Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Master Review: A Pricey Performer

rantoc

Distinguished
Dec 17, 2009
1,858
0
19,780
0
They say its SLI capable but yet have the same "stupid" 3 slots spacing resulting in the typical air starvation of the main card since it will be obstructed by the second card. Todays big custom air cooled cards are 2.5 to 3 pcie slots wide, not the old typical 2 pcie - When will the MB makers "evolve" to the new width of the cards for multigpu and who will be the first?
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor
Even the founder's edition cards are only two slots, and most of the oversized cards are 2.5 slots. A 3-slot cooling design is a defective design, and such cards should be called out for that. We're already putting the top x16 slot in the case's 2nd slot hole to make space for oversized CPU coolers, voltage regulators and DIMM cooling, and there's a scarcity of 8-slot cases, so two three-slot cards at 4-slot spacing doesn't even make sense. For those reseaons, if I review a board with the 2nd x16 slot aligned to the case's 6th card hole, I'll probably just write it off as a bad idea.

 
Dec 6, 2018
3
0
10
0
Does anyone know if this Mobo ships with a bios that supports the latest CPU's? I was planning on getting a Intel - Core i7-9700K 3.6 GHz 8-Core Processor and wasn't sure if this mobo has the bios to support it...
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor
Anything that says "Z390" does.
 
Dec 6, 2018
3
0
10
0


Thank you so much for the fast reply and the answer to my question; this is my first time piecing together a PC and building it myself. I'm really excited to see how well this thing runs, http:// compared to my current PC.
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor
That's quite a build. It makes me appreciate my free test kit a bit more :)

 
Dec 6, 2018
3
0
10
0


Luckily my wife just finished building her PC and knows exactly what she's doing so she will be undoubtedly "helping", haha. Anything on there you feel like needs to be different?
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor

dude, after paying my bills it would take me close to four months to buy that card, but it looks like a perfectly workable machine to me.
 

V@no

Distinguished
Feb 26, 2011
15
0
18,510
0
Wait, if 3 m.2 installed, you get only 3 SATA3 ports available and they also choke some of the PCIx16 as well??? what kind of bs is this?
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor
Nah. First of all, to choke off three SATA ports you have to run a PCIe M.2 in the top slot and an SATA M.2 in the middle slot. But you won't be running an SATA M.2 drive will you? So you'll get four SATA.

As for the bottom M.2 and bottom PCIe slot, you realize that the bottom slot was only x4 max right? Many people put an x4 storage card in these slots. But you're going to put a M.2 card in the bottom M.2 slot instead. It's more of an either/or option, either you get four lanes for that storage on the bottom PCIe slot, or you get four lanes for storage from the bottom M.2 slot. By chipset limitation, the other option would be to not have one of those two interfaces.

 

V@no

Distinguished
Feb 26, 2011
15
0
18,510
0
All 3 m.2 slots are shown as PCIe x4 with 2 of them compatible with SATA, the speed should be the same in all them as long as compatible drives are used.

In the table it says "M.2-1 takes pts 4-5, SATA M.2-2 pt 1" from this I understand that if m.2-1 slot used, it will disable SATA4 and SATA5 and if used m.2-2 it will disable SATA1?
And M.2-3 will use 2 lanes from the bottom PCIe x16 slot, effectively making it x8 x8 x2 configuration if all 3 PCIe slots are used

Also, what the hell does sign ^ means?:
(2) PCIe 3.0 x4^ / SATA*, (1) PCIe 3.0 x4
(*Excludes ports 1, ^4-5)

Asterisk "*" = see note below
"^" = ?
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor

There are a limitted number of superscript characters on a keyboard, and I'm not using custom superscript that could get erased in editing, so I use those instead. When its says SATA*, you look below it and it says *Excludes port 1, that means an SATA M.2 drive will exclude SATA port one.

So slide up to my previous response. That third "missing SATA port" is only missing if you use an SATA M.2 drive in the second M.2 slot.

Now you're going to ask me what an SATA M.2 drive is, and I'll just say the magic word "legacy", and all will become clear ;)
 

V@no

Distinguished
Feb 26, 2011
15
0
18,510
0
Did you see what I said in my first message? I said "if 3 m.2 installed"

My point here is, Gigabyte is known to make motherboards flashy and full of features, the features that you can't use all at once. It's like a car with steering wheel on driver's side and pedals on passenger's side.
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor
I'm fairly certain I addressed all of your concerns. The first one steals two SATA ports. The second one ONLY steals an SATA port if the M.2 drive has an SATA interface. The third one steals two lanes from the four lane slot. But if you're comparing it, you can compare it to a board that either has no four lane PCIe slot, or no third M.2 slot. While it's easy to oversell a board by sharing resources, at least the board with shared resources has more flexibility than one that eliminates several interfaces.
 

V@no

Distinguished
Feb 26, 2011
15
0
18,510
0
So, what you are saying if we install 3 pcie m.2 drives (like Samsung 970, which probably will not fit in the third slot), then we still have 4 SATA ports available, because they are not "legacy" m.2 drives???
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor
Right, the only resource exclusion I see for the middle M.2 slot is a shared pathway that is exclusively SATA, according to the documentation I read. That doesn't require a physical switch, the firmware just needs to figure out which SATA device to read.

Conversely, the top M.2 slot is using a two-pathway physical switch, along with the chipset's SATA/PCIe conversion via the chipset's flexible HSIO, so it's always going to exclude two SATA ports regardless of whether the M.2 device is PCIe or SATA.
 
Dec 10, 2018
2
0
10
0
Hi all. I am thinking of changing back to Intel's CPU the i9-990K. I have the AMD 1950X in the ASUS Zenith Extreme motherboard. Iv'e had nothing but ruble with the the Asus motherboard,this is my second one that went faulty. What a piece of crap. So I am looking at Gigabyte Aorus Master now. Coming from from the high end motherboards with eight sticks of ram and almost unlimited Sata/Pcie lanes it's hard to swallow the limitations of the Z390 platform. What I need is two M.2's and one for my C drive and one cor my scratch drive. I also want to use my Samsung 850 Pro a 1Tb solid state drive for temp file storage. I would also like to use the new Intel Optane drive drive in the top M.2 slot to boost performance, but I think that will be a problem?? I also need to have my two have my two 4Tb Wd hard drives as storage.
Is this possible? Looking forward to your opinions.
Cheers.
Mike
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor

Well, you could step up to X299 if Z390 doesn't have enough connections.
Gigabyte lists the Z390 Aorus Master as Optane-ready.According to its spec sheet, if you don't mind the bottom PCIe slot getting kicked down to x2 mode, you should be OK.
 
Dec 10, 2018
2
0
10
0
Thank you CRASHMAN for your reply. I am only using one GPU so I think I just might getaway with the list of components I need to connect? I am looking at 5GHz across all cores as a big bonus for my work in PS & LR CC. I dint know of any other CPU that can deliver that sort of speed at a similar price point?
I would love to hear your and others viewpoint on this.
Cheers.
Mike
 

Crashman

Polypheme
Editor

I don't have a horse in the race between AMD and Intel. I know that AMD gives you more computing power per dollar but Intel usually wins game benchmarks...and that's about it. I just test the boards ;)

As for X299, yeh, the smaller processors for Z390 kill what's available for X299 in value.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS