ASRock Z490 Taichi: Physical Review – Steve’s Hardware

Overall we were quite impressed with the hardware on this motherboard. We like the VRM very much, but what really impressed us is the feature count. For starters, ASRock’s approach to PCI-E 4.0 is more unique than we have seen, with a separate fourth M.2 slot just to be used with next generation CPUs. We also have USB 3.2 2×2 (20Gb/s), 2.5Gbit LAN, and a lot of USB internal and rear IO connectors. The aesthetics of the motherboard are also quite pleasing. Overall, the Z490 Taichi from ASRock once again fulfils the legacy of the product line and would make its predecessors proud.

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SuperMicro SuperO C9Z490-PGW / PG: Physical Review – Steve’s Hardware

Don’t let its 6+2 phase VRM fool you, the C9Z490-PGW is loaded with high quality parts that are capable of taking your CPU to a very comfortable overclock without much hassle. The level of quality of the motherboard ensures excellent performance as well. The PEX8747 and the 10Gbit NIC are very nice additions, and pretty much make this a mixture between a high-end gaming/enthusiast motherboard and a workstation product.

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We kick off motherboard specifications starting with the Intel LGA1200 socket and behind it the Z490 chipset. This platform is compatible with an entire range of processors from 10th Gen Core i3 to Core i9 and even Pentium Gold and Celeron. Memory support includes speeds up to DDR4400 with overclocking and 2933MHz in JEDEC timing mode. Four slots support 32GB DIMMS offering a peak capacity of 128GB.

Audio is next in line with the ALC1220VB Codec supporting 8 channels and DTS:X Ultra. Networking is two part, one being 2.5Gbe powered by the Intel i225 with a second Intel Gbe controller for backup. Wi-Fi 6 is included on this platform with the AX201 from Intel offering Wi-Fi 6 and BT5.1 connectivity.

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GIGABYTE Z490 AORUS MASTER: PCB Review – Steve’s Hardware

The motherboard has a very neutral aesthetic appeal, with a nice black and gunmetal color theme. Most of the motherboard’s shields are actually made of actual metal instead of the typical plastic we see most of the time. There are eight fan headers located on the motherboard, including two pump headers that probably operate at full speed by default, and a CPU_OPT header. There are also two external temperature sensors circled in green, and there are included temperature probes that you can stick in a GPU or near an exhaust or intake vent in the case.

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We kick off motherboard specifications starting with the Intel LGA1200 socket. This platform is compatible with an entire range of processors from 10th Gen Core i3 to Core i9. This board’s power design is thoroughly overkill, even for the enthusiast overclocker, offering a doubled seven-phase design for the Vcore with Intersil ISL99390 stages at 90A each. SOC is powered by a single Vishay SIC651 50A stage and Intersil ISL69269 PWM controller behind it all.

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MPG Z490 Carbon EK X is a joint product of MSI and EKWB. The MSI MPG Z490 Carbon WiFi could also be used as an example of the motherboard. At first glance, the differences are minimal, but a ready-made kit for building with a custom liquid cooling system is already another level. It will be interesting to check the overclocking capabilities and VRM behavior under the waterblock under serious loads.

Read more @ i2Hard (Russian)


Looking back at MSI’s premium model history, the Godlike first made an appearance in 2016 back on Intel’s X99 chipset – designed for Intel’s Broadwell-E HEDT processors, the MSI X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon used carbon fiber styled aesthetics. The MSI X99A Godlike Gaming followed an more punchy aesthetic with lots of red heatsinks, although both models featured a range of high-end controllers for the time.

The Godlike then became a mainstay in MSI’s motherboard ranges from 2017. The MSI Z370 Godlike Gaming was built for Intel’s Coffee Lake processors, and this variant featured a black and silver design with integrated RGBs. Ever since, the MSI Godlike has been the brand’s flagship, making its presence known as a high-end model with the latest and greatest controller sets and being well-positioned to take advantage of both Intel and AMD’s latest chipset designs.

Read more @ AnandTech

EVGA Z490 Dark

Honestly the Z390 Dark was a great motherboard to begin with so i kind of understand why EVGA wouldn’t change many things about the Z490 Dark, especially its design and heatsink cooling system. Still even having a single PCIe 4.0 slot would be nice, not so much because it would propel GPU performance to new heights (it wouldn’t) but rather for marketing purposes. Again, I understand that by using two RAM slots EVGA can ensure higher stability levels but again some people may see this as something negative since they can’t expand the amount of memory later on.

Read more @ NikKTech


ProArt is a niche lineup designed for creative professionals who need the very best in platform connectivity. This lineup aligns ASUS to offer a competing product against the GIGABYTE Designare lineup. It does that by providing a Z490 chipset design backed with integrated Thunderbolt 3, 2.5Gbe LAN, and additional 10GBe by way of an AIC.

A large part of the board’s design is quite similar to the Z490 Prime we most recently reviewed, sharing similar components and board design, including power stages, LAN controllers, and USB 3.2 design. We will run over the full specs of this board below.

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Board specifications start with the Intel LGA1200 socket, compatible with all 10th Generation processors, including Core i3, i5, i7, and i9. Those on a budget can also install Pentium Gold or Celeron processors as well. Power design is supported by a 12+2 design for CPU and memory, ONSemi supplying the power stages with each running at 45A, giving the CPU a total of 540A. Memory is supported with four DDR4 slots, speeds up to 4800MHz via overclocking.

Expansion is handled by 2x PCIe 3.0 x16 slots from the CPU and another three x1 slots, and an x16 electrically limited to x4 from the chipset. 6x SATA III ports give way to the Ultra m.2 storage configuration that includes two slots, one of which is heatsinked.

Read more @ TweakTown