Not much of a while ago, Intel launched the Ivy Bridge featuring 28 nm architecture and compatibility with PCI-E 3.0 and a little processing boost over the Sandy Bridge but lowering the power requirements by a lot !
Simply to manage the processor and show what all it can do, Intel quickly released the Z77 Chipset for the processor to work with. Z77, being a successor to the Z68 offers really some power over its predecessor !
Features include Native USB 3.0 ports, full support for PCI-E 3.0, Intel Rapid Start Technology, Intel Quick Sync Video, Intel Smart Response Technology, as well as Intel Smart Connect Technology. Z77 is also capable of adding LucidLogix MVP which can combine and adjust the power of your iGPU and GPU to give an ~30% increase in the performance.
The motherboard might not fit every pocket, but the pocket which it fits is lucky enough as it is moderately priced at ~ Rs. 16500 INR and gives you extreme value. When it comes to Luxury, this says a no to that but a complete welcome to performance and features.
The board has been developed by ASUS ROG (Republic Of Gamers) which is known for developing the best computer hardware and is ranked in one of the Top few ! The products are not for a Nerd. but for an enthusiast who can rise up to any limits. The ROG division of ASUS is also leading in manufacturing “OC like mad” Graphics Cards.
The board looks like :
So, now that we are all excited lets see what are the specifications ..
|CPU||Intel® Socket 1155 for 3rd/2nd Generation Core™ i7/Core™ i5/
Core™ i3/Pentium®/Celeron® Processors
Supports Intel® 22 nm CPU
|Memory||4 x DIMM, Max. 32GB, DDR3 2800(O.C.)/2666(O.C.)/2600(O.C.)/2400(O.C.)/2200(O.C.)/2133(O.C.)/
2000(O.C.)/1866(O.C.)/1600/1333 MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory
Dual Channel Memory Architecture
|Graphic||Integrated Graphics Processor
Multi-VGA output support : HDMI/DisplayPort ports
– Supports HDMI with max. resolution 1920 x 1200 @ 60 Hz
– Supports DisplayPort with max. resolution 2560 x 1600 @ 60 Hz
Supports Intel® HD Graphics, InTru™ 3D, Quick Sync Video, Clear Video HD Technology, Insider™
|Multi-GPU Support||Supports NVIDIA® SLI™ Technology
Supports AMD CrossFireX™ Technology
Supports LucidLogix® Virtu™ MVP Technology *1
|Expansion Slots||2 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (x16 or dual x8, red) *2
1 x PCIe 2.0 x4 (black)
1 x mini-PCIe 2.0 x1 *3
|Storage||Intel® Z77 chipset : *4
2 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), red
2 x SATA 3Gb/s port(s), black
1 x eSATA 3Gb/s port(s), red
1 x mini-SATA 3Gb/s port(s), black
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10
Supports Intel® Smart Response Technology, Intel® Rapid Start Technology,
Intel® Smart Connect Technology *5
ASMedia® PCIe SATA controller : *6
2 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), red
|LAN||Intel®, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s)|
|Audio||SupremeFX III built-in 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
– Output Signal-to-Noise Ratio (A-Weighted): 110 dB
– Output THD+N at 1kHz: 95 dB
– Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
Audio Feature :
– SupremeFX Shielding™ Technology
– 1500 uF Audio Power Capacitor
– Gold-plated jacks
– X-Fi® Xtreme Fidelity™
– EAX® Advanced™ HD 5.0
– THX® TruStudio PRO™
– Creative ALchemy
– Blu-ray audio layer Content Protection
– Optical S/PDIF out port(s) at back panel
|USB Ports||Intel® Z77 chipset :
4 x USB 3.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, blue, 2 at mid-board)
Intel® Z77 chipset :
8 x USB 2.0 port(s) (4 at back panel, black+white, 4 at mid-board)
ASMedia® USB 3.0 controller :
2 x USB 3.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, blue)
|Overclocking Features||mPCIe Combo™ (mPCIe/mSATA combo card)
ROG Connect :
– RC Diagram
– RC Remote
– RC Poster
– GPU TweakIt
Extreme Engine Digi+ II :
– 8 -phase CPU power design + 4 -phase iGPU power design
– 2 -phase QPI/DRAM power design
UEFI BIOS features :
– ROG BIOS Print
– GPU.DIMM Post
USB BIOS Flashback
Overclocking Protection :
– ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)
|Special Features||ASUS Hybrid Processor – TurboV EVO :
– CPU Level Up
ASUS EPU :
ASUS Exclusive Features :
– AI Suite II
– Ai Charger+
– USB 3.0 Boost
– Disk Unlocker
ASUS EZ DIY :
– ASUS O.C. Profile
– ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
– ASUS EZ Flash 2
ASUS Q-Design :
– ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
– ASUS Q-Slot
– ASUS Q-DIMM
– ASUS Q-Connector
|Back I/O Ports||1 x DisplayPort
1 x HDMI
1 x eSATA 3Gb/s
1 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
4 x USB 3.0
4 x USB 2.0 (one port can be switched to ROG Connect)
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
6 x Audio jack(s)
1 x Clear CMOS button(s)
1 x ROG Connect On/ Off switch(es)
|Internal I/O Ports||1 x USB 3.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 2 USB 3.0 port(s)
2 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 4 USB 2.0 port(s)
4 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
2 x SATA 3Gb/s connector(s)
2 x CPU Fan connector(s)
3 x Chassis Fan connector(s)
1 x S/PDIF out header(s)
1 x 24-pin EATX Power connector(s)
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
1 x Front panel audio connector(s) (AAFP)
1 x System panel(s)
8 x ProbeIt Measurement Points
1 x Power-on button(s)
1 x Reset button(s)
1 x Go Button(s)
1 x mPCIe Combo header(s)
2 x SATA 3Gb/s cable(s)
4 x SATA 6Gb/s cable(s)
1 x SLI bridge(s)
1 x Q-connector(s) (2 in 1)
1 x ROG Connect cable(s)
1 x 12 in 1 ROG Cable Label(s)
1 x ROG Door Hanger(s)
|BIOS||64Mb UEFI AMI BIOS, PnP, DMI2.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 2.5,
ACPI2.0a Multi-Language BIOS
|Manageability||WfM2.0, DMI2.0, WOL by PME, PXE|
Sound Blaster® X-Fi 2 Utility
DAEMON Tools Pro Standard
ASUS AI Suite II
As we opened the RED Box, there was this beast looking to us right in our eyes waiting to be unleashed, beneath it were some goodies that we wanted and you also would as the ROG products are undoubtedly of the best quality.
The logo that was found on the VRM heatsink gives the assurance of it being from ROG.
So, the board seems to be basically in a black skin and have some part of red which will be hidden by components if you plug them on. Basically ASUS has managed to make the most space for aftermarket cooling and has maximized it as possible on an mATX board
As you can see above, there is a lot from ASUS for cooling into this.
The heatsinks for the VRAM and MOSFETs are finished in a Matte Black rough finish and are bigger than normal size for better dissipation and again shows the characteristic of a true beefy overclocker.
As the image above this one confirms, there are 4 DIMM slots and 2 PCI-E 3.0 Slots onboard, of which, the topmost slot is x16 which divides half its power with the lower slot if the lower one is populated and both work on x8/x8. So, the CPU gets equal load and this results in better performance.
The 4 DIMM Slots support upto 8 GB DDR3 modules which are rated at the highest 2666 MHz when OCed but I bet you can take it far off if you are experienced with Overclocking as Maximus V GENE is a pure OCing + Gaming board and packs the power on none other. So, if extreme overclockers get their hands on it, then it is “performance-no-par” thing !
The bottom side of the board is loaded with pins and headers and includes the Power On/Off and the Reset key. On the other side and the Bottom-Right of the ROG sign, you see the Dual Digit Debug Display while the left-side consists of just Audio Connectors and a pair of buttons as well as a Thunderbolt header ! Moving on the Right side has the USB 2.0 Headers, a Fan header and the front panel connectors. A total of 4-pin PWM-based fan connector are available onboard with “all that you need” controls from the BIOS itself and great control using Fan Expert 2.
The Rear I/O plate did impress us with USB BIOS Flashback with a white USB Port at the bottom most, ROG Connect button. 4 USB 3.0 Ports at the back plate is as is with this ROG Masterpiece, 1 eSATA Port and one LAN connector, with digital audio, HDMI, and Display Port. In my usage conditions, the Analog Port does not make much sense while the Gamer’s special 7.1 Surround Sound Rocks ! There are 4 SATA 6 GB/s Ports of which, the bottom 2 SATA Ports (RED) are driven by ASMedia Controller while the Top 2 SATA Ports (RED) are driven by Intel Z77 Chipset onboard controller. While the other 2 SATA Ports (BLACK) are SATA 3 GB/s and driven Intel Z77 PCH.
The CPU VRM design is an 8+4 design, with eight phases for the CPU proper, and four for the iGPU portion.
So, in all the board seems to be really nice and a pretty nice overclocker. A definite recommendation from our side. If you want to OC and game, then we think we found something that matches you perfectly. But remember, this board is to be only used by extreme Overclockers and hardcore gamers as this suits their style perfectly.
The board has perfectly mounted stuff and well managed power. The ASUS Maximus V GENE gives you 8+4 Phases and manages it all really nicely. The BIOS was found really friendly and the mSATA device worked perfectly, advanced users will find this board hell of an entertaining one and the best thing is that the board has excellent value.