Hardware Asus Maximus VIII Impact Preview - Has the King Returned?

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Dogbert666, 20 Oct 2015.

  1. Dogbert666

    Dogbert666 Live. Laugh. Benchmark. Staff Administrator

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  2. MrGumby

    MrGumby CPC 464 User

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    The whole price of a Skylake build baffles me. Unless you choose an i5 and want a small power efficient gaming rig, X99 and 5820k is the way to go. IMO
     
  3. MrGumby

    MrGumby CPC 464 User

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    Are there any plans to release a Skylake version of the G3258?
     
  4. edzieba

    edzieba Virtual Realist

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    For an ITX board, no m.2 = no sale. If you;re building a SFF system, m.2 is a no-brainer. If you're not building a SFF system, using ITX rather than mATX is just throwing money away.
     
  5. bawjaws

    bawjaws Well-Known Member

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    The real question for me is: what does this board do to justify the £50+ premium over the Z170i Pro Gaming? It'll have to be bloody amazing to justify a premium of 40% or more.

    First impressions of this board are that no M.2 is a stupid move - I'd never even heard of U.2 drives before today, much less seen them for sale. The Sata ports aren't in the best place, either - having one or more on the edge of the board would have been preferable. That aside, it certainly looks tidy. I just can't help but feel that this board is going to be a status symbol for epeen rather than objectively justifying its price tag compared to other Z170 ITX offerings.

    I have one other observation to make regarding reviews of products that aren't actually available for sale (I know this is a preview, not a review, but the point still stands) - it's all well and good reviewing the likes of the Z170i Pro Gaming and giving it a value score based on an expected RRP of £120, but when it's not actually available to buy anywhere for that price it makes a bit of a mockery of the score. I couldn't find the Z170i for less than £135 the other day (pre-order only, too) which is 12% more than the review price. I wouldn't be surprised to see stocks of the Impact being similarly scarce and subsequently costing a lot more than the £185 RRP mentioned in this article.
     
  6. Combatus

    Combatus Bit-tech Modding + hardware reviews Staff Super Moderator

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    Retail prices of in-stock items fluctuate too so as with anything we review - our conclusions are based on the price stated - not what it is 6 months down the line for example. Unfortunately we can't rewrite reviews if prices rise any more than when they fall - we rely on you being a well-informed enthusiast to make that call yourself when comparing it to the competition - I'm sure you'd prefer to read the reviews now to get some idea of what's coming than to wait - I'm sure prices won't be that much higher, if at all :) Also, 135 is 7% more than the original review price of 126, not 12% ;)
     
  7. bawjaws

    bawjaws Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, was going on the original price being £120 :D Apologies!

    Obviously prices will vary (both up and down) but a lot of new tech seems to retail at above RRP - i5 6600Ks were supposed to be £200 RRP but have been £225 from some stockists.

    I do take your point about not being able to revisit things post-review, and people are savvy enough to be able to revise "value" scores themselves. It's just frustrating that products often seem to creep above their RRP between review date and when retailers actually have them in stock. It's more of an issue for group tests, to be honest, where competing products are often differentiated on price.
     
  8. mi1ez

    mi1ez Active Member

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    My thoughts exactly. Great board apart from this obvious omission.
     
  9. Anfield

    Anfield Well-Known Member

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    Agreed, no mainboard sold for a three digit figure should lack M.2 in 2015.

    U.2 is what SFF-8639 has been renamed to, it is effectively the successor to the still born Sata Express and is pimped by Intel as the next big thing to connect 2.5" ssds, who sell the 2.5" versions of their DC P3500, 3600 and 3700 ssds with that connector.
     
  10. MightyBenihana

    MightyBenihana Do or do not, there is no try

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    In terms of design I feel this is a step backwards too. It just seems to lack the visual appeal of the previous impact - and that battery cable, well that just looks lazy.
     
  11. Bindibadgi

    Bindibadgi Tired. Forever tired.

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    "This is to be expected as Skylake boards are generally a bit more expensive than their predecessors due to the fact that some of the power circuitry has moved back onto the PCB but thankfully it's not a massive price increase - noticeably south of £200 is good, and it's only £50-60 more than the Z170i Pro Gaming."

    This is certainly part to do with it, but also the cost of manufacturing has increased during 2015 however the knock-on effect was delayed by all manufacturers until Skylake due to need to sell-out on Haswell-era hardware. If Broadwell had arrived there would have been v2 Z97s and the price rise would have been perceived as more gradual. China's recent RMB and commodities falling (copper etc) has helped a bit. The price increases are certainly not as bad as we're seeing for the Intel K series chips themselves!

    M.2 missing is hard to accept especially with the Samsung 950 Pro coming shortly, but it is difficult to add on ITX and using the daughterboards is not easy (electronically more so than physically).
    I think because people haven't seen the U.2 options coming it's hard to understand the relevance and the Intel 750 SSD is crazy$. There should be Marvell and Phison U.2 based drives seen at Computex are coming soon in Q12016 (delayed from Q4) and EVERY mini-ITX case has a 2.5" slot. I don't like the U.2 connector placement either, but where else to put it?? Maybe they needed a U.2 to M.2 adapter (if that's even possible - PCIE signalling when you add ANY sort of cable is a total bitch. I remember working on the 750 Pro U.2 and most of Intel/ASUS' work was learning to sustain signal/IO quality in the EMI heavy case environment)

    EDIT: The Z170I Pro Gaming has M.2 on the rear but this hasn't? Why not just make a switch between using M.2 and U.2.

    I'm buying a 950 Pro though and if I was Skylaking I'd be more tempted by the Z170I Pro Gaming in price : performance. I hope EK/Bits does an AIO block for it.

    This I totally agree with. That battery. And I don't like the new font :/ I wish ROG had gone white+RGB not the channel boards.
     
    Last edited: 21 Oct 2015
  12. MightyBenihana

    MightyBenihana Do or do not, there is no try

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    White would have been interesting, especially as red and black is getting a bit long in the tooth now. I know it would have created visual compatibility problems with the rest of the ROG brand but it's not as if they haven't gone with white before (970 Turbo Edition).
     
  13. edzieba

    edzieba Virtual Realist

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    Every other Z170 ITX board (with the exception of the ASRock Z170M-ITX/ac) has managed to put an m.2 slot on the rear of the board, and all except the MSI Z170i Gaming Pro AC have managed to accommodate a full 2280- drive (the MSI board only has mount points for 2242 and 2260, but you can put a 2280 on there if you bodge your own mount).
     
  14. Taua

    Taua Member

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    Honestly not the impact 8 I was hoping for, not that I was going to buy it anyhow as the impact 7 is serving me very well. It's certainly a good motherboard, but the price is not reasonable considering it's lacking m.2, which is where the high end speed in storage is at *right now*. Oh and a battery wire on a premium motherboard, no.

    Also, lacking USB ports, compared to the VII.
     
  15. bawjaws

    bawjaws Well-Known Member

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    The CMOS battery wire seems to be a feature of Z170 ITX boards - this, the Z170i PG and the MSI Z170I all have a natty black and red wire running from a header to the battery. Not the greatest look of all time, but to be honest it's a minor criticism compared to lack of M.2 support :)
     
  16. SchizoFrog

    SchizoFrog New Member

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    There are so many issues regarding this motherboard, other motherboards and Skylake in general that I really have no desire to buy in to this generation.

    However, as the 'price' in reviews was questioned above I thought I would throw my little bit in and my comment is in reference to this:

    While it is true that the pre-order price is £10-£15 more expensive, that is only in regards to the price at the time of writing the review. Even using the link within the review brings up the current price for the Impact VII which is £182.99 (Overclockers) and so they are currently due to be about the same price.

    I do feel that when comparing prices, the prices used should be what they are available for at that time as if you were going to buy one or the other today.
    If you were to compare release price against release price you could get a very skewed perspective, as I believe has happened here as in truth, the Impact VIII is no more expensive than the VII.
     
  17. theshadow2001

    theshadow2001 [DELETE] means [DELETE]

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    What are these issues?
     
  18. SchizoFrog

    SchizoFrog New Member

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    Sorry, I did mean to add that I would wait until the full review of the Impact VIII before going fully in to it as I'd like to evaluate the Impact properly first.

    However, as I didn't and that you have asked:

    The ever increasing cost of Skylake as a platform is a significant issue. Both CPUs and motherboards alike are far more expensive in general than their Z97 counterparts.

    It seems that the planning depts at a variety of motherboard manufacturers took too much time off as almost every board out there has been criticised when compared to (again) their Z97 counterparts.
    For example:
    Having that ugly M.2 PCB on view is a major concern for me in terms of aesthetics with regards to several motherboards, especially the MSI Z170l AC. Yes, it is enough for me not to buy that motherboard.
    Also that stupid and ugly loose red/black wire that features on both of the new ASUS ITX boards.

    There are other issues too... All in all... Skylake isn't even something I would look longingly at.
     
  19. bawjaws

    bawjaws Well-Known Member

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    So which is it? :D
     
  20. SchizoFrog

    SchizoFrog New Member

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    That is a very specific case and is an exception. The MSI Z170l AC board is significantly more expensive (£20-£25) than the Z97 ACK version for example.
     
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