Asus has included some first-party and third-party software to help users get the most out of their motherboard and system.
First up is AI Booster, the applicaton that allows users to access overclocking options and some BIOS settings without leaving Windows.
Here you can see that you have access to the NOS settings, that will overclock your system based on a percentage of CPU frequency. The system will attempt to make all the necessary changes to the BIOS and run without issue, most of the time.
Here you can also see we can go manually and edit settings like the CPU frequency, multiplier, voltages and fan speed monitoring.
This screenshot shows the AI Booster software overclocking our 2.67 GHz processor to just over 3.0 GHz without any issue at all and with no fuss.
AI Gear allows the user to adjust the noise output of the system by controlling the power settings. Here you can see that the fans are spinning slower (the bottom level indicator) because the system is in the “3rd” gear, labeled as “max power savings.” In my testing, this software really didnt’ do much to the power consumption that I could tell (only a couple of watts different) or noise levels.
The Asus Update software allows the user to backup and update their BIOS without leaving Windows. You can even directly access the Asus website for the latest BIOS upgrades through the application as well. For users not familiar with the process of BIOS updates, this software can be very handy.
This third party virus protection software has been fairly popular online for being cost-competitive and open-source (for the most part) as well. Asus has included a free copy in with the Crosshair motherboard; hey free virus protection is always a plus!
The SoundMax software is used with the on-board audio to act as an equalizer and to setup some simple effects if you’d like. In my usage the software was competant, but really nothing special.
This software is responsible for the SoundMAX microphone that we discussed ealier and allows the setting of the enhancement type.
Futuremark 3DMark06 Advanced
As an added bonus, Asus has included a full copy of Futuremark 3DMark06; the full version! This is another $30 value that many gamers will want and should be considered an added value.