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Pros: Purchased this board because I trust Gigabyte products and it's one of the few X99 boards to use Intel's USB 3.1 chip for true 3.1 speeds on both ports and Thunderbolt 3 support. Most other X99 boards with Thunderbolt compatibility will sell the add-on boards for $80+ later and are rarely sold too. Sure it uses up 4 PCI-E lanes but with a 6800K and one graphics card (nvidia 1060) and an M.2 drive it's not a problem for me.
Cons: Purchased this board on July 20th, 2016 hoping I'll get lucky and receive one with an updated BIOS version that supports Broadwell-E processors. As previously mentioned in the reviews, if your board's serial number begins with 155 it means it was made in 2015 and therefore likely has the older F2 version bios whereas version F22 that came our in January does support it. I suspect Newegg still has a stock of older boards still. Unfortunately with my Intel Broadwell-E 6800K it does not POST so users cannot update the BIOS themselves and the board doesn't support updating the BIOS over usb without a supported processor installed. If you have an older processor you can boot with it, update the BIOS and then swap back your Broadwell-E but I cannot.
Other Thoughts: Hoping Gigabyte will respond to me for how to proceed. I've requested an RMA number to mail the board to them but it looks like I'll have to pay shipping which it starting to look bad.
Will update review to anyone interested in my progress.
Update 9/8/16: Paid about $20 to ship board to CA (I'm in NY) and received my board back in hands from Gigabyte in two weeks once they received it - UPS ground return shipping is free at least. You only need to ship the board itself, no accessories. Calling support was very helpful in getting an ETA and its progress. Will build pc now and update if any issues.
Update 12/1/16: Works great. Thanks Gigabyte for updating the BIOS. Running 6800K which I was easily able to OC to 4.2Ghz. Their"Gigabyte Apps" with EasyTune is ok. Does a good job - doesn't seem super polished but does what it does. Purchased a PNY Elite X 128GB USB 3.0 drive and the performance on the USB 3 vs 3.1 power is quite a large difference - 50MBs vs 190MBs. I may buy a Type-C to Type-A to get 2 USB 3.1 type A ports since none of my devices have Type C yet. Running Samsung 960 Pro which the BIOS recognized - installed Windows 7 Pro (during install you will need to load the NVMe 2.0 drivers from Samsung for Windows installer to see it however). I'm currently having issues getting the drive to run at Gen 3 however (it's running at Gen 2 x4) but it could be that Samsung's drivers (184.108.40.2067) at the time of this update isn't polished yet. Some say don't OC and it will kick back to Gen 3 but I will update if true.
Oh, F23 with the updated EFI/BIOS for me is perfect. Heard lots of complaints of Gigabyte having two screens to see everything but with F23 it's just one now and I can see all settings - from OC to Thunderbolt settings, Fans, etc.
This review is from: ASUS USB 2.0 External Blu-Ray 6X Writer with BDXL Support Model SBW-06D2X-U/BLK/G/AS
Pros: I received the external writer today so I will update once I start burning with it's performance and reliability experience. Unlike some bad reviews below the drive was plug and play for me on my Windows 7 Pro (64-bit) computer - which is what it should be. No drivers needed for me. I used my favorite and free burning application: ImgBurn (from imgburn.com) and it recognized it no problem. Highly recommend using this application instead, and VLC for video playback as the included ones are too bloated for what should be simple - burn and playback. I placed a blank Verbatim BD-R (6x) disc inside which is recognized. The USB Y-style cable is neat as it's 1 cable but has both USB plugs for the data and power it needs (the part that plugs into the drive itself is your standard Mini-USB plug). CD included includes the following software: PowerBackup 2.5, CyberLink Power2Go 8, and TurboEngine.
Cons: Very easily scratched, even a quick soft wipe with an undershirt you can see the the ever so light scratches. You see them in the right light close up so it's not something you will notice two feet away on your desk. Wish it was a matte finish but nothing to knock a star/egg for as it's performance and reliability I will update here as we use it.
Other Thoughts: In order to play retail DVDs and BluRays that are region locked you need to set your drive's region (this is standard one-time setting for any pc dvd/bluray optical drive you install) before you can play DVDs and Bluray. Note, home videos from friends and family aren't region-locked if you're asking.
a. Click Start (or Search), type devmgmt.msc and hit enter to open Device Manager (or right-click Computer on your desktop and choose Manage and then click Device Manager)
b. Double-click DVD/CD-ROM drives to see your new Asus drive, right-click this drive, and then click Properties.
c. On the DVD Region tab, choose United States (or what country you're in or what region-locked your discs are from).
I considered Asus USB 3.0 burner which utilizes a desktop optical drive (hence the larger size difference and power requirement) as it was only $15 more but I already had a external dvd burner like this size (these uses laptop optical drives which is why their slim, also usb 2.0 enclosure) and it made it super convenient for me to take it with me - in a bag, or quick setup and go from PC to PC in an IT environment when needed. This device compactness and no need to carry a power adapter for me was worth the main difference - half the burn speed (6x vs 12x). Sure USB 3.0 vs 2.0 a bigger difference, but it's the burn speed you should consider as that's what it all means. We rarely burn Blu-Ray discs and for the times we do we have 50 BD-R discs available that are 6x anyway so burning at 12x wouldn't be possible unless we discarded these.
No firmware updates at Asus site so no need to check.
Pros: Working in my Intel's NUC D34010WYK running Ubuntu for about a month now. For the price, the specs at the time of purchase was the fastest speeds 9-9-9-28 as opposed to others which are 11-11-11-28 (remember, lower is better for those not sure what these numbers mean).
Cons: None.READ FULL REVIEW