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ASUS Maximus VIII Impact Motherboard Review

Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: ASUS

Introduction and Technical Specifications

Introduction

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The Maximus VIII Impact is one of the Intel Z170 chipset offerings in the ROG (Republic of Gamer) board line. The board features the standard black and red ROG aesthetics in an mini-ITX form factor to accommodate space constrained system builds. ASUS chose to integrate black-chrome heat sinks into the board's build, giving it a sleek and modern appearance. The board's integrated Intel Z170 chipset integrates support for the latest Intel LGA1151 Skylake processor line as well as Dual Channel DDR4 memory. With an MSRP of $250, the Maximus VIII Impact comes a price premium for a high-quality and feature packed product.

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ASUS integrated the following features into the Maximus VIII Impact board: four SATA 3 ports; one U.2 32Gbps port; an Intel I219-V Gigabit NIC; 2x2 802.11ac WiFI adapter; one PCI-Express x16 slot; on-board power, reset, Clear CMOS, and USB BIOS Flashback buttons; 2-digit Q-Code LED diagnostic display; ROG SupremeFX Impact III 8-Channel audio subsystem; integrated DisplayPort and HDMI video ports; and USB 2.0, 3.0, and 3.1 Type-A and Type-C port support.

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The Maximus VIII Impact features an eight phase digital power system, providing more than enough power to the CPU for any task you throw its way. The power delivery system itself consists of International Rectifier PowIRStage MOSFETs, MicroFine alloy chokes, and 10k-rated Japanese-sourced black-metallic capacitors.

Continue reading our preview of the ASUS Maximus VIII Gene motherboard!

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ASUS integrated the latest ROG sound technology into the Maximus VIII Impact motherboard, ROG SupremeFX Impact III. Similar to previous generations of the SupremeFX sound technology, SupremeFX Impact III integrates the audio components on a isolated PCB from the other main board components minimizing noise generation caused by those other integrated devices. ASUS designed the audio subsystem with high-quality Japanese-sourced audio and power circuitry, an ESS ES9023P DAC, a dedicated 2Vrms headphone amplifiers for a top-notch audio experience, and a de-pop relay.

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Technical Specifications (taken from the ASUS website)

CPU Intel® Socket 1151 for 6th Generation Core™ i7 / Core™ i5 / Core™ i3 / Pentium® / Celeron® Processors
Supports Intel® 14 nm CPU
Supports Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0

* The Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 support depends on the CPU types.
* Refer to www.asus.com for CPU support list

Chipset Intel® Z170
Memory 2 x DIMM, Max. 32GB, DDR4 4133(O.C.) / 4000(O.C.) / 3866(O.C.) / 3800(O.C.) / 3733(O.C.) / 3600(O.C.) / 3500(O.C.) / 3466(O.C.) / 3400(O.C.) / 3333(O.C.) / 3300(O.C.) / 3200(O.C.) / 3000(O.C.) / 2800(O.C.) / 2666(O.C.) / 2400(O.C.) / 2133 MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory
Dual Channel Memory Architecture
Supports Intel® Extreme Memory Profile (XMP)

* Hyper DIMM support is subject to the physical characteristics of individual CPUs.
* Refer to www.asus.com for the Memory QVL (Qualified Vendors Lists).

Graphic Integrated Graphics Processor - Intel® HD Graphics support
- Supports HDMI with max. resolution 4096 x 2160 @ 24 Hz
Supports Intel® InTru™ 3D, Quick Sync Video, Clear Video HD Technology, Insider™
Expansion Slots 1 x PCIe 3.0 / 2.0 x16 (x16 mode, black)
Storage 1 x U.2 port, black,
4 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), gray,
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10
Intel® Rapid Storage Technology supports *1
Supports Intel® Smart Response Technology *1

*1 This function will work depending on the CPU installed.

LAN Intel® I219V, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s), GameFirst technology
Intel® LAN - Dual interconnect between the Integrated LAN controller and Physical Layer (PHY)
Anti-surge LANGuard
Wireless Data Network Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac
Supports dual band frequency 2.4 / 5 GHz
Supports MU-MIMO
Bluetooth Bluetooth V4.1
Audio ROG SupremeFX Impact III 5.1-channel High Definition Audio CODEC
- Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
- SupremeFX Shielding Technology
- ESS® ES9023P
- 2VRMS Headphone Amp into (32-600Ohms)
- Front panel audio connector (AAFP)

Audio Feature :
- Gold-plated jacks
- DTS Connect
- Optical S/PDIF out port(s) at back panel
- Sonic SenseAmp
- Sonic Studio II
- Sonic Radar II

USB Ports Intel® Z170 chipset :
6 x USB 3.0 port(s) (4 at back panel, blue, 2 at mid-board)

Intel® USB 3.1 controller :
1 x USB 3.1 port(s) (1 at back panel, black, Type-C)

Intel® USB 3.1 controller :
1 x USB 3.1 port(s) (1 at back panel, red, Type-A)

ROG Exclusive Features Slow Mode
ROG RAMCache
Overwolf
SupremeFX Impact III
Start Button
Reset Button
LN2 Mode
Impact Power III :
- MicroFine Alloy Chokes
- 10K Black Metallic Capacitors
- IR3553 PowIRStage® MOSFETs
Mem TweakIt
ProbeIt
KeyBot II
- One-click Overclocking
- X.M.P.
- DirectKey
- ClrCMOS
- Power On
UEFI BIOS features :
- O.C. Profile
- GPU.DIMM Post
- Tweakers' Paradise
- ROG SSD Secure Erase
- Graphic Card Information Preview
ROG RAMDisk
Extreme Tweaker
Special Features OC Design - ASUS PRO Clock Technology
- Full BCLK range for extreme overclocking performance
5-Way Optimization by Dual Intelligent Processors 5
- 5-Way Optimization tuning key perfectly consolidates TPU, EPU, DIGI+ Power Control, Fan Xpert 3, and Turbo App
ASUS Wi-Fi GO!
ASUS Exclusive Features :
- MemOK!
- AI Suite 3
- Ai Charger+
- USB 3.1 Boost
- Disk Unlocker
- Mobo Connect
- PC Cleaner
Remote Entertainment
- Media Streamer
- HyStream
ASUS EZ DIY :
- ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
- ASUS EZ Flash 3
- ASUS USB BIOS Flashback
- Push Notice
ASUS Q-Design :
- ASUS Q-Shield
- ASUS Q-Code
- ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
- ASUS Q-Slot
- ASUS Q-DIMM
Overclocking Protection :
- ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)
Operating System Support Windows® 10, 64bit
Windows® 8.1, 64bit
Windows® 7, 32bit / 64bit
Back I/O Ports 1 x HDMI
1 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
1 x USB 3.1 (black)Type-C
1 x USB 3.1 (red)Type-A
4 x USB 3.0 (blue)
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
3 x Audio jack(s)
1 x Clear CMOS button(s)
2 x Wi-Fi antenna port(s)
1 x USB BIOS Flashback Button(s)
1 x Q-Code LED
1 x Start Button
1 x Reset Button
Internal I/O Ports 1 x U.2 port
1 x USB 3.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 2 USB 3.0 port(s)
4 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
1 x CPU Fan connector(s) (4-pin)
1 x Chassis Fan connector(s) (4-pin)
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) *2
1 x ProbeIt Measurement Points
1 x Thermal sensor connector(s)
1 x 5-pin EXT_FAN(Extension Fan) connector
1 x LN2 Mode jumper(s)
1 x Slow Mode jumper(s)
1 x SupremeFX Impact III connector
1 x M.2 socket pre-installed with a Wi-Fi/Bluetooth module
1 x System panel connector

*2 AAFP connector is built-in on the SupremeFX Impact III card

Accessories User's manual
ASUS Q-Shield
4 x SATA 6Gb/s cable(s)
1 x CPU installation tool
1 x Supporting DVD
1 x ASUS 2T2R dual band Wi-Fi moving antennas (Wi-Fi 802.11a / b / g / n / ac compliant)
1 x Fan Extension Card (3 x 4-pin fan out)
1 x Fan Extension card screw pack
1 x 12 in 1 ROG Cable Label(s)
ROG Fan Label
1 x 5-pin to 5-pin cable
1 x Panel cable
1 x Thermistor cable(s)
BIOS 1 x 128 Mb Flash ROM, UEFI AMI BIOS, PnP, DMI3.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 3.0, ACPI 5.0, Multi-language BIOS, ASUS EZ Flash 3, CrashFree BIOS 3, F11 EZ Tuning Wizard, F6 Qfan Control, F3 My Favorites, F9 Quick Note, Last Modified log, F12 PrintScreen, F3 Shortcut functions and ASUS DRAM SPD (Serial Presence Detect) memory information.
Manageability WfM2.0, DMI3.0, WOL by PME, PXE
Support Disc Drivers
ROG GameFirst technology
ROG RAMDisk
ROG RAMCache
ROG CPU-Z
ROG Mem TweakIt
Overwolf
Keybot II
Kaspersky® Anti-Virus
DAEMON Tools Pro Standard
ASUS WebStorage
ASUS Utilities
Form Factor Mini ITX Form Factor
6.7 inch x 6.7 inch ( 17 cm x 17 cm )

January 2, 2017 | 09:56 AM - Posted by LauRoman

I can't understand why, in this day and age, when there still is available place on the back panel, they still cram 4 usb ports in that small of a place.

January 2, 2017 | 10:37 AM - Posted by PCPerFan (not verified)

Doesn't Z270 come out tomorrow? :P

January 2, 2017 | 11:14 AM - Posted by CB (not verified)

+1

This review is a waste of time. Maybe six months ago this board was interesting, but it's replacement will be out in weeks if not days.

January 2, 2017 | 05:10 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I don't think motherboard reviews are ever completely out of date, as motherboards fail a lot more often than CPUs, so someone in the future may be looking for replacement motherboards for their still-working CPU on an older platform. Intel's lack of progress since sandy bridge also makes staying on the absolute latest platform unnecessary - it's not a bad idea to buy an older platform in the future if you can find a good deal on it.

January 3, 2017 | 06:04 PM - Posted by quest4glory

You can still buy the Impact VII.

Your comment is a retread, though.

January 2, 2017 | 11:11 AM - Posted by CB (not verified)

Any modern motherboard without M.2 is a complete fail.

January 3, 2017 | 01:05 PM - Posted by mouf

agreed.... even my Z97 Maximus Formula does.

I am also pretty confident the Z170 ASUS Pro Gaming has M.2 as well.

January 3, 2017 | 06:05 PM - Posted by quest4glory

It has m.2, which is populated by the WiFi adapter. That can be removed, or one can get a sled for an m.2 and plug that into the u.2.

January 2, 2017 | 11:57 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Nothing else to add your honor.

January 2, 2017 | 01:05 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

This board was aanounced in October 2015 so this review is far too late, unless it was a new board revision or something.

BUT! My next build should be an Maximus IX IMPACT wirh Z270 so glad this board can still show up the world ATX motherboard are so 1995. Time to at least move to microATX.

January 3, 2017 | 01:06 PM - Posted by mouf

Morry,

Just an FYI that your OC section states you used 4 x 4gb of Corsair RAM.

January 3, 2017 | 06:06 PM - Posted by quest4glory

Ahh, writing reviews from a template, we see.

January 4, 2017 | 09:38 AM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Thanks for pointing that out.  Fixed...