You might be questioning why we included so much power testing in this review, and the answer is easy…
Many people question the value of these lower priced enthusiast boards. They think if you do not spend 500 bucks on a motherboard, it isn’t a REAL overclocking board! The most common reasoning given is that price conscious boards will use lower quality Capacitors and VRM to cut costs. This is a legitimate complaint, as poor power delivery can lead to lowered performance, and lower maximum overclocks.
The high power draw for the X79 chipset in general is very high, and as we have already seen it can be very stressful on components. It is easy to see from our testing today that there is a big jump from the low end of power draw to the high end. Using Digi-Power to their advantage, ASRock is able to provide a great platform for the user.
Think there is a coincidence that Asrock has Gold caps?
It’s almost like an in-your-face show of power for those who know what they are looking for in a high powered enthusiast class motherboard. There is no ‘skimping’ on the Caps and VRM on this motherboard; they were definitely designed specifically to provide clean, robust power.
There are also many extra touches that just make this one of the easiest motherboards I have ever worked with. The PCIe slots in particular can be very helpful with multiple GPU setups. Other manufacturers should follow ASRocks’ lead on this design. It really simplifies the installation and removal of watercooled multiple GPU setups.
The inclusion of the Game Blaster is just the icing on the cake. An excellent idea coupled with great design ends up as huge win for the user! ASRock certainly did not cut corners here, and premium bundle items such as this are just hard to beat.
The Extreme9 is also just an attractive board. The color scheme and the gold caps are aesthetically pleasing, and for users who are trying to coordinate with other components the color scheme is easy to work with.
The 8 x USB3.0 ports, with 4 more USB 2.0 ports, and 5 x PCIe 3.0 x16 thrown in, this motherboard quite literally has it all!
There are so many features to this motherboard bundle that it is hard to nail them all down in this conclusion, but we must end with the SATA ports.
The X79 chipset was originally designed with many more 6Gb/s native SATA ports. For reasons that Intel have not disclosed, a PCIe X4 dedicated storage link was left on the cutting room floor. The chipset was effectively ‘crippled’ as far as us storage enthusiasts are concerned. We went from 6 ports down to 2 ports for SATA3 6Gb/s!
Here again ASRock delivers. 12 SATA ports is just astounding, and the functionality that comes with that is very important. Being a storage centric site, we love nothing more than SATA ports, and lots of them! This board goes above and beyond the call with 8 x 6Gb/s ports, and four additional SATA 2 ports.
Enthusiasts are also worried about price. Price is a huge concern, and with the price of admission to the upper end X79 processors being very expensive, any help is good. Coming in at 344 USD this board is a great value that simply cannot be beat!
Once taken into context with the ridiculous pricing of other upper echelon boards, and the great performance from this board, it is easy to see that this motherboard is a winner!
Les-This board deserves an award~! And not a normal one, a BIG one~!
I couldn’t agree more Paul and thank you for your time, in depth examination of the ASRock Extreme 9 X79 motherboard and phenomenal report. I would only see it fitting to award ASRock with our coveted Editors Choice award.
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