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This review is from: MSI 990FXA-GD80 V2 AM3+ AMD 990FX + SB950 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
Pros: This board does what it should, I am running an FX 9370 in it without a problem. The board looks nice when powered on and is well laid out.
Cons: For a board aimed at overclocking it is a real problem that there is no load line calibration. While overclocking my CPU voltage drop by almost a full .1 volts. Even with a smallish overclock and voltage bump, Kill-a-Watt shows only ~420 watts use during heavy stress test (and I have a decent power supply rated for well over twice that load). and I get terrible vdroop. I'm under water and will drop from 1.55 volts as set in the bios to 1.45-1.48 (it bounces around) when stress testing. This really is a big issue and kills this board as any kind of serious overclocking board.
Other Thoughts: If you're going to use factory settings or even a moderate overclock on the eight core CPU's, this board should be fine. But for the higher end overclocking crowd (which is what this board is meant to do and the market it is aimed at) I would suggest looking at a different motherboard. I would have giving this board a higher rating if I was not overclocking, but I bought this board thinking it would be a good part for pushing my FX 9370 and because I've liked my previous MSI motherboards, but I can't help but feel like this one is a big disappointment because of the vdroop that kills overclocks.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: While I don't need more than a quad core, having a few more cores certainly doesn't hurt. I have a 125 watt AM2+ motherboard, this was a drop in replacement (just needed a bios update... thanks MSI!) I'm running at 2.4GHz on the memory controller/L3 and 3.96GHz on the cores. I haven't gone for more yet, but this was a very quick and easy overclock... I may push it further yet, but I'm happy with the time spent on the co vs. the temps and stability, so I probably won't push it much further.
Cons: It's still going to trail Sandy Bridge more often than not. I wish there was more that I use that would take advantage of all these cores.
Other Thoughts: My old PhII needed over 1.5v to reach 2.4/3.6GHz and wouldn't budge any higher no matter what. This chip is running at a higher clock speed, with more cores, and a lower voltage bump (I'm running 1.46v). There are better performing parts by Intel, but for the price and being a drop in replacement (for me) there's not much to complain about here... I have a higher clock than my old chip with less voltage, run cooler (I top out around 49-50C running six instances of prime, though this time of year it's a bit cooler in my home) and have two more cores than before. All done with a two minute bios install, a five minute install and a five minute overclock, and the price was right. This was a good bang for the buck upgrade.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: P3 Kill A Watt Electricity Load Meter and Monitor
Pros: Works well, does what it is supposed to do. Easy to use, also.
Cons: I'm driving my wife crazy because I keep checking how much power anything we plug in uses. :)
Other Thoughts: Fun toy and/or very useful for productive purposes. I found that my Phenom II @ 3.6GHz with a single 5870 uses about 335 watts in Furmark (1920x1200, 4xAA). With a second 5870 in Crossfire I use 515 watts in the same test!READ FULL REVIEW