Earlier today we brought you pictures and specs sheets of ASUS' top-tier ROG Maximus XII family of socket LGA1200 motherboards based on the Intel Z490 chipset. The rest of that slide-deck was leaked to the web by VideoCardz, revealing some fascinating specs common across the series. Apparently, a 6 PCB layers is the bare minimum for ASUS' lineup, which probably contributes to the elevated prices across the board. Some of the cheaper 300-series chipset motherboards make do with just 4 PCB layers.
The CPU VRM solutions are a definitely step up from the previous generations, designed to cope with rising electrical requirements of the 14 nm 10th gen Core processors. For the ATX and M-ATX models, 12+2 phase solutions appear to be the bare minimum for the ROG Strix Z490 series, and 9-phase for the cheapest Prime Z490 series. The ROG Strix Z490-E Gaming, which leads the ROG Strix Z490 series, tops the chart with a 16-phase solution that's probably similar to the one on the Maximus XII Hero. There's also a big innovation with memory optimization, series-wide. With its Z490 motherboard series, ASUS is transitioning from T-topology to daisy-chain, across the board. This is combined with the company's Optimem III automated memory optimization feature on select models, which enables you to populate all four slots on your motherboard with dual-rank DIMMs, and yet achieve frequencies as high as DDR4-3600, with timings as tight as CL16.