Recently my motherboard for my AMD FX series CPU has died and I was contemplating on upgrading to the Ryzen 2nd gen CPUs or a 8000 or 9000 intel CPU (now that I have a budget for those CPUs) and I thought to myself "Ok I have a budget of $500, and I don't need any hard drives, I will need ram," so on and so forth. After budgeting out and seeing what was great in the market for over clocking and just general future proof. I decided to go with a Ryzen 5 2600X thus I needed a capable motherboard that could handle overclocking and something that was stable enough not only that something that could easily be reverted (more on this later).
I then made the decision to go with the Asus Crosshair Hero Vii (7 to those who don't understand roman numerals). While this board is specifically targeted at overclocking enthusiasts (which I am) this is a great board if you are looking for ones that have high Inputs for USB and Audio. This board contains 2 USB 2.0 ports (one of which can be switched to USB BIOS Flashback), 8 USB 3.1 Gen 1, USB 3.1 Gen 2, and USB 3.1 Type C for a total of 12 usb ports. Not only that there is no need for an IO shield (which is a very welcomed feature on my end as I don't have to worry about losing another one). This board also has a PS/2 port (for keyboards/Mice that have a PS/2 plug) 6 audio jacks (5 of which are 3.5mm and one S/PDIF [optical out]). There is just too much to list on this board with out a wall of text so here is the website (directly linking to Asus.com): https://www.asus.com/us/Motherboards/RO ... fications/
My personal thoughts:
Is this overkill for your average consumer? By far yes. What about prosumer? No. Honestly there are a lot of things I love about this board that eases the headaches of building your own PC such as ASUS Q-Code and Q-LED which provide troubleshooting starting points, for example if there is a bad ram or it isn't seated properly the light underneath the Q-Code display will light up and that means that the stick of ram is either bad or isn't seated properly. While I wasn't looking in particular for a RGB addressable motherboard this one in my opinion is perfect for those who want to have RGB lights but don't want to break the bank when it comes to RGB light strips as this motherboard you can use any RGB light strips with Asus Aura from Walmart or Best buy. Not only that this board is compatible with Phillips Hue Lighting. While I like the features that this offers as a person who has experience in building computers, knows how to build computers, and troubleshooting. This may be overwhelming for a novice and those who are tech illiterate with some features. The Q-Codes are given to you in the manual are easily readable and concise and is a perfect choice for those who do PC building or Hardware trouble shoot as a side job.
So this is where things get interesting. Reviewing this was hard in my usual way as this targets two markets Average Consumer / Prosumer. I broke the ratings down in two separate areas for each respectively.
Average Consumer Rating:
3.5 out of 5
+ Excellent Build
+ Plethora of USB Slots and 2 M.2 Drives
+ 6gb/s transfer speeds on each SATA port.
- Unnecessary Options (LN2 Mode ect.)
5 out of 5 (1st perfect score for my reviews)
+ Post code display (Q-Viewer/LED)
+ Overclocking stability
+ Vast options for DIY
+ Great Workbench Motherboard
+ Price for the options
While I decided to go 5 out of 5 for the prosumer rating is that I feel that this motherboard is targeted at that target audience. While some features are welcomed for the Average consumer, I feel that putting the price tag at $279.99 is a bit steep for that target. There are some features I feel that they could take away for two different versions of this Board for less of the price for example taking away the LN2 mode, Fast/Slow mode and keeping it at Slow or have it in the BIOS options instead, and possibly getting rid of some Fan headers or the AIO pump header would be a good start. This is an excellent board don't get me wrong for the prosumer however for an Average consumer it is a strong maybe if you plan on getting more technical with your builds.
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