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Item#: N82E16813130681
  • $219.99
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4 out of 5 eggs Initial reaction - impressed 03/20/2014

This review is from: MSI X79A-GD45 Plus LGA 2011 Intel X79 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros:

It's still early, since I've only had the board for 3 days now. However, this board has been a breeze getting setup. Things just... work.

All 5 of my PCI slots are loaded up and recognized. 2 video cards (Radeon 7870 & 5450), a UAD Quad card, firewire card, and USB 3,0 card. My ASUS P9X79 Pro would drop out one of the above when I tried to load them all.

No BIOS issues straight from manufacturer. It looks like the BIOS has internet connectivity... if so, that seems like a great feature.

My Raid 0 array was immediately picked up.

My Win8 OS drive is snappier on this mobo than my P9X79 Pro. And transferring large amounts of data felt quicker. I transferred approx 400GB of data between Sata 3 and Sata 6 in about 1hr 15 mins, give or take. The drives are 7200rpm.

This board doesn't have all of the "features" of the Gigabyte GA-X79-UP4 or the ASUS P9X79 stuff... but, what it lacks in feature set it seems to make up in quality/stability. There's very few third party controllers on the board (if any). I think the tremendous feature sets of the P9X79 board ran it to the ground after 9 months of use. I expect this to do much better over a longer period of time. I don't need built-in Bluetooth/Wifi/eSata/tons of USB3... I can add that stuff via PCI or USB.

I haven't overclocked yet... so I'd like to point that out. I'm only going for a 4.2ghz clock on my 3930K. I've read reviews that this board can do up to 4.5ghz without much in depth tweaking. We'll see though... I expect it to continue to perform well.

My P9X79 board yielded some weird issues (firefox would not install the Adobe Flash plugin.. I had to do it manually... and, in my audio program Studio One... the right click menu would open up only in the center of my screen after i updated my 7870 drivers.) This mobo seems to have fixed these issues. Not even a Win8 reinstall fixed those issues!

RAM works without issues... recognized all sticks on first POST. Kingston HyperX Red - 32GB.

It looks nicer than I thought it would too. Sexy board lol.. especially with the blue LEDs lit up.

Cons:

The fan controller was a little strange. I felt like the fans spin faster when set to Auto than when I set to 100%. I'm fairly novice though, so user error is possible here. But that's the only thing I found to be a little weird. Not sure if a BIOS update fixes it or anything.. I have not updated my BIOS as of yet.

You only get 6 SATA ports.... 2 of which are Sata 6. Many will see this as a con, especially for you guys who need more than 6 drives. However... I kind of see this as a benefit to be honest, b/c there's less things that can go wrong.. they didn't add SATA slots via third party Marvel controller. I like that philosophy on this board. Keep it simple. I decided to just get bigger hard drives and consolidate my data.However... when it's all said and done, it has less SATA ports, and most people will see that as a con, so i'm mentioning it.

Other Thoughts:

I'm not a power PC builder. I've built maybe 4-5 PCs so far that I've used for myself and friends. I have good general knowledge of building, but am far less experienced than many others.

I say that to say... this board was a BREEZE to get up and running, and everything just works as expected. Great board to buy.. seems to be stable and reliable. Only time will tell of course. I definitely recommend this over P9X79 (from my personal experience) and it got much better reviews than GA-X79-UP4.

When it comes to X79 chipset mobo's... if you need to spend less than $300 on a quality setup... get this mobo. If you can afford more.. grab one of the ASUS ROG boards (at a much higher price tag).

I reserved the 5th star and kept it at 4 b/c I have not overclocked it yet. If I gave it 5 stars before I even attempted to overclock then I would be a super fanboy and this review would have no credibility. This

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  • Christopher O.
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week


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Item#: N82E16813130681
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