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ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer AM3+ Motherboard Review

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ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer Conclusion

IMPORTANT: Although the rating and final score mentioned in this conclusion are made to be as objective as possible, please be advised that every author perceives these factors differently at various points in time. While we each do our best to ensure that all aspects of the product are considered, there are often times unforeseen market conditions and manufacturer changes which occur after publication that could render our rating obsolete. Please do not base any purchase solely on our conclusion, as it represents our product rating specifically for the product tested, which may differ from future versions.

ASRock_990FX_Fatal1ty_01Benchmark Reviews begins our conclusion with a short summary for each of the areas that we rate. Performance is a difficult thing for a motherboard manufacturer to improve on when the CPU and the chipset control almost everything. There are some things a manufacturer can control, however. One of those things is the power management, and ASRock uses a digital PWM and an 8+2 power phase design to allow for stable and consistent power performance. The ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard also focuses on another area under their control, the audio codec, to improve performance. The Purity Sound greatly enhances audio performance.

I like the look of the ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard. I understand that it is difficult to judge the appearance of a motherboard, considering that it is typically hidden away inside of a case. Even with a windowed case, the other components cover up a lot of the motherboard. That being said, I like it when motherboard manufacturers take the time to put some cosmetic features on their motherboards. The ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard’s gaming color scheme is mirrored on the heat-sinks. The heat-sinks also sport flashy designs, which I like.

As for construction quality, the ASRock does a lot to ensure the durability and stability on the Fatal1ty 990FX Killer. The ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard starts off with a digital PWM. It also uses premium gold caps that last longer and operate more stably. Perhaps the best construction feature on the Fatal1ty 990FX Killer, though, is the high density glass fabric PCB designed to help the motherboard to deal with moisture and avoid short circuits.

If you are audiophile, the ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard offers all the functionality you could want. The Purity Sound system offers EMI shielding, a differential amplifier in addition to a headset amplifier to offer improved frequency response and better base. The ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard also offers enhanced functionality for gamers with the Atheros Killer E2200 NIC, the 2450MHz RAM support, and, of course, the m.2 Gen2 x2 slot. The ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard doesn’t leave out casual users, however, offering A-Style for sharing your stuff across all of your devices.

The ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer motherboard will cost you around $104.79 (Newegg / Amazon). That is a price that I can live with for a fully featured motherboard like the Fatal1ty 990FX Killer. The Purity Audio features, the high quality components, the E2200 NIC, the m.2 Gen2 x2 port, and more make the Fatal1ty 990FX Killer worth the price. As a gamer, I find the Fatal1ty 990FX Killer to offer all the features I need and a price I like.

Pros:Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award Logo (Small: Web Ready)

+ Purity Sound w/ 2 amplifiers
+ m.2 Gen2 x2 slot
+ Atheros Killer E2200 NIC for Gamers
+ Good, Competitive Price

Cons:

– 2 PS/2 ports taking up space on I/O

Ratings:

  • Performance: 9.00
  • Appearance: 9.00
  • Construction: 9.00
  • Functionality: 9.50
  • Value: 9.50

Final Score: 9.20 out of 10.

Excellence Achievement: Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award.


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13 comments

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  1. Tom J

    The FX-9590 results in AIDA might be because of throttling – I think that Fatal1ty board is only rated for the 125W CPUs, not sure if it does any downclocking or anything for the 220W FX CPUs (the 9590 and 9370 aren’t officially supported on that board). It’d be interesting to hear what the temperatures were on that 9590 during those tests.

  2. johnniedoo

    Excellent review, my thoughts were similar to TomJ on using the 9 series AMD in this board. Being a high density glass board, maybe less susceptible to the temp warping, but doubt it- not being an engineer or even close. I knew there was a board made by ASRock that was certified for the 220W processors though. that and only the Gigabyte UD7, I think.
    Seeing that the 9590 was included in the testing did catch my eye though. and for just over $100 new is an even greater eye catcher. Am needing to upgrade a couple of AM3 boards since I can not find any new Phenom II 4 or 6cores retailing anymore. Not even sure how long this AM3+ will last for my FX processors . thanks again for a great review.

  3. TourDeForce

    Interesting review, but it seemed to quickly morph into a processor comparison rather than the motherboard review indicated.

  4. Rich

    No benchmarks with an m.2 SSD installed??!! Like, what are the boot times, program load times compared to other systems with an SSD connected to SATA This is one of the few AMD boards with m.2…. come on guys!

    1. Olin Coles

      While you’re at it, rant about how car review magazines never test all the different tires available for that model. The M.2 slot on this board supports SATA 6 Gb/s M.2 cards, so it would perform pretty much the same as other SATA 6Gb/s SSDs. The only difference would be if a M.2 PCI Express Gen2 x2 card is used, which could reach 10 Gb/s. Of course, the sky is the limit for what is tested, and then it becomes an SSD review. See here: http://benchmarkreviews.com/category/comprehensive-product-reviews/computer-hardware-reviews/pc-storage/

  5. WAEL

    They are, of course, PCIe 3.0 slots???? mine is 2.0 and on ASROCK site they wrote : 3 PCIe 2.0 x16, 2 PCIe 2.0 x1 . maybe you got a new Rev ?

  6. INTESTINAL

    Fatal1ty Killer,supports processor TDP 220W? As demonstrated in the test FX9590

  7. Kennith Jay Rosenthal

    They actually are NOT, of course, PCIE Gen 3.0 slots.

  8. DJ Estioco

    I’ve been reading around and I thought the 990FX Killer isn’t compatible with the 9590 FX? I’ve bought both and it said the CPU isn’t on the Mobo Support List? Am I doing something wrong?

  9. Gemma

    Great review, great board! I like the look of the gaming series motherboards, they look better than the extreme or overclocking series.

  10. Caring1

    Still a nice board, and I happen to like the inclusion of PS2 ports on the rear for the keyboard, if you’re whining about lack of USB ports when there is that many, you are doing it wrong.

  11. Michael

    It’s not pcie 3.0 it’s only 2.0

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