ASUS X99-DELUXE Conclusion
ASUS has done their usual sterling job with this motherboard. Stuffed with hi-spec components and popular, useful features, the X99-DELUXE is like a set of Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar tires for your Ford F150 pickup.
Regardless of the suitability of an LGA2011-V3 system for any particular purpose, it makes sense for ASUS to keep the platform current and competitive with its more mainstream LGA1150 setups. Their X79 systems were getting a little long in the tooth, really, and it’s nice to see the very latest BIOS user interface and features on the very latest Intel system.
However, there were a few little signs that this board isn’t quite ready: I was shocked that several of the auto-overclocking features left the board unable to POST, and a few niggling little bugs in the BIOS caught my eye. For example, this BIOS has the nifty feature of showing you exactly which settings you’ve changed, and how, when you save and reboot, a nicety ASUS introduced to their LGA1150 boards a year or so back. But in some cases, I could change a setting (like BCLK) and the BIOS would report that nothing had been changed (the change did stick).
ASUS rolled out a new BIOS just a couple of days ago that addressed some of these problems, so I’m sure in a month or so that everything will be working perfectly. The non-booting BIOS overclocks do worry me a little since I saw a similar problem in the Sabertooth X79 Mark I I reviewed earlier this year. On the other hand, using the “5 Way Optimization” feature in AI Suite 3 resulted in the best automatic overclock I’ve ever seen. I expect ASUS to fix the BIOS overclocking issues in a future release.
So…do I recommend this board or not? Well, that depends: if you’re someone who can actually use a Haswell-E effectively– that is, if you’re a professional content producer– then I think you’d be better served with ASUS’ own X99-E WS motherboard. Avilable online for $398.99 (Amazon | Newegg), the X99-DELUXE is a very expensive motherboard, but if you’re an enthusiast or home user who likes $1,000 CPUs, this is about the nicest home you could give one.
+ Updated UEFI reaches feature parity with LGA1150 boards
+ Switchable PCI-E lane allocation
+ Multiple m.2 mounting options
+ Amazing auto overclock from AI Suite 3
+ First beam-forming 802.11ac onboard
— Some minor problems in BIOS
– Some overclocking features produce non-bootable systems
– Does it really make sense for anyone?
Final Score: 9.05 out of 10.
Excellence Achievement: Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award.
COMMENT QUESTION: Who makes the best motherboards, in your opinion?