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Asus Maximus Extreme VIII is after several years next extreme versions of the series Maximus. The last one was Maximus VI Extreme in 2013 at chipset Intel Z87 (Maximus Extreme is primary for extreme OC and extreme clock and there was no reason for Z97 Extreme board. The sixth one got BIOS support for Haswell refresh). That's about 2 years since. VIII Maximus Extreme proved in the summer of 2015, but sales fell in the autumn of the same year.



We will not linger here and go straight to the description of the boards on the theoretical side.





The board is based on the new Intel Z170 chipset series. It is very modern and brings major changes particularly strong increase in the number of PCIe lines in the south bridge and then associated communication DMI3.0 bus. Plus we can also call it practical use PCIe 3.0 links for M.2 SSDs or incorporation USB3.1 + Intel Thunderbolt port into one, but here we find a version USB3.1 compatible with other USB standards. Maximal possible transfer speeds you can see in the picture plate. In terms of the proposal CPU biggest change is the BCLK communication separate CPU cores and then separately with PCIe, SATA, USB, etc. This means the possibility of full BCLK clock! Another change is the socket with 1151 pins and processors that support DDR4 memory (DDR3 but even if the motherboard has slots for them). Maximus Extreme VIII make progress on the actual power controll for the CPU, iGPU, memory, and has also been fairly improved sound, LAN itself. And there is also better WiFi 802.11ac. Some of the things we look slightly in more detail ...


Digitally controlled management supply itself is at very high level. Conventional power control goes from the PSU source through the rails to supply the CPU (8pin) and then to the main control of the PWM controller and then further transformed into the power cascade (phases). It has MOSFETs chokes and capacitors for charging. The change here is motherboard for better precision has two digitall controllers for power supply of the CPU. One is purely for iGPU voltage control and second one for the CPU voltage. Mosfets are type of optiMOS as the highed suits and coils have a great opportunity optical density of energy and contain small ferite granules for improved electromagnetic properties (named Microfine Alloy chokes).


However overclocking has undergone further refinement. It was the first higher number of pins, but the practical measurements showed no effect on OC such as 2011v3 with the „Asus OC socket“.... Asus Pro Clock technology, the opportunity to reach 400MHz BCLK OC!


With overclocking is also related to this thing. The actual OC Panel II, an improved version of the original. It includes features retry and safe button (attempt failed post again, no one would have to hard shut down PC and then something to reconfigure, safe = returns the following post straight into the BIOS with the original values and we may change it. Post gone by default values of BIOS) More about the OC panel II in queries.


This motherboard has an unbelievable number of fan connectors and one for water pump and also for extra temperature sensoring. The control is possible of course PWM (or DC).



The new audio part is called SupremeFX 2015 and consists of more electronics parts than previous generations. Of course there is the famous audio shield, a separate part of the PCB, a separate left and right channel audio links, headphone amplifiers, as well as audio switching relays, ESS audio converter and a separate audio clock generator.


This is related to sound like Sonic Studio II


Again the software - perfect package called AI Suite 3 allows great tuning unit after the performance, power management and digi controll, fan control (even to zero level of silence! There is a PWM controller for water pump, etc.) and prioritize network settings. And, or course, the option to manually tune everything possible...


BIOS is setup so that this would be a chapter itself. Not worth it to elaborate in depth, lots of preset profiles, mainly numbers of OC memory profiling according memory chips (Hynix, Samsungs etc), but even a noob in the basic display confess and BIOS guide help in a few steps to set acceptable overclocking or simply set the RAID drives. Items in BIOS, you can also add to your favorites.




Intel networking chips are the best. It's simple, Intel is a giant in itself and knows how to make the best combo chipset, CPU and reticule make it among themselves to work with the lowest delays ... Here's the latest Intel LAN chipset I219-V. The LAN connector also includes enhanced protection against electrostatic discharge and antisurge. Software for LAN also does not hurt :)


Connectivity of Maximus VIII Extreme is the best level. M.2 PCIe can reach up to 32 Gbit / s, then we have several USB 3.1 with a theoretical transfer of up to 10 Gb / s and sata Express. I think M.2 completely overrides the SATA Express in the future ....


About Intel Thunderbolt I have already spoken, even more interesting may be the server PCIe standard U.2 for highend NVMe discs. Wifi is dualband with 2.4GHz and 5GHz band.


Part of a new generation of motherboards is also popular RGB lighting. This is optional and in several modes. Some probably comforted when I say that it can be completely shut down. I have set it according to the CPU temperature.



Keybot II also undergone minor changes (it create macros on nonmacro keyboards and sometimes very helpful for some RPG games). Overwolf's another application for the passionate gamer ... And generally you would find other applications such as ROG Ramcache, RAM disk, and many more on the DVD ...


2. Motherboard packaging and accessories of motherboard





The mobo is in the classic red box ROG, over the years, is more or less similar style of packing and I personally liked it. However, it is quite strong and full, thanks to the accessories inside ...


Rear side of motherboard shows features and innovations of board



Accessories are enormously large, we find that a lot of SATA cables, SATA stickers, „sticker“ on the door handle, manual, installation DVD, SLI and Crossfire bridge, back capping panel, 5.25 "position for the OC panel screws, installation" Skylake "frame (Skylake is enough thin and poorly can put in the slot), fan extender and of course the OC Panel II



he position of the panel itself, if it is placed into the case.



And here is already the OC Panel II. The basic position is covered, but for experience OC games suited to push the cap and use features such as fans connectors, LN2 mode, slow mode, VGA hotwire and more ...

3. The motherboard description




Motherboard Maximus Extreme VIII, is like most Extreme versions in the e-ATX size. Motherboard is therefore relatively wide and therefore, beware if you can put into the case. Slightly changed color. ROG were before several reds, now prevails clearly black and red in smaller amounts appearing only on the pasive of PCH and the cover plate over the VRM cooling.



The rear side of the board has a "backplates". In the caset of VRM as a good heat distribution for mosfets and for PCH primarily as reinforcement. It is seen that Maximus Extreme VIII is luxuriously board.


Deployment of PCIe slots is solved well. Long PCIe x16 are electrically: PCIe x16, PCIe x4, PCIe x2, PCIe x8 (designed for SLI / CF), PCIe x2 and x4 PCIe. For that you will know that the involvement of two cards will be as 2x 8 lines, and if you connect three cards will run as x8 + x4 + x4.


The audio part is called SupremeFX 2015. Most part is hiding under the plastic cover labeled "SuperemeFX". At my photo is visible only the relays, sound Nichicon capacitors and a corner of the sound chip ALC1150. The rest as a headphone amplifier, transmitter and signal processor are under cover.


Bottom part of mottherboard provides connectors for connecting PC case, interesting for someone can be a thunderbolt header or ROG connector (for OC panel or Front Panel Base) or header for fans extender ( which is part of the package). Interesting is button SLI / CF. First, before I had board in my hands, I thought that it could come in handy for hardware activation of two graphics cards. However, this is only an slot indication where to put two graphics cards (such help). BIOS button is switch BIOS function, the motherboard has two removable Winbond BIOS chips.



Outputs for connecting drives offer not only classical SATA 6Gb / s (no SATA 3Gb / s) or less advanced SATA Express and ultaquick U.2 connector for special discs. Behind pointed SATA ports can be found M.2 for SATA / PCIe SSDs. Perfect are two USB 3.0 headers, one even angled! And we also see the connector of backlighting southern bridge.


View of the OC zone and also the already mentioned USB 3.0 headers. Above the post display is connector for water pump, that we are now through the BIOS or software to control too! There are also buttons, start, reset, mem OK, safe boot, retry button, switch active/deactive PCIe slots, switch to the slow mode at extreme clock, LN2 jumper or jumper for activating / deactivating DIM slots. Who would be interested in this more, please ask in the discussion and I will try to explain everything to you more detailed....


Finally, should not be missed shot on the back-output IO motherboard, these are truly perfect. From left to right they are: buttons to erase the BIOS settings and flashback BIOS (it is uploading BIOS without having CPU, RAM, etc. on the board, you must just keep the ATX power on the board 24 pin connector. This feature is useful when you have damage BIOS or in the future, when you will buy Kabylake and you do not have the required BIOS on the board in advance)

Furthermore 2x USB3, 2x USB3.1-A, WiFi / Bluetooth, DisplayPort and HDMI for iGPU, LAN port, USB3.1 and USB3.1-A-C / Thunderbolt, PS2, audio outputs, including optical output.

Power management,circuits of motherboard and few chip details

The power circuit of motherboards and discrete chips description is the chapter, which many readers skip or is it lost forever. After a few years, I am aware of that :), but you do not want to cheat at least a gross basis. It would be a shame not to know, according to what you can also choose a new motherboard.


I have indicated in green color power connectors at motherboard as CPU and the motherboard itself. It is not necessary to injoy both CPU connectors, two are for the case of extreme overclocking.

Yellow color then I framed each PWM connectors for fan and water pump. There are a total eight connectors including a connector for connecting the fan extender.

Red highlight is the circuit power for processor (8 phases) and for iGPU part of CPU (4 phases). Yellow highlighting is power phase for the south bridge. Orange highlight one phase for the IO the CPU. Blue color is 2-phases for memory. Small pink squares are the individual PWM digital controllers for the CPU, iGPU part of the processor and digital controller of memory circuit.

I finally called the arrow keys, which PCIe slots are connected to the processor and to the south bridge. South bridge is brand new on the Z170 includes a PCIe 3.0, which is a luxury that's still not up to X99. This allows, for example, be used more than efficiently new PCIe drives.



Part detail of processor vrm phases. We see output capacitors and behind the massive chokes. Mosfets are below the VRM pasive, which is cool it. Cooling of the MOSFET is generally important not only for overclocking, but also for the operating characteristics and service life of the whole.



There are the details of PCIe switches from Asmedia. Bottom right we see a chip labeled as "BIOS". But it is not the BIOS chip, but the chip to provide function BIOS flashback.

The theory behind us and we can go to the actual testing :)


4. Test components and description / test settings



Intel core i7-6700K 4/4.2 GHz

Asus Maximus VIII Extreme

Silverstone AiO Tundra SLim

Asus GTX980Ti Poseidon Platinum

2x 4 GB G.SKill TridentZ 2133 MHz jedec/3600MHz XMP

SSD Intel 60GB+3TB HDD

Windows 7 SP1 x64




Test programs and games:


wprime 1.55

Cinebench R11.5

Cinebench R15

AIDA 64 Engineer, memory bandwith

3D Mark 11

3D Mark Fire Strike

Alien vs Predator test (max possible settings at FHD)

Sniper Elite II (FHD settings and Extreme details)

Far Cry 4 (see pictures bellow), section of the game running out and driving a car in the first part of the mission and the subsequent missions by the river as the second result 24183197610_d9df6907a0_n.jpg24111006229_398f8f0192_n.jpg

WOT – max possible details and settings at FHD+high texture pack, map Murovanka, replay


Counter Strike: GO - timedemo of battle, max possible settings at FHD



5. CPU overclocking

I start overclocking part before I will show test results. In the graph are already included the results of overclocking CPU ... I have used the popular AIDA stress test. I do not recommend Prime95 stress test for Skylake, nor indeed for any other CPUs. That test is oversized in burning of CPU and power cascade. It generates alspo a lot and unreal errors (bugs) ... It is my personal opinion after the experience of forums around the world. Better to do with OCCT test, Intel stress test or AIDA stability test. Skylake overclocks very well. Since the CPU main IR controler is a back out to the processor, and it is reduce the heating. Also, useable voltage range is now excellent and cooling down the CPU is well. And even though it is made on new 14nm technology! The technology size of the production that much does not mean and the problem are and has always been temperatures. This processor matters, unless there overdo the vcore ... but I can say that with a better cooler is Skylake i7 on 1.4V safe for long time and for some tests you can jump up to 1.5V (as example hwbot prime test, Cinebench redner,...). Temperatures should not, however long exceed 90 C at cores. Skylake comes clocked better than Haswell. The whole point is simple, based on a voltage CPUx turbo multiplier. The rest can fine-tuned via BCLK, which is on „K processors“ fully open (perhaps so you can try combination of 150MHz BCLK and turbo multipliers + to do reduce dividers cache + memory frequency). For more xxperienced users Im recommending also set up small things like cache frequency and cache voltage, SA voltages for high memory clocks and a of course, we must not forget at LLC aka load line calibration. On Asus MBs LLC works best at level 4 or 5. You can play with the VRM settings more.



But to my result. Processor Ive got stability at a high frequency of 4747 MHz at all cores. I think that is a very good result. Suffice CPU voltage only 1.36 V. As you can see, the temperature in the load are very good.

I share my BIOS settings for 4747 MHz, you can try using some ROG motherboard with Skylake with this values...








6. Performance tests stock, and after CPU overclocking



-less is better



-less i better



-less is better



-more is better



-more is better



- more is better



- more is better



- more is better



- more is better



- more is better



- more is better



- more is better



- more is better



- more is better



-FPS more is better



-FPS more is better



-FPS more is better



-FPS more is better



-FPS more is better


Power consumption – how much? There has Skylake luxury, of course, consumption in the graph is a load of CPU in CINEBENCH and GPU Radeon idle, but as you can see, the increase in power consumption is minimal assembly against a baseline. More would probably grew up from approximately 1.45V VCore ..



-Watts, less is better


7.Overclocking bonus - AIR vs LN2


7.1 AIR benchmarking overclocking

Quickly I tried what processor and the motherboard can handle. Maximum in render CINEBENCH I got there 4900 MHz, 5 GHz failed to even higher voltage ... Even so, it is an above average piece of silicon.



After I tested Superpi. Shorter 1M I had 5100 MHz also, but the screenshot is not saved... So at least one at 5000 MHz.



Longer 32M Superpi at 5000 MHz.



Validation process with all active cores+hyperthreading at 5157MHz



7.2 LN2 cooling



And then it could also go on LN2 cooling.





Here, too, did not save the image at 5700 MHz (or have forgotten), I found at my disk only at 5620 MHz



And finally, what do you gaming that Minecraft at 5720 MHz? :)




8. Closing speech

Motherboard Asus Maximus Extreme VIII did not disappoint. And Im more than happy for the same product. The board has an excellent layout, BIOS settings, power circuit, good ongoing support for overclockers and options as M2, U2, OC Panel II and the general accesories only show that you are getting something of a luxury. The only one malady for most mortals is price. But this motherboard is not done for all, but for the highest hardwareand OC enthusiast. For those more normal will make a similar salary Maximus Hero, Gene, Impact, or even cheaper Ranger. But if you pulsing blood hardware passion for liquid nitrogen, then definitely take this board. He would even then Chuck Norris :)



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  • 2 weeks later...

thanks. Last days in free time I played with memory. But I cant get 4000 (effective) MHz if Im doing whatever. Seems limit of the IMC? Example I can run superpi at 1960 MHz with 1.7V and cl13. But if I tried few MHz up via BCLK, the system frozed. After I tested it with lazy timings and with 1.8V and the same result :-/



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