Gigabyte Z490I AORUS Ultra Motherboard Review

/ 5 days ago

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A Closer Look

I do love mini-ITX motherboards, especially when they cram in so much hardware into such a tiny space. It’s certainly an impressive technical achievement and AORUS has still managed to make everything look amazing too. It’s obviously had to cut down on the phases a bit, but you do still get a Direct 8 Power Phase design, with a 90A Smart Power Stage, Tantalum Capacitor Array and a 10-layer PCB! That’s bloody impressive and should be more than enough to feed the top Intel chips what they need.

Gigabyte Z490I AORUS Ultra Motherboard Review 1

A lot of the potential comes from the rather impressive VRM heatsinks. Rather than solid blocks, they’re much more like traditional cooling fins and are stacks in such a way that your airflow should cool them really well. Plus, there’s a C shaped heatpipe linking the top, left and bottom heatsinks.

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If that wasn’t enough, the whole thing screws through to a rear backplate, which adds strength, but also just more protection and heat dissipation in general.

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Power is fed from a single 8-pin header in the left left of the board.

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That lower heatsink offers up TWO M.2 mounts, with one stacked on top of the other, plus the additional heat shield and heatpipe there.

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Tucked into the bottom row, you’ll find a full-size PCIe slot with Ultra Durable Armour.

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Finally, you’ll find their Solid Pin Power Connectors with Metal Shielding on the 24-pin, just like they have on the 8-pin. There’s also a bank of RGB running down the right side of the box as seen in our header image.

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