ASUS Maximus VI Extreme Review
As we would expect the M6E follows the regular ROG design with a combination of red and black plastics, as well as the single-sided RAM retainers. The CPU socket has a lot of heatsink surrounding it, which will be a boon to standard overclockers and a bit of a pain for those who prefer their cooling on the extreme sub-zero side. Considering the price we'd have liked to see a little more flair in the heatsink design too, rather than just a heavily-finned black lump.
The PCI Express lanes are nicely spread as you'd expect to find on a full ATX motherboard. The placement of the legacy PCI is slightly obscured if you were planning on running dual graphics cards, but by now very few people should have a PCI card left and by moving the PCIx1 slot down it allows the use of modern sound cards. As every single one of the ten SATA ports is the 6Gbps type they are all in red plastic.
Up by the DIMM slots we have the power and reset switches, along with the dip switches to turn off PCI lanes to allow you to fault-find a multi-card setup without having to pull cards in and out. Useful if you've got a well-sorted water-cooling arrangement.
With Z87 motherboards natively supporting triple screen goodness, the rear of the M6E is positively bristling with ports. In the place where we'd usually find the combined PS2 port and USB ports for our input devices, we find the adaptor for the WiFi.
ASUS continue their drive towards external motherboard controls with the Maximus VI Extreme. With the Rampage IV we saw the OC Key, which was an average idea implemented in an average manner that never really saw much use in the real-world, and we fear that the new OC idea will suffer from the same 'nice on paper but leave it in the box' fate. It looks cheap. It requires SATA power even if you're using it externally rather than in a drive bay. If you use it internally the cable is too short to allow it to be hidden away, leading to untidy internals. If you use it externally the cables stop it sitting flush with the desk so it constantly falls over. Not helped by the pointless height and having all the controls at the peak. Someone needs to teach the R&D department about levers and the centre of gravity.