Review: ASRock Z390 Taichi Ultimate

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Great review as always. After hesitation between this one and the Gigabyte Aorus Z390 Xtrem I finally decided for last one (currently on order, not yet received). These two boards offer quite similar specs and a Ethernet 10Gb link that is a must for me as I'll soon get a 10Gb fiber connection to the internet 🙂 I know the price of the Aorus is much higher than the ASRock Ultimate (almost double...) but I frankly did not find the ASRock look that nice personally. Below the details of my in assembly built (any comments welcome). CPU Intel® Core™ i9-9900K (3.6-5.0+ GHz) 14nm MB Gigabyte Z390 AORUS XTREM GPU1 EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti FTW3 GPU2 EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 FTW DDR4 Corsair Vengeance RGB PRO DDR4 32GB Kit (4 x 8GB) 3200MHz Cooling Corsair H150i Pro M.2 NVMe Samsung 970 PRO 1TB M.2 2280 NVMe M.2 NVMe Samsung 970 EVO 2TB M.2 2280 NVMe PC Case Phanteks Enthoo Evolv X (Midi Tower) BLK PSU Corsair HX1200i Monitor ASUS PA328 4K
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another great review, and another winner form Asrock. i've used the Taichi series for three builds (X399 1st & 2nd gen, Z370) and have gotten extremely good value and use out of them. i'm not in love with the screened graphics of gears, but i love the performance/dollar and relative lack of rgb. if i ever had a reason to get a 9th gen Intel, this would be the board of choice for me.
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lucasfrance:

Great review as always. After hesitation between this one and the Gigabyte Aorus Z390 Xtrem I finally decided for last one (currently on order, not yet received). These two boards offer quite similar specs and a Ethernet 10Gb link that is a must for me as I'll soon get a 10Gb fiber connection to the internet 🙂 I know the price of the Aorus is much higher than the ASRock Ultimate (almost double...) but I frankly did not find the ASRock look that nice personally. Below the details of my in assembly built (any comments welcome).
Congratulations! The Gigabytes Z390 got away better VRM. [URL='https://be.hardware.info/reviews/8855/14/23-intel-z390-moederborden-review-+-vrm-test-welk-bord-is-echt-8-core-waardig-benchmarks-vrm-test']Hardware.Info Belgie https://i.imgur.com/7thJbb8.png[/URL]
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Thanks Pictus. This at least gives me an "objective justification" for my expensive MB choice 🙂
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Based on the temps figures above (if correct) I feel really bad for the two last MB VMR chips....
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lucasfrance:

Great review as always. After hesitation between this one and the Gigabyte Aorus Z390 Xtrem I finally decided for last one (currently on order, not yet received). These two boards offer quite similar specs and a Ethernet 10Gb link that is a must for me as I'll soon get a 10Gb fiber connection to the internet 🙂 I know the price of the Aorus is much higher than the ASRock Ultimate (almost double...) but I frankly did not find the ASRock look that nice personally. Below the details of my in assembly built (any comments welcome). CPU Intel® Core™ i9-9900K (3.6-5.0+ GHz) 14nm MB Gigabyte Z390 AORUS XTREM GPU1 EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti FTW3 GPU2 EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 FTW DDR4 Corsair Vengeance RGB PRO DDR4 32GB Kit (4 x 8GB) 3200MHz Cooling Corsair H150i Pro M.2 NVMe Samsung 970 PRO 1TB M.2 2280 NVMe M.2 NVMe Samsung 970 EVO 2TB M.2 2280 NVMe PC Case Phanteks Enthoo Evolv X (Midi Tower) BLK PSU Corsair HX1200i Monitor ASUS PA328 4K
Nice build! Some questions... 1) What temps are you getting with the H150i during a stress test? (incl sustained CPU clocks and voltage during the test) 2) Is the cooler top or front mounted? 3) Have you tried overclocking the RAM? I'm running GSkill TridentZ @ 4000Mhz 17-17-17-38 ~ 1.36V (stock XMP 3200CL14)...squeezed another 10~12GB/s out of them according to AIDA
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SniperX:

Nice build! Some questions... 1) What temps are you getting with the H150i during a stress test? (incl sustained CPU clocks and voltage during the test) 2) Is the cooler top or front mounted? 3) Have you tried overclocking the RAM? I'm running GSkill TridentZ @ 4000Mhz 17-17-17-38 ~ 1.36V (stock XMP 3200CL14)...squeezed another 10~12GB/s out of them according to AIDA
Thanks. Cannot reply your questions yet as the MB should arrive... tomorrow! 🙂 All other parts have arrived already. I proceeded with the Corsair H150i fans mounting at the top of the Evolvx (it comes equipped with 1 fan on the back side and 2 fans on the front side). This case is gorgeous... Will see how it goes during the weekend hopefully and will not miss to reply your questions.
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lucasfrance:

Thanks. Cannot reply your questions yet as the MB should arrive... tomorrow! 🙂 All other parts have arrived already. I proceeded with the Corsair H150i fans mounting at the top of the Evolvx (it comes equipped with 1 fan on the back side and 2 fans on the front side). This case is gorgeous... Will see how it goes during the weekend hopefully and will not miss to reply your questions.
Enjoy the build! Awesome I look forward to the statistics. I have the same case and CPU 😉 , although I'm running a Phanteks PH-TC14PE air cooler, some cores hit 100degC 😡 after a few minutes during an AIDA FPU CPU stress test (~1.25volts, 4.7Ghz sustained all core clocks and 168W peak package power consumption...I'm using HWMonitor to keep track of the temps, voltages etc.)
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Pictus:

Congratulations! The Gigabytes Z390 got away better VRM. [URL='https://be.hardware.info/reviews/8855/14/23-intel-z390-moederborden-review-+-vrm-test-welk-bord-is-echt-8-core-waardig-benchmarks-vrm-test']Hardware.Info Belgie https://i.imgur.com/7thJbb8.png[/URL]
Weird, I have those same VRM on my old Asus Z87 deluxe and they're rock solid for what 5years now, although my has 16 of them, but still. I think that hardware.info got something messed up or faulty batch.
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SniperX:

Enjoy the build! Awesome I look forward to the statistics. I have the same case and CPU 😉 , although I'm running a Phanteks PH-TC14PE air cooler, some cores hit 100degC 😡 after a few minutes during an AIDA FPU CPU stress test (~1.25volts, 4.7Ghz sustained all core clocks and 168W peak package power consumption...I'm using HWMonitor to keep track of the temps, voltages etc.)
Have already prepared all the wiring fully ready and in place to welcome the MB tomorrow 🙂 I'll let you know the cpu temps under stress during the week end. 100°C seems quite high (even if I know the 9900K can get hot). What thermal paste did you use ? I'll first give a try with the paste delivered by Corsair (already applied on the thermal block) and should it not be fine I have some Thermal Grizzly ready.
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lucasfrance:

Have already prepared all the wiring fully ready and in place to welcome the MB tomorrow 🙂 I'll let you know the cpu temps under stress during the week end. 100°C seems quite high (even if I know the 9900K can get hot). What thermal paste did you use ? I'll first give a try with the paste delivered by Corsair (already applied on the thermal block) and should it not be fine I have some Thermal Grizzly ready.
I'm using Phanteks nano diamond thermal paste, which as far as I can tell is a pretty respectable tp. Last night I made huge strides in reducing my temps by manually setting the core voltage. In the bios, instead of "auto" or "adaptive" vcore voltage settings, I used "override" and set the voltage to 1.25v with LLC set to "mode 6" This gives me a load voltage of 1.208v, just enough for a stable sustained 4.7Ghz all core clock, at least on my setup. Core temps during Aida64 FPU cpu stress test : Before : 95~100°C within only 2 minutes After : 75~83°C after 10 minutes 🙂 Not bad considering it's a heavy AVX workload on air.
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Hi SniperX, After a complete night of work my new system is now up I running perfectly well ! 🙂 I spent few hours to sort out a problem at first boot after assembly (Bios Error Code "7F" : was afraid something went wrong with the MB or CPU during assembly) that was due it seems to the fact I connected to many fans on the same powerline ? To be checked later one... I'm currently porting my previous SW configuration (Partitions copies on the NVMe) and performing some network tuning. Afterwards I'll proceed with the OC/perf/temps tests. I'll let you know. Congrats for the °C reduction on your side. Good job ! 🙂
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lucasfrance:

Hi SniperX, After a complete night of work my new system is now up I running perfectly well ! 🙂 I spent few hours to sort out a problem at first boot after assembly (Bios Error Code "7F" : was afraid something went wrong with the MB or CPU during assembly) that was due it seems to the fact I connected to many fans on the same powerline ? To be checked later one... I'm currently porting my previous SW configuration (Partitions copies on the NVMe) and performing some network tuning. Afterwards I'll proceed with the OC/perf/temps tests. I'll let you know. Congrats for the °C reduction on your side. Good job ! 🙂
Thanks Great stuff. Rather weird that the fans would cause that... Look forward to the statistics
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After a good sleeping night (didn't sleep for about 48 hours) I'm working on finding a way to have the keyboard/mouse support for my Win 7 partition on the Z390... Seems no easy solution available, except installing a PCI USB card just for this, as the Z390 USB drivers are not Win 7 compatible as of yet... Benchmark & Temps measurements are just next on the To Do List …
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Hi there, Here are my first CPU OC / Temps results (see PC detailed HW config in a previous post above) Room temp : 20.5°C H150i (3 fans on the top of the case) Case closed / 1 fan in the rear, 2 fans in the front (Phanteks Evol X standard config) DDR4 at 3200 (default / No OC) CPU on rest : Temp 38-42°C Stress Test (CPU-Z stress): H150i : Extreme - 4.7GHz : 61-65°C - 5.2GHz : 80-84°C H150i : Balance - 4.7GHz : 62-67°C - 5.2GHz : 82-85°C H150i : Quiet - 4.7GHz : 70-74°C - 5.2GHz : 90-95°C Power (CPUID Monitor : Package power) - 4.7GHZ : about 122W - 5.2GHZ : about 176W I also tried Prime95: Test 1 (first in menu choice) : H150i : Extreme - 4.7GHz : 77-82°C - 5.2GHz : PC crash twice (?) H150i : Extreme Test 2 (second in menu) - 5.2GHz : 73-79°C H150i : Extreme Test 3 (third in menu) - 5.2GHz : 69-74°C That's it for now 🙂
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Update : With the Corsair H150i in Extreme mode I get 25-35°C when CPU on rest (with the 5.2GHZ config).
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lucasfrance:

Update : With the Corsair H150i in Extreme mode I get 25-35°C when CPU on rest (with the 5.2GHZ config).
Your stress temps are very good considering...the crash during the first test is during very heavy AVX workloads ...you should set a lower core multiplier in the bios specifically for AVX workloads if you plan on running 5.2Ghz permanently ...the low idle temps are due to power savings mechanisms that kick in to reduce the clocks and the voltages when there is little or no cpu load Some tests (Ambient 25°C) CPU-Z stress test (10 minutes) : Test v17.01.64 4.7Ghz : 64-71°C vCore : 1.184V Package : 105W Prime95 torture test (5 minutes) Small FFTs 4.7Ghz : 85-97°C vCore : 1.248V Package : 190W I definitely have some room for improvement with regards to cooling...looks like I will have to get me a H150i and will install an additional 140mm fan on the front intake (x3) Thanks for the feedback and enjoy the new rig 😉
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Yes, I'll have to investigate the crash on the heavy AVX test at 5.2GHz. I'm quite happy with the new rig perfs and CPU temps are really great thanks to the Corsair H150i. I do feel you would significantly improve your temps by installing one on your side so you can safely reach the 5.2GHz on all cores too 🙂 Kind Regards,
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Those taichi remind me of my old and still working x58sabertooth, indestructible!
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In the review it states "Two 8-pin connectors" to supply the CPU with power, but based on the photos and the specs, I believe you meant "One 8-pin and one 4-pin connector". Can you confirm?