K8V is designed with 64-bit computing in mind and will support the Athlon 64 series of CPUs. It can use ECC or non-ECC DDR SDRAM and expansion is via three memory slots, five PCI slots and an AGP slot. Drive connections are abundant, too, with Serial ATA RAID and Parallel RAID all part of the mix; via the Promise RAID controller, you get options for RAID 0, RAID 1 or RAID 0+1.
Six-channel audio with S/PDIF con-nectivity is provided, as are eight USB 2.0 ports, gigabit Ethernet, and FireWire.
In our performance tests using SYSMark 2001, the board performed magnificently. It worked in conjunction with a 2.05GHz Athlon 64 3200+ CPU, 1GB of non-ECC DDR400 SDRAM, a 256MB Radeon 9800XT graphics card, and a 160GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 hard drive.