EVGA Z690 Classified Review: Declassified Class

Robust power delivery, horizontal connectors, three M.2 slots, and eight SATA ports for $629.99.

EVGA Z690 Classified
(Image: © EVGA)

Why you can trust Tom's Hardware Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.


EVGA’s BIOS, like the other board partners, didn’t change much compared to Z590. Once the systems POSTs, you’re still presented with four options (Setup, Default, Gamer Mode, and EVGA OC Robot) to access different functionality. After entering the Setup portion of the BIOS where you have access to tweak settings, there’s an informative system summary up top. There are headings for different sections below that, with the rest of the screen taken up by options for each header. For the most part, there isn’t a lot of digging around in the sub-menus to find the most frequently accessed items, but CPU and memory overclocking are in different sections. Gamer Mode provides a slight boost to the CPU, while the EVGA OC Robot finds a faster clock speed by raising clocks and playing with voltage while stress testing. Overall, we like EVGA’s BIOS implementation for Z690.


On the software side, EVGA’s Eleet X1 is a multi-functional monitoring and tweaking tool. For example, Eleet can overclock the CPU and Memory and monitor the system voltages, temperatures and fan speeds. Additionally, it offers RGB lighting control and several preset lighting modes, plus the ability to adjust by each strip attached to the motherboard headers. The latest version of Eleet X1 ( is easy to read and helpful. The only thing we feel that’s missing from the software is fan control.

Test System / Comparison Products

As of October 2021, we’ve updated our test system to Windows 11 64-bit OS with all updates applied. We kept the same Asus TUF RTX 3070 video card from our previous testing platforms but updated the driver to version 496.13. Additionally, our game selection was updated, as noted in the table below. We use the latest non-beta motherboard BIOS available to the public unless otherwise noted. The hardware we used is as follows:

Test System Components

Swipe to scroll horizontally
CPUIntel Core i9-12900K
MemoryKingston Fury DDR5 5200 CL40 (9KF552C40BBK2-32)
Row 2 - Cell 0 GSkill Trident Z DDR5 5600 CL36 (F5-5600U3636C16GX2-TZ5RK)
Row 3 - Cell 0 ADATA XPG DDR5 6000 CL40 (AX5U6000C4016G-FCLARBK)
GPUAsus TUF RTX 3070
CoolingMSI MEG Coreliquid S360
PSUEVGA Supernova 850W P6
SoftwareWindows 11 64-bit (21H2, Build 22000.282)
Graphics DriverNVIDIA Driver 496.13
SoundIntegrated HD audio
NetworkIntegrated Networking (GbE or 2.5 GbE)

EVGA supplied our Supernova 850W P6 power supply (appropriately sized and more efficient than the outgoing 1.2KW monster we used) for our test systems, and G.Skill sent us a DDR5-5600 (F5-5600U3636C16GX2-TZ5RK) memory kit for launch day testing. MSI and Asus also provided launch day kits.

Benchmark Settings

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Synthetic Benchmarks and SettingsRow 0 - Cell 1
ProcyonVersion 2.0.249 64
Row 2 - Cell 0 Office Suite, Video Editing (Premiere Pro), Photo Editing (Photoshop, Lightroom Classic)
3DMarkVersion 2.20.7290 64
Row 4 - Cell 0 Firestrike Extreme and Time Spy Default Presets
Cinebench R23Version RBBENCHMARK330542
Row 6 - Cell 0 Open GL Benchmark - Single and Multi-threaded
BlenderVersion 2.93.1
Row 8 - Cell 0 Full benchmark (all six sub-tests)
Application Tests and SettingsRow 9 - Cell 1
LAME MP3Version SSE2_2019
Row 11 - Cell 0 Mixed 271MB WAV to mp3: Command: -b 160 --nores (160Kb/s)
HandBrake CLIVersion: 1.2.2
Row 13 - Cell 0 Sintel Open Movie Project: 4.19GB 4K mkv to x264 (light AVX) and x265 (heavy AVX)
Corona 1.4Version 1.4
Row 15 - Cell 0 Custom benchmark
7-ZipVersion 21.03-beta
Row 17 - Cell 0 Integrated benchmark (Command Line)
Game Tests and SettingsRow 18 - Cell 1
Far Cry 6Ultra Preset - 1920 x 1080, HD Textures ON
F1 2021Ultra Preset - 1920 x 1080, HBAO+, RT Med, TAA + 16xAF, Bahrain, FPS Counter ON

MORE: Best Motherboards

MORE: How To Choose A Motherboard

MORE: All Motherboard Content

Joe Shields
Motherboard Reviewer

Joe Shields is a Freelance writer for Tom’s Hardware US. He reviews motherboards.

  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    Along the right edge, we run into eight SATA ports, which is one area where this board has more than most of the competition. The Classified supports RAID0/1/5/10 modes for SATA if you’re looking for redundancy or striping (or both). In all, you can run all eight SATA ports and all three M.2 sockets concurrently (you just lose the bottom PCIe slot).

    Am I the only one who just doesn't understand why 8 or even 6 SATA ports are included on motherboards, especially higher end motherboards, in 2022? If you're going to buy a $600+ motherboard, you likely have a pair or triplet, or even a quartet, of high capacity NVMe drives and probably don't have any SATA drives. Seems to me that bandwidth could be put to better use...