Intel “Core-X” Core i7-7900X, Core i7-7820X, Core i7-7800X, Core i7-7740X, Core i5-7640X HEDT CPU Review on ASUS PRIME X299 Deluxe Motherboard

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Jul 16, 2017


ASUS Prime X299 Deluxe Motherboard

26th June 2017
Type Motherboard
Price $499.99 US

ASUS PRIME X299 Deluxe Motherboard- Close Up

The ASUS PRIME X299 Deluxe motherboard is styled in a very beautiful white, silver and black color combination. It’s a very expensive motherboard and so far, it doesn’t comprise on the package and its looks so we are hopeful it delivers a great impression in terms of performance too. The board comes in the standard ATX form factor and there are a lots of features to talk about so let’s get started.

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The board uses the LGA 2066 socket to support Intel Core-X series processors. The socket is compatible with both Intel Skylake-X and Kaby Lake-X processors. You can note that while the total pin count has increased, the socket dimensions remain largely similar to the previous LGA 2011 socket. The socket has a protective cover out of box which can easily be removed when installing the processor.

The motherboard packs a 8 Phase Digital Power design to power the socket. The motherboard is outfitted with ASUS’s 5-Way Optimization system and ASUS PRO Clock II technology which help deliver better performance in standard and overclocked configurations. Features like overvoltage protection, enhanced DRAM over current protection and ESD guards are implemented across the board. The motherboard features the ASUS Digi+ VRM EPU “ASP 1257 – NSG7 – N410P” controller that delivers real-time control over voltage droop, switching frequency and power efficiency setting and allowing fine-tune of CPU voltage regulation.

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The CPU is supplied power through a 8+4 Pin power connector configuration. This will feed the CPU with up to 200 Watts of power. Most Intel CPU’s will be shipping with TDP’s of 140W but that changes when users overclock, that changes power limit based on applied voltages and clock speeds.

The VRMs are covered by a single, dense aluminum heatsink . The heatsink is colored silver and is very beefy but there are reports that some manufacturers have not tested the heatsinks during the qualification process, resulting in higher VRM temperatures. We will test this in the power and thermal tests, if the VRM is able to provide stable operation under load scenarios.

The motherboard has a total of eight DDR4 DIMM slots which can support up to 128 GB (Quad Channel) and 64 GB (Dual Channel) Non-ECC, un-buffered memory. These slots are rated to support XMP profiles up to 4133 MHz. Each slot is labeled, making it easier to install DIMMs in the proper orientation. Unlike other motherboard manufacturers, ASUS is sticking with the normal DIMM design and not implementing steel shielding or RGB LEDs which may seem like a down side.

Expansion slots include four PCI-Express 3.0 x16, two PCI-Express 3.0 x1 and dual M.2 slots. The board can support 4-Way multi-GPU (CrossfireX / SLI). The M.2 slots are rated to support NVMe PCI-e Gen3 x4 and Intel Optane series memory. Only a CPU that offers 44 lanes can deliver full x16 operation on two SLI or Crossfire configured discrete GPUs.

ASUS has featured their SafeSlot technology on the expansion slots. There are three expansion slots that make use of this technology to offer 1.6 times stronger retention force and 1.8x stronger shearing test. Such slots are ideal for modern generation of graphics cards such as the MSI GTX 1080 Ti Lightning X which takes up three slots and puts a lot of weight on the PCIe slot.

The supported types for the M.2 socket are 22110, 2280, 2260 and 2242. M.2 slots offer up to 32 GB/s link speed compared to just 6 GB/s on SATA 3 bus. Do note that the top most M.2 port can be configured in SATA and PCIE 3.0 x4 mode (depending on the available lanes) while the bottom M.2 port runs at PCIE 3.0 x4 mode, natively.

The X299 PCH is housed beneath a large heatsink with ASUS logo and label embedded on it. There are some key features of this heatsink as it includes ASUS AURA support, features a M.2 heatsink and a OLED Dash display which looks impressive.

Storage options include seven SATA III ports rated to operate at 6 GB/s. These can support 7 different storage devices at a single time. There is also a single U.2 port. The motherboard supports RAID 0, 1, 5, 10 configurations but to enable that, you have to buy a separate RAID key from Intel and supported only on Core i9 series processors that can address up to 20 bootable drives.

The motherboard has multiple temperature sources and dedicated ICs for smart protection that protect each fan header from over-temperature and over-current. A total of seven 4-pin PWM/DC fan headers are located on the board (3 more with the fan expansion card) while dedicated header for AIO pump and Water pump are located on the board too.

Inside the motherboard, ASUS has equipped a USB 3.1 Gen 2 front panel connector which offers support for next-generation PC cases and devices.

The ASUS Prime X299 Deluxe utilizes a unique audio codec designed in close collaboration with Realtek — the Realtek S1220A. It also features an unprecedented 120dB signal-to-noise ratio for the stereo line-out and a 113dB SNR for the line-in, providing pristine audio quality. Additionally, a new impedance-sensing circuit automatically adjusts gain to ensure the optimal volume range for your headphones. The audio PCB features power pre-regulator, audio-shielding, integrated amp and premium Japanese made audio capacitors.

On the bottom of the motherboard, we can spot the Power On/Off, Reset, Mem Ok, EZ-XMP switches along with the Debug LED and an addressable RGB LED strip header. You can also tell that the motherboard has dual USB 3.0 front panel headers, a single USB 2.0 front panel header and a header for the ThunderboltEX 3 expansion card that goes on one of the expansion slots.

The PRIME cover on the I/O panel looks superb. There’s no cooling mechanism involved with the cover as it’s just for visuals and mostly hollow from the inside. But it does add to the overall looks of the product and that’s it’s main purpose over here. There’s also ASUS AURA integration within this part which adds to the looks of this high-end product.

The I/O on the motherboard include 2 LAN (RJ45) ports, 3 USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports, 1 USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C port, 4 USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, 4 USB 2.0 ports (one port can be switched to USB BIOS Flashback), 1 Optical S/PDIF out, 5 Audio jacks, a USB BIOS Flashback button and a ASUS-Wi-Fi GO! Module that supports the Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac+ WiGig 802.11ad and Bluetooth v4.1 compatible antennas.

ASUS PRIME X299 Deluxe Motherboard Picture Gallery:

Source: ASUS Prime X299 Deluxe Official Page

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