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VRM Explained on ASUS Maximus XI Hero

Level 9
this is a must see video of /// VRM Explained on ASUS Maximus XI Hero /// Buildzoid analyzes the ASUS Maximus XI Hero VRM to talk about the "twin-8 phase" design and what it really means. ///

Level 11
Just watched that video earlier today... Very technical and in-depth! Idk what to say honestly... Its kinda disappointing. It's making me reconsider getting the Hero XI. I've been considering getting either the 9900k or 9700k and Im not too keen on the Hero XI being the hottest-running of the z390 boards. I think i might wait until the Hero XI Apex is available...That's looking more appealing to me atm.
ASUS ROG Maximus XIII Hero Apex | Intel i9 11900k @5.5ghz | G. Skill Trident Z 32gb@4000mhz | WD SN850x 4gb/WD SN850 2gb | Gigabyte Aorus Master 3080Ti | EVGA Supernova G2 1300w | Windows 11 Pro

I always buy ASUS ROG board because they are suppose to be high end board. I was going for the Asus maximus XI code or formula for my z390 build. However this "twice 8 phase" BS has really really turned me off. There are nothing wrong with using cheap components for low end board, but in their high end ROG and then charging it more then the competitors!!! WTH!!! I have lost alot of respect for ASUS.

Level 14
Z390 and i7-9700K/i9-9900K are not really targeting "cheap low end board" customers, it's good that they're using "high end ROG" VRM components, even if high end always costs more than low end. Yes, ASUS/ROG motherboards tend to cost more than the competitors ... but they also have a tendency to consistently score higher OC performance records than the competitors.
"All opinions are not equal. Some are a very great deal more robust, sophisticated and well supported in logic and argument than others." - Douglas Adams


Level 12
Yeah people over on are returning Max X I Hero / Code / Formula boards and going for Gigabyte boards. For Asus, it looks like you have to go to the Extreme, Gene (not available in the US?) or Apex (which is probably going to be over $500) to get a decent VRM. Still no comment from Asus, though what can they say? They decided to go with a new VRM topology, with no doublers. It works, but with VRM temps 10C+ higher.

Maybe Asus will release a revision of the boards with a totally different (and better) VRM, like they did for the Max X Hero /wifi, when they had a parts shortage. This worked out great for those who got Max X Hero boards with the same VRM design as the higher cost ROG boards. Not so great for the people (like me) who got the cheaper, inferior VRM design, that does not report a VRM temp, despite their marketing at the time clearly showing a thermometer over the VRM section, indicating that VRM temp is reported. Asus would never comment on that either, and the details of what they pulled did not surface until a year later, when the whole Z390 VRM analysis craze started.

Generally, Asus BIOS is considered the best, better than Gigabyte. This time around, that is the only advantage I can see, and I am not sure it is worth the "Asus Tax" premium price over competitor's products that have better VRM designs for less money. First the shenanigans they pulled with the MX Hero VRMs, and now this "Twin 8-Phase" BS.

I guess its time to start looking at the Gigabyte BIOS.

Does the code have the same VRM as the hero ? What about the Formula ? It's all the same ? :eek:

Level 8
Yes, all the same.

i9 12900k + Asus Maximus Z690 Apex + EVGA RTX 3090 Ti FTW3 ULTRA
G.SKILL Trident Z5 RGB Series 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR5 6000l XMP 3.0 Desktop Memory Model F5-6000U4040E16GX2-TZ5RK+ Samsung 870 Pro SSD, EVO 1TB, EVO 2TB
EVGA SuperNOVA 1000 T2 Power Supply + Fractal Meshify 2 XL case
Ek Velocity 2 CPU block, Ek GPU block
Koolance Fittings and QDC's + Mo-Ra 3 Pro 4x180 Radiator
LG 38GL950G Monitor +
Windows 10 Pro

What About the Extreme ?

Level 7
I have to say that my level of disappointment with ASUS is growing. I only build with ASUS and have since 08, so now that my Rampage IV Extreme Black Edition has had DIMM A1 and my PCI-E 16 slot crap out and I'm looking to buy new gear I of course wanted to buy ASUS and was looking at the Z390 Maximus XI Extreme and a 9900K. Then to find out the 9900K is having thermal issues even though it's IHS is soldered on was disheartening enough, but then to find out that ASUS has completely screwed the pooch on their VRM design on the Z390 disappoints me. To think that a brand that I have pushed for 10 years or more and has been an industry leader is either becoming inept in their engineering or that they are purposely trying to deceive their customers so they can increase their profits buy using a cheaper design while charging premium prices breaks my heart and has rocked my brand loyalty, every review I've seen is saying just that. So either ASUS needs to address it now and convince us that their design isn't a mistake some how or they need to admit to their deception.

To think that because of this I have had to consider buying another brand and now Gigabyte has been ranked the best of the Z390's by many reviewers must mean that I've died and gone straight to hell! Gigabyte the the low end joke of the world now stands above ASUS.....I just don't know what to say or do. Do I buy an inferior ASUS product and remain the fan boy or do I admit I now live in Bizarro world and buy a freakin Gigabyte MB? I don't think JJ can explain this one away.

I really feel like ASUS needs to redeem itself on this one with a complete redesign of the Z390 that innovates the VRM beyond what the others are doing and slash the prices of the existing Z390's.

I really wish an ASUS rep would chime in here.....

Level 12
I agree with everything you said, but if history is any indicator, Asus will remain mum on the subject. There were many posts about the MX Hero VRM variations, some boards reporting VRM temp, others not. Asus reps posting in the same threads would absolutely not address any post directly asking for confirmation that there were 2 versions of the board. It was a year later when every Z390 boards' VRM designs were under intense scrutiny, that Elmor mentioned in passing that the MX Hero wifi had 2 versions with totally different VRMs. When Z370 was still the latest release, and being actively sold, no one from Asus would say word.

Now, all the Z390 marketing pages on the site have been scrubbed of any mention of "Twin 8-Phase". I think only the Extreme mentions VRM at all. So they got the message that people felt mislead adn they dropped the Twin 8-Phase marketing. Rather than highlight the advantages of their new topology, they just stopped mentioning VRMs at all.

They might come out with a major revision with a VRM topology like the other guys, but I dount it. They may just move on. Z390 will not be current for long. It will be interesting to see what they do for whatever the next release is (14nm++++ ?)...