Asus ROG Maximus Extreme XII Review

Introduction to Asus ROG Maximus Extreme XII

Asus has been one of the leading PC- component company’s in the world.  Ever since ASUS was founded on Apr 2, 1989, the vision “In Search of Incredible” has stayed strong and has even pushed the limits throughout the years. When Asus first launched the Maximus Line within the ROG community, it changed the high-end PC world as it was known. From world-record-breaking motherboards with features exclusive to the ROG design to peripherals, you wouldn’t believe. These include the fastest gaming monitors in the world and PSUs that display exactly what’s drawing from the system. These incredible products are built by Asus automation factories, which use very little human interaction to make sure each component is placed in the same place each time with many sensors keeping everything in check. These innovations have brought in a new line of the ROG Maximus series: Introducing Asus’s twelfth interaction of the ROG line, the Maximus XII. This Behemoth of a motherboard introduces advanced features designed for water-cooling enthusiasts. The Maximus XII sets the groundwork for software and hardware using this “Intelligent Motherboard” to achieve record-breaking high-speed memory support and enough controls to see exactly how your water and fans are cooling your system. Thanks to Asus and Intel, ProClockers was able to throw everything but SLI at this board. We dig deep into the software and explain some of the crucial hardware implanted on this board, making it truly a game-changing board.

Asus has always kept the ROG series box the same in terms of style. The Maximus XII follows suit with big EXTREME letters to let you know what you’re getting yourself into. On the back, you get to see a picture of the board gloriously labeled with key specs guaranteed to get anyone hyped up for owning such an item.

Unpacking the Asus ROG Maximus Extreme XII

What’s in the box?:

This motherboard comes packed to the brim with all the crucial accessories, along with some extras, to get your system up and running. In fact, you get two boxes separate boxes!

  • Motherboard
    • ROG Maximus XII Extreme motherboard
  • Cables
    • 1x Addressable RGB extension cable (12v)
    • 1x RGB extension cable
    • 8x ROG weave STATA 6GB cables
    • 1x 3-in-1 Thermistor cable pack
  • Additional Cooking Kit
    • Fan Bracket
    • 1x ROG assistant fan (40m)
  • Fan Extension Card
    • 1X Fan Extension Card II
    • 1x Fan Extension Card II Power
    • 1x Fan Extension Card II Node connector cable
    • 1x Fan Extension Card II Screw
  • ROG DIMM.2 with Heatsink
    • 1x ROG DIMM.2 with heatsink
    • 2x M.2 pads for ROG DIMM.2
    • 2x M.2 screw packages for ROG DIMM.2
  • Thunderboltex 3-TR
    • 1x Thunderboltex 3-TR Card
    • 2x Mini Display Port cables
    • 1x ASUS TB header cable
    • 1x USB 2.0 Cable
  • Miscellaneous Goodies
    • 1x M.2 Rubber package
    • 1x M.2 SSD screw package
    • 1x Q- connector
    • 1x ROG logo plate stickers
    • 1x ROG multi-bit screwdriver (extremely useful)
    • 1x ROG Swag Stickers
    • 1x ASUS 2×2 dual-band WI-FI moving antennas
    • 1x USB drive with everything you need to get started
    • 1x User manual

Woo, that’s quite a lot, huh? Here you have what the most comprehensive package ASUS has ever given out is.

Now, let’s take a closer look at these awesome extras.

Fan Extension Card II

The Extension Card II was upgraded to truly expand, adding 3 more PWM fan connectors, 1 more thermal header, and 3 RGB (12V) headers, all powered by SATA power. Connecting to the motherboard will be a connection called NODE_IN. This will transfer all the data to the motherboard and allow you to control the fans. Something extremely cool, and only a ROG standard, is a NODE_OUT. That’s right, daisy chain extension cards! Add another card for all you FANHEADS.

ROG DIMM.2

The ROG DIMM.2 module is an innovative expansion card that allows two M.2 drives to be connected, like DDR4 Ram stick.  The DIMM.2 is exclusive to ASUS and supports up to two drives as long as 110mm, and can be used as a RAID, thanks to RAID on a CPU. One of the key features is its Metal heatsink, which adds an elevated aesthetic feel and controls thermals for max performance. The DIMM.2 does share lanes with the CPU, so therefore, SLI with GPUs would be impossible if both slots on the DIMM.2 are occupied. Also, you’ll need to activate the DIMM.2 in the BIOS to have everything set. Those that aren’t rocking SLI and want maximum storage will find this a necessity for their build.

Thunderboltex 3-TR

A very interesting add-on in the Maximus XII is Intel’s Thunderbolt technology. You can connect up to six Thunderbolt-enabled devices and a Display Port (enabled display in a daisy-chain configuration). This is thunderbolt 3, or USB-C. For users that have a Mac display or other thunderbolt enabled display, you’ll find that using this card will give you the ability to display 8k Ultra HD content. Thanks to Display Port 1.4 support and having 40GBps bi-directional bandwidth, you have the ability to transfer a 4k Movie in less than 30 seconds and the ability to connect to a graphics card and have the out display through the thunderbolt display port. It’s certainly a great add-on.

The TR-3 has 2 USB Type-C Thunderbolt ports, the top-most being able to quickly charge up to 100w. So, you could charge your laptop with this device if needed. The lower of the two has a quick charge of up to 27W. The two bottom ports are Mini Display Port IN Ports. These allow you to connect your graphics card up to your display for maximum video data throughput. All that data does require some extra juice, which is where a 6 pin PSU connection is needed. Using the quick charge 100w port allows you to daisy chain up to 6 thunderbolt devices. No doubt, when more Thunderbolt devices begin to hit the market, they’ll surely be included with future Maximus releases.

ROG Assistant Fan

This little 40mm fan isn’t a pushover. In fact, it really pushes some air. It’s used to cool the VRM heatsink, and I’ve noticed a 4C difference from not having it installed. In the right build, it could be a nice aesthetic; otherwise, it’s a definite must if you plan on doing any extreme overclocking, including LN2.

Asus board layouts usually try to stay the same throughout the modern years, although this board welcomes a new generation of CPU. The LGA 1200 Socket is a modified LGA 1151 with a few more pins improving power delivery and overall turbo/overclocking performance.  This slightly changes this size, making it longer but still compatible with every LGA 1151 cooler available. Compared to the Maximus XI Extreme motherboard, it has greater aesthetics, like the Live Dash OLED, Advanced I/O, and water-cooling station. We go through all of these and more in our tear down.

Advanced I/O

Asus loads up the Maximus XII with the ultimate in connectivity.

  • 6 x USB 3.2 Gen 1
  • 3 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 (1x USB-Type C)
  • Marvell AQtion AQC107 10Gb
  • Intel 2.5Gb Ethernet
  • Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201
    • The 802.11ax is a new standard that offers lower latency, faster speeds, a way longer range and is extremely efficient 7 times more than 802.11ac
  • 1x USB 3.2 Gen 2×2
    • This special port allows you to connect a multitude of devices and is the fastest type available at 20Gps.
  • Asus’s Supreme FX connections with Optical S/PDIF out, each port is illuminated with the corresponding jack color (an Asus exclusive that I’ve always have been a fan of).
  • Asus’s BIOS Flashback
  • Clear CMOS Button


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