ASUS has launched a new lineup of Z790 motherboards, specifically crafted with cutting-edge features to cater to Intel’s upcoming Raptor Lake Refresh series.
Although ASUS makes frequent references to this new series in its official announcements, the company avoids confirming the exact name or release date of the processors, instead suggesting that they are approaching in the near future.
Similar to MSI and Gigabyte, ASUS has prepared a fresh lineup of Z790 motherboards for the upcoming CPU series. These motherboards haven’t undergone drastic changes, but instead present a minor update that could attract gamers to invest in the LGA-1700 platform, even though its expected to be phased out next year. The revised ASUS Z790 series includes models like the ROG Maximus Z790 Dark Hero, ROG Strix Z790-A Gaming WiFi II, and TUF Gaming Z790-Pro WiFi.
One of the significant improvements is the addition of the WiFi 7 standard to these motherboards (excluding the TUF model). ASUS emphasizes their compatibility with the company’s latest WiFi 7 routers from the 2023 lineup. In an effort to enhance wireless networking, ASUS has introduced an innovative antenna design called the WiFi Q-Antenna, which incorporates a new design, PCB layout, and internal pin connections.
The updated Z790 motherboards also provide compatibility for PCIe Gen5 SSDs, featuring a dedicated M.2 slot tailored for this storage type. It’s important to mention that Intel’s platform is restricted to 16 lanes in this standard, resulting in a reduction of GPU lanes to 8 when utilizing this storage. These constraints are not present in AMD’s latest 600-series motherboards. Furthermore, the new ROG STRIX-A model impressively offers a total of five M.2 slots in different standards.
Another significant inclusion is the compatibility with updated front panel connectivity, incorporating a Type-C connector. This not only provides access to the latest USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 speeds (reaching up to 20 Gbps), but also introduces support for Power Delivery 3.0, which can now be conveniently monitored directly through the system.
The availability of all three motherboards is imminent. While Intel plans to release its 14th Gen Raptor Lake Refresh desktop K-series in early October, ASUS isn’t constrained by any embargo and can proceed with launching these boards without delay.