In for micro-ATX duty is the ROG Strix Z270G Gaming. Its superior memory overclocking credentials are due to the unique form factor tweaking the third gen T-Topology for the better, making it the Strix board you'll be able to push your DIMMs over 4GHz (should they be rated for it), even if you populate all four slots! Up to 64GB of DDR4 is supported, and XMP 2.0 if the DIMMs have the profile included.
Supporting new Intel 7th Generation Core processors in its LGA1151 socket, and coupled with the Z270 chipset, the Strix Z270G Gaming is, of course, best paired with those K-series for overclocking. Combining DIGI+ VRM technology and Pro-Clock base-clock tech will deliver on the OC experience, although, you'll still be better off with an ROG board for eeking every last MHz out of a chip. For those who want quick-n-easy overclocking, you'll find automatic OCing options both in the UEFI BIOS and AI Suite software in Windows.
Its polymorphic, AURA RGB backlit PCH heatsink neatly matches the angular cuts made in the VRM heatsinks, and the striped PCB design. Combined with the board-wide black metallic capacitors and stainless steel strengthened PCI-Express 16x slots (supporting 2-way SLI and CrossFire) you have to admit it looks truly fresh and interesting.
The six, side mounted (Intel Optane Memory ready) SATA ports are paired with two M.2 slots - one back side, one front - which support SATA/PCI-E and PCI-E 4x only (respectively), enabling an upgrade transition without throwing out an old SATA M.2 drive, or, the capacity to RAID0 two PCI-E M.2 drives for mega data speeds. Naturally the latest NVMe spec hardware is supported as well.
The rear IO connectivity houses the 802.11ac 2T2R Wi-Fi with MU-MIMO (Bluetooth 4.1/4.0LE/3.0H+S), plus Intel Gigabit Ethernet (i219v) with LANGuard port and ROG GameFirst IV too.
USB 3.1 Type-A and C is available for best compatibility with new peripherals, as well as four USB 3.0 and two USB 2.0 ports too. The front IO also has new USB 3.1, USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 pin-outs onboard too. USB 3.1 front IO is coming to new PC chassis in 2017, so keep an eye out if you need 10Gbit/s in arm's reach.
In addition there's the two display outputs: HDMI and DP, for up to 4K60p output on each, plus 7.1 channel surround audio and digital Toslink S/PDIF from the upgraded SupremeFX S1220A onboard. Finally there's also PS2 keyboard/mouse for legacy compatibility.
SupremeFX audio features the new S1220A audio codec, along with imdepance sensing, codec shielding, PCB isolation, premium Nichicon audio capacitors and dual headphone amplifiers (OPA1688 and RC4580). This is paired with ROG exclusive audio and gaming software: Sonic Studio III and Sonic Radar III. The S1220A delivers exceptional 120dB SNR output and 110dB SNR line-in, making it ideal for gaming audio over headphones or surround speakers, as well as clear in-match microphone for voice or casting.
3D printing is still a big thing for ROG, and Strix Z270G extends the trend with a 3D printing mounting point of its own by the ATX socket. Two 4-pin RGB peripheral headers are included top and bottom of the board, and AURA Sync software ties it altogether to color your entire rig in just way you want.
Like all the Strix Z270 boards, the Gene features the latest Fan Xpert 4 software. This controls the usual 4-pin fan headers - 5x across the board with both DC/PWM modes supported - and new high power (36W) water-pump header too. Five fan control sources can be chosen from between CPU, case temp, PCH, GPU or external temp sensor (2-pin).
Additional software in the box includes ROG CloneDrive, RAMCache II and Overwolf.