ASUS F2A85-V Pro ATX AMD FM2 Motherboard

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

ASUS is one of the go-to brands for many PC enthusiasts these days, and rightfully so. Over the years ASUS has developed a reputation of rock solid performance and reliability. ASUS has set the bar high, and we don't doubt that the ASUS F2A85-V Pro will live up to the expectations. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro is built with the latest AMD 'Trinity" APU's in mind in the Socket FM2 package. Along with the new FM2 socket, AMD also launched the AMD A85 chipset. The AMD A85 chipset brings with it a couple of added features over the AMD A75 chipset. The AMD A75 chipset had the ability to run six SATA III 6Gbps ports and two SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports. The AMD A85X chipset has added two of each to the FM2 motherboards. This allows us to run up to eight SATA III 6Gbps devices and four SuperSpeed USB 3.0 devices without the need for third party controllers.

In addition to the added features of the AMD A85X chipset, ASUS has also included a long list of features exclusive to them. One of the sets of features that ASUS is excited about is their Windows 8 Exclusive features. The Windows 8 Exclusive features consists of three parts, Fast Boot, ASUS Boot Setting, and DirectKey. According to ASUS, the new fast boot is a combination of hardware and software designs that will shorten system boot-up times to 2-seconds allowing for a user experience that removes delays under Windows 8 as well as earlier versions of Windows. The ASUS Boot Setting can do a number of things for your user experience. From within the Windows 8 environment you can select the way you want your PC to boot the next time, or every time. If you like to be at your desktop inside of seconds you can choose Fast Boot, or regular boot with the full P.O.S.T.. If you need to stop into the BIOS you can choose to do that as well from within the ASUS Boot Setting. The third feature in the ASUS Windows 8 Exclusive features is the DirectKey. It is similar to the ASUS Boot Setting as it allows up to head straight into the UEFI BIOS, but it's a hardware based option rather than software. If you are frequently needing to go into the BIOS, you can re-purpose the reset button and attach it to the DirectKey pins, and be able to enable this from outside of the case.

ASUS has also implemented their Dual Intelligent Processors 3 with new DIGI+ Power Control on the F2A85-V Pro. What exactly does that mean for the end user, well according to ASUS it will give you full hardware control, and total performance tuning. Here's a little bit of information on the Dual Intelligent Processors 3 directly from ASUS:

The world’s first Dual Intelligent Processors from ASUS pioneered twin onboard chips - TPU (TurboV Processing Unit) and EPU (Energy Processing Unit). Third generation Dual Intelligent Processors with New DIGI+ Power Control provides a total APU, memory and SMART DIGI+ Key profile tuning digital power solution, which includes two digital voltage controllers allowing ultra-precise DRAM tuning in addition to ultra-precise APU voltage control. It's upgraded with one-click extreme performance optimization with the user-friendly AI Suite II utility. This evolution of innovative and industry-leading ASUS technology provides super-accurate voltage tuning for better efficiency, stability and performance.

ASUS Dual Intelligent Processor 3

The DIGI+ Power Control has two digital voltage controllers which is an upgrade to the motherboard power delivery solution on AMD FM2 motherboards. One of the digital voltage controllers is specifically for the DRAM, and the other is for the APU. Both receive ultra-precise voltage control as a results.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro UEFI BIOS

When the first Intel P67 motherboards started hitting the market in January of 2011, we have seen many different variations of UEFI BIOS come through the Legit Reviews labs, one of our favorites from the start is the ASUS UEFI BIOS. If you aren't real comfortable in the BIOS, the EZ mode allows you to tweak a few items including the boot order. We can also do some minor performance tuning here, nothing real extreme, but it does give us a little extra performance without much risk. I think you would be pretty hard pressed to make any damaging changes in the ASUS EZ Mode. The Advanced mode is a different story, here we can do some damage if we aren't a little careful. Though nothing that we weren't able to do in the more traditional BIOS. The Advanced section of the ASUS UEFI BIOS is one of the best laid out that we have seen, everything is right where you would expect it to be, and there are more options than you can shake a stick at.

ASUS has plenty more features on the F2A85-V Pro that make this a killer board. Features like USB 3.0 Boost that can improve transfer speeds by 170%, Remote GO! that allows you to check your PC from a smartphone or Tablet, DLNA Media Hub streaming, Wi-Fi connectivity, USB BIOS Flashback, Network iControl, Fan Xpert 2, USB Charger+, Complete SUB 3.0 Integrations, and of course native SATA 6Gbps support there isn't much that the ASUS F2A85-V Pro doesn't offer.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD FM2 Motherboard Specifications:

CPU AMD Socket FM2 Athlon/A- Series Processors Supports CPU up to 4 cores Supports AMD Turbo Core 3.0 Technology
Chipset AMD A85X FCH(Hudson D4)
Memory 4 x DIMM, Max. 64GB, DDR3 2400(O.C.)/2250(O.C.)/2200(O.C.)/2133(O.C.)/2000(O.C.)/1866/1600/1333/1066 MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory
Dual Channel Memory Architecture
Support AMD Memory Profile (AMP) memory
Graphic Integrated AMD Radeon HD 7000 Series Graphics in A-series APU
Multi-VGA output support : HDMI/DVI/RGB/DisplayPort ports
- Supports HDMI with max. resolution 1920 x 1080 @ 60 Hz
- Supports DVI with max. resolution 2560 x 1600 @ Hz
- Supports RGB with max. resolution 1920 x 1600 @ 60 Hz
- Supports DisplayPort with max. resolution 4096 x 2160 @ 60 Hz
Maximum shared memory of 2048 MB
AMD Dual Graphics technology support
Supports DirectX 11
Multi-GPU Support Supports AMD 3-Way CrossFireX Technology
Supports LucidLogix Virtu MVP Technology
Expansion Slots 2 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (x16 or dual x8)
1 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (x4 mode)
2 x PCIe 2.0 x1
2 x PCI
Storage AMD A85X FCH(Hudson D4) chipset :
7 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), gray
1 x eSATA 6Gb/s port(s), red
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10, JBOD
LAN Realtek 8111F, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller
Audio Realtek ALC892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
- Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
Audio Feature :
- Optical S/PDIF out port(s) at back panel
USB Ports ASMedia USB 3.0 controller :
2 x USB 3.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, blue)
AMD A85X FCH(Hudson D4) chipset :
4 x USB 3.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, 2 at mid-board)
AMD A85X FCH(Hudson D4) chipset :
10 x USB 2.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, 8 at mid-board)
Overclocking Features Overclocking Protection :
- ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)
Special Features ASUS Dual Intelligent Processors 3 with New DIGI+ Power Control :
SMART DIGI+ :
- Smart DIGI+ Key- Quickly delivers optimized VRM frequency, voltage and current for superior APU/DRAM overclocking performance with one click.
ASUS TPU :
- Auto Tuning
- TurboV
- GPU Boost
- TPU switch
ASUS EPU :
- EPU
- EPU switch
ASUS Digital Power Design :
- Industry leading Digital 6 +2 Phase Power Design
- CPU Power Utility
- DRAM Power Utility
ASUS Exclusive Features :
- Remote GO!
- USB BIOS Flashback
- MemOK!
- AI Suite II
- Ai Charger+
- USB Charger+
- Anti-Surge
- ASUS UEFI BIOS EZ Mode featuring friendly graphics user interface
- Network iControl
- USB 3.0 Boost
- Disk Unlocker
ASUS Quiet Thermal Solution :
- Stylish Fanless Design Heat-pipe solution
- ASUS Fan Xpert 2
ASUS EZ DIY :
- DirectKey
- Precision Tweaker 2
- ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
- ASUS EZ Flash 2
- ASUS MyLogo 2
ASUS Q-Design :
- ASUS Q-Shield
- ASUS Q-Slot
- ASUS Q-Connector
100% All High-quality Conductive Polymer Capacitors
Back I/O Ports 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse combo port(s)
1 x DVI
1 x D-Sub
1 x DisplayPort
1 x HDMI
1 x eSATA
1 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
4 x USB 3.0 (blue)
2 x USB 2.0
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
6 x Audio jack(s)
Internal I/O Ports 1 x USB 3.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 2 USB 3.0 port(s) (19-pin)
4 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 8 USB 2.0 port(s)
1 x COM port(s) connector(s)
7 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
1 x CPU Fan connector(s) (4 x -pin)
4 x Chassis Fan connector(s) (4 x -pin)
1 x S/PDIF out header(s)
1 x 24-pin EATX Power connector(s)
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
1 x Front panel audio connector(s) (AAFP)
1 x System panel(s)
1 x DirectKey Button(s)
1 x DRCT header(s)
1 x MemOK! button(s)
1 x TPU switch(es)
1 x EPU switch(es)
1 x USB BIOS Flashback button(s)
Accessories User's manual
I/O Shield
4 x SATA 6Gb/s cable(s)
1 x Q-connector(s) (2 in 1)
BIOS 64 Mb Flash ROM, UEFI AMI BIOS, PnP, DMI2.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 2.7, ACPI 2.0a, Multi-language BIOS, ASUS EZ Flash 2, ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3, F12 PrintScreen Function, F3 Shortcut Function and ASUS DRAM SPD (Serial Presence Detect) memory information
Support Disc Drivers, ASUS utilities, ASUS Update, Anti-virus software (OEM version)
Form Factor ATX Form Factor
12 inch x 9.6 inch ( 30.5 cm x 24.4 cm )

Retail Box and Bundle

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Retail Box and Bundle

I've always been a fan of minimalistic designs on retail packaging. Let the features sell the product, not flash. ASUS has done this well in my opinion. Their retail packaging for the F2A85-V Pro motherboard will catch your eye if it's sitting on your local PC shop, but it's certainly not overdone. ASUS points out several of the key features on the front of the packaging. They have put the heaviest emphasis on the Dual Intelligent Processors 3 features as well as support for the AMD A-Series APU's.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Retail Box and Bundle

On the back of the retail packaging, ASUS goes into much greater detail and there is certainly no shortage of marketing text. If you've already picked up the box, the back is geared at selling the product. Once again ASUS puts the Dual Intelligent Processors 3 with New DIGI+ Power Control at the top of the feature list. They have also included details about the ASUS Remote GO!, ASUS Fan Xpert2, and the ASUS Network iControl.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Retail Box and Bundle

Once we open up the retail packaging for the ASUS F2A85-V Pro we can catch our first glimpse of the motherboard as well as see that it is securely packaged within the packaging.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Retail Box and Bundle

Beneath the motherboard and supporting cardboard we can see the bundle. It's a pretty simple bundle, but it will get the job done. Included with the ASUS F2A85-V Pro is the manual, support DVD, four SATA III cables, Q-connector, and the I/O shield.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Motherboard Layout

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

The ASUS F2A85-V Pro is a sharp looking AMD FM2 motherboard. Though looks certainly aren't everything when it comes to computer components. You could have the best looking rig out there, but if it doesn't perform it doesn't mean squat. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro has the looks, as well as the ASUS name to back it up. We will get to the performance shortly, but for now lets take a look at the the overall layout and physical features of the F2A85-V Pro.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

The ASUS F2A85-V Pro will support up to 64GB of DDR3 memory at speeds up to 2400MHz(O.C.) in a dual channel architecture. A feature that is new to AMD is the AMP memory profiles, with memory that also supports the AMP profiles all you need to do is set the system to use the AMP profile and you will be running the rated memory speeds. Think of it as X.M.P. for AMD. Along the edge of the PCB we can find the internal SuperSpeed USB Header, 24pin motherboard power, and the MemOK! button. Rounding the corner and working our way up the edge we can find the EPU switch and a pair of 4pin fan headers, one is the CPU_FAN while the other is the third chassis fan header (CHA_FAN3).

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

Swinging the ASUS F2A85-V Pro around, we can see seven of the eight SATA III 6Gbps ports from the AMD A85X chipset. The remaining SATA III port will be found on the I/O panel as an eSATA port. To the right of the SATA ports we can find fourth 4pin chassis fan header (CHA_FAN4). To the left of the SATA ports we have the BIOS Flashback (BIOS_FLBK) button and the BIOS Flashback LED. Working our way up the edge, we can find the pinout for the front panel, TPU switch, clear CMOS jumper, DirectKey button,  and four internal USB 2 headers.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

Picking up along the edge of the ASUS F2A85-V Pro we can find the white Serial port connector (COM1), front panel audio connector, and the SPDIF out header. Looking at the front edge of the ASUS F2A85-V Pro we can find several of the IC's that make up the features of the board. Starting off to the left of the eight solid caps, we can see the Realtek ALC892 High definition audio codec, and the Nuvoton NCT6779D Super I/O controller a short jump to the left. A little further over we can find the ASMedia ASM1042 SuperSpeed USB 3.0 controller and the Realtek RTL8111E Gigabit Ethernet controller a bit further to the left. Above all of our IC's we can find the expansion slots. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro features three PCIe x16 Gen 2 slots, two PCIe x1 slots as well as a pair of PCI slots. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro will support up to Three-way CrossfireX, as well as AMD Dual Graphics technology.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

The ASUS F2A85-V Pro uses solid heatsinks with a heatpipe connecting between the PWM's and the AMD A85X chipset heatsinks. Just below the PWM heatsink we can find the 8pin CPU power plug.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

The I/O panel on the ASUS F2A85-V Pro features the usual suspects. The display outputs include, HDMI, DisplayPort, VGA 15pin DSub, as well as a DVI port. When it comes to data connectivity there are a total of six USB ports, two USB 2 ports, and four SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports. I mentioned earlier about the eighth SATA III 6Gbps port that can be found on the I/O panel, well here it is. We also have a single PS/2 port for either a keyboard or mouse, six audio jacks, optical SPDIF out, and the Gigabit Ethernet RJ45 jack.

The Legit Reviews Test System

The Test System

Before we look at the numbers, let's take a brief look at the test system that was used. All testing was done on a fresh install of Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit and benchmarks were completed on the desktop with no other software programs running.

AMD A85 Test Platform:

AMD A85 Test System

The AMD Socket FM2 platform that we used to test the AMD A10-5800K processor was the ASUS F2A85-V Pro motherboard with the latest BIOS. The Corsair Dominator Platinum 8GB 1600Mhz memory kit was run at 1.50V with 9-9-9-24 1T timings. 

You can see CPU-Z version 1.61.3 and screen shots below for additional platform information.

AMD A85 Test Settings

AMD A10-5800K Processor GPU-Z

Let's get on to the testing!

                                            Intel Test Rig

 Processor  AMD A10-5800K APU  Live Pricing
 Motherboard  See Above  Live Pricing
 Memory  8gb Corsair Dominator Platinum 1600MHz  Live Pricing
 Hard Drive  Kingston HyperX 128GB SSD  Live Pricing
 Video Card  None  Live Pricing
 CPU cooler  Stock
 Live Pricing
 Chassis  None - Open Bench  
 Power Supply  Corsair HX750   Live Pricing

SiSoftware Sandra 2012 SP6

Sisoftware Sandra 2011 SP5

The Sisoftware Sandra 2012 SP3 benchmark utility just came out a few weeks ago and we have started to include it in our benchmarking. Sandra 2012 comes with support for Virtualisation (Virtual PC/Server, Hyper-V, VMware) and GPGPU (OpenCL, DirectX 11 DirectCompute), but today we will be using the program to look at memory and CPU performance!

ASRock Z77E-ITX mITX Intel Z77 Sandra 2012 SP4c Memory Benchmark Scores

Benchmark Results: The ASUS F2A85-V Pro memory bandwidth performance is right on par with the GIGABYTE F2A85X-UP4. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro has an aggregate performance of 14.302GB/s while the GIGABYTE board is a fuzz ahead with 14.311GB/s, nothing that would be noticible in day to day usage.

Futuremark 3DMark 11

 

3DMark 11 Screenshot

3DMark 11 is the latest version of the world’s most popular benchmark for measuring the 3D graphics performance of gaming PCs. 3DMark 11 uses a native DirectX 11 engine designed to make extensive use of all the new features in DirectX 11, including tessellation, compute shaders and multi-threading.

3DMark 11 Settings

Since Futuremark is releasing 3DMark11 today we decided to run the benchmark at both performance and extreme presets to see how our hardware will run.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro 3DMark11 Performance Preset Benchmark Results

GIGABYTE F2A85X-UP4 3DMark 11 Performance Benchmark Results

Benchmark results: The AMD Radeon HD 7660D is a very solid performer in Futuremark 3DMark 11. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro was able to edge out the GIGABYTE board in all three scores, the overall score hit 1531 (+10), the Physics score hit 4152 (+36) and the graphics score hit 1388 (+8).

Sleeping Dogs

Sleeping Dogs PC game

Sleeping Dogs is a 2012 open world action-adventure video game developed by United Front Games in conjunction with Square Enix London Studios and published by Square Enix. The game was released on August 14, 2012, for Microsoft Windows. The game uses the Havok physics engine.

Sleeping Dogs Settings

We used the Adrenaline Sleeping Dogs Benchmark tool to benchmark this game title to make sure the benchmarking was consistent. We tested with 'Medium' quality setting at 1280x1024 and 1920x1024 resolutions.

Sleeping Dogs benchmark results

Benchmark Results: The ASUS F2A85-V Pro was once again able to take a slight edge over the GIGABYTE F2A85X-UP4.

AMD SATA III 6Gbps Performance

CrystalDiskMark is a small benchmark utility for drives and enables rapid measurement of sequential and random read/write speeds. Note that CDM only supports Native Command Queuing (NCQ) with a queue depth of 32 (as noted) for the last listed benchmark score. This can skew some results in favor of controllers that also do not support NCQ.

AMD SATA III 6Gbps CrystalDiskMark Performance Benchmark Results

The SATA III 6Gbps performance testing was completed using a Corsair Force GT 240Gb SATA III 6Gbps SSD.

AMD SATA III 6Gbps CrystalDiskMark Performance

Benchmark Results: The ASUS F2A85-V Pro and the GIGABYTE F2A85X-UP4 were virtually identical in our SATA III 6Gbps performance testing today. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro was able to hit a sequential read speed of 479.8MB/s and a sequential write speed of 295.5MB/s.

HD Tune Pro 4.01 is an extended version of HD Tune which includes many new features such as write benchmark, secure erasing, AAM setting, folder usage view, disk monitor, command line parameters and file benchmark.

AMD HD Tune Pro 5.00 Write Benchmark Results

AMD SATA III 6Gbps HD Tune Performance Benchmark Results

AMD HD Tune Pro 5.00 Read Benchmark Results

AMD SATA III 6Gbps HD Tune Performance Benchmark Results

AMD SATA III 6Gbps HD Tune Performance

Benchmark Results: Once again there is very little performance difference between our two AMD A85X motherboards today, the ASUS F2A85-V Pro had an average read speed of 360.6MB/s and an average write speed of 335.1MB/s.

AMD SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Performance

Thermaltake BlackX 5G SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Dock

There are a number of different Super Speed USB 3.0 host controllers out there. In order to know which ones perform the best we run a series of tests that will put the controller through the ringer and see how it comes out on the other side. Each of our motherboards uses a different Super Speed USB 3.0 controller and you can find the below.

CrystalDiskMark is a small benchmark utility for drives and enables rapid measurement of sequential and random read/write speeds. Note that CDM only supports Native Command Queuing (NCQ) with a queue depth of 32 (as noted) for the last listed benchmark score. This can skew some results in favor of controllers that also do not support NCQ.

AMD SuperSpeed USB 3.0 CrystalDiskMark Benchmark Results

Testing of the USB3 was done using the "Thermaltake BlacX 5G Hard Drive Docking Station . The drive used was an Corsair Force GT 240Gb SSD.

AMD SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Performance

Benchmark Results: The ASUS F2A85-V Pro has two different SuperSpeed USB 3.0 controllers, so we figured we would test them both today. The ASMedia ASM1042 really didn't stand a chance against the AMD A85X controlled ports as the ASM1042 controlled ports, at least not in the sequential read as they hit only 192.7MB/s vs the AMD A85X chipset speeds of 230.3MB/s. The Sequential Writes were comparable with the ASM1042 ports hitting 233.5MB/s compared to the 237.0MB/s from the AMD A85X chipset. The ASMedia ASM1042 controller can be sped up using the ASUS AISuite II USB Boost. We have played with that and it has made a world of difference. We just wanted to show what you will get without anything other than the drivers installed.

HD Tune Pro 5.00 is an extended version of HD Tune which includes many new features such as write benchmark, secure erasing, AAM setting, folder usage view, disk monitor, command line parameters and file benchmark.

AMD SuperSpeed USB 3.0 HD Tune 5.0 Read Benchmark Results

Intel Z77 SuperSpeed USB 3.0 HD Tune Benchmark Results

AMD SuperSpeed USB 3.0 HD Tune 5.00 Write Benchmark Results

AMD SuperSpeed USB 3.0 HD Tune Benchmark Results

Testing of the USB3 was done using the "Thermaltake BlacX 5G Hard Drive Docking Station . The drive used was an Corsair Force GT 240Gb SSD.

Intel Z77 SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Performance

Benchmark Results: Much like the above performance in CrystalDiskMark we see the ASMedia ASM1042 behind in the average read, and right on par with the average write on the ASUS F2A85-V Pro.

System Power Consumption

Since power consumption is a big deal these days, we ran some simple power consumption tests on our test beds. The systems ran with identical power supplies, Solid-Sate Drives, Memory kits and motherboards from the same company. To measure idle usage, we ran the system at idle for one hour on the desktop with no screen saver and took the measurement. For load measurements, Prime95's in-place large FFT's were run on all cores to make sure each and every processor was at 100% load for maximum power consumption and heat. Curious about other test scenarios, we decided to play some Sleeping Dogs and took the maximum power consumption during a benchmark session.

ASUS F1A75-M Pro System Power Consumption

Benchmark Results: At idle, the ASUS F2A85-V Pro was just about even with the GIGABYTE F2A85X-UP4, only 1 Watt higher. Once we started putting a load on the system we started to see a difference. Running Prime 95 Large FFT's to load up only the CPU the F2A85-V Pro was 15 Watts higher than the GIGABYTE FM2 counterpart. Gaming with Sleeping Dogs the ASUS F2A85-V Pro was 9 Watts higher than the GIGABYTE board. 

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Overclocking

Overclocking greatly varies due to what hardware is being used and who is doing the overclocking. Always remember that no two pieces of hardware will perform the same, so our results will differ from what you might be able to get.

AMD A10-5800K Retail Cooler

To overclock the AMD A10-5800K APU we decided to how far we could push the processor with the factory AMD retail boxed cooler. This is a budget processor and we figured that many will try to overclock with stock cooler.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro A10-5800K CPUz

It didn't go unnoticed that the ASUS F2A85-V Pro and the AMD A10-5800K combination like to sit at 4.0GHz rather than the typical 3.8GHz. The AMD A10-5800K has a typical speed of 3.8GHz with a turbo up to  4.2GHz.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro A10-5800K Auto Tune CPUz

The ASUS F2A85-V Pro UEFI BIOS has the option to run the OC Tuner. We wanted to give this a go as we see many people may want to do this for sake of ease, or simply not wanting to do much tinkering for fear of causing damage. Once we enabled this option in the UEFI BIOS the system reset itself, and once it rebooted into our Windows 7 install we found that our APU has been overclocked to 4.3GHz. It may not be a record breaker, buy hey, there's nothing wrong with a little free performance from enabling one option in the BIOS!

ASUS F2A85-V Pro A10-5800K Overclocking

The ASUS F2A85-V Pro was able to increase the APU multiplier to x45 without an issue. We were able to run Cinebench to check our stability and we seemed to be golden!

ASUS F2A85-V Pro A10-5800K Overclocking Results

Using the stock retail CPU cooler for the AMD A10-5800K doesn't leave us much headroom for overclocking. Although the system was rock solid at 4.5GHz, or at least seemed to be. The AMD A10-5800K was throttling back due to the heat being generated by the APU. Our best results were at 4.2GHz for the multi-threaded runs in Cinebench, we were able to hit 3.5. Beyond 4.2 our SMP scores started to drop, 3.44 @4.3GHz, 3.18 @4.4GHz, and all the way down to 2.86 @4.5GHz. The single core benchmarks continually climbed as we increased the frequency, starting out at 1.04 at 4.0GHz and ending at 1.16GHz at 4.5. Running on a single core the retail CPU cooler was able to handle the heat without much of a problem and we didn't see much CPU throttling.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro A10-5800K Overclocking Results

In order to prove our theory above about the A10-5800K throttling down and being a detriment to the system performance we decided to step up our cooling a notch or six. To make sure we were consistent we didn't change any of our other settings for the testing. At 4.5Ghz our score with the retail AMD boxed CPU cooler had dropped down to 2.86 points in Cinebench, swapping out the retail cooler for our Corsair H100 Hydro water cooler we were able to confirm our suspicions  The SMP score jumped to 3.65 points, a jump of nearly 28%! This was done by solely improving the CPU cooler and eliminating the heat involved with overclocking.

Final Thoughts & Conclusions

ASUS F2A85-V Pro AMD Socket FM2 Motherboard Layout

The ASUS F2A85-V Pro was definitely a very solid board today. Though we didn't see a whole lot of performance difference between the two AMD A85X motherboards that we have tested so far. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro and the GIGABYTE F2A85X-UP4 were running neck and neck with neither really standing out. Granted both ASUS and GIGABYTE are top tier manufacturers so we wouldn't expect any less, and if one truly pulled ahead of the other we would start looking for an issue with it. Fortunately both boards were performing great, so it's a good bet that neither have any issues. It's all going to come down to brand loyalty, and the features that you are looking for out in your choice.

When it comes to brand loyalty, there really isn't much to say on the subject. It's all a matter of personal preference and as well as personal history with that brand. I'm sure we all have a friend of a friend that has had bad experiences with every company out there. Personally I have friends that swear by ASUS and others that only use Brand X. I tend to go where the performance is, and you can't really go wrong when you go that route. The ASUS F2A85-V Pro definitely has the performance to keep up as well as out-perform the GIGABYTE F2A85X-UP4.

Graphics performance is where it's at with the new AMD Trinity systems. The A10-5800K and the ASUS F2A85-V Pro were easily able to out-perform the previous generation AMD APU's and the much more expensive Intel 'Ivy Bridge' platforms. It is certainly fair to say that when coupled with the latest AMD Trinity APU's the ASUS F2A85-V Pro can give you the latest Microsoft DirectX 11 eye candy, without breaking the bank. Right now you can find the AMD A10-5800K Socket FM2 APU for only $119.99, the ASUS F2A85-V Pro is available for only $130.98. For only ~$250 you can have the start of a solid gaming PC. Down the road you can always pop in a dedicated graphics card, or three since the ASUS F2A85-V Pro will support 3-way CrossFireX. 

I was impressed at how easily we were able to overclock our AMD A10-5800K APU to 4.5GHz today. Without having to adjust the voltages or other various settings we were at 4.5GHz in just a short time. Though it's certainly fair to say that we were severely limited due to the retail heatsink that we were using today. Once we pulled off the chunk of aluminum that comes with the AMD A10-5800K and sent it to the wayside, and put on our trusty Corsair Hydro H100 CPU cooler we saw much better performance at 4.5GHz. If you plan on doing any overclocking I would definitely couple a better CPU cooler with the ASUS F2A85-V Pro and APU. By simply changing the CPU cooling over we were able to eliminate throttling and bring the system performance in Cinebench from a score of 2.86 to 3.65! A 28% increase from only changing out the CPU cooler! 

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Overclocking Results

The ASUS F2A85-V Pro is can be found for as little as $130.98, which considering all of the features that you get, is a pretty solid price. As with just about all ASUS motherboards, the F2A85-V Pro is backed by a three year warranty for a little peace of mind in your investment.

ASUS F2A85-V Pro Recommended Award

Legit Bottom Line: The ASUS F2A85-V Pro is a very solid AMD Socket FM2 motheboard from one of the top companies out there. If you're in the market to build AMD's latest 'Trinity' platform the ASUS F2A85-V Pro should be on your short list if not on the top of it!