The enthusiasts have been waiting for Intel’s latest chipset revision, the P45 Express chipset with glee. Codenamed “Eaglelake”, the P45 promises a 1600MHz FSB update and a PCI-E 2.0 refresh. Read on to find out more about the features, while we work hard on overclocking and benchmarking the board.

The Intel P45 Express chipset is the 2nd 4 series chipset from Intel after the X48, poised to replace the P35, the P45 is is positioned as a mid-end chipset for both the enthusiasts and professional alike, with a series of feature refresh from its P35 predecessor. Notable updates include a 1600Mhz FSB update, official DDR3-1333Mhz support, PCI-E 2.0 support with a possible dual x8 split for ATI Crossfire configurations (the P35 could only do x16+x4). The I/O Controller Hub (ICH) is also updated to ICH10, with LPT support completely removed, as well as potential support for 10GBe Connectivity. 10GBe connectivity will be something that we will not see in the near future, as 10GBe LOM chipsets are expensive and scarce, and the necessary networking equipment is still not available to the average home user.

We’ve managed to get Asus to send us a copy of the P5Q Deluxe, A P45 board with DDR2 memory support. DDR2 memory is still prevailing due to its significantly cheaper price and lower latencies compared to the DDR3 memories. We’ve done some snooping and the cheapest DDR3 sticks are available still cost a good 100% more than their DDR2 counterparts. The P5Q Deluxe is similar to its P5Q3 brother, with minute differences like a different Firewire400 chip and a missing wireless addon card.

The P5Q Deluxe mainboard boosts DDR2-1200 support, along with an unprecedented 16 phase CPU power along with an updated EPU-6 engine that touts power savings of up to 40%, with overclocking and power saving on demand features. Apart from these refreshing features, we will also see the usual Expressgate feature that will allow you to start surfing the net 5 seconds upon booting up. On an interesting note, the P5Q Deluxe incorporates the onboard power and reset switches that has been missing on the Deluxe series boards and are only usually present on the Republic of Gamer series. Before we bring you guys on the usual roadtrip, let’s go through some brief specifications.

Asus P5Q Deluxe Specifications

  • CPU: Supports all Quad/Dual Core Intel LGA775 Processors
  • MCH: Intel P45 Express w/ PCI-E 2.0 support
  • ICH: ICH10R
  • RAM: 4x 667/800/1066/1200 1.8v DDR2 SDRAM up to 8GB
  • Storage: 6x SATA 3.0Gbps via ICH10R, 2x SATA 3.0Gbps via Silicon Image SIL3752 controller, 1x UDMA133 & 1x eSATA 3.0Gbps via Marvell 88SE6121 controller
  • Audio: Analog Devices ADI2000B 8 channel High Definition Audio Codec with Optical and Coaxial SPDIF
  • Networking: 1x Marvell 88E8001 PCI Controller, 1x Marvell 88E8056 PCIe Controller
  • Firewire: LSI Firewire 400 dual port controller
  • Expansion: 3x PCIe x16 slots, (x16x4x4 or x8x8), 2x PCIe x1 slots, 2x PCI 32bit PCI2.3 compliant slot