To be able to cram all the things onto this mITX mainboard that ASUS wanted, they had to become masters of daughterboards first. They did this by adding not one, not two, but five of them to this beautiful little cove of treasures. In the past we’ve seen the VRM board that added 8- to 10-phase CPU VRM, and the new ASUS board has grown from that concept. The Maximus VII Impact is based on the Intel Z97 Express chipset for LGA1150 processors.
The first of the five daughterboards is the 8-phase CPU VRM that we’ve seen similar already. The second is called ImpactControl II and has an on-board power, reset and clear CMOS button. It also features the ROG connect and has a row of POST LEDs in the rear I/O shield. The third is called CoolHub and is as the name suggest for the cooling. It has two 4-pin PWM fan header and a LN2 mode toggle. As Fourth card we find the mPCIe Combo IV board with mPCIe x1 slot on the one side and an M.2 slot with PCIe 2.0 x4 on the other side. The mPCIe slot is occupied by the 802.11 AC WLAN card. The fifth and last board is the SupremeFX Impact II audio board that is EMI shielded and has a 110 DBA SNR codec. Build with audio grade capacitors and inherent ground layer isolation, good sound should be guaranteed. It of course also has a headphones amp build in.
To provide enough power for enthusiast overclockers, the Maximus VII Impact gets its power from a combination of 24-pin ATX and 8-pin EPS connectors. Being a mITX board we only see two DDR3 memory slots and a single PCI Express 3.0 x16 slot. Apart from the M.2 x4 from the daughterboard, the board offers four SATA3 ports. The wired network is handled by an Intel Gigabit Ethernet chip. Other I/O connections are four USB 3.0 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, a combination PS2 port and audio connections.
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