Board Features

The ROG Maximus Z690 Hero is a premium ATX motherboard that represents one of ASUS's most premium models based on Intel's Z690 chipset. For storage, there's the capacity to install up to five M.2 drives, including two PCIe 4.0 x4 and one PCIe 3.0 x4 integrated onto the PCB, with one PCIe 5.0 x4 and one PCIe 4.0 x4 coming via an included ROG Hyper M.2 add-on card. Other storage options include six SATA ports with support for RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 arrays.

As with most premium Z690 models, the ROG Maximus Z690 Hero has support for up to DDR5-6400 memory, with capacities of up to 128 GB across four available memory slots. On the lower portion of the board are two full-length PCIe 5.0 slots that can operate at x16 or x8/x8, while a half-length PCIe 4.0 x4 slot allows users to install additional devices such as networking, storage, and other controllers.

In terms of cooling support, ASUS includes a total of eight 4-pin headers, with two designated for CPU fans, one for an AIO cooler, one for a water pump, and four for chassis fans.

ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Motherboard
Warranty Period 3 Years
Product Page Link
Price $600
Size ATX
CPU Interface LGA1700
Chipset Intel Z690
Memory Slots (DDR4) Four DDR5
Supporting 128 GB
Up to DDR5-6400
Video Outputs 1 x HDMI 2.1
2 x Thunderbolt 4 (DP 1.4)
Network Connectivity 1 x Intel I225-V 2.5 GbE
Intel AX211 Wi-Fi 6E
Onboard Audio SupremeFX ALC4082
ESS Sabre ES9018Q2C
PCIe Slots for Graphics (from CPU) 2 x PCIe 5.0 x16 (x16, x8/x8)
PCIe Slots for Other (from PCH) 1 x PCIe 4.0 (x4)
Onboard SATA Six, RAID 0/1/5/10 (Z690)
Onboard M.2 1 x PCIe 5.0 x4 (ROG Hyper M.2)
1 x PCIe 4.0 x4 (ROG Hyper M.2)
1 x PCIe 4.0 x4
1 x PCIe 4.0 x4/SATA
1 x PCIe 3.0 x4
Onboard U.2 N/A
Thunderbolt 4 (40 Gbps) 2 x Type-C (Rear panel)
USB 3.2 (20 Gbps) 1 x USB Type-C (One header)
USB 3.2 (10 Gbps) 6 x USB Type-A (Rear panel)
1 x USB Type-C (Rear panel)
USB 3.1 (5 Gbps) 4 x USB Type-A (Two headers)
USB 2.0 2 x USB Type-A (Rear panel)
4 x USB Type-A (Two headers)
Power Connectors 1 x 24-pin Motherboard
2 x 8-pin CPU
1 x 6-pin PCIe
Fan Headers 2 x 4-pin CPU
1 x 4-pin AIO pump
1 x 4-pin Water pump
4 x 4-pin Chassis
IO Panel 2 x Antenna Ports (Intel)
2 x Thunderbolt 4 Type-C
1 x USB 3.2 G2 Type-C
6 x USB 3.2 G2 Type-A
2 x USB 2.0 Type-A
1 x RJ45 (Intel)
1 x HDMI 2.1 Output
5 x 3.5 mm Audio jacks (Realtek)
1 x S/PDIF Optical output (Realtek)
1 x Clear CMOS button
1 x BIOS Flashback button

The Z690 Hero is using lots of the Z690 chipset's native features, including an Intel AX211 Wi-Fi 6E CNVi, a single Intel I225-V 2.5 GbE controller, as well as including dual Thunderbolt 4 Type-C ports on the rear panel. There is also a front-panel USB 3.2 G2x2 Type-C header. In addition to this, there are also six USB 3.2 G2 Type-A, two USB 2.0 Type-A, and one USB 3.2 G2 Type-C port on the rear. Powering the onboard audio is a SupremeFX ALC4082 HD audio codec and ESS Sabre ESS9018Q2C DAC that controls five 3.5 mm audio jacks and one S/PDIF optical output.

Test Bed

With some of the nuances with Intel's Alder Lake processors including the new P and E-cores, our policy is to see if the system gives an automatic option to increase the power limits of the processor. If it does, we select the liquid cooling option. If it does not, we do not change the defaults.

Test Setup
Processor Intel Core i9-12900K, 125 W, $589
8P + 8E Cores, 24 Threads 3.2 GHz (5.2 GHz P-Core Turbo)
Motherboard ASUS ROG Maximus Z690 Hero (BIOS ..)
Cooling ASUS ROG Ryujin II 360mm AIO
Power Supply Corsair HX850 80Plus Platinum 850 W
Memory Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB DDR5-4800 CL 14-14-14-34 2T (2 x 16 GB)
Video Card MSI GTX 1080 (1178/1279 Boost)
Hard Drive Crucial MX300 1TB
Case Corsair Crystal 680X
Operating System Windows 10 Pro 64-bit: Build 21H2

We must also thank the following:

Hardware Providers for CPU and Motherboard Reviews
Sapphire RX 460 Nitro MSI GTX 1080 Gaming X OC Crucial MX200 +
MX500 SSDs
Corsair AX860i +
AX1200i PSUs
G.Skill RipjawsV,
SniperX, FlareX
Crucial Ballistix
BIOS And Software System Performance
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  • shabby - Wednesday, June 15, 2022 - link

    Lol at the price, who buys these things?
  • Duwelon - Wednesday, June 15, 2022 - link

    It's getting a lot harder to justify these insane board prices, overclocking is almost a dead art anyway except as a nostalgic hobby to reminisce the days when you could get a ~25-50% boost with a decent board. Today it's more like 2-5% after spending $200-$500 above the basic model.
  • Tom Sunday - Wednesday, June 15, 2022 - link

    One thing for sure: “It's getting a lot harder.” I love the idea in buying one of those Z690 HERO’s when the time or my ship finally arrives. Even a used Z490 generation HERO would be welcomed if the dollars were available. Now working 2-jobs and a midnight-shift at Walmart driving a forklift! My daily lunchbox meal increased by about 50% and now $7.54 per gallon of gasoline puts me way under and elevating my credit card debt to the worst ever. All to tie me over to the next paycheck! Before all of this inflation mess started I regularly came to visit the major tech-channels to mostly dream about all the newly proffered hardware. About the absolute "must haves” and synthetic benchmarks. It appears that my dreams are now over and perhaps a nightmare is settling-in for the man on the street like me! I cannot help thinking that there must be many more people like me in the same boat facing a new reality! Overclocking indeed is almost a dead. But my reminiscing today is now clearly centered on overclocking my finances everything else has to wait in line!
  • poohbear - Wednesday, June 22, 2022 - link

    It's gonna be an ugly 2 years, but by 2024/25 we should be out of this mess.
  • Just a reviewer - Friday, August 12, 2022 - link

    As long as Democrats don’t run our country we will be out of this mess.
  • JeffFlanagan - Sunday, October 30, 2022 - link

    Just a reviewer, would you prefer the people who betrayed our democracy and the concept of rule of law with their crime President's coup? The Democrats are not to blame for global inflation, but the Republicans, who lie about everything, will try to use it to gain power and betray us again.
  • mode_13h - Thursday, June 23, 2022 - link

    If you can relocate, there should still be some better-paying opportunities elsewhere in your state or the country. Overall, the job market is still pretty tight, but I know the real estate situation makes relocation hard.

    If relocation isn't an option, then look at other career paths and figure out a plan to get yourself on a different track. Easier said than done, I know. Take care & good luck.
  • Just a reviewer - Friday, August 12, 2022 - link

    Sounds like you live in California where gas and food is extremely expensive. I would move out of California ASAP. In the mid west food and gas is much cheaper. Yes it still still expensive due to bidens policys but at least it will be less expensive than California.
  • Just a reviewer - Friday, August 12, 2022 - link

    Also good point over clocking doesn’t gain much performance.
  • JeffFlanagan - Sunday, October 30, 2022 - link

    Inflation has nothing to do with Biden's policies. Why are you lying to undermine America here of all places?

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