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ASRock X99M Extreme4 And Fatal1ty X99M Killer Review

ASRock is ready to take on EVGA in the battle for enthusiast-oriented microATX motherboards. Can the company best known for value conquer its gaming-centric competitor in overclocking and features, or will this be a pure pricing play?

ASRock's Bundled Software

While the X99M Extreme4 includes ASRock’s A-Tuning software, the Fatal1ty X99M Killer instead has F-Stream. Apart from the logos and border color, it’s the same product.

Both boards reached 4.3GHz at 1.2V core using the program’s auto-tuning routine, and both boards crashed after approximately 30 minutes of 16-thread, AVX-optimized Prime95. Pre-programmed overclocks of 4GHz at 1.20V, 4.2GHz at 1.22V, 4.4GHz at 1.3V and 4.5GHz at 1.36V were stable as long as the processor remained under its thermal threshold. The 4.5 GHz setting eventually forced thermal throttling.

The A-Tuning / F-Stream OC Tweaker menu provides hardware access to firmware-level controls. But unlike the programed overclock, it doesn’t require a reboot for most changes. I was able to confirm that BCLK, CPU ratio and certain voltage changes were operational using software and a volt meter, though my changes were far below the software’s range.

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Both motherboards include ASRock’s XFast LAN (by cFos) packet prioritization software, but the Fatal1ty X99M Killer’s integrated Killer Network controller adds that component's corresponding management suite.

Remember that I mentioned the Fatal1ty X99M Killer’s XSplit Premium three-month software code? The motherboard’s installation disc includes the software.

  • Mac266
    Just a quick error,
    Chipset for all X99 boards is listed as Z97
    Reply
  • Crashman
    14730663 said:
    Just a quick error,
    Chipset for all X99 boards is listed as Z97

    Fixed, thanks. In case you're wondering, that type of error occurs from continuously recycling tables.
    Reply
  • Calculatron
    Go ASRock!
    Reply
  • ocer9999
    Whoa, both are really tempting! Need to start saving!
    Reply
  • HideOut
    To bad the killer model seems to suffer a high markup at amazon according to the green link.
    Reply
  • Lutfij
    Nice work Thomas! Guess you were sitting on this board in your lab for some time now huh ? :D :)

    Anyways, good writeup and keep em coming. Now to find someone crazy enough to shell out on a X99 platform inside an N200 ... hmmm.
    Reply
  • Crashman
    14733470 said:
    Nice work Thomas! Guess you were sitting on this board in your lab for some time now huh ? :D :)

    Anyways, good writeup and keep em coming. Now to find someone crazy enough to shell out on a X99 platform inside an N200 ... hmmm.

    It takes a couple weeks to get stuff published, unless there's an NDA and everyone puts everything else to the side. These would be among the stuff put to the side though :(
    At least you knew it was coming :)
    Reply
  • Mac266
    14730952 said:

    Fixed, thanks. In case you're wondering, that type of error occurs from continuously recycling tables.

    Onya Crash. Nice review as well.
    Reply
  • m32
    The ASRock Fatal1ty X99M Killer LGA 2011-v3 is selling for $250 ($230 AMIR) on Newegg. Amazon currently isn't selling it on Amazon, and 3rd parties are known to over mark products.
    Reply
  • RedJaron
    Tom, what would it take to get ASRock to start putting more 4-pin fan headers on their boards? I love their products, been using a Z68 Ex4 Gen3 for three years and just built a friend's machine on an H97M Pro4. But I love quiet PCs. Having PWM signalling for all the chassis fans, and not just the CPU coolers, means it runs as quiet as possible during web surfing and other downtime.
    Reply