05 August, 2017   Rakesh Sharma    Reviews . X299 AORUS Gaming 7

The Intel’s X299 platform had little effect on the high end PC market. Consumers and we all were excited about the new platform, but after the VRM heating issue of X299 motherboards and announcement of the new AMD’s show-stopping 16-core Threadripper CPUs now consumers have a lot to choose from.

Anyway today we are reviewing another X299 motherboard, this time is a Gigabyte product the AORUS X299 Gaming 7 motherboard with RGB Fusion, Digital LED, Triple M.2 with Thermal Guard, ESS SABRE 9018 DAC, Killer DoubleShot™ Pro, Front & rear USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C and more.

Now let’s see what this AORUS board have for us.

Features

  • Supports Intel® Core™ X-series Processor Family
  • Quad Channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 8 DIMMs, DDR4400+(OC)
  • Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready
  • Intel® VROC ready
  • ASMedia 3142 USB 3.1 Gen 2 with USB Type-C™ and Type-A
  • Front USB 3.1 Gen 2 Header
  • 3-Way Graphics Support with Dual Armor and Ultra Durable™ Design
  • Server-Class Digital Power Design
  • 121dB SNR AMP-UP Audio with ALC1220 & High-End ESS SABRE 9018 DAC with WIMA audio capacitor
  • Sound BlasterX 720°, the top-of-the-line audio engine solution for 4K gaming and entertainment
  • Killer DoubleShot™ Pro for the best gaming networking experience possible
  • Killer 2x2 802.11ac Wireless – AC 1535
  • Intel® GbE LAN Gaming Network
  • RGB FUSION with Multi-Zone Digital LED Light Show design, support digital LED & RGB LED strips
  • Swappable Overlay for Accent LED
  • Smart Fan 5 features Multiple Temperature Sensors and Hybrid Fan Headers with FAN STOP
  • Triple Ultra-Fast M.2 with PCIe Gen3 x4 interface and Thermal Guard
  • NVMe PCIe Gen3 x4 U.2 support by optional adaptor
  • USB DAC-UP 2 with Adjustable Voltage
  • Precise Digital USB Fuse Design for Stronger Protection
  • Anti-Sulfur Resistor Design
  • Ultra Durable™ 25KV ESD and 15KV Surge LAN Protection
  • Lightning-Fast Intel® Thunderbolt™ 3 AIC Support
  • GIGABYTE UEFI DualBIOS™ with Q-Flash Plus USB port
  • APP Center Including EasyTune™ and Cloud Station™ Utilities
  • Specifications

    Package

    Motherboard comes in a mate gray/orange colour finishing box with a big AORUS logo with motherboard model no. in front At the rear of the box, we find that Gigabyte goes into great detail on the specifications of the motherboard

    Inside the box

    Looks

    Board is a solid build in the mate black colour theme.

    Layout

    Detailed layout of board.

    1. New Intel LGA 2066 Socket Supports New Intel Core X-series Processor Family

    2. 8 x DDR4 memory slots, support up to 128GB. Quad channel memory architecture

    Overclock DDR4 memory frequencies up to 4400MHz.

    3. ATX Power connector (24-pin EATXPWR)

    4. 2 x ATX CPU Power Connector (8-pin + 8 Pin ATX12V).

    5. Back I/O ports : PS/2 keyboard/mouse port, USB Type-C™ port, with USB 3.1 Gen 2 support, 4 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports (red), 4 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, 2 x RJ-45 ports, 2 x MMCX antenna connectors (2T2R), optical S/PDIF Out connector, 5 x audio jacks (Center/Subwoofer Speaker Out, Rear Speaker Out, Line In, Line Out, Mic In))

    6. Fan Connectors : 1 x CPU fan header, 1 x water cooling CPU fan header, 4 x system fan headers, 1 x system fan/water cooling pump header, 1 x 3 Amp fan/water cooling pump header

    7. Debug Code display.

    8. 9.Front 2 X USB 3.1 Gen1 connectors and USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C port.

    10.8 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors.

    11. Front Panel Connector

    12. 2 x USB 2.0 Connectors

    13. Power button, reset button, ECO button and OC button

    14. Trusted Platform Module (TPM) header (2x6 pin, for the GC-TPM2.0_S module only)

    15. 2 x RGB (RGBW) LED strip extension cable headers

    16. Front panel audio connector

    17. Expansion Slots : 2 x PCI Express x16 slots, running at x16 (PCIEX16_1, PCIEX16_2), 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x8 (PCIEX8), 2 x PCI Express x16 slots, running at x4 (PCIEX4_1, PCIEX4_2)

    18. 19. M2_1 slot supports 2242/ 2260 /2280 storage devices, M2_2 slot supports 2242/ 2260 /2280/ 22110 storage devices. Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready

    Removing Heat-sinks

    Gigabyte used aluminum heatsink in this board with proper thermal pad installed. The chipset heatsink have backlit AORUS logo.

    I/O cover is having a separate RGB LED PCB mounted..

    AORUS X299 Gaming 7 Motherboard with bigger VRM heatsink connected via heatpipe increases surface area for better heat dissipation and a thick back plate with proper thermal pad, Two 8-pin power connector with a bank of bypass capacitors on 12v rail. Interesting VRM solution.

    Component Layout

    Let’s now see what all components GIGABYTE have planned for this board.

    1. 2. 8-phase digital power controlled via International Rectifier IR35201 PWM Controller IC and IR3556M (Integrated PowIRstage) is a synchronous buck gate driver co-packed with a control MOSFET and a synchronous MOSFET with integrated Schottky diode with output current capability of 60A DC each.

    3. Two 2-Phase digital memory power supply section controlled via International Rectifier IR35204 PWM Controller IC and IR3553M MOSFET

    4. These two are VCCSA and VCCIO VRM sections controlled via International Rectifier IR35204 PWM Controller IC and IR3553M MOSFET which only run with a KabyLakeX CPUs. SkylakeX cpu don’t use these VRMs.

    5. Realtek RTS5411 USB3.1 Gen1 Hub chip.

    6. 11. ASMedia ASM3142 a USB3.1 Gen2 Controller.

    7. Realtek RTS5423 a USB3.1 Gen2 Controller

    8. 9. Intel and Killer GLan controllers

    10. NXP Semiconductors CBTL08GP053 a USB Type-C High Performance Crossbar Switch ICs used for Type-C connector interface

    12. 18. iTE 8295FN Microcontrollers used for RGB Fusion with Digital LEDs controlling .

    14. Intel X299 Chipset

    15. Two MX 25L12873F chip for dual UEFI BIOS.

    16. 17. AORUS AMP-UP Audio is powered by a Realtek ALC 1220 120dB SNR HD Audio - The ALC1220 is a high-performance multi-channel High Definition Audio Codec with up to 120dB SNR for crystal clear audio along with premium quality Nichicon fine Gold audio capacitors.

    Rear Audio port have its own ESS SABRA HiFi DAV with WIMA audiophile grade capacitors and a Dual High Performance, High Fidelity Audio Operational Amplifier LME49720 from Texas Instruments

    RightMark Audio Analyzer (RMAA) suite is used for testing AORUS AMP-UP Audio against ASUS Xonar U7 External Sound card. You can see clearly the difference between Noise level, dynamic rang and Total harmonic distortion percentage produced by AORUS AMP-UP Audio

    RMAA ASUS Xonar U7

    RMAA AORUS AMP-UP Audio

    19. ITE 8951E Chip.

    20.ITE 8686E is the SuperIO chip.

    Testing

    CPUIntel Core i7 7820X CPU
    Board AORUS X299 GAMING 7
    RAM4 X 4GB Corsair DDR4
    SSDKingston SV300 120GB
    CoolerCM MasterLiquid 280 Pro
    GFX ASUS STRIX GTX 950
    PSUCooler Master V1200
    DisplayAcer S220HQL
    OS Windows 10

    BIOS

    Bundled Software

    Benchmarks

    Power Consumption

    Wattage reading as per displayed by APC Pro 1000VA (Model no. BR1000G-IN) UPS. Running Cinebench R15

    Pros

    • Very good VRM Cooling design
    • Two 8-pin CPU power
    • Good Audio
    • WIFI onboard
    • Good RGB lighting options

    Cons

    • Slight high power Consumption

    Conclusion

    GIGIABYTE AORUS X299 Gaming 7 motherboard has performed well in compression with other X299 boards we have tested yet. AORUS X299 motherboard have incorporated one of the best VRM cooling solution resulting in a higher/stable CPU performance and overclocking.

    AORUS X299 Gaming 7 motherboard with its build quality and features make it one of the best X299 motherboard out there. If you are really planning for a X299 based higher end desktop build than the AORUS X299 Gaming 7 motherboard is best for you and worthy of our PC TeK Reviews EXCELLENCE Award.

    Manufacturers Info

    Site Link

    Thanks.

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