ASUS ROG Maximuz Z690 Over the last six months since Intel launched its 12th Gen Core series of processors, we’ve looked at several Alder Lake desktop CPUs and seen how competitive they are from top to bottom – not just in performance but price too. To harness the power of Alder Lake, however, there are many options in terms of Z690 motherboards, and today we’re taking a look at one of ASUS’s more premium models, the ROG Maximus Z690 Hero.
They say hard times don’t create heroes, but ASUS has done for many years with good results. Equipped with plenty of top-tier features such as Thunderbolt 4, Intel’s Wi-Fi 6E CNVi, and support for up to DDR5-6400 memory, it has enough to make it a solid choice for gamers and enthusiasts. It’s time to see if the Z690 Hero option stacks up against the competition and if it can sparkle in a very competitive LGA1700 market.
ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero Overview
As it stands, ASUS has a pretty big stack of Z690 motherboards catering to multiple markets. This includes its Prime series for its entry-level users looking to build an affordable yet still adept system. In contrast, the ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) series primarily targets gamers and enthusiasts. The ASUS ROG motherboard series is split into two main areas, the ROG Strix series for gamers, and the high-end ROG Maximus series for enthusiasts looking for the best performance, the best feature sets, and, as we’ve seen throughout the years, some pretty modernized and RGB inspired aesthetics.
To keep things more accessible to users, for Z690, ASUS has opted to make its naming schemes easier for its Maximus series. It would use Roman numerals to depict the model in the past, such as the ASUS ROG Maximus X for Z370 and the Maximus XII for Z490. Replacing the Roman numerals, at least for now and hopefully going forward, they have reverted it to the chipset to make things easier to distinguish.
The ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero and the previous ROG Maximus XIII (Z590) Hero aren’t too dissimilar in style, but ASUS has gone forward and jazzed up the design a bit for Alder Lake. This includes a large I/O Polymo rear panel cover, pixellated with ASUS’s Aura RGB LED lighting, which adds a bit more of a modern flavor to the overall design. ASUS has unified the design further down the board, with a cool-looking pixelated ROG logo embedded into the glossy black section of the chipset heatsink. The majority of the board has a matte black finish which makes it compatible with most color schemes, and for users looking to add more style, there are three 3-pin and one 4-pin Addressable Gen2 RGB headers.