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Third Party Review

Author: Catherine Dempsey

The Maximus XIII Hero is the entry level unit in the Maximus XIII line of motherboards developed by ROG. It comes ready out of the box to fit into either your new build, or old favorite gaming rig. While the Intel® Socket LGA 1200 for 11th Gen Intel® Core™ processor that the Hero uses has been surpassed by the newly released 12th Gen Intel® Cores™, it is still more than capable of putting out the high performance expected by serious gamers and industry professionals. This excellent all-around balanced motherboard also features 14+2 teamed power stages, and is rated for 90 Amps. This motherboard features an appropriately robust cooling system to compliment it’s high powered design. Heatsinks dedicated for the VRM, M.2 drives, and chipset are included, along with an L-shaped heatpipe and high conductivity thermal pad. Multiple headers are present and ready to cool your rig by fans, water-cooling, or a combination of the two. WiFi 6E AX210 and dual Intel® 2.5 Gb Ethernet grant this system a fast and reliable network connection, up to the task of intense online gaming and streaming. PCIe® 4.0 is supported, which doubles the data transfer rate and individual bandwidth of older but commonly used PCIe® 3.0. Two Thunderbolt™ USB Type-C® ports are present, so you can add more monitors to your rig.

The XIII Hero comes with the kind of software perks that users have come to expect from ROG. ASUS’s AI Suite, including AI Overclocking, AI Cooling, AI Networking, and Two-Way AI Noise Cancelation combine to enhance the user experience and make otherwise complex fine tuning as easy as the click of a button. It also comes with ROG UEFI (BIOS), which make it even simpler to configure your rig to your own personal preferences, making it especially appealing for DIY newcomers who can learn the ropes without getting overwhelmed. MemTest86 comes pre-installed, which allows users to pinpoint memory issues without having to dig deep in the OS, and records a report for future reference. Another feature that makes this board a great choice for the new DIYer is that it comes with a complimentary year long subscription to AIDA64 Extreme. This tool gives the user detailed information about software and hardware used by the system, as well as monitoring and diagnostic features. Vital system sensors can be tracked in real time using this tool, so users can get a fast and easy view of what exactly is going on under the hood, even while the computer is running. Aura Sync (to easily customize your rig’s aesthetics), Ramcache III (to cache storage devices and boost load times), and Sonic Studio III (virtual surround sound for headsets) all come with the Hero XIII. This motherboard comes Windows 11 ready, and as icing on the cake even includes a free month long subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud, so users can test drive Adobe’s industry standard applications, such as Photoshop and Premier Pro. This is a great all purpose motherboard, whether you’re a pro-gamer, a learning DIYer, or a professional that needs a strong, fast, and reliable rig.