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This review is from: GIGABYTE GA-X99-UD3 LGA 2011-v3 Intel X99 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
Pros: I purchased this model after my Asus X58 failed and I decided to upgrade to the X99 platform. Setup was pretty easy, recognized my 5930K and Gskillz 16 GB memory modules right away. Took about an hour to setup and boot into a fully functional Windows 8.1.
Overclocking software is pretty simple to use, and the motherboard boots up quicker than most older X99 motherboards. About 28 seconds to boot into Windows which is about 15 seconds faster than my old X58 platform.
Cons: The X99 UD3 memory performance pretty slow when compared to X99 motherboards from Asus. I was only getting 35 GBps using DDR 4 at 2133MHZ, and 37 GBps at 2666 MHZ. On my Asus MB using the same memory modules I pushed 42 GBps at 2133 MHZ, and 46 GBps at 2666 MHZ. The slower memory performance did translate to lower frame rates gaming. Hitman Absolution runs at 79 FPS on my Asus board, and 71 FPS on Gigabyte UD3 using the same hardware besides the MB.
2nd issues, is the bios when upgrading to version F4 and F5. When I tried upgrading to later bios the motherboard would either fail to boot, say no OS found on the hard drive, and unable to load into Bios unless you do a CMOS reset and revert back to Bios F2.
Overclocking is easy, but slower than the Asus X99-A. I know I didn't win the lotto with my 5930K , but I was able to get a little bit more performance out of the Asus board. On the UD3 I was able to overclock my 5930K to 4.3 GHZ stable on all cores, on the Asus X99-A I was able to overclock to 4.5 GHZ on 4 cores, and 4.4 GHZ on the last two cores.
Other Thoughts: I couldn't figure out if I liked this motherboard, or if I liked the X99 platform. USB 3.0 is fast, I'm finally getting proper SATA 6 performance, and slightly quicker boot times than my old X58 motherboard. After upgrading to the Asus X99 MB, and experiencing measurable performance increases, I decided I liked the platform and not the Gigabyte MB. I'm a bit happier with the Asus X99-A, it's worth $20 extra to allow your Intel 5900 series to fully stretch its legs.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: Cheap and very fast for the price. This is my sixth time buying this CPU for my clients after upgrading from AMD 965. During testing it flys through Corel Photo & Video Suite X5, Powerdirector 12, Handbrake, and Adobe CS4 without any hitches. It runs somewhat warm, installed after market cooling from Cooler Masters lowered the temps from 60C to around 52C during full load.
Cons: While yes its fast, but AMD 6300/6350 might be the better option for gaming. If the client only games I always recommend AMD 6300/6350 and putting the extra money towards larger capacity SSD/Hybrid SSD drives. On the other hand the 8320 powers ahead both 6300 and the 6350 in multimedia applications such as video, music, and photo editing.
Other Thoughts: I paid $139 for this CPU during one of Neweggs 48hr sales. This made both myself and the client happy after targeting AMD 6350 CPU because of his budget. His system flies with Seagate 512 Hybrid SSD installed along with AMD 260X 2GB video card.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: CORSAIR Hydro Series H110 Extreme Performance Water/Liquid CPU Cooler. 280mm
Pros: I picked up the H110 on sale for $90 last month, originally I was looking Corsair H100i but I figured why not save $15 and get the newer unit. The cooling performance is very impressive, brought my temperatures down from low 90s C when rendering to 68C on my overclocked I7 970. I only wish the fans were quieter
Cons: The 140 MM holes for the fans would not fit my case, I had to modify my case in order to install the H110. 2nd problem, stock fans were loud, very loud, sounded like a video card running hot in SLI. I could hear my PC from two rooms away. I replaced the stock fans with Corsair Air Series AF140 Quiet Edition, besides what I mentioned I'm now happy with the cooling performance and noise.
Other Thoughts: Make sure your case has 140 MM holes, otherwise break up the old trusty drill, measuring tape, and markers.READ FULL REVIEW