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ASUS P8H67-I Deluxe Socket 1155 Motherboard

ASUS P8H67-I DeluxeToday’s contender for the mini-ITX crown is the ASUS P8H67-I Deluxe. Being based on the H67 the chances of extreme overclocking are nil, but for use in a HTPC build it offers all (and I mean ALL) the features one would want in such a motherboard. Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and a multitude of video connections are just a few of what this new motherboard has to offer.

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ASUS P8H67-I Deluxe

ASUS P8H67-I DeluxeToday’s contender for the mini-ITX crown is the ASUS P8H67-I Deluxe. Being based on the H67 the chances of extreme overclocking are nil, but for use in a HTPC build it offers all (and I mean ALL) the features one would want in such a motherboard. Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and a multitude of video connections are just a few of what this new motherboard has to offer.

Introduction to the ASUS P8H67-I Deluxe

In the ongoing quest to build PC systems as small as possible, you have to begin with the primary components. The biggest of those, both literally and figuratively, would have to be the motherboard. Over the past few years we have seen micro-ATX become very popular due to their size; however, once people had a chance to witness the mini- ITX motherboard and the power capable of being packed into it, the popularity of micro-ATX platform slowed.

With the birth of the mini-ITX motherboard, even overclocking became a possibility at this small level, which we saw one particular mini-ITX board take the world by storm. As the H55 was awhile ago at this point and the competing manufacture is not the creator of this product, we’ll just mention a few things. While its primary function was to be used as a HTPC backbone, but this motherboard overclocked as well as many full-sized boards. Based on a chipset that is on its way out the door, it’s time for a new board to reign.

Today’s contender for the mini-ITX crown is the ASUS P8H67-I Deluxe. Being based on the H67 the chances of extreme overclocking are nil, but for use in a HTPC, SoHo, or even a SFF Gaming build, it offers all (and we mean ALL) the features one would want in such a motherboard. Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, USB3, full bandwidth PCIe x16 slot and a multitude of A/V connections are just a few of things this new motherboard has to offer.

Update: Something that ASUS brought to our attention and felt was worth mentioning., which after hearing we feel the same about, is that not everyone might be fully aware of the details surrounding the K-Series of Socket 1155 processors. Most notable of which — at least to most of you guys/gals, right? — would have to be the fact of it being an “Unlocked Processor”, meaning the ability to overclock it has been made rather simple by way of simply needing to CPU multiplier (and depending on how high, voltage maybe). The next thing is perhaps something of more interest to anyone looking to run this as a HTPC or Office system. Of all the different Sandy Bridge models available, it is the ‘K’ prefix models which have a higher iGPU clock speed. While likely of little real-world need for anyone running off the iGPU, it could make a difference of smooth HD content playback at 1080p, and might be more of an issue for the 3D Blu-ray. 

Specifications

CPUIntel® Socket 1155 for Intel® 2nd Generation Core™ i7 Processor/Core™ i5 Processor/Core™ i3 Processor/
Support Intel® 32nm CPU
Supports Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0
ChipsetIntel® H67(B3) Express Chipset
Memory2 x Small Outline DIMM, Max. 16 GB, DDR3 1333/1066 Non-ECC,Un-buffered Memory
Dual Channel memory architecture
* Please refer to www.asus.com or user manual for Memory QVL.
Expansion Slots1 x PCIe 2.0 x16
VGASupports HDMI with Max. Resolution 1920 x 1200 @60Hz
Supports DVI with Max. Resolution 1920 x 1200 @60Hz
Supports D-Sub with Max. Resolution 2048 x 1530 @75Hz
Max. UMA Memory: 1748MB
StorageIntel® H67(B3) Express Chipset
2 x SATA 6.0 Gb/s ports (gray)
2 x SATA 3.0 Gb/s ports (blue)
Support RAID 0,1,5,10
1 x External SATA 3Gb/s port
LANRealtek® RTL8111E Gigabit LAN Controller
Wireless LANWi-Fi 802.11b/g/n
AudioRealtek® ALC892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
– DTS Surround Sensation UltraPC
– BD Audio Layer Content Protection
– Supports Jack-Detection, Front Panel Jack-Retasking
– Optical S/PDIF out port at back I/O
USBChipset built-in
– 4 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports (2 ports at mid-board, 2 ports at pack panel)
Chipset built-in
– 6 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports (2 ports at mid-board, 4 ports at back panel)
ASUS Unique FeaturesASUS Power Solutions
– ASUS Anti-Surge Protection
– ASUS EPU
ASUS Exclusive Features
– GPU Boost
– MemOK!
– BT GO!
ASUS EZ DIY
– ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
– ASUS EZ Flash 2
– EFI BIOS (EZ Mode)
Back Panel I/O Ports1 x PS/2 Keyboard/Mouse Combo port
1 x DVI
1 x D-Sub
1 x HDMI
1 x External SATA
1 x LAN(RJ45) port(s)
2 x USB 3.0/2.0
4 x USB 2.0/1.1
1 x S/PDIF Out (Optical)
6 -Channel Audio I/O
2 x Wi-Fi antenna port
1 x Bluetooth
Internal I/O Connectors1 x USB 3.0/2.0 connector(s) support additional 2 USB 3.0/2.0 ports
1 x USB 2.0/1.1 connector(s) support additional 2 USB 2.0/1/1 ports
1 x MemOK! Button
1 x GPU Boost Switch
2 x SATA 6.0Gb/s connectors
2 x SATA 3.0Gb/s connectors
1 x CPU Fan connector(s) (4-pin)
1 x Chassis Fan connector(s) (4-pin)
1 x 24-pin ATX Power connector
1 x 4-pin ATX 12V Power connector
1 x Front panel audio connector
1 x System Panel connector
1 x Clear CMOS jumper
BIOS32 Mb Flash ROM , AMI BIOS, PnP, DMI2.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 2.5, ACPI 2.0a
ManageabilityWOL by PME,PXE
Support DiscDrivers
Anti-virus software (OEM version)
ASUS Update
ASUS Utilities
Form FactorMini ITX Form Factor
6.75 inch x 6.75 inch ( 17.1 cm x 17.1 cm )
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Features

  • GPU Boost – Go to the Limit with iGPU Level Up
  • MemOK! – Any Memory is A-OK!
  • Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n Support
  • ASUS BT GO!
  • SATA6G / USB 3.0

Closer look

To start off, ASUS mass produces two version of the P8H67-I, the first is the basic model which lacks Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and eSATA. The second and what we are taking a look at today, is the Deluxe version, coming equipped with those options plus all the goodies you just read about on the Specs page.

As stated in the introduction the P8H67-I is based on the Cougar Point H67 chipset, which means the board takes advantage of the latest Intel 2nd generation Core I-series processors. Also meaning that even with its small stature, it can still take on Intel’s mightiest and fastest Sandy Bridge processor; the i7 2600K.

Being located in the center of all the features of the P8H67-I, the CPU socket is somewhat cramped. Unfortunately this means that if a graphics card is planned pn being installed, the room available for a CPU cooler is going to be limited. So if you intend on using a discrete GPU with this motherboard then you’ll want to plan on using the standard Intel cooler, or something similarly low-profile in size.

Cornering the CPU socket is the VRM MOSFETs, set up in a 4+2 phase power configuration. The board uses only a 4-pin AUX power connector allowing a person to utilize lower wattage power supplies.

A little unusual with P8H67-I is that it uses the laptop SO-DIMM type of memory, and not the full-sized slots we are use to. It’s not the physical size of the modules we are concerned with though, but the frequencies in which it supports; a limit of 1333MHz can be utilized by the motherboard. Then again, after considering for a minute this is a H67 motherboard means overclocking is almost nonexistent (save for K-series chips), so high frequency memory is really not that necessary. We’ve also come to the conclusion that a maximum of 16GB but 4GB modules are the largest size available on the market. [Editor’s Note: While technically there are 8GB modules available, at 1866MHz even, it’s not exactly common or cheap. Samsung lists half a dozen 8GB modules available back in this Jul’10 product guide, so the other IC manufacturers may also be offering competing products. Though I must say, while it may be running at 1866MHz I can’t see it performing too well at its break-neck latency of 13-13-13! That all considered I think it’s fair to consider 4GB as the largest for all except those with a totally disposable income. Update: Something else ASUS thought of, which I apologies for perhaps implying otherwise, is the H67 lacks the memory overclocking multipliers to go above 1333MHz. So while the 8GB modules I mentioned will still be expensive even at 1333MHz, there are still many very affordable options out there in 4GB kits , even at speeds up to 1866MHz if you like.]

To the right of the DIMM slots we HAVE a vertical standing CMOS battery. Also, ASUS managed to get the MemOK button and EPU switch integrated into the PCB, despite the small footprint of the P8H67-I.

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The lone slot on the board is an x16 PCIe 2.0, operating at full bandwidth.

Nestled up to the ATX power connector we have a mini-PCIe half-height Wi-Fi card. To its right we have the SATA ports (just off picture), two SATA II (blue) and two SATA III (gray). All of which are controlled by the H67 chipset and support RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10. Below it is the blue USB3 expansion header for an additional two ports.

List of rear panel connections:

  • PS/2 combo keyboard/mouse
  • 2x Wi-Fi SMA antenna connectors
  • Bluetooth module
  • 6 USB ports (4x USB 2.0, 2x USB 3.0)
  • 1 eSATA
  • LAN port (Realtek RTL8111E)
  • IEEE 1394
  • 2 S/PDIF for 8-channel digital audio (coaxial and optical)
  • 6-channel analog audio (Realtek ALC892)
  • Video (DVI, HDMI, VGA)

Key Features

GPU Boost

One feature that is missing from the H67 is the ability to overclock the CPU. This is the only thing that set the two chipsets apart, but one thing that you can overclock with the H67 is the GPU. ASUS aptly calls this feature GPU Boost, and this feature can either be activated from within the BIOS, or through the AI Suite application in Windows.

EPU Switch

To help save on some power, ASUS has implemented their EPU feature into the P8H67 boards as well. What this does is further drop the CPU core voltage by around 30-70mV (0.03-0.07V), yet still keeping the same clocks and system stability. To healthy benefits to this is improved hardware lifespan and lower energy consumption (which one could translate into a lower month power bill).

MemOK! Button

If at any time you are having a problem with the system POSTing, booting or even just a drop in performance, pressing this button when power up will attempt to fix the underlying problem. Also, if you went for a single stick of memory and later upgrade by adding another, but is of a different brand, should any problems arise then the MemOK! button can also try to resolve the issue. By cycling through various different memory speeds, timing configurations and voltages (which there are an insurmountable combination of), the chances are pretty good that it will be able to rectify the problem should one crop up.

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BT Go 3.0!

This feature is ideal for such a motherboard like the P8H67- I. Why? Chances are many will use this motherboard as the backbone of the HTPC. And that being the case it makes it easy to share those precious moments caught on a mobile. Enabling Bluetooth on both devices will allow you to display the images on a much larger screen.

AI Suite II

We are all familiar with the AI Suite by now. This is one of the best motherboard manufactured application made. Yes, it does allow you to overclock the CPU on supports motherboards and chipsets. But that is not all. With AI you can access temperature and fan settings. Overclock the GPU and enable the EPU function of the power phase. The app could be overwhelming to some and if that is the case the app is fully modular and you can disable or hide what it is you don’t need.

Wireless on board

ASUS is not the first to include Wi-Fi on a motherboard but they did take it one step further. They added two antennas to package for the best reception and increased throughput. The antennas also have long enough cables, allowing you to place them where needed for optimal reception. The Wi-Fi is fully Wireless-N (802.11a/b/g/n 2.4/5GHz) complaint for the connection and wireless transfer.

Conclusion

Coupled with one of Intel’s latest Sandy Bridge processors, the ASUS P8H67-I Deluxe is one of the finest ITX motherboards on the market. It offers all that one needs in the building a Home Theater PC system. The small form factor, built-in Wi-Fi and multiple audio/visual options are just what the doctor ordered. Due to the absence of most of the options found on larger motherboards, like additional PCIe slots and extra onboard headers, allows for a nice decrease in power consumption, thankfully resulting in a lower electric bill.

If that is not your cup of tea, then it can also make one hell of a motherboard for a LAN box. Throw in a speedy processor, with a discrete GPU, and you can be fragging with the best of them. Its lone PCIe x16 slot is capable of fitting the fastest of graphic cards, only being limited by the size of your case.

While yes, the P8H67-I Deluxe is not overclockable, it is by no fault of ASUS, instead simply a limitation of the H67 chipset. The P8H67-I Deluxe will required the usage of SO-DIMM DDR3 (generally used in laptops), so the build cost may be a little higher and DIMM speed will be limited. [If you’re not too picky, a person can easily find a set of 2x1GB DDR3-1066 on eBay for as little as $15-shipped, which is what I ended up doing for the ASRock E350M-1 review. If you go that route then keep your eyes open for Intel-based Mac modules and should have no problems working for you, as that is what my Hynix sticks came from. -Clint]

We enjoyed the time we spent with the P8H67-I Deluxe and would like to thank J. J. at ASUS for sending it over to us!

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ProClockers was founded in 2004, and since then we have reviewed thousands of tech products, including motherboards, CPUs, graphics cards, PC cases, cooling solutions and more. Whilst many of the original products we reviewed back then have long bit the dust, we continue working hard to provide unbiased PC hardware and tech reviews.

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