ASUS today announced six new entry-level motherboards based on the Intel H81 chipset as well as the ROG Maximus VI Impact, a mini-ITX gaming motherboard.
Designed for 4th generation Intel Core processors, the ASUS H81 Series features exclusive ASUS 5X Protection technology for reliability and is available in a range of specifications.
The ASUS H81 Series comprises the H81-Plus ATX motherboard; the H81M-Plus, H81M-A, H81M-C and H81M-E Micro-ATX motherboards; and the H81I-Plus Mini-ITX motherboard. All models feature two DDR3 (1600MHz) DIMM slots for up to 16GB RAM, one PCI-Express x16 (@x16) slot and two SATA 6Gbit/s ports. All models also include the latest ASUS UEFI BIOS, Realtek 7.1 audio and USB 3.0 with USB 3.0 Boost technology for data transfer rates up to 1.7 times faster than ordinary USB 3.0 with industry-standard UASP (USB Attached SCSI Protocol) devices.
The ASUS H81-Plus, H81M-Plus, H81M-A and H81M-E motherboards feature exclusive ASUS 5X Protection technology for long-term computing. DIGI+ VRM digital voltage regulation enhances system stability, while resettable fuses protect I/O ports and DIMM slots from short circuits and voltage spikes. Electrostatic-discharge (ESD) guards also protect sensitive components from electromagnetic interference, too. 5X Protection is capped by chromium-plated stainless steel I/O ports that resist corrosion and last up to three times longer than standard ports.
All H81 Series motherboards also feature 100% high-quality 5K solid capacitors last more than twice as long as traditional electrolytic capacitors.
The Maximus VI Impact is a mini-ITX gaming motherboard based on Intel Z87 chipset for the latest 4th generation Intel Core processors. It is the first ROG mini-ITX motherboard to be fully loaded with exclusive gamer features and proves size is no longer an indicator of performance. It features the SupremeFX Impact discrete sound card for 115 dB SNR audio and Impact Power digital power-management technology for the same overclocking control as ROG full-size ATX motherboards. Maximus VI Impact also takes connectivity to the next level with onboard 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0.
ROG Maximus VI Impact features the SupremeFX Impact discrete sound card with a custom design that keeps the PCI Express x16 slot free. The dual-differential circuit design splits the audio chip's analog signal into opposing phases that are combined by four operational amplifiers (op-amps) to produce a stronger output, while ELNA audio capacitors smooth high and low-frequency signals to deliver warmer sounds.
Maximus VI Impact also features Perfect Voice technology that uses active noise cancellation on the microphone input to keep VoIP chat clear in noisy environments, and Music PnP technology that allows external sound sources to play through PC speakers when the PC is shut down. SupremeFX Shielding 4 reduces audio distortion from electromagnetic interference. The lossless 115dB output and the ability to drive high-impedance headphones (up to 600ohms) complete the sound experience.
Based on ROG Extreme Engine DIGI+ III technology, Impact Power is compact voltage-regulator module (VRM) with 60A BlackWing chokes and 10K black metallic capacitors that gives precise digital power management for complete overclocking control that's on a par with ROG full-size ATX motherboards.
Connectivity options include the mPCIe Combo II + Wi-Fi 802.11ac/Bluetooth 4.0 add-on card, which deliver Wi-Fi speeds up to three times faster than 802.11n, while an M.2 slot supports the latest high-performance SSDs.
ROG Maximus VI Impact is also packed with exclusive features for gamers. Sonic Radar detects source of in-game sounds and plots them on an on-screen overlay for a unique method of pinpointing the enemy, while Intel Gigabit Ethernet with ROG GameFirst II technology eliminates online game lag by prioritizing traffic for optimum ping rates.
Other bundled tools include ROG RAMDisk that allows up to 80% of a computer's available RAM to act as a high-speed virtual drive for accelerated game-loading times, while SSD Secure Erase built in to Maximus VI Impact's UEFI BIOS lets users quickly restore drives to a factory-fresh condition for the best possible performance.
The Q-Code display shows two-digit codes for rapid identification of POST errors, while pressing the DirectKey button enters the UEFI button immediately. Maximus VI Impact also features a MemOK! button on the motherboard that automatically loads failsafe memory settings when overly aggressing timing prevents the PC from booting.