AORUS Master Z390 Motherboard Review

/ 5 years ago

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AORUS Z390 Master

The latest Intel i9-9900K processor is here, at last, bringing with it, Intel’s first consumer level 8-core 16-thread CPU. Of course, it also delivers blazing fast cores that boost to 5 GHz and even beyond that with overclocking. While the new CPUs do work on the existing Z370 motherboards with BIOS update, why invest in Z390? It seems these motherboards are a simple refresh but tweaked to enhance what the new CPUs have to offer. Better build quality, improved BIOS, power delivery, Intel Managment Engine, etc. These little tweaks should add up to better performance and connectivity to take full advantage of the CPUs.


The Master from Aorus is easily one of their best-equipped motherboards to date, short of their extreme X299 motherboards. It features support for both 8th and 9th Gen CPUs, although that’s true of all Z390 motherboards. With 12 phases RI Digital VRM and PowIRstage, as well as 2 x 8 Pin CPU connectors, which should allow us to drive the big power levels the new i9 demands. On top of that, you’ve got superb networking and connectivity options, high-performance audio, RGB lighting and all the other modern luxuries we’ve come to expect. We know what we’re in for, it’s Z370 beefed up a wee bit, so let’s throw it on the bench and see what it can do!

  • Supports 9th and 8th Gen Intel® Core™ Processors
  • Dual Channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready
  • 12 Phases IR Digital VRM Solution with PowIRstage
  • Advanced Thermal Design with Fins-Array Heatsink and Direct Touch Heatpipe
  • Onboard Intel® CNVi 802.11ac 2×2 Wave 2 Wi-Fi
  • 125dB SNR AMP-UP Audio with ALC1220 & High-End ESS SABRE 9118 DAC with WIMA audio capacitors
  • USB TurboCharger for Mobile Device Fast Charge Support
  • Intel® Gigabit LAN with cFosSpeed
  • RGB FUSION with Multi-Zone Addressable LED Light Show Design, Supports Addressable LED & RGB LED Strips
  • Smart Fan 5 features Multiple Temperature Sensors and Hybrid Fan Headers with FAN STOP
  • Front USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C™ Header
  • Triple Ultra-Fast NVMe PCIe Gen3 x4 M.2 with Triple Thermal Guard
  • USB DAC-UP 2 with Adjustable Voltage
  • CEC 2019 Ready, Save Power With a Simple Click


For in-depth specifications, please visit the official AORUS product page here.

12 Phase Digital Power Design

  • 40A IR 3553 for each vCore Phase
  • High current capacity MOSFET
  • Lower temperature
  • Server level reliability

What AORUS Had to Say

“In the dark, starless night, the falcon strikes fear into the heart of its prey. Even with minimal visibility, the falcon pinpoints its prey and patiently anticipates the perfect moment to swoop in for the kill. The falcon with its laser sharp gaze dominates the darkness of night in the same manner that AORUS Core Lighting illuminates the vast AORUS ecosystem.” – AORUS

What’s in the Box

It comes with all the usual bonus bits and bobs, most notably the WiFi antenna, and a hard SLI bridge. I do like the stickers too, they’re always fun, as are the Velcro ties for keeping things neat and tidy.

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