ASUS has some tough shoes to fill. Fortunately, they're familiar shoes; their own, in fact. A long string of high performance motherboards that got adopted simultaneously by the enthusiast and gaming sets, led ASUS to create a specialty brand segment they call "Republic of Gamers". The ROG Creed goes like this: "The Republic of Gamers is committed to delivering the most innovative and best performing PC solutions to enhance the gaming experience of power users." That's a tall order, especially in the competitive PC component market where today's news is already old news. One of the newest members of this Republic is the Maximus II GENE, part of a new group of small form factor components that give nothing away in performance to their larger brethren. Benchmark Reviews is pleased to review this latest offering, based on the Intel P45 and ICH10R, and we put it through the wringer against a well known full ATX-size reference board. The new ASUS Maximus II Gene motherboard goes by the tagline: Mini Size, Max Mobility. You have to take these marketing lines with a grain of salt, because taken at face value, you might expect a mini-ITX board. Instead we have a micro-ATX (uATX) board that squeezes almost every last feature from its feature-rich ROG brother into the slightly smaller format. A more accurate description might be: Micro Size, Max Performance. Let's dive in and take a look at what ASUS calls: A new band of ROG heroes, the GENE squad.
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