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EVGA X99 Micro Motherboard Review: Haswell-E And MicroATX

Power, Heat, Efficiency And Overclocking

Power, Heat And Efficiency

EVGA’s X99 Micro fits mid-pack in energy consumption, which means that it should also appear mid-pack in efficiency. That quick-and-dirty analysis comes from its average-looking performance in the majority of benchmarks.

The X99 Micro did suffer slightly higher CPU temperatures, but differences this small can be caused by paste placement as much as by voltage differences. Power consumption was consistent with the other products, after all.

I guessed at the top of the page that the EVGA X99 Micro’s mid-pack performance and power consumption would place it dead center in efficiency. The actual results are close, but the X99 Extreme4’s extra-low power consumption bent the curve.

Overclocking

EVGA X99 Micro BIOS Frequency and Voltage settings (for overclocking)
BIOS Version5.6.5 (09/19/2014)PCH Voltage0.90-1.60V (1mV)
Base Clock80-250MHz (0.05MHz)DRAM Voltage0.80-2.00V (1mV)
CPU Multiplier12-80x (1x)CAS Latency5-31 Cycles
DRAM Data Rates1200-2666 (200/266.6MHz)tRCD5-31 Cycles
CPU Vcore0.80-2.00V (5mV)tRP5-31 Cycles
VCCIN1.50-3.05V (1mV)tRAS10-63 Cycles

Every X99 motherboard we’ve tested is able to push this Core i7-5960X to a 44 x 101MHz core clock, where the additional voltage needed to achieve even higher core frequencies eventually causes thermal throttling. There’s nothing lost or gained in the X99 Micro in this respect.

The X99 Micro ties for last place in BCLK overclocking, though it will allow that same 2% increase to be applied to the 1.25x CPU strap for a 128MHz setting. That will be important when we begin to search for the ultimate in memory bandwidth.

To get that high memory bandwidth, we first need to find a high data rate. EVGA’s X99 Micro helps us by outputting near-perfect DIMM voltage, where both the CPU and DRAM need near-perfection to reach the RAM's rated DDR4-3000.

Memory settings that we don’t often notice, such as slower tertiary memory timings, often allow better overclocks at the cost of bandwidth. EVGA takes the top DRAM data rate, while ASRock and MSI compete for bandwidth superiority.

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