TUF Jacket: Bulletproof?
The Thermal Armor (TA) works hand in hand with ASUS AI Suite II which tracks twelve different sensors around the motherboard which includes the CPU itself. To test the TA's effectiveness, the system was first left to idle for 60 minutes.
After our 60 minute idle period, the system was then loaded down for 60 minutes without any extra cooling fans. We used just the Zalman CNPS10X Extreme at its highest speed to represent a typical performance system setup.
The process was repeated with a Noctua NH-C14 (horizontal) CPU cooler installed on the system because it sports two massive fans facing down which pushes air inside the TA.
It doesn't take an engineer to have predicted these results. Obviously, the NH-C14 is the better configuration as it gets the air down inside which caused temperatures to drop across all the sensors. Even the Zalman cooler makes some difference with its wide dispersion around the socket. Some well placed case fans will also benefit the TA's channeling. Keep in mind that direct air flow is not required at all for the Sabertooth to operate. But, of course, any extra air movement is a bonus, particularly if it is aimed through the Thermal Armor.
This isn't the first time we've seen a motherboard telling us that it is built with military grade components. What it actually means though is that it uses highly resilient components that are resistant to heat, abuse, substandard power, and extended periods of extreme use. That is what it truly means for something to carry the "military grade" standard. Much of those electronic components are indeed covered by a protective plate as you don't want them exposed to foreign materials while you defeat the opposing forces in your favorite game. Plus, ASUS is the only company to actually get the blessing of the US military.
Overall, the ASUS Sabertooth P67 motherboard is an inspiring product. Its performance and overclocking potential is extremely impressive further solidifying the reasons why the Editor's Choice Award was given to the P8P67 EVO in which it shares much of the same technology with. But of course, since value is part of the equation when it comes to our highest accolades, the Sabertooth does stand out as a premium priced product.
Based on its $219 US price tag, it does provide a great platform for creative modders and a great performance platform for enthusiasts alike. The Sabertooth achieves it's mission objective to offer you a never failing motherboard with an industry leading 5 year warranty and is still the only "Military Grade" board with a seal of approval from the US Military. Whether that's worth the price is up to you, but we do feel compelled to recommend it if your pay grade allows for it.
- True Military Rated Components
- MemOK! and three separate SATA controllers
- DIGI+VRM: Highly tuned VRM and Turbo Performance
- Thermal Armor: Unique opportunity for modders
- Very attractive design and concept
- Exemplary overclocking and stability
- US Military Approved With Certificate
- Armor hides the board's CMOS battery
Overall Rating: 9.0 / 10.0
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