Is the Asus Rampage III Extreme the best motherboard ever or overpriced hype?

Moments ago, in our chatroom, I said that, if I had the money, I’d buy two Asus Rampage III Extreme motherboards: one to use and one to hang on the wall like a diploma. That’s how great the thing looks. Never mind that, simply reading the stats, it’s one of the best motherboard money can buy as of today—it looks as if it was designed by an extraterrestrial being, one with an advanced outer space art degree. It’s a very good board, but is it OMG BEST THING EVER~!

Maybe not, it seems. The problem, nearest I can tell after reading Bit-Tech’s review (fun fact: Bit-Tech is one of the few tech sites I read for pleasure, not just because I have to), is that, compared to the Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R, the Rampage doesn’t justify its price. The Rampage retails for $379, which is not exactly inexpensive, while the Gigabyte retails for $199. For essentially half the price, you’re looking at nearly the same performance.

That’s not to say that the board is rubbish or anything—four PCE-E slots, six memory slots, two SATA-III and USB 3.0 ports—but such components aren’t unique to the near-$400 board. In fact, you’ll find that the Gigabyte is much the same, if only half the price.

That does seem to be the bottom line: a fine board, but it doesn’t do enough to justify such a price tag. (“Ultimately, for the vast, vast majority of users, the R3E fails to justify its extremely high price tag in the face of such stiff competition from Gigabyte and Asus’ own range of non-[Republic of Gamers] motherboards.”)

Then again, the people who are in the market for “enthusiast” motherboards may not be as tight with their money as the average person, so all these “not worth the money” complaints may not necessarily apply.

But again, it sure does look nice.