ASRock X570 Aqua Review: Feature-Packed, Liquid-Cooled

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Firmware, Software and Overclocking

Firmware and Software

The current X570 Aqua firmware has no EZ-mode interface, and we probably shouldn’t expect one given the board’s elite-enthusiast target market. The OC Tweaker menu affords us most of the settings we need to push our CPU and DRAM to respective limits, along with five registers to store custom settings for future reference.

The Tool menu includes an RGB LED submenu, which may work better for many users than the included Polychrome Sync software. Other tools include an SSD overwriter and access to the board’s Instant Flash integrated firmware update utility.

Four of the X570 Aqua’s five fan headers are switchable between PWM and voltage-based fan RPM control, with the CPU fan header having only PWM. Users can choose between several fan profiles, or configure a custom slope using basic arithmetic.

ASRock’s A-Tuning works, according to our readings, to allow users to configure their overclock through Windows. Its System Info tab reports a different CPU thermal reading than the one from AMD’s software, though the one AMD uses can be found here as SB TSI CPU .

The version of Polychrome Sync included on the installation disc functions, but its memory settings are so laggy that we often found the memory displaying the previous pattern after applying the change. Frustratingly, the update offered by ASRock’s APP Shop wasn’t compatible with this board. Hopefully ASRock fixes this lighting software issue sooner rather than later.


We’re using most of the hardware from our first X570 review to compare the X570 Aqua to our first four boards, but the original Fractal Design Celsius S24 isn’t designed to be used on this monoblock, so we switched it out for an MCP35X. Given the extra voltage regulator and PCH heat that the radiator would be required to control, we likewise updated that to a Coolstream XE 240 with a pair of Vardar 2200RPM fans. A tubing kit from Bitspower and a few additional fittings from Alphacool brought it all together.

The X570 Aqua ties for first in CPU overclocking with the Asus X570-E Gaming and MSI X570 Ace, but the Ace beats it in DRAM OC. We also noticed the CPU-Z is now reporting a dip in core voltage under Prime95 small-FFTs, regardless of the level of droop compensation set, though the highest stable speed remained consistent with those previously-tested boards. Full-CPU-load wattage for the entire system fluctuated between 224 and 234 watts.

Performance is the point of overclocking, and the X570 Aqua makes a clean sweep with a 3% advantage in memory bandwidth.

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Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.