A mATX gaming motherboard is finally coming as ASUS steps into the ring with what could be called a successor to its 2015 desktop-grade ROG Maximus VIII Gene mATX gaming motherboard. Rather than replace it as a full-sized ATX board, the new ROG Maximus XI mATX gaming motherboard gives mATX builders something to smile about after three long years.
Compared to the standard ATX form-factor, PC builders looking for machine with a smaller footprint as usually far more limited when it comes to motherboards With a PC motherboard being the very foundation of a build, a lack of options when it comes to smaller boards means a diminished selection of components to choose from both at the time of building, and when it comes to upgrade in the future.
Thankfully, ASUS has decided to bring its famous ROG Maximus line of gaming motherboards to the niche side of the market after a 3-year vacation. Boards can get far smaller than mATX, but any improvement in choice is cause for celebration. The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Gene even numbers itself 3 iterations above the company’s last mATX gaming motherboard from back in 2015, with the three-year gap signaling prime upgrade time for those still running the board’s older brother.
The biggest change in appearance itself comes from the omission of two memory slots, bringing ASUS’ 2018 mATX gaming motherboard down to a mere two slots. To make up for it, each can support DDR4-4600, the fastest consumer-grade memory available. At prices of around $800+ for 16GB of the stuff, we can’t imagine many picking up this board will trick it out to its full potential.
To complement the idea of cramming a lot of horsepower into a small chassis with a board this size, the ASUS ROG Maximus XI Gene features a dizzying amount of 4-pin PWM fan headers to help keep the end result cool and RGB-heavy. And while we’re on the topic of RGB, there’s plenty of LEDs build into the board itself to give those cooler trims a healthy glow.
It’s an LGA1151 socket board, too, so expect someone to stick the ridiculously expensive i9 9900K CPU in there. Just don’t go expecting a multi-GPU setup. SLI is officially dead with this one.