Review MSI MEG X570 Godlike Review: Flagship Class, Five M.2 slots, 10 GbE

Jan 7, 2021
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Would you need a high-end DAC to use a solid audiophile headphones?
gg83 - I'd probably not use the built-in dac/amp on the motherboard. From what little I just read about a few minutes ago, there may be some electromagnetic interference and/or crosstalk within a CPU case, especially under load. Also, according to this article, the power output from motherboards is less than 10 mw, which is low. As far as needing high-end, well, high-end is relative. I'd bet 99% of listeners would be totally happy with a $200 Schiit stack dac/amp combo (modi + magni). The Magni generates 2,400 mw at 32 ohms, quite a bit more than 10. This should power 99.9% of headphones to far beyond healthy db levels (some planar magnetic cans can suck up a lot of juice, though). As for DAC sound quality, I really can't speak on that because I don't have a golden ear that can tell much difference during critical listening.
 
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Jan 7, 2021
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Would you need a high-end DAC to use a solid audiophile headphones?
This would probably drive most headphones. Dynamics better than planars most likely. But a seperate dac and amp will almost always be an upgrade, particularly if you are using playback or streaming software that supports exclusive mode, ie cutting the windows sound mixer "middle man" out of the equation.
Not to knock anyones setup, but if someones just using spotify or youtube music, dont bother with an outboard DAC, put an extra couple hundred in your headphone budget and have fun, don't go down the rabbit hole lol
 
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Jan 7, 2021
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I cant really use all the M.2 at full capacity right? Some would have to be at sata level becuase of pcie lanes?
 
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Makaveli

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Remember when $200 bought you a -really- good AMD motherboard...
I paid $280 CAD for my board and I like it. I would never spend $400-$500 on a board so I wouldn't have looked this board anyways.

The 5950x has 40 PCI lanes. If you bought this board. Why wouldn't you get the 5950x?
You need to look at the distribution of those lanes and how the M2's will access them and that will explain what they are referring too.
 

mrv_co

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What is the use case for 'Video output' for a board in this class? The lack of video output shows up as a 'con', but it is not mentioned at all during the write-up.
 
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I paid $280 CAD for my board and I like it. I would never spend $400-$500 on a board so I wouldn't have looked this board anyways.
I spent $262 on my ASUS Crosshair VI Hero WiFi, which is quite a bit more than my previous board, the ASUS Sabertooth 990FX/Gen3 R2.0 which cost $200...I can't imagine paying $700 for a motherboard which can only be used for, realistically, ONE CPU generation, since we know the Ryzen 5000 series is the end of the road for AM4, unless AMD gives what would amount to a + revision...
 
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Makaveli

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I spent $262 on my ASUS Crosshair VI Hero WiFi, which is quite a bit more than my previous board, the ASUS Sabertooth 990FX/Gen3 R2.0 which cost $200...I can't imagine paying $700 for a motherboard which can only be used for, realistically, ONE CPU generation, since we know the Ryzen 5000 series is the end of the road for AM4, unless AMD gives what would amount to a + revision...
Agreed.

For me I jumped on AM4 late so when straight to x570 and started at Zen 2 and will go Zen 3.

After that new socket and zen 4 so I never saw the point of spending $500+ on a motherboard.
 
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You need to look at the distribution of those lanes and how the M2's will access them and that will explain what they are referring too.
I have the board and the 5950x. The lanes get distributed properly. Granted, the board was designed when the 3000 series was first released but it definitely wasn't designed with the 3950X in mind.
 

PapaCrazy

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gg83 - I'd probably not use the built-in dac/amp on the motherboard. From what little I just read about a few minutes ago, there may be some electromagnetic interference and/or crosstalk within a CPU case, especially under load. Also, according to this article, the power output from motherboards is less than 10 mw, which is low. As far as needing high-end, well, high-end is relative. I'd bet 99% of listeners would be totally happy with a $200 Schiit stack dac/amp combo (modi + magni). The Magni generates 2,400 mw at 32 ohms, quite a bit more than 10. This should power 99.9% of headphones to far beyond healthy db levels (some planar magnetic cans can suck up a lot of juice, though). As for DAC sound quality, I really can't speak on that because I don't have a golden ear that can tell much difference during critical listening.
Agreed across the board. Very happy with my Magni/Modi combo. I'll just add my two cents on DACs... I used to think it didn't matter, but after experiencing a number of DACs I started to see differences in how they were tuned (or more precisely the filtering algorithms). In my experience, the Texas Instruments DACs I've had were all very precise but somewhat cold and sterile sounding. The Burr-Brown DACs that came on a lot of older equipment (like the famed 'audiophile' PS1) were warmer but not as detailed. I have been enjoying the chip in the Modi very much - it is an AKM AK4490 "velvet sound" chip. They are tuned to be musically pleasing and somewhat thick in tone. Some are not huge fans because it sounds bloated to them, and there is a bit of glare. However, I find the chip very musical and I enjoy its thick tone and energy. Over time, I started to use the Modi more than my STX sound card. Both provide clean signals, but I prefer the sound of the Modi over the TI chip in the STX. I will also mention that the vast majority of high end motherboard DACs (including the Godlike, or the Dark Hero mentioned a couple days ago) are made by Sabre. I have no experience with their chips, but I have heard they can be cold in their presentation.

What is the use case for 'Video output' for a board in this class? The lack of video output shows up as a 'con', but it is not mentioned at all during the write-up.
Wondering about this too. The 5900/5950x have no onboard GPU, so what would a video output on the board possibly be used for? Pass-through?
 
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NP

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What is the use case for 'Video output' for a board in this class? The lack of video output shows up as a 'con', but it is not mentioned at all during the write-up.
The first thing coming on my mind would be flashing GPU bios. That's a real PITA without a mobo with video output.
 

mrv_co

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The first thing coming on my mind would be flashing GPU bios. That's a real PITA without a mobo with video output.
If so, then I would expect the author to elaborate beyond simply listing this as a con. Even then don't you still need a CPU w/ an integrated GPU of some sort to use the video output? I honestly don't know since I've never run into this issue with any of my builds over the years.
 

Jim90

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For folks considering these high end x570 boards and looking to make use of all those PCIE lanes, M.2, USB etc, you might want to wait and check out the incoming Zen3 Threadrippers - particularly the rumoured 16 core variant. The price of top end x570 boards is not far away from some TRX40 boards. AMD did promise "long term support" for TRX40 and there's only been one CPU cycle for them so far (Zen2). Of course, you need to be sure you'll make use of the extra TRX40 features to justify it.
 

Gasek

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Yeah, but you get all those m.2 slots! Lol. Good point, I'd take a USB add-in card over the m.2 one.
See, I've got 8 ports on mine (+4 on front panel usbs): oculus rift with 3 sensors = 4 usbs, webcam, mouse, keyboard, card reader, Bluetooth, USB Xbox 360 gamepads, USB Hyperx cloud headphones, 2 external USB Hds... 11 USB ports total? My motherboard has 8 USB back ports... I can't imagine living with just 5. The cheap motherboards got 5 ports on back, not a $700 one... I'm very surprised that the review missed this fact.
 
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PapaCrazy

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See, I've got 8 ports on mine (+4 on front panel usbs): oculus rift with 3 sensors = 4 usbs, webcam, mouse, keyboard, card reader, Bluetooth, USB Xbox 360 gamepads, USB Hyperx cloud headphones, 2 external USB Hds... 11 USB ports total? My motherboard has 8 USB back ports... I can't imagine living with just 5. The cheap motherboards got 5 ports on back, not a $700 one... I'm very surprised that the review missed this fact.
Same here, I would have to use dongles like it was some kind of Mac, or use powered hubs and hope no ports failed over time. I'm curious how such a high end board ended up with 5 ports. The I/O is sparse. and there's plenty of room for more. Wonder if they had to divert lanes for the 3rd M2 slot on the board.
 
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gg83

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See, I've got 8 ports on mine (+4 on front panel usbs): oculus rift with 3 sensors = 4 usbs, webcam, mouse, keyboard, card reader, Bluetooth, USB Xbox 360 gamepads, USB Hyperx cloud headphones, 2 external USB Hds... 11 USB ports total? My motherboard has 8 USB back ports... I can't imagine living with just 5. The cheap motherboards got 5 ports on back, not a $700 one... I'm very surprised that the review missed this fact.
When will we get room-scale wireless already!? I have so many wires all over the place.
 

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