Asus ROG Crosshair VI Hero Motherboard Review: Page 4 of 10

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Posted by Paul Malfy on Saturday, May 13, 2017 - 8:00am

A Closer Look

The Crosshair VI Hero has a black and gray color scheme. Asus has recently moved away from their traditional black and red color scheme of previous ROG motherboards. The Crosshair branding is found on the I/O and the Hero branding is found on the heat sink at the top of the board.

The rear of the Crosshair VI Hero.

For storage connectivity there are eight SATA 6 Gb/s ports

There are four DIMM slots that support up to 64 GB of DDR4 at 3200 MHz. There is a single front panel USB 3.1 connection on the motherboard, just below the 24-pin connection.

There are two PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots (x8/x8 when both are populated) with support 2-way AMD Crossfire and Nvidia SLI. The third x16 slot is electrical gen 3.0 x4 and wired to the chipset. The top two x16 slots are reinforced with metal brackets to help prevent cards from sagging or tear-out.

Both 8-pin and 4-pin CPU power connectors provide ample power for even the most extreme overclocking.

The chipset heatsink has AURA RGB lighting controlled by the AURA software.

The Crosshair VI Hero supports all current Ryzen and upcoming A-Series processors. The cooler mounting holes are compatible with AM2 through AM4 coolers.

Surrounding the socket are heatsinks cooling the 12-phase power delivery.

There are 3 x 4-pin headers across the top of the board; A CPU fan, a CPU OPT fan and an AIO Pump header.

The single M.2 drive slot supports up to 22110 form drives. Ryzen processors offer both SATA and PCIe Gen 3 x4 M.2.  The upcoming 7th gen A-Series and Athlon processors will only work with SATA drives.

Speaker, RGB, and front panel connectors reside at the bottom forward corner.

Next to the front panel and RGB headers is another fan header, a water pump header and a front panel USB 3.0 header. There is an ROG_EXT header for the ROG OC Panel. If not in use, half of this header can double as a front USB 2.0 header.

The lower edge also contains start, reset, safe boot, and retry buttons. Next to those is the slow mode switch for LN2 overclocking. The slow mode is only used in LN2 benchmarking. This mode decreases the CPU frequency to stabilize the system and prevent crashes during extreme overclocking.

There are Clear CMOS and BIOS reset buttons with a mini PCIe slot, to add in a mini Wi-Fi card next to them. A Wi-Fi card is sold separate and the I/O shield has cut outs for the Wi-Fi antenna. There are fourteen USB ports in total; eight USB 3.0, four USB 2.0 ports, one USB 3.1 Type-A that supports the KeyBot II feature, and a USB 3.1 Type-C. The single LAN port is driven by the Intel I211-AT with surge protection. An optical S/PDIF out port and five 3.5mm audio jacks provide audio connection.

The Crosshair VI Hero has the ROG SupremeFX 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC S1220 with SupremeFX Shielding Technology delivering a 113dB signal-to-noise ratio on the line-in connection and a 120dB signal-to-noise ratio on line-out. There is also a low dropout regulator for clear power delivery and an ESS Sabre Hi-Fi ES9023P digital to analog converter for better front panel audio. Lastly a Texas Instruments® RC4580 op-amp provides high gain with low distortion.

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