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ASUS Z490 Motherboard Preview

ASUS TUF Gaming Z490-Plus WiFi

The ASUS TUF Gaming series has proven a huge hit in recent years, as it blends great build quality, affordability and compatibility into a single package. Plus, TUF products typically have the same aesthetic through the range, including partner brands with TUF Gaming Alliance products.

The motherboard looks fantastic, with a set of larger heatsinks than I was expecting from a TUF board. The diagonal pattern to the metalwork, vents, and even the PCB looks great too as it strikes through the motherboard.

The board features a 16 Phase design, which is a huge step up from the last generation where a board like this would have had an 8-10 phase. That hardware is topped with some pretty robust-looking heatsinks too and fed from an 8-pin PSU header and an additional 4-pin header.

Further down the board, you’ll find an exposed M.2 mount at the top of the PCIe lanes, and another further down with a small heatsink on it. There are two full-size PCIe lanes, with armour on the top one, and three 1x slots too, should you need them.

There are six SATA ports on the board too, with four facing up on the PCB.

Then a further two on the side.

Finally, we have the rear I/O, which doesn’t come with the shield pre-installed, but there’s one in the box, of course. There are a few USB ports, but not a huge amount, although it does include a Type-C. There’s both HDMI and DisplayPort, and networking comes from the Intel I219-V 1GbE port as well as the 802.11ax WiFi.

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Peter Donnell

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