ASUS Unveils The Z97 ROG Maximus VII Formula, ROG Maximus VII Impact and ROG FM2+ Crossblade Ranger Motherboards

ASUS Unveils The Z97 ROG Maximus VII Formula, ROG Maximus VII Impact and ROG FM2+ Crossblade Ranger Motherboards

If you had noticed my articles from a few days back regarding Devil’s
Canyon processors from Intel, you might have noticed that we were the
first to mention that the high-end Z97 motherboards were going to launch
in future from various manufacturer’s. Today at Computex 2014, ASUS
went ahead and launched those three high-performance motherboards which
true enthusiasts were waiting for that include Z97 ROG Maximus VII
Formula, ROG Maximus VII Impact and ROG Crossblade Ranger.

ASUS Latest Z97 Boards Include ROG Maximus VII Formula, ROG Maximus VII Impact and ROG Crossblade Ranger

ASUS has launched three high-end ROG “Republic of Gamers” branded
motherboards which will be aimed at the overclocking community at
different price ranges. We will start off with the high-end ROG Maximus
VII Formula motherboard which features the LGA 1150 socket and Z97 PCH.

ASUS ROG Maximus VII Formula

The ASUS ROG Maximus VII Formula is the flagship motherboard of
ASUS’s Z97 motherboard lineup featuring the latest version of the ROG
ARMOR which includes a strong SECC steel fortifier with termal pad
cooling and adopts the CrossChill Copper cooling which offers the option
of both air and liquid cooling. Integrated ‘Pin-finned’ heatsinks
improve heat dissipation with an increased surface area, while twin
G1/4-inch threaded sockets support any standard liquid cooling loop. ROG
testing has shown that a liquid-cooled ROG Maximus VII Formula
motherboard with CrossChill operates at temperatures up to 23 degrees
Celsius lower than air-only cooling.

The motherboard adopts a 8 Phase DIGI+ VRM which is cooled by the
massive heatsink that adopts integrated water cooling design. The CPU
socket is powered by an 8+4 Pin power configuration while the
motherboard itself is powered by the 24-Pin ATX connector. There are
four DDR3 DIMMs which offer support of up to 32 GB DDR3 memory with
speeds of 3000 MHz (O.C+), right next to the memory slots are two
switches for Power On/Off and reset which is accustomed to overclockers
and enthusiasts. There’s also a diagnostic LED on the top left corner of
the board.

Expansion slots include three PCI-e 3.0 x16 and three PCI-e 3.0 x1
slots. There’s an M.2 SSD connector hidden beneath the armor plating
which needs to be removed to equip an NGFF form factor drive offering
speeds of up to 10 GB/s (PCI-e x2 speeds). The board comes with a
additional mPCIe Combo III card over at the I/O panel that
offers 802.11ac wireless B/G/N connection. The PCH is hidden beneath an
angular heatsink while the storage includes 6 SATA 6 GB/s and two SATA
Express ports which is impressive. A USB 3.0 header connector can also
be spotted next to the storage ports. The ROG Maximus VII Formula also
includes the latest SupremeFX onboard audio that features 120dB SNR
headphone output with a 600ohm headphone amplifier, and renowned WIMA
and ELNA audio capacitors. Differential signal processing with OpAMP and
EMI shielding reduce electromagnetic interference, too.

ASUS ROG Maximus VII Impact

ASUS ROG Maximus VII Impact

The second board we have in highlights is the Mini-ITX ROG Maximus
VII Impact which retains the design and quality standard of the ROG
Maximus VI Impact while improving upon it. The Maximus VII Impact
features the LGA 1150 socket and the Z97 express chipset. The
motherboard features a right-angled VRM board that comes with a 8+2
Phase Digital PWM and is cooled off by a vertical heatsink with an
embedded ROG logo. ASUS went with their flagship red and black color
theme for the Impact motherboard, a second heatsink is located on the
Z97 PCH. From a design perspective, the motherboard looks alot similar
to the ASUS’s Z97 ITX board but the ROG product adopts several new
features not before seen in any iTX board. Power to the socket is
provided by an 8-Pin connector.

First of these features is the introduction of SupremeFX 2104 impact,
an add-on sound card which delivers high quality audio and features
Headphone AMP, SupremeFX shielding, 120dB SNR and ELNA audio caps. With
such an high quality sound card already provided with the motherboard,
audiophiles won’t have to buy a secondary audio card. There’s a mPCIe
Combo IV module which adds 802.11ac wireless connectivity and can even
support M.2 interface SSDs though one’s which are shorter in length.

The Maximus VII Impact comes with a single PCI-e 3.0 x16 slot which
can be used to add in a graphics card. For storage, it offers four SATA 6
GBps ports while two DDR3 DIMM slots offer memory compatibility with
capacity upto 16 GB. Now the most interesting part about the Maximus VI
Impact is its I/O panel, due to size limitations AMD decided to take off
the overclocking switches from the board’s PCB and reconfigured them on
a separate Impact control hub which is located on the I/O panel. Tiny
but useful, this Impact control hub offers MemOK, Flashback, DeBUG LED
and voltage headers in a compact size hub that’s easily within reach and
doesn’t require you to open your chassis over and over again to reach
the swtiches. Other I/O options include a bunch of USB 3.0 ports,
Gigabit LAN, HDMI, DIsplay port, SPDIF and e-SATA. Pricing and release
date were not mentioned.

ASUS ROG Crossblade Ranger

ASUS ROG Crossblade Ranger

The last motherboard in ASUS’s lineup is the ROG Crossblade ranger
which adopts a 8 Phase VRM powered by a 8-Pin connector. Now the
interesting thing about this board is that its aimed towards the AMD APU
crowd and to be precise, the Kaveri APUs. The motherboard comes with
the same gorgeous Ranger design scheme of the Z97 counterpart offering a
neat red and black color scheme.

Technical overview of the motherboard gives us four DDR3 DIMMs, 8
SATA 6 GB/s ports along with a USB 3.0 header. Expansion slots include
three PCI-e 3.0 x16, two PCI-e 3.0 x1 and a single PCI slot. The board
comes with the SupremeFX audio scheme and you can see how the audio
section of the PCB is isolated from the rest of the board. The ASUS Z97
and FM2+ motherboards are expected to launch in Q3 2014. The exact
prices are not known but we’ll update you as soon as we have more

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