ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero Review

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero proves to be one of the best Z390 motherboards on the market.

This review covers everything you need to know about this motherboard, from the rear I/O ports to the BIOS and overclocking capabilities.

ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero Review

At the end of this article, we’ve put together a useful resource to help answer any other questions you might have.

ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero (Wi-Fi) Z390 Gaming Motherboard LGA1151...
  • Designed for 9th 8th Generation Intel Core processors maximize connectivity, speed with Dual M.2, USB 3.1 Gen 2, on board 802.11AC Wi Fi and ASUS optimum II for better DRAM overclocking stability
  • Revamped 5 way Optimization over clocks Intelligently based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry while FanXpert 4 delivers dynamic system cooling
  • Aura Sync RGB lighting with addressable headers features a nearly endless spectrum of colors with the ability to synchronize effects across an ever expanding ecosystem of AURA Sync enabled products
  • Pre mounted I/O shield ensures streamlined installation and represents ROG's attention to detail and quality

ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero (Our Review)

Overall Assessment

Rocking an ATX form factor, the ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero is a killer motherboard equipped with an arsenal of features and connectors.

Hardware and Storage

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero has a ten-phase power design and an LGA1151 CPU socket that supports 8th and 9th Generation Intel processors. This means the board is future-proof, saving you from having to upgrade your processor or motherboard when newer generations are released.

Like its predecessor, the ASUS ROG Maximus X Hero, the Maximus XI Hero has dual-channel DDR4 DIMM slots with a maximum capacity of 64GB. Fully utilizing the RAM capacity ensures that your PC won’t slow down anytime soon.

These slots also have XMP 2.0 support, allowing you to alter memory profiles so you can take advantage of higher memory speeds.

We liked the inclusion of these slots but the fact that they aren’t shielded means they could be damaged if you aren’t careful.

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero has two M.2 slots for SSD support.

Along with SSD support, the motherboard is equipped with a Z390 Optane ready chipset. This means SSDs connected via the M.2 can swap data at a whopping 32Gbps.

The ASUS ROG includes the SANDRA diagnostic software. This gives you access to a heap of useful hardware and software information regarding your BIOS, drivers, and the CPU.

Rear I/O

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero has an integrated I/O shield that provides more rigidity and eliminates the risk of damaging any of the ports. This feature can be found in other ROG boards like the ASUS ROG Crosshair VII.

The ports on the rear I/O include a PS/2 port, two USB 2.0 ports—one for updating your BIOS via a USB flash drive—three USB 3.1 Generation two Type-A and C ports, two USB 3.2 Generation one Type-A port, and five audio jacks with an optical S/PDIF port.

Unlike the ASUS ROG Rampage VI Extreme, this motherboard doesn’t have any integrated Wi-Fi.

However, something you’ll find on both boards is the inclusion of a Clear CMOS and BIOS flashback button.

These buttons enable you to conveniently update the BIOS without the presence of a CPU or DRAM, allowing you to troubleshoot your hardware without having to install all your peripherals. This also saves you money in case you haven’t purchased all the necessary hardware for your rig.

The Cooling

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero stays frosty with a good amount of heat sinks and natively supports up to eight fans.

Of the eight fans, two headers can be used for water pumps supporting a single or dual custom water-cooling loop configuration.

This configuration allowed us to increase the overclocking rate because it’s more effective at keeping components cool than typical air-cooling

In addition to the fan headers, there is an external thermal sensor, a water flow sensor, and a water in and out sensor targeting the high-end builders looking to max out their rig.

ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero (Wi-Fi) Z390 Gaming Motherboard LGA1151...
  • Designed for 9th 8th Generation Intel Core processors maximize connectivity, speed with Dual M.2, USB 3.1 Gen 2, on board 802.11AC Wi Fi and ASUS optimum II for better DRAM overclocking stability
  • Revamped 5 way Optimization over clocks Intelligently based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry while FanXpert 4 delivers dynamic system cooling
  • Aura Sync RGB lighting with addressable headers features a nearly endless spectrum of colors with the ability to synchronize effects across an ever expanding ecosystem of AURA Sync enabled products
  • Pre mounted I/O shield ensures streamlined installation and represents ROG's attention to detail and quality

Game On

Being a part of the Republic of Gamers family, the ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero stays true to its name by providing gamers with many impressive features.

If you’re a gamer who prioritizes smooth frame rates playing games at their highest settings, this board has you covered.

Three PCIe slots support SLI, NV link, and Crossfire. This allows gamers to make use of three graphics cards to give them that extra performance boost for intensive programs.

These slots are protected by ASUS’s shielding technology. This provides stability and support when using bigger graphics cards. No more stressing about damaging or snapping your board.

ASUS also implements an audio system designed for gamers to give them the best sound quality.

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero uses the SupremeFX S1220 Eight-channel HD audio codec and features an ESS ES9023 DAC allowing for the best audio playback. The audio component is shielded to protect against noise interference.

Gamers will be pleased to hear about the addition of Sonic Radar into the codec. This technology uses positional locations to output audio, giving gamers an advantage when playing competitively.

Aesthetics

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero has a premium matte black design with brushed metal accents on the outskirts of the board. 

This is great for those who prefer a monochromatic motherboard, but anyone looking for RGB  support will be disappointed.

There are two areas where RGB is present—one near the rear I/O, and the other is near the PCH heatsinks.

There are also addressable RGB headers if you want to add more color to your rig.

The RGB is controlled using the ASUS Aura Sync software, allowing you to choose from a variety of colors and light modes. 

Another neat feature that adds to the board’s aesthetic is a QLED screen that allows the user to monitor and troubleshoot system settings.

BIOS and Overclocking

The BIOS has all the features for overclocking, LLC levels, and recommendations for profiles and settings.

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero also includes an ASUS Retry button.

This allows you to hard reset your system without losing the BIOS settings. This comes in handy if you forget to save your profiles or bios settings.

The BIOS features an EZ and Advanced mode that ASUS has implemented in most of their ROG motherboards.

An impressive overclocking tool found in the Advanced mode is the Prediction tab that makes overclocking easier.

It does this by using the Silicon quality calculated by the SVID table of the CPU. This tells the motherboard what voltage it requires for every clock speed through the frequency range it would normally operate under.

The prediction tab has a Cooler Points section that logs the temperature of the system in the form of points. It uses these points to calculate how you’ll be able to overclock the CPU based on the available cooling.

Using the Silicon Quality and Cooler points, we can adaptively set the overclock automatically based on the measurements provided.

These features aren’t present in most motherboards on the market and being able to use specific, measured values when overclocking helps with the process. So we appreciate ASUS for adding this into the BIOS.

Advanced mode has preset overclock profiles for the CPU and memory.

You should note that when compared to the ASUS ROG Strix Z390-e Gaming, which only overclocks at 4266 MHz, the Maximus XI Hero has a maximum memory overclock of 4400 MHz. This highlights just how strong the overclocking potential of this board is.

If you’d like to know more about some of this board’s siblings, check out our review of the Best Asus Motherboard of 2021.

Pros

  • Amazing audio codec
  • Feature-packed at an affordable price
  • Good heat dispersion
  • Aesthetically pleasing
ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero (Wi-Fi) Z390 Gaming Motherboard LGA1151...
  • Designed for 9th 8th Generation Intel Core processors maximize connectivity, speed with Dual M.2, USB 3.1 Gen 2, on board 802.11AC Wi Fi and ASUS optimum II for better DRAM overclocking stability
  • Revamped 5 way Optimization over clocks Intelligently based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry while FanXpert 4 delivers dynamic system cooling
  • Aura Sync RGB lighting with addressable headers features a nearly endless spectrum of colors with the ability to synchronize effects across an ever expanding ecosystem of AURA Sync enabled products
  • Pre mounted I/O shield ensures streamlined installation and represents ROG's attention to detail and quality

Cons

  • No integrated Wi-Fi or Bluetooth
  • Some included software is bloatware

Common Questions about ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero

Is this the best ASUS ROG board?

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero is one of the best ROG on the market, and when compared to other ROG motherboards like the ASUS ROG Zenith Extreme, it has many benefits.

Not only does it have a 30% lower thermal design, but it has better memory compatibility and extra PCIe slots, making the Maximus XI Hero a better motherboard for gamers or those wanting to dive into overclocking.

Are the fan headers for three or four-pin fans?

You should note that the ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero only supports four-pin fans. You won’t be able to install three-pin fans.

Does this motherboard support NVMe drives?

The ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero supports four NVMe drives.

The two M.2 slots support a total of four NVMe drives but it is important to note that the SATA connections don’t support the drives.

Customer Reviews

“My computer needed an upgrade for a while now, so I decided to buy this motherboard. I am a photographer so the software I use is very demanding when it comes to performance and speed, so this motherboard was the obvious choice. Being able to overclock the CPU and graphics card, along with providing me with speed, makes me say one word: wow!”

Richard M

5/5 stars

“This is the best motherboard in its class by far! ASUS has never disappointed me, and it doesn’t look like that’s happening anytime soon. My only complaint about this board is that there isn’t any integrated WI-FI. This is a feature that I think every motherboard and company should have.”

Edu P.

4/5 stars

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