ASUS F2A85-M Pro - Reasonably Priced Motherboard

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Asus’ F2A85-M Pro costs twice as much as the next cheapest FM 2 board on test, and it’s also noticeable pricier than the MSIA85A-GD65, which sports the same A85X chipset.

It’s also a micro-ATX board, so it’s understandably thin on expansion options, with just two 16x PCI-Eslots and two 1x slots located in between. There’s no PCI slot and, unlike the cheaper MSI, there are no power, reset or CMOS clear buttons either. However, there are seven SATA connectors, six of which are angled, plus Asus’ usual perks such as USB BIOS Flashback and its Al Suite II Software, including Fan Xpert 2.

ASUS F2A85-M Pro

The layout doesn’t have issues either, with the 8-pin EPS 12V connector and 24-pin ATX connector both located at the edge of the PCB, although you’ll lose one of the 1x PCI-E slots if you use a discrete dual-slot GPU. As you’d expect at this rice, the F2A85-M Pro also has the full complement of video outputs, including Display Port, HDMI and DVI-D. Plus, should you wish to dabble in some dual-GPU malarkey, it also supports Cross Fire X, with its two 16x PCI-E slots running at 8x with two graphics cards installed.

ASUS F2A85-M Pro

At stock speed, the F2A85-M Pro proved to be slightly faster overall than both me A75-based motherboards on test, beating them in all our Media Benchmarks tests with an overall score of 1,407 around 30 points ahead, although this equates to less than 3 percent. In our game tests, it was much the same, with the F2A85-M Pro slightly ahead but not by much, with minimum frame rates of 26fps in Skyrim using on-board graphics and 48fps in Crysis 2 with a discrete GPU. It was also slightly ahead in the SATA tests, with a lead of a few megabytes per second over the other motherboards.

ASUS F2A85-M Pro

Overclocking the F2A85-M Pro was also easy, thanks to another cracking EFI system from Asus. We were quickly up to 4.4GHz after setting the vcore to 1.485V, and disabling the AMD Power Now and C6 state options. Sadly, we couldn’t reach 4.5GHz, as we managed with the Gigabyte and MSI boards, though, with Prime95 persistently failing on the second core. Thankfully, this didn’t have a huge impact on speed tests; the F2A85-M Pro lost its lead but overclocking still saw 60 points added to the overall Media Benchmarks score. We also managed to increase the GPU clock speed to 1GHz; along with the CPU overclock, this added 1 fps to the minimum in Skyrim.


ASUS F2A85-M Pro

The F2A85-M Pro is a solid FM2 board with the usual Asus perks. However, it price is ludicrous given how similarly all the other boards on test performed. It has marginal speed advantages at stock speeds, but there’s little other evidence to justify the extra outlay.


·         Madras: Excellent EFI system; good layout; plenty of features

·         Korma: Double the price of A75 motherboards

·         Product code: F2A85-M pro

·         Price: $164

·         Manufacturer


·         Speed: 41/ 45

·         Features: 27/ 30

·         Value: 12/ 25



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