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Maximus IX Hero and M.2 wifi

Level 8
Does anyone know anything about the M.2 wifi connector on the Maximus IX Hero?

On the motherboard schematic in the manual there is a connector shown in the upper-left hand corner called "M.2 WIFI". But then, there's no mention made of this connector anywhere in any documentation pertaining to the Hero. The connector is exactly where one would install an M.2 wifi module, and I imagine that is exactly the setup on the Code and the Formula versions of the Maximus IX.

Especially odd is that I watched a couple of box openings on YouTube for the Hero and the backplate has the two holes where antenna ports would be installed. So, if you don't install a wifi module there, Hero owners would be left with two empty holes there. That is to say, I'm surprised that Hero owners haven't mentioned anything about it.

But, supposing one did want to install a wifi setup there, for the life of me I can't find that anyone makes a kit, especially and including Asus. I found wifi M.2 cards but then you have to cobble together a kit of antenna leads, the antenna ports, and an antenna setup, etc.

So, what is that connector good for? Does anyone have any more information about this M.2 wifi connector? Thanks.

Level 7
I asked Raja about it but that was on and he'd never heard of it.
Tad annoying as I was looking for one myself.


Level 7
I threw a Gigabyte GC-WB867D-I REV 4.2 IN MY MAXIMUS VIII HERO and I now have wifi and bluetooth for about $40......

dannyboy292 wrote:
I threw a Gigabyte GC-WB867D-I REV 4.2 IN MY MAXIMUS VIII HERO and I now have wifi and bluetooth for about $40......

Problem is we shouldn't have to, the manual states that it should be able to be purchased separately and it's not.

Has anyone figured out a solution to this?

I got an Intel 8260 wifi module, installed it and it's not showing up.

Does the M.2 slot need to be enabled in the BIOS?

Does it have to be a Qualcomm Aetheros wifi module specifically?

Has anyone gotten this M.2 slot to work on the Maximus IX Hero?

Level 8
There are two elements in the Hero UEFI; one for "Wi-Fi" and the other "Bluetooth". Mine were enabled by default. I imagine this is for that M.2 slot and its only used with the Formula (and any other Maximus IX version with integrated Wi-Fi).

Don't forget about the driver.

Thanks for the reply Isaacc! I do indeed have both of those set to "enabled" in the BIOS. I did also install the drivers for it from Intel's website.

Unfortunately, the card isn't even showing up in my device manager.

I'm 99% sure it's seated correctly, but with the armor installed on top it's hard to verify.

I'm worried because it looks like no one has gotten this working. Is it possible that the slot is there but not connected? Or maybe my Intel 8260NGW isn't compatible? It's a little frustrating because the product page for this motherboard says that it's M.2 wifi ready, but makes no other mention of the M.2 wifi slot other than mentioning it in the manual's map of the motherboard.

I ended up going to Asus tech support directly with this, and figured I'd post my results here since this topic came up when I searched up this issue:

Hello Chris,

Thank you for contacting ASUS Product Support, my name is Daldin C. I do hope you are having a wonderful day today.

Based on the issue described, you are looking for the bios update for this motherboard for Intel 8260NGW.

I understand how frustrating that can be, so let me assist you, moving forward.

The maximus IX hero thus support M.2 2242/2260//2280 for storage devices (SATA & PCIE 3.0 x4), for2242/2260/2280/22110 storage device support (PCIE 3.0x 4 mode)

For this wifi/bluetooth module ( Intel 8260NGW M.2 2230, M.2 1216 ) its not supported by this m.2 slot for this motherboard

Refer to ASUS Service No=N170556281

If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact us again for assistance.

Best Regards,
Daldin C.

I responded that they didn't seem to understand which M.2 slot I was talking about and included the page from the manual with the wifi M.2 slot circled, and got another response:

Hello Chris,

Thank you for contacting ASUS Product Support.
My name is Richard M. and I understand that you are having issue with the MAXIMUS IX HERO.
Sorry for the incovenience using the MAXIMUS IX HERO. Regarding your first question if intel 8260 is compatible with your Motherboard, No it's not comaptible. Heres the QVL kindly click this link. The MAXIMUS IX HERO only supports the

1 x M.2 Socket 3 with M key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (SATA & PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)
1 x M.2 Socket 3 with M key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 storage devices support (PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)

And for your 2nd question if there is a module. Honestly there is no module for this.

Please refer to this case # N170557121 for future reference

Richard M, L1 , 9:30PM 5/19/2017 MNL

If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact us again for assistance.

Best Regards,
Richard M.

So, either their advertising and manual lie about supporting WiFi modules, or these support people have no idea about the M.2 WiFi slot.

After these discouraging responses, I leave this note to anyone searching for this in the future: Do not expect to be able to use the M.2 WiFi slot on the IX Hero motherboard!

Indeed, the M.2 slot for the wifi module is an M.2 "E key" slot. Theoretically it should accept any E key device. I think the main question here is whether Asus purposely disabled this slot in the BIOS. Otherwise, I don't see why your Intel wifi module shouldn't work.

You might try this tack on behalf of everyone: Ask Asus what do the two elements in the Hero UEFI actually pertain to, enable and disable, that is for "Wi-Fi" and "Bluetooth". See what they say.

We know that the Hero, Code and Formula are essentially the same board with various features included or not. I'm only guessing, but I suspect that there was a disconnect between the various developers such that the manual for the Hero included reference to the M.2 slot when it shouldn't have, the UEFI inadvertently had those two elements left in, and the M.2 slot itself was left on the Hero board.

The splash page for the Hero pretty prominently advertises that it has an M.2 (E key) slot "ready for WiFi".

There's a little hope here, one of the support respondents said he was going to escalate this question to a higher up. I'll keep this thread updated.

Level 8
Any update on this matter ?