Summary: This was my first build since my i7 920 in 2009, and I had no plans to upgrade before being asked to test this board because the 920 was still handling everything I threw at it. I was curious to see just how much faster this setup would be. In short, it’s fast. REALLY fast. Windows 7 Ultimate boots in a matter of seconds, and programs and games load ultra-fast and run buttery-smooth. This is all on stock speeds.
Pros: - Compatibility with the latest and greatest IB-E and XEON processors.
Summary: ships with H4 bios but that did not deter me from installation with my i7-4930k. note, that windows 8 installs are a bit tricky on these higher end systems. I recommend setting your ram speed down a few notches to 1600 Mhz or less depending on your RAM and don't do anything tricky overclocking off the bat. keep in mind also that windows 8 install is very particular about needing stability as a priority for the file xfer to be successful.
Pros: Good overclocking capabilities. If you have awesome RAM, this is the best MB I have used in a long time. MSI BIOS options make it real easy.
Summary: MSI please let me know what I need to do to overclock my i7 3930k I was able to OC no problem on my last Gigabyte board with an i7 3770k but I cant overclock to save my life on this board. There could be one factor that is not making this possible and it could be that I have a 600 watt Rosewill PSU and I am running an i7 3930k which requires 130 watts and I also have a single GTX 780 which requires either 230 or 260 watts of power but I don't know I do plan on upgrading...
Pros: Is well built, has a nice look to it, many overclocking features and it comes with a nice suite of tools, software, and utilities.
Cons: I cant overclock my CPU to save my life, I am not a skilled over clocker and I am new to it but my last board was a Gigabyte Z77 UD4H mobo and I had zero problems overclocking my i7 3770k to 4.6GHz on air with no over heating issues and it was completely stable but with this board I have tried many different variations of CPU ratio and base clock and of course I know enough to know that you should try to make small upward increments in voltage if you cant find stabili...
Summary: As a whole, I would consider this board to be a “entry-level enthusiast” board. It’s nice, allows for tweaking manually or automatically, and has some really cool, powerful features (here’s looking at you, quad-channel RAM).
Pros: First things first, I’m not the world’s best overclocker. I enjoy building PCs for my own use, and as much as I might enjoy seeing a 3.6GHz processor get to 5.1GHz or something, I’m usually just happy when the computer runs well as a whole without digging far into the nitty gritty. However, this motherboard gave me a chance to compare my limited OC-ing ability against an automated process. Neat!
Cons: If you happen to read the manual, you’ll find that some of the material does not make sense or is outdated. I didn’t have to refer to it much (other than connectors for the power switch and whatnot), but be warned.
All in all a pretty good mid-range X79 motherboard
21 May 2013
Summary: Finally, an explanation of the rating. This board is not perfect, obviously, but then again nothing is. However I do think certain products deserve 5 eggs and I rate this based on how satisfied I would be with a product on a daily basis, and this motherboard definitely qualifies for that.
Pros: Solid midrange X79 board. All around all the features you really expect on a good motherboard are there. Also, keep in mind that X79 is really a high-end platform (i mean, the motherboard itself goes for 250 bucks) so even though it's mid range all the basic bases are covered. You have the following things you'd expect to find:
Cons: Not too many showstoppers here. This is a solid motherboard. The only real things that I expected more out of a 250$ motherboard were the lack of ports, namely, there are only 2 USB 3.0 ports and 2 SATA 3 ports. So make sure you put your SSDs on the two SATA 3 ports and not the other ones. Hard drives are fine- they won't get bottlenecked by SATA 2 vs 3 anyway.
Summary: I’ve used several MSI motherboards over the past few years, and this has been my favorite experience with them so far. I still don’t like their auto-overclock implementation (OC Genie) very much, nor do I really like messing with BIOS settings from within Windows, but I think some people who like simplicity in overclocking will really enjoy it.
Pros: Aesthetics are quite nice on this board; I really like the black and grey look – it’s sleek and understated. I personally prefer this to the gaudy color schemes of many other boards, because it means that you can do whatever you want aesthetically with your build and the mobo won’t clash with it.
Cons: The big con for this board is that there are only 2 SATA 6 GB/s ports. Now for some people that will not matter, but anyone looking to ever use multiple SSDs really should look elsewhere. This board is NOT for someone needing all the bells and whistles in terms of connectivity options. With the lack of SATA 6, I would have liked to see more connectivity options elsewhere – maybe a whole bunch more USB 3.0 ports or something. It loses an egg for this at the $250 price ...
Summary: To sum things up if you want an X79 board that won’t break the bank and run great at stock speeds that has some settings that can be tweaked along with decent built in audio then this board is a good choice. Also worth noting is its ability to use enormous amounts of ram via its 8 slots (Up to 128 GB once 16 GB DIMMS come out) and 3 way graphics cards.
Pros: Black I/O shield
Cons: Quick install guide has some generic pictures that are at least 5 years old such as IDE connections.
Summary: If your building a simple LGA 2011 system. I would recommend this board for its stability and ease of use.
Pros: Solid basic LGA 2011 board, overclocks well and stable after BIOs update. Been running almost 24/7 for more then a month as a gaming/ folding rig with no problems. For a lower priced 2011 board its hard to go wrong. I also own a Asus Rampage 4 Formula, and performance wise, its about the same, the Rampage benefits from having more options for expansion, 4 sata 6 Gig vs 2 ect. but is $100 or so more.
Cons: The "click" bios is the only con I have. I've had no problem with it, but can be limiting as others have stated. More of a novelty then anything, but then again not really a problem.
Summary: Other boards add SATA ports and additional network adapters but with really lousy components. This is simple, clean, and quality. Probably the best 2011 board out there. Performance is great. I don't bother overclocking.
Pros: Feature complete with no cheap extras that just fill feature checkboxes and don't perform well. The LAN is thankfully an Intel 82579V, not a Realtek as stated in the Newegg listing. Also, you can use all six SATA ports with Intel's RSTe (Enterprise) or iRST (Consumer) BIOS options. The manual has it wrong, RAID5 is also supported on SATA1/2 (6Gbps) ports in addition to the SATA3/4/5/6 (3Gbps) ports. It's a recent motherboard design (as of this writing) which hopefully...
Cons: The BIOS is marginal. "ClickBIOS" offers more BIOS features under Windows than from within the BIOS itself. Argh. More BIOS oriented control over fan speeds, UEFI vs legacy mode would have been appreciated. RAID5 performance is terrible, but that's Intel's fault, not MSI's. For some reason it takes forever to power down.
Summary: Now before anyone thinks "oh SpeedStep", no. That's not it. Remember that I did say this was happening under full load. My framerates on Tera Online went from 35-80 down to 10-25 fps. Passmark before and after new OS install showed ratings below the Intel 920 and my last 3570k. Finally got a hold of MSI and got them to send me a bios beta and bam. It worked.
Pros: Overclocking on this board is easy and almost as easy to get past the 4.3GHz limit on the 3820. At 4.8GHz with a slightly uncomfortable bump in Vcore at 1.45. Good lookin'. Good price.