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Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard review

Ardjuna Seghers



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Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard
  • Asus Sabertooth 55i TUF Motherboard


Our Score:


Let's face it, enthusiast PC hardware is a male-dominated sector, and boys have always been attracted to army stuff. Thus Asus has had the brilliant idea of combining the two with its new 'Marine Cool' TUF (which stands for The Ultimate Force, but see the clever play on 'tough' here?) Sabertooth 55i motherboard. To be honest we think Asus has got its analogies a little mixed up here as saber-tooth tigers aren't the first things we think of when someone says military, but at least they've got the camouflage colour scheme spot on.

As the name suggests, this is one of the new socket LGA 1156 boards based on the Intel P55 chipset, compatible with Intel's latest Core i5 and i7 processors. And it's not just the combat colours that make it special; it also features 'rugged' build and components. Its capacitors, for example, have been shock, temperature, moisture, vibration, and even "Salt Spray" tested - invaluable if you want to take your new motherboard sailing. All joking aside though, this resistance can be genuinely useful if you live near the shore, as salty sea air can wreak havoc on PC parts (so even if the rest of your computer dies, your motherboard's capacitors should survive).

Getting back to aesthetics, everything's based on a black PCB, with the white TUF logo (two wings flanking a shield) discreetly visible between the PCI Express and memory slots. Most of the various slots and jumpers are clothed in brown, beige or gunmetal grey, and thankfully the memory slots are coloured according to pair so you know which slots to occupy for dual channel mode (why don't all motherboards do this?). Not only this but beige is the consistent colour to denote primary, so at a glance you know the beige 16x PCI-Express slot and memory slots are the ones to fill first.

The highlight in terms of looks though are the ceramic (or CeraM!X, as Asus prefers to call it)-coated heatsinks for the power phases surrounding the CPU socket and the P55 chipset cooler. While not as magpie-friendly as their polished metal counterparts on most other motherboards, Asus claims better performance thanks to improved heat dissipation.

So onto practical considerations. The Sabertooth 55i TUF's basic design and layout is very similar to Asus' P7P55D Deluxe, but then why fix what isn't broken? Thanks to P55 boards replacing the north and south-bridge of previous X58 motherboards with a single chip, there's plenty of room to play with layout. Here Asus got things right pretty early on and hasn't changed things just for the sake of it.


October 15, 2009, 4:27 pm

It would help if you actually mentioned the warranty in these articles. That's the one thing missing from your otherwise enjoyable site.

...motherboards tend to last to survive far beyond their useful lifespan. Not in my experience with Asus they don't. I had 2 same boards fail on me with the same fault and because you can't RMA direct to Asus, I was stuck with the retailers refusal to do anything about it. I haven't bought Scan or Asus since. Get an EVGA board, 10 year warranty and direct RMA. You know it's worth it :)


October 15, 2009, 6:30 pm

I've been working in a big electronics store for the last 7 years and I've seen faulty Asus motherboards only couple of times. And there was absolutely no problem to get a replacement from the distributor. And you can get direct RMA here in Poland - all you need is to fill in the form on the Asus website. My current PC is based on an Asus MB, as 2 previous PC's before it.


October 15, 2009, 9:41 pm


Indeed, kind of forgot to mention that, apologies. Unfortunately it's just the standard 3years as far as I'm aware.

I must admit that I've used an Asus board in one of my previous PCs and like with S_p_i_d_e_r it lasted as long as the rest of the machine did.

BTW, we usually mention warranties on, for example, laptops in the feature table.


October 16, 2009, 2:18 pm


Our current warranty is 3 years, with an estimated 5 days turnaround time if you purchase from an ASUS authorised reseller.

I'm sorry for the problems you've experienced in the past. Our RMA service has been changed quite radically in the last 3 months to help improve the consumers experience of ASUS.


October 16, 2009, 8:43 pm

well intel has managed to confuse me, so you can use the i7 and i5 in the P55 but only the i7 in the X58? I thought the i7 and i5 were going to be seperate lines that you choose one and if you wanted the other you had to buy a new motherboard aswell


October 17, 2009, 9:08 pm

That's nice to read ASUS UK, but it's once bitten twice shy for me. Unless you're saying there IS now a direct RMA procedure? I bought Asus for at least 10 years prior to this experience. (back when the pcchips website had a wooden veneer background image and you had to try your best to find drivers for various chipsets using FCC codes and Acer was still ALi :D)

I felt at the time, that had I been able to convince the retailer to ask Asus on my behalf, that Asus would have seen straight away that it was a legitimate claim. The retailer refused to do that. As I had no direct recourse with Asus, I decided to take my money elsewhere.


October 17, 2009, 9:11 pm

PS: thanks Ardjuna; warranty details are right up there on my list when looking for new hardware.


October 19, 2009, 7:16 am

I am not an Asus fan but it makes decent products. I give a big thumbs up for this motherboard and Asus. Good and different kind of effort.

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