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ASRock Fatal1ty X99 Professional Gaming i7 Motherboard Review

The X99 marketplace has become increasingly crowded with competitive options from the four main motherboard vendors thanks to them all refreshing their portfolios in response to Intel’s new Broadwell-E CPUs.

Here at KitGuru we have reviewed a number of these motherboards including the ASUS Rampage V Edition 10 and STRIX X99 Gaming, Gigabyte X99-Ultra Gaming and MSI X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon.

ASRock‘s Fatal1ty X99 Professional Gaming i7 joins the fray with its own interpretation of what it thinks consumers want in this niche and specialised market segment.

In pricing terms, the ASRock motherboard is competitive with a UK retail price of £270 ($260 in North America). It’s main like-for-like price-contenders are the ASUS ROG STRIX X99 Gaming (£280/$335) and the Gigabyte X99-Ultra Gaming (£250/$280). ASRock is more competitive in North America than it is in the UK, nonetheless, pricing is still fair given what’s on offer.

ASRock’s warranty duration seems to vary more by retailer and region than other vendors, but typically the warranty on this product is 2 or 3 years – check with your preferred retailer before purchasing. The industry-standard for a warranty on this class of product is 3 years.

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While a gaming motherboard by name, the ASRock Fatal1ty X99 Professional Gaming i7 excels in regards to connectivity with dual Ultra M.2, dual Gigabit LAN with teaming support and a plethora of USB options. Taking into account general connectivity for motherboards at this price point, no other model is better equipped than ASRock’s.

For example, Gigabyte’s X99-Ultra Gaming has dual-gigabit but no teaming support and only a single M.2. Both the ASUS ROG STRIX X99 Gaming and MSI X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon have single Gigabit and single M.2.

The Fatal1ty X99 Professional Gaming i7 also nails the building experience with onboard power and reset buttons, a debug LED, a rear clear CMOS button and a clear CMOS jumper, something not all vendors have managed to include.

ASRock has made some compromises to achieve the extra connectivity; the number of full-sized PCIe slots has fallen from 4 to 3 to make room for the second M.2 port. There’s also been little focus on customisation which means no RGB lighting or changeable heatsink covers like is found on rival motherboards.

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Pros:

  • Excellent all-round connectivity – WiFi, dual Gigabit, dual M.2, USB 3.1 and more.
  • Great building experience – onboard buttons, debug LEDs, rear I/O clear CMOS
  • Well rounded UEFI with sensible default turbo behaviour

Cons:

  • No customisation options and somewhat tiresome red & black colour scheme
  • Only 3 full-sized PCIe slots

KitGuru says: The Fatal1ty X99 Professional Gaming i7 is a connectivity-rich motherboard that delivers a great building experience.

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Rating: 8.0.

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