CPU & Motherboards

ROG MAXIMUS XII FORMULA LGA1200 Motherboard Review

ROG MAXIMUS XII FORMULA (Z490) LGA1200 Motherboard

From my unboxing video, I actually felt a little shorted by this board due to the package but after testing it for performance and experience our use-case scenario for this board, I’d have to say it’s actually a very solid motherboard and is quite hard to find fault in especially after you’ve paid $550 for it. The official SRP is of course subject to market variance but our pricing here in the Philippines is Php27,600 ($550 +/-)  and for that price ASUS did not increase SRP cost much for this board despite the large VRM upgrade over the Maximus XI. That VRM along with most of the parts for this board makes this actually share the performance position with Maximus XII Extreme, this is elevated to the point of this board actually providing significantly more value due to its VRM water channel block which allows users to properly cool their CPU as well as the VRM. With the 10th-gen’s improve cooling, watercooling should be fun on this generation especially for those chasing 5Ghz.

Speaking of 5Ghz, let’s touch on overclocking here as well as we discuss performance. The ASUS ROG Maximus XII Formula shares the same power design as the Maximus XII Extreme and much of the ROG lineup, with its 16-phase power delivery, making it just as sturdy a platform as its bigger brother and more OC-oriented brother the APEX. It’s actually the more traditional compromise of the two, integrating the overclocking genes of both while embracing watercooling as well. The board performs well in our tests even with multi-core enhance disabled and users are welcome to disable power limits to get full performance if they have a decent cooler.

As a more traditional board, ASUS also did not have to move PCIe slot allocations and the Formula retains multiple x16 slots for multi-GPU as awell as x1 slots for other things. The M.2 layout is well executed and is one of the most enduring designs we’ve seen and most practical as well.


In terms of build quality, there’s just no beating a classic and this motherboard, even with its evolution, has maintain a signature look all its own throughout the years. Now wearing glass tops on is shroud, ASUS has improved its process to make glass on motherboards look cool and the transition from plastic to metal on this shroud is just seamless. A large backplate helps in dissipation as well as improving structural rigidity. I have to note though that the chose to go with the straight lines on the shroud is not my favorite change on this board, the abstract tech lines on the Maximus XI Formula was excellent and that was simply more stunning from a design perspective. The new glass lines also has a lighter RGB on them and this board actually doesn’t shout RGB much and keeps it on the low. Whether you like RGB or not, this board has a softer touch of it and for me, that’s something I can appreciate.

ROG MAXIMUS XII FORMULA (Z490) LGA1200 Motherboard

This is board is built extremely well as ASUS already knows the ins and outs of the design. You can call it a redo all you like but price didn’t really move much and I rescind my initial reception of this board. I think I’ve done 3 of this Formula reviews already and the message was that this board is a classic and you don’t need to fix what’s not broke. That rings true still for the ASUS ROG MAXIMUS XII FORMULA but ASUS did install new niceties on this board like the teaming 16-phase power as well as a 10G LAN. ASUS has officially also come out stating their hardware is PCI-e gen4 ready and while its not on the packaging, these boards look to be ready to take on Rocket Lake as well.

As it is, the ROG MAXIMUS XII FORMULA is the same beautiful board we’ve seen for many years and it has not changed much except for the power design to support more powerful CPUs. That said, the aesthetic will have its audience and its got its audience but like it or hate it, there’s no denying this board is clean and ASUS has done a good job reinforcing the looks with a capable platform that can deliver much of what you want from a modern system.

ASUS backs the ROG MAXIMUS XII FORMULA with a 3-year warranty. We give it our B2G Recommended Seal and B2G Gold Award!

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BossMac Suba

Owner and lead reviewer for Back2Gaming. More than 10-year of corporate IT experience as well as consumer IT journalism. His extensive skill set and experience in communicating complicated technical details into easily understandable bits. He's been with you since dial-up and the ISA slot. His favorite animal is the scapegoat.


  1. Hmm, why is it though performing worse in certain benchmarks? May this also be due to bios version and could still be improved?

  2. This is explained in the Behavior page: https://www.back2gaming.com/reviews/b2g-hardware/hw-components/cpu-mobo/rog-maximus-xii-formula-lga1200-motherboard-review/7/#split_content

    Basically out-of-box settings for ROG uses default Intel behavior with MCE disable so only runs at 120W TDP vs AORUS running at 250W TDP or basically near 5Ghz vs 4.4Ghz or so ROG/Stock

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