Joined on 01/12/09
Pros: The GA-990FXA-UD7, like other baords in Gigabyte's Ultra Durable series, is built like a tank. The PCB is very thick and there is virtually no flex whatsoever. This is a very solid motherboard, you can't tell from the pictures. The layout is clean with nothing looking like it was shoehorned in. Full-length heatpipe connecting the Southbridge, Northbridge and VRMs for a more even heat dissipation. Fired right up after installing, already came with the latest FC BIOS. Survived an 8 hour run of Prime95 blend without warnings or errors, and the highest temp observed by HWMonitor was 43°C at full load. The G.Skill RAM was running its most aggressive XMP Profile 2 with timings of 1866Mhz at 9-9-9-24-1T.
Cons: Loadline calibration doesn't work well, or at all, when set to Auto. To maintain proper voltages when under full load (such as a Prime95 run), you need to set the Loadline Calibration to "High". Not "Very High", not "Extreme". Just "High". Not really a con, but you need to be mindful of the PCI-E slot #1 (where your only/first video card goes). If you have a large CPU cooler like Noctua NH-D14, the back of the video card will be within a few centimeters of the fins/fan clips on the Noctua. No risk of contact, but they are close.
Overall Review: Be aware that this is an Extended ATX motherboard, so be sure your case can accommodate it before you order. If you are populating more than three PCI-E slots, Gigabyte recommends connecting ATXP4 to a SATA power connection for auxiliary power to ensure the slots are not power starved. Newegg was out of stock on this board for months, literally. I emailed Gigabyte's tech support and asked them if they were still making it. I got an email reply 8 minutes later saying yes they still make this board. Yes, 8 minute turnaround to an email question. On a Friday. Amazing. My build: Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD7 AMD FX-8350 CPU AMD Radeon R9 290X Sapphire TRI-X Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler G.Skill Ripjaws Z 16GB 1866MHz 9-9-9-24-1T Corsair Neutron GTX 120GB SSDs HT|Omega Claro Halo sound card Sennheiser G4me Zero circumaural 150 Ohm headset SeaSonic Platinum SS-860XP2 860W PSU SilverStone FT02 thermodynamic ATX case Tripp Lite 1500VA 940W line-conditioning UPS
Pros: 9-9-9 timings at 1600MHz on 1.35v. Kingston reputation for quality. Product is from a privately held American company. Support our workers!
Cons: Does not dispense ice cream.
Overall Review: Bought this as an upgrade for a HP EliteBook 725 G2. Works perfectly, no issues. Night-and-day difference in performance going from the stock 4GB single channel CL11 factory DIMM to this 16GB dual channel CL9 kit.
Pros: This kit matches the maximum speed (DDR3-1066) and maximum capacity (8GB) for my Lenovo ThinkPad X201 and works perfectly with it.
Overall Review: Don't bother getting a 16GB kit for a X201, it won't work and you will end up returning it. The X201 BIOS will see all 16GB ok, but both Windows and Linux will freeze when trying to boot with it. Lenovo says X201 only supports 8GB RAM and apparently they mean it.
Pros: Amazingly comfortable ear cups when worn, more so than any other headset I have ever owned. Closed design is effective at keeping ambient sounds around you out. Solid build quality. Swing boom mic up to mute.
Overall Review: The headset speakers are rated at 150 Ohm. Be sure you have an audio output that is capable of properly driving them.
such nice sound
Pros: The quality of the audio output from this card blows the doors off of the Realtek onboard sound chips appearing on so many motherboards nowadays. Paired this card with a Sennheiser 150 Ohm headset and I'm in heaven. When gaming I can hear even the smallest nuances around my character in clear detail, it's incredible! The driver install provides an app that has more DSP, mixer and configuration options than I will ever use.
Overall Review: This is a PCI card, so be sure you have a PCI (not a PCI-E) slot available. The capacitors are rather tall and can possibly make contact with a card installed below it, especially if the card below it has chips on its backside. Be sure to properly set the jumpers for the impedance level of your headset. Anything over 35 Ohms and HT Omega says to set the jumpers to "High".