ASUS’ ROG Strix ITX boards for Ryzen are coming; unique riser card with SupremeFX and M.2 on one PCB!
ASUS’ Impact boards are always something I look out for, especially after the amazing ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Impact which featured a riser PCB to pack 8-phase power delivery in an ITX motherboard. While I have yet to see a more recent ROG Maximus Impact motherboard, I can definitely get my rocks off to the latest ROG Strix X370-I Gaming and ROG Strix B350-I Gaming boards.
To power the eight Zen-based cores found on the Ryzen 7 CPUs, the power delivery system must be sufficiently beefy, especially when you take overclocking into account. Even with space being such a premium on ITX motherboards, ASUS packed a six phase VRM design for smooth power to the CPU on both the ROG Strix X370-I Gaming and B350-I Gaming. The shorter traces used in the dual-DIMM configuration allows the boards to maintain stability at higher RAM speeds, promising DDR4-3600 on these ITX boards.
A riser board above the motherboard chipset is where ASUS decided to pack SupremeFX audio in the limited space available. Isolating the audio circuitry from the rest of the motherboard helps reduce interference and improve audio fidelity. To save even more space, the primary M.2 slot which is fed by a PCIe 3.0 x4 link directly from the CPU also shares the same PCB, and is cooled by a heatsink to prevent the blazing fast NVMe PCIe x4 SSDs from well, going up in a blaze and throttling. Don’t worry, the SupremeFX audio card doesn’t share the bandwidth with the M.2 slot, so you get full speed on your SSD. A second M.2 slot is on the rear of the motherboard, also supporting PCIe 2.0 x4 SSDs, but that slot gets its bandwidth from the chipset.
RGBae is one of the most important features on a motherboard right now, and ASUS would be a fool not to include their ASUS AURA Sync technology on the ROG Strix X360-I Gaming and ROG Strix B350-I Gaming boards. The illumination runs along the right edge of the motherboard, for a glowing edge effect, while more LEDs under the M.2 heatsink lights up the ROG logo on it. If that’s not enough, RGB headers support LED strips to extend the colors to the rest of your case.
There is also on-board dual band 802.11ac WiFi, an Intel Gigabit LAN port and a plethora of USB ports. The boards do lack display outputs but considering that you are getting an ROG Strix motherboard, you will most probably be using a discrete GPU anyway, making the ports useless.
The ROG Strix X370-I Gaming and ROG Strix B350-I Gaming are set to arrive late-October in the US, with pricing to be released soon. Malaysian availability is still unknown but we will be sure to update when we hear wind of it!
Pokdepinion: I don’t expect these to be cheap, but these boards look very solid for gamers who prefer a small cili padi rig over humongous beasts.