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MSI X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon Motherboard Review

There’s certainly no shortage of high-end motherboards on the Intel X99 platform – ASRock, ASUS, Gigabyte and MSI all have motherboard options over £400 in this space. The MSI X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon is MSI’s top-flight option and with a price of £454.99 in the UK, $600.00, it is out of the realistic grasp of most PC gamers.

Such a serious price point requires a serious number of features and extras and thankfully MSI’s X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon does deliver enough to warrant consideration. As far as connectivity and expansion are concerned this motherboard has everything covered – dual Gigabit LAN, AC WiFi, USB 3.1, USB Type-C, 4-Way GPU, M.2, U.2 and SATA Express.

The X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon hits the mark for building and overclocking experiences too – a debug code reader, onboard power buttons, voltage checkpoints and a comprehensive UEFI that’ll help you squeeze the most out of your CPU. The clean colour scheme with RGB customisation is beneficial to the building experience as well, giving you more flexibility to mix and match any variety of colours you may choose. The budding modder should also note the shroud and heatsinks are easily removable for painting or different carbon fibre wraps.

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There are some things that let this MSI motherboard down a little bit though, not least the somewhat ropey RGB software that doesn’t allow individual LED zone adjustment or the Android app that resets the colour every time the lighting mode is changed. The problems we encountered hopefully have a fix in the works and will be fixed in future, so shouldn’t present a barrier to purchasing, though the lack of an RGB header on the motherboard may put some buyers off.

The main sticking point for purchasing will undoubtedly be the steep price point which is trumped only by the ASUS Rampage V Edition 10 and ASRock X99 Extreme 11. With so much financial outlay required prospective buyers will expect near perfection – the MSI X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon isn’t perfect though it is still a very competent motherboard.

In addition to some oversights in the RGB department the lack of armour or reinforcement plates underneath the motherboard seems a bit stingy, so too does the “only” 8 rear USB ports, which is a couple less than the the competition presumably because MSI chose to instead allocate rear I/O space to a PS/2 port and 6.35mm audio jack.

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You can buy from Overclockers UK for £454.99 inc VAT HERE

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Pros:

  • Striking aesthetics.
  • Broad connectivity options for storage, networking and peripherals.
  • Supports up to 4-Way GPU configurations.
  • Onboard buttons, debug LED and voltage checkpoints.
  • UEFI well-geared towards overclocking.
  • Premium audio package.
  • Generous accessory bundle.

Cons:

  • RGB software needs work, no RGB headers.
  • Steep price point.
  • No underside armour/reinforcement or heatsink customisation stickers.
  • Only 8 rear USB ports.

KitGuru says: It’s not going to be your God but the MSI X99A Godlike Gaming Carbon is a worthy consideration for any premium Intel X99 system. Features-galore, overclocking prowess and refined styling make this pricey motherboard a solid enthusiast option.

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Rating: 8.0.

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