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May 5, 2014

ASUS Releases Three ROG Z97 Gaming Motherboards for Intel Devil's Canyon CPUs

The LGA 1150 socket has been showing up on pretty much every Intel-ready motherboard of this year, and the latest set of mainboards from ASUS is no exception. And it's a pretty powerful set too.

We are, of course, referring to the new Republic of Gamers motherboards, specifically the Maximus VII Gene mATX, Maximus VII Hero ATX, and the new Maximus VII Ranger ATX. Their names say what form factor they use: the first of the series is a micro-ATX mainboard, while the other two are full-sized ATX models. It's a pretty standard move, this, to release at least two platforms, covering the two most popular motherboard types in the world. The trend was followed for the other ASUS motherboard product releases of the past couple of days, but we'll see to those separately, later. We won't really go into too much detail as far as technical specifications go. Not in the traditional sense. The photo gallery should show easily enough how many PCI Express/memory slots and storage/I/O connectors there are.

Instead, we'll specify the things that you would be hard-pressed to find, starting with the discrete audio cards included in the product boxes. The ROG Maximus VII Hero and Ranger come with SupremeFX 2014, while Maximus VII Gene gets the SupremeFX Impact II discrete audio card. Electromagnetic interference (EMI) should be minimal thanks to the isolation technologies used in their making, while the premium ELNA audio capacitors and 8-channel gold-plated audio output ports make the integrated audio technology as good as that of add-in adapters. Another asset is the support for M.2 (PCI Express x2) solid-state drives, also known as NGFF (next generation form factor). They're like DDR3 DIMM modules but with the connector on one of the narrow sides. The data transfer is of up to 10 Gbps.

UEFI BIOS is another advantage, along with KeyBot (uses a dedicated USB socket to turn normal keyboards into “smart” ones with one-click smart login, instant shortcuts and commands, macros, etc.). Then there's the Sonic SenseAmp, which detects headphone impedance and automatically adjusts the built-in amp. Finally, the Sonic SoundStage button optimizes audio settings for FPS, racing, combat and sport games. The new ROG motherboards from ASUS ship with RJ45 LAN ports with LANGuard (better throughput with up to 1.3 times the surge protection and 1.9 times the static electricity tolerance of traditional boards) and black nickel processor socket covers with improved circuit layouts.

The ASUS Maximus VII motherboards ship in a black and red color scheme and use the upgraded ROG UEFI BIOS to detect ASUS graphics cards, plus the Secure Erase function to wipe out SSD data and restore factory speeds (SSDs get slower over time, even with TRIM active).

ASUS Maximus VII Hero

ASUS Maximus VII Gene

ASUS Maximus VII Ranger
Image credits to ASUS


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