With five Maximus VI motherboards to choose from, you maybe wondering which board you should go for. Just automatically go for the Extreme because it's always the biggest and baddest available? Where does the Formula fit? Will the Hero suit my needs? What about the smaller form factors? We'll guide you through them below!

Maximus VI Extreme

The Extreme targets many-GPU gamers of 3 or 4-way SLI/CrossFireX, or someone who simply requires the most PCI-Express lanes (thanks to the PLX PCI-Express Gen 3 switch) and SATA on the LGA1150 platform. Passionate overclockers that really enjoy using the integrated, [exclusive] tweaking functions should also be focusing on the Extreme as well. It's bundled with:

  • The OC Panel and ROG extreme overclocking tools.
  • The mPCIe Combo II card with 802.11ac WiFi
  • 10 SATA III

But it does not have SupremeFX technology. Reason being is that ROG believes the target audience would prefer a very high-end (Xonar) sound-card to fill one of the PCI-Express ports, or use external solutions like the Xonar Essence One series, so the feature focus has been shifted to other components. •	The desired candidate needs to be a PC tech and PC gaming driven individual, who keeps their ear to the ground on forums and key media to follow trends. •	Editorial experience is required.  •	A technical understanding of PC hardware is highly desired. •	Fluent in English language with an aptitude for writing. •	Community/forum management experience is required. •	Photography and video experience is optional.

Maximus VI Formula

Target User: SLI or CrossFireX gamer, watercooling users and modders; basically those who want the ultimate gaming motherboard, and the best looking case out there. Think of the Formula as equivalent to the Extreme, but with an alternative feature-set. To back up these credentials, it is packed with kit:

  • The best onboard audio ever designed [SupremeFX Formula] and Sonic Radar, 
  • The mPCIe Combo II card with 802.11ac WiFi bundled, 
  • The CrossChill cooler that can be air or watercooled; it's the only pre-installed waterblock with G1/4 threads.
  • The stealthy ROG Armor.
  • 10 SATA III

The Armor is the only ROG board to use it, so if you want it you've got to go Formula. It serves two functions - one to strengthen the PCB as it uses quite thick SECC steel, and on the opposite side the Armor cover shields it and provide an aesthetically awesome design. Modders can remove it to paint or treat it with different designs, in order to match full case mods, for example. It has an OC Panel compatible pin-out, but it doesn't come pre-bundled like the Extreme. Maximus VI Formula

Maximus VI Hero

We're still rocking the ATX form factor with the Hero, but for those who can't afford - or - don't need all the Formula/Extreme features, the Hero is one to go for. Its strong core feature-set package includes:

  • SupremeFX [2013] with Red-line and ELNA caps and Sonic Radar 
  • 2-way SLI or CrossFire-X support, 
  • 8 SATA III

There's no mPCIe Combo II card with WiFi, Armor, CrossChill or OC Panel bundled. It does still have the same Extreme Engine DIGI+ III, 2nd Gen T-Topology DDR3 and new UEFI BIOS functions and bundled RAMDisk the other Maximus VI boards feature, and it still supports the OC Panel if you buy it at a later date. Likewise, the PCE-AC68 is the alternative upgrade path for adding 802.11ac WiFi as well.

Maximus VI HeroMaximus VI Gene

As ever if you're looking at micro ATX, then the Gene is always your go-to option. Yes, there's also the TUF Gryphon alternative now that's mighty tempting, but the Gene has a few unique advantages specifically designed for gamers like:

  • SupremeFX [2013] with Red-line and ELNA caps and Sonic Radar 
  • mPCIe Combo II card
  • 8 SATA III

2-way SLI and CrossFire-X is of course still supported, plus an extra 4x slot at the bottom if you're watercooling the graphics cards to free-up the slot for something like a RAIDR or Xonar, perhaps. Note that while it features the mPCIe Combo II card, there's no WiFi pre-fitted. However, it does still have the same Extreme Engine DIGI+ III, 2nd Gen T-Topology DDR3 and new UEFI BIOS functions and bundled RAMDisk the other Maximus VI boards feature, and it still supports the OC Panel if you buy it at a later date. Maximus VI Formula

Maximus VI Impact

This is the new, no compromise mini-ITX master. The Impact is the new go-to option for gamers who want the smallest build possible. Combining it with the short-PCB DirectCU Mini graphics cards is an ideal fit, although many mini-ITX cases do support longer cards. At 17cm square, due to its obvious physical constraints the features from the other Maximus VI motherboards can't be directly ported over so alternative designs were invented to match them as closely as possible. The Impact Power and SupremeFX Impact are two daughter-boards the poke out from the PCB at 90 degrees, providing ATX-like high-end power and high-performance 110dB SNR audio with headphone amplifier, giving the Impact its 'no compromise' design. The Impact might not have 6-8 SATA ports, but few mini-ITX cases support that many SATA devices. Alternatively it does still manage to include the mPCIe Combo II card with 802.11ac WiFi bundled and M.2 slot for small NGFF SSDs, in-keeping with the small-theme. With ATX-like performance in a tiny case it's tempting to try a mini-ITX build. They can be a challenge in PC design, but that's also what inspires enthusiasts to build one, and they are especially useful if you're a LAN gamer or travel with your PC, yet don't want a gaming laptop. If mini-ITX is what you want, but the Impact is out of your budget range, see our "which mini-ITX board is right for me" article as well [out soon!].

Maximus VI Impact