12 Oct, 2016   Rakesh Sharma    Reviews .  GIGABYTE GA X99-PHOENIX SLI Motherboard Review

Today we are reviewing Gigabyte G1 X99-PHOENIX SLI motherboard, another nice motherboard from GIGABYTE satisfying every segment of enthusiasts customer line with better targeting their end users needs. Aimed at the Broadwell-E family, GIGABYTE introduced the G1 X99-PHOENIX SLI motherboards including a range of features from updated I/O connectivity to the latest storage port.

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

Features

  • Supports Intel® Core™ i7 6950X Processor Extreme Edition
  • Support Intel® Turbo Boost Max Technology 3.0
  • Quad Channel, Registered / Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 8 DIMMs
  • Intel® USB 3.1 with USB Type-C™ Support
  • Best 3-Way / 2-Way SLI™ & CrossFire™ Support Spacing
  • NVMe PCIe Gen3 x4 22110 M.2 Interface & U.2 Interface for Intel® SSD 750
  • SATA Express Connector for Up to 10Gb/s Data Transfer
  • Dual Intel® GbE LAN with cFosSpeed Internet Accelerator Software
  • 115dB SNR HD Audio with Built-in Rear Audio Amplifier
  • Ambient Surround LED with RGB Multi-Color Choices
  • Ultra Durable Metal Shielding over PCIe and DDR Slots
  • Ultra Durable Anti-Sulfur Resistors for Longer Lifespan
  • Ultra Durable Anti-Rust Rear I/O Connectors
  • Dual Hybrid Fan Headers with Precise PWM / Voltage Control for Water Pump & Fan
  • GIGABYTE UEFI DualBIOS™ with Q-Flash Plus USB ports
  • APP Center Including EasyTune™ and Cloud Station™ Utilities
  • Intel® 802.11ac Dual Band Wireless Connection & Bluetooth® 4.2

Specifications

Package

Looking at the front of the box, we see Gigabyte logo with motherboard model no. 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 and Orange-White colour theme.

Layout

Detailed layout of board.

1. Intel LGA 2011-3 Supports Intel® Core™ i7 6950X Processor Extreme Edition

5x (15μ) Gold Plated CPU Socket Design. GIGABYTE motherboards come equipped with a 15 micron thick gold plated CPU socket, which means that enthusiasts can enjoy absolute reliability and longevity for the CPU socket overtime, without having any concerns about corroded pins or bad contacts.

2. 8 x DIMM slots supporting maximum 128GB of DDR4 3600(OC) / 3400(OC) / 3333(O.C.) / 3200(O.C.) / 3000(O.C.) / 2800(O.C.) / 2666(O.C.) / 2400(O.C.) / 2133 MHz memory modules. In-between two DIMM slot we have light bar with RGB leds.

ULTRA Durable™ Memory Armor - GIGABYTE’s exclusive one piece stainless steel shielding design prevents against PCB distortion and twist (Plate bending) in addition to preventing any possible ESD interference.

3. ATX Power connector (24-pin EATXPWR)

4. ATX CPU Power Connector (8-pin ATX12V).

5. 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port, 2 x SMA antenna connectors (2T2R), 1 x DVI-D port, 1 x HDMI port, 4 x USB 3.0/2.0 ports, 1 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports, 1 x RJ-45 port, 1 x optical S/PDIF Out connector, 5 x audio jacks (Center/Subwoofer Speaker Out, Rear Speaker Out, Line In, Line Out, Mic In)

6. 7. 11. 13. 1 x CPU Fan and 3 x System Fan Connectors

8. Front 2 X USB 3 Ports.

9.1 x SATA Express connector, 6 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors (SATA3 0~5), supporting RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, and RAID 10. 4 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors (sSATA3 0~3), supporting IDE and AHCI modes only (An operating system installed on the SATA3 0~5 ports cannot be used on the sSATA 0~3 ports.), 1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 PCIe x4/x2 SSD support), 1 x U.2 connector. * When an i7-5820K or i7-6800K CPU is installed, the U.2 connector becomes unavailable.

10. System Front panel Connector

12. 2 x USB 2.0 Connectors

14. TPM Connector

15. Front panel Audio connector and RGB LED strip extension cable header.

16. M.2 PCIe connector

17. Expansion Slots.

1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x16 (PCIEX16)* For optimum performance, if only one PCI Express graphics card is to be installed, be sure to install it in the PCIEX16 slot. 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x4 (PCIEX4), 2 x PCI Express x1 slots (All of the PCI Express slots conform to PCI Express 3.0 standard.), 2 x PCI slots

18. M.2 Socket 1 connector for the wireless communication module (M2_WIFI)

Removing Heat-sinks

Gigabyte used dense aluminum heatsink in this board. Heatsinks base is having thermal pad installed.

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

Component Layout

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

1. 2. 8-phase digital power, server level Cooper Bussmann chokes coils and Durable Black solid capacitors. IR3580 is IR (International Rectifier) 8-phase single output PWM Controller IC. 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 50A DC each.

3. Two 2-Phase digital memory power supply section (separate for each side DIMMs). IR 3570A is IR (International Rectifier) Dual output 4+1 and 3+2 phase PWM Controllers. IR 3553M 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 40A DC each

4. Intel's DSL6540 Thunderbolt 3.0/USB 3.1 controller.

5. Renesas Electronics YET-D720210-0004 Usb 3.0 4-Port Hub Chip

6. Intel i211 one Gigabit Ethernet controller chip.

7. Intel i218v one Gigabit Ethernet controller chip.

8. Gigabyte Audio is powered by Realtek ALC1150 (under the EMI shield) is a high-performance multi-channel High Definition Audio Codec that delivers an exceptional audio listening experience with up to 115dB SNR, ensuring users get the best possible audio quality from their PC.

The ALC1150 provides ten DAC channels that simultaneously support 7.1-channel sound playback, plus 2 channels of independent stereo sound output (multiple streaming) through the front panel stereo outputs. Two stereo ADCs are integrated and can support a microphone array with Acoustic Echo Cancellation (AEC), Beam Forming (BF), and Noise Suppression (NS) technologies. The ALC1150 incorporates Realtek proprietary converter technology to achieve Front differential output 115dB Signal-to-Noise ratio (SNR) playback (DAC) quality and 104dB SNR recording (ADC) quality.

A semi-transparent line on motherboard separates the whole audio section from the rest of the board in order to minimize interference. Audio section is having premium Nichicon Gold Capacitors 100uf/6.3v for audio filtration. In addition Gigabyte used one OP1652 Op-amp for rear audio amplification. So listening under Stereo mode produces high audio quality with excellent dynamic range.

RightMark Audio Analyzer (RMAA) suite is used for testing Gigabyte High Definition audio against Asus Xonar DX Sound card. You can see clearly the difference between Noise level, dynamic rang and Total harmonic distortion percentage produced by AMP-UP Audio.

RMAA Asus Xonar DX

RMAA GIGABYTE Audio

9. 14.Fan control and monitoring is performed via ITE IT8792E the system controller.

10. Array of RT9018B regulation chip to drive RGB LEDs on board.

11. NXP L04083B . NXP Semiconductors a 4 differential channel, 2-to-1 multiplexer / demultiplexer switch for PCI Express Generation 3

12. The ITE IT8951e is used to provide the USB BIOS recovery functionality.

13. Gigabyte uses two SPI chip labeled MXIC MX 2SL12873F a capacity of 128 Mb for storing UEFI BIOS.

15. Intel X99 Chipset

16. Renesas Electronics YET-D720210 Usb 3.0 4-Port Hub Chip

17. ITE IT8620e is SuperIO chip monitors temperatures, voltages and other key metrics for normal operation and overclocking.

Testing

CPUIntel Core i7 6950x
Board GIGABYTE GA X99-PHOENIX SLI
RAM4 X 4GB Corsair DDR4
SSDKingston SV300 120GB
CoolerCM Nepton 240M
GFX GIGABYTE GTX 1070
PSUCorsair RM650x
DisplayAcer S220HQL
OS Windows 10

BIOS

Bundled Softwares

Benchmarks

Power Consumption

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

Pros

  • Great Looks
  • RGB LED light bars at DIMM slots
  • Nice Audio
  • Build in M.2 WIFI with Dual Intel G-LAN
  • External RGB Strip Support
  • Great OC

Cons

  • Instead of PS2 Keyboard/mice port, there should be two more USB ports.

Conclusion

The new Gigabyte X99 PHOENIX SLI board is designed for Broadwell-E support and has lot to offer like four PCI-e 3.0 x16 and a single PCI-e 3.0 x1 slot, two M.2 slots and a single U.2, SATA Express and 8 SATA III GB/s ports for storage and more. But to make use of both U.2 and M.2 ports at same time one need a 40-lane CPU , the 28-lane CPUs (5820K or 6800K) won't be able to supply enough bandwidth.

The nice colour theme of orange and white on Gigabyte X99 PHOENIX SLI motherboard give the motherboard a distinct and attractive looks, at least in my opinion. RGB lighting when tuned to orange light, actually make the board looks classy.

And the best part which make Gigabyte X99 PHOENIX SLI motherboard the top recommendation for extreme users and professionals is the totally revamped PCI-E layout to optimize 2-way and 3-way GPU configured over 4-way and two Intel Gbit NICs with Intel Wireless AC along with all the latest connectivity features.

Manufacturers Info

Site Link

Thanks.

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