ASUS RoG MAXIMUS IX APEX – User Experience Introduction Hey everyone, back this time with, in my opinion, the Z270 Series Motherboard to have for the Enthusiast Overclocker. ASUS Republic of Gamers have gone back to some of their roots on this new board. Taking out a bit of the "normal' and spinning it all into the extra-ordinary for the extreme overclockers around the world. Looking past the oddly shaped PCB and extensive RGB lighting arrays, we have, in what one could describe the love child of Maximus Extreme and Maximus Impact. For Game of Thrones fans, it's like the Mountain and Oberyn Martell got smashed together, combining their brute strength, agility and looks to produce something that the world has never seen, yet it will always remember. Looks wise, everything matches the rest of the ROG IX Lineup, albeit the PCB reshape to a more X shaped appearance. There is a very good explanation for this which I will discuss later. All around the PCB, you will find RGB LED's everywhere from the Rear of the PCB, to the PCH, VRM Heatsink and the Illuminated Nameplates. All of this is customizable with the included AURA SYNC Software. Obviously these are features that you wouldn't expect on a full-out OC focused motherboard, but man, they are so worth it. Going back to the fusion I mentioned earlier, the Apex may have the power delivery available from the Extreme series of board, but it also has the cut-down features of the smaller Impact boards. This means, less SATA connections available, less DIMM slots for memory, and well, less shrouds and fancy covers. Don't despair, it's all been balanced to give the best of all worlds. We have an extra DIMM slot, which Asus have aptly named a DIMM.2 slot, allowing support for their add-in M.2 card in a convenient position. Watercooling support has not been missed, and we now have connections for your waterpump, rated up to 3A, an abundance of fan headers, all 1A rated, a waterflow sensor as well as two further water temperature sensors. So far, this board is a machine. In the hands of renowned overclocker Dancorp, on release allowed for 8 new World Records and 18 Global First places to be attributed to it. Most notably reaching a sky high 7328Mhz using one special 7700K CPU and some extremely expensive Liquid Helium for cooling. Adding to that, it has also managed memory frequency in excess of 5Ghz. This is all a testament to the engineering and quality circuitry components the ASUS have installed. Yes, Republic of Gamers have their focus back on the overclocking scene once again. Now, I have a Plan! Moving forward, this time around I would like to do the review a little different. Below, you will find my usual ramble and photo's galore. But, this time around, instead of comparing to other boards, I would like to share with you a blog of using this board and it's functions. When I write these reviews for you all, I usually setup the products and use them for a period to give a proper perspective of how it performs. This means hooking on a daily drive, testing out the overclockability, stability, all of the functions, the lighting and the supplied software. Then playing some music whilst perusing my favourite local overclockers forum, followed getting into some gaming for my own personal all round experience. Usually followed up by some more benching due to gaming frustrations, then the cycle continues between the 2. So, if there is anything that interests you about this spectacular piece of hardware, comment below. I'll see what I can find and share it back with you all.