This is where you can fast forward to the final section of the review, and get a quick recap and points on the ASUS Maximus VII Hero.
Strong Overclocking: The Maximus VIII Hero has great overclocking capabilities, and while I don't have more than a few other motherboards to compare it against at this stage, it works very well with high speed memory kits. Not every Z170 motherboard will be able to boot 3600MHz with XMP at launch, but the Maximus VIII Hero has no problem doing so. The board was also able to handle 4.8GHz with 3600MHz on the memory and it did so with ease. ASUS's built-in OC profiles and features further sweeten the deal.
SupremeFX Audio: I think ASUS did a very nice job upgrading their audio with the dedicated DAC and other enhancements to the standard Realtek Codec. ASUS also paid attention to the smallest details of the audio on the Maximus VIII Hero; they added a dedicated oscillator for the DAC, and they used a relatively quiet relay for the de-pop circuit.
Extensive Fan Control: The Maximus VIII Hero has the best fan control I have seen on a motherboard. Not only has ASUS made all of the ports both PWM mode and DC mode (voltage mode) capable, but they added more controls such as spin up time to further enhance a user's ability to control the fans in great detail.
Great Looks: The Maximus VIII Hero is one of my favorite looking motherboards. I really like sleek and simple yet elegant looks, and the Hero delivers. The heat sinks are very nice, and I like how ASUS tries to tease you with the slight cutouts on the shield around the audio. The chokes are even slanted a little to add style, and the PCH lighting and ROG symbol are also very nice.
No Voltage Read Points: Since Skylake has so many voltage rails being fed to the CPU, many users will probably want to see what exact voltages are being fed to their CPU instead of relying on software. Users can still check out the voltages by finding the output capacitors of each of the VRMs and measuring there, but dedicated pads wouldn't have hurt.
The Maximus VIII Hero was very nice to work with. Its BIOS felt stable, had many options, and provided very good guidelines for overclocking. The choice to use Texas Instruments NexFETs in the VRM was a sound one as can be seen in the thermal imaging section. The Maximus VIII Hero has all the right stuff to be an affordable overclocking motherboard aimed at breaking records. I expected to have problems with just turning on XMP with my 3600MHz memory kit, but there were none with the Maximus VIII Hero. ASUS did a good job of auto tuning behind the scenes to provide high overclocking margins.
While the Maximus VIII Hero is an excellent overclocking motherboard, it also has some other noteworthy features. ASUS did a really good job with the audio, and the aesthetics of the motherboard are sure to turn heads. The Maximus VIII Hero should also be priced competitively. At around $230, it should be a very popular board because of its feature set and ROG extras. Overall, the Maximus VIII Hero impressed me with its looks, features, and performance, but on top of all that, it is a solid overclocking motherboard.
Product Summary Breakdown
|Performance (including Overclocking)||97%|
|Quality including Design and Build||95%|
|Bundle and Packaging||90%|
|Value for Money||92%|
|Overall TweakTown Rating||93%|
The Bottom Line: While the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero has a great feature set and brilliant aesthetics, it has all the right stuff to be an affordable overclocking motherboard aimed at breaking records.
PRICING: You can find the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link below to see real-time pricing for the best deal:
United States: The ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero retails for $239 at Amazon.
United Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon UK's website.
Australia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at PLE Computer's website.
Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon Canada's website.
- Page 1 [Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing]
- Page 2 [Packaging and the Maximus VIII Hero]
- Page 3 [Maximus VIII Hero Circuit Analysis]
- Page 4 [Maximus VIII Hero Circuit Analysis Continued]
- Page 5 [BIOS and Software]
- Page 6 [Test System Setup]
- Page 7 [Overclocking]
- Page 8 [CPU, Memory, and System Benchmarks]
- Page 9 [System IO Benchmarks]
- Page 10 [Thermal Imaging and Power Consumption]
- Page 11 [What's Hot, What's Not & Final Thoughts]
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