Gigabyte AORUS Gaming 9 X299 Motherboard Review
Peter Donnell / 8 months ago
A Closer Look
From the moment you take it out of the box, you know this motherboard means serious business. For starters, this is by far the heaviest motherboard we’ve ever had in the office. It has extensive applications of armour on all major components. However, it’s the thick full-size back plate that adds most of the bulk.
The new X299 socket finished in black, helping it match the darker design of the rest of the motherboard. As you can see at the back, there’s a very robust power delivery for the CPU. When it comes to overclocking and providing consistent and clean power to the CPU, this is going to be a huge benefit.
Server-Class Digital Power Design
There are 8 x DIMM slots on this motherboard. Of course, they’ll support up to quad-channel, and speed of up to DDR4 4400+(OC). Between the memory slots, you’ll also find full RGB light strips, with three on this side, and three on the other, giving you lots of customisation options.
Here you will find armoured PCIe slots and plenty of them. Of course, this is going to more than satisfy the needs of those using multiple graphics cards, PCIe M.2 and much more.
Count them, 1, 2, 3, M.2 drive mounts each with their own durable armoured heat sink covers.
A chunky heatsink over the main chipset too, of course, this also comes with RGB lighting built-in.
Extensive connectivity options!
Down the right edge of the board, you’ll find 8 x SATA 6Gbps port, as well as USB 3.1, 3.1 and all the usual stuff.
However, it’s the bottom row that is easily the most crowded. There are USB headers, a second USB 3.0 header, front panel connectors, a BIOS code LED, etc. Of course, it’s the four small buttons that are most important to many, with ECO, OC, Reset and Power controls built-in.
A high-end DAC comes built-in too, with ESS Sabre Hi-Fi, gold caps, and a trace separator to prevent interference.
The CPU takes its power from 2 x 8-pin headers. Of course, that’s more power than the CPU really needs, but it’ll help provide more stable voltages for higher overclocks.
One of my favourite features on the Gigabyte AORUS Gaming 9 is the backplate. The rear shroud is built-in, as is the rear cover, giving it a nice clean look and easing the installation. Of course, this backplate is fully LED lit too, so finding those USB ports should be nice and easy.
Finally, we have a full-cover backplate on this motherboard. Not only does this give the board added strength and look awesome, it also protects your fingers from the sharp solder on the rear of the motherboard while installing.
Not content with the 3 x NVMe M.2 mounts on the motherboard? Included in the box, you’ll also find this gorgeous GC-PCIe x4 M.2 mount. This means you can add yet another storage drive to your build. Of course, it’s a nice practical feature, but it also looks pretty slick too.