ASRock Z390 Extreme4 Review: 9th Gen “Core” Value?

ASRock’s Z390 Extreme4 officially supports Intel’s latest higher-finish mainstream processor, the Main i9-9900K. But that doesn’t mean it must be utilised with that CPU, as we’ll see later in our testing.

Priced all over $a hundred and sixty US (and also all over £160 in Uk), the Z390 Extreme4’s goal customers are almost certainly seeking at one thing closer to the Main i5-9600K. And provided the board’s similarities to its Z370 predecessor, we feel it will almost certainly aid the mid-amount CPU fairly handily. But it is however competing towards other boards that can effectively aid the Main i9-9900K’s higher power prerequisite, its failure to preserve up with people competing products places a significant ding in its approval rating.

Technical specs

Socket LGA 1151
Chipset Intel Z390
Variety Variable ATX
Voltage Regulator 12 Phases
Movie Ports DisplayPort one.2, HDMI one.4, VGA
USB Ports ten Gbps: (one) Type-C, (one) Type A
5Gb/s: (4) Type A
Community Jacks (one) Gigabit Ethernet
Audio Jacks (five) Analog, (one) Digital Out
Legacy Ports/Jacks (one) PS/2
Other Ports/Jack Antenna Bracket
PCIe x16 (three) v3. (x16/x0/x4, x8/x8/x4)
PCIe x8
PCIe x4
PCIe x1 (2) v3.
CrossFire/SLI 3x / 2x
DIMM slots (4) DDR4
M.2 slots (2) PCIe three. x4* / SATA*, (one) M.2 Crucial-E
(*Consumes SATA Ports /one, 4/five)
U.2 Ports
SATA Ports (8) 6Gb/s (Ports /one, 4/five shared w/M.2)
USB Headers (one) 5Gb/s Type-C, (2) v3., (2) v2.
Enthusiast Headers (five) 4-Pin
Legacy Interfaces Serial COM Port, System (beep-code) Speaker
Other Interfaces FP-Audio, D-LED, (2) RGB-LED, Thunderbolt AIC, TPM
Diagnostics Panel
Internal Button/Switch ✗ / ✗
SATA Controllers Built-in (/one/five/ten), ASM1061 PCIe
Ethernet Controllers WGI219V PHY
Wi-Fi / Bluetooth
USB Controllers ASM1074 Hub
Hd Audio Codec ALC1220
DDL/DTS Connect DTS Connect
Warranty three Yrs

Functions

Sitting down at the center of ASRock’s customer motherboard line, the Extreme4 has prolonged available users a much less expensive way to reach a moderate overclock from higher-finish processors. That exact same thought has used whether we were chatting about the 8700K, the 7900X, or even some of its AMD choices. Rates often reflected a large big difference in power requirements amongst Intel’s large and very little processors, but enthusiasts could rely on the Extreme4 series to provide worth that was at least aggressive to other boards that utilised the exact same socket.

But Intel’s decision to wedge the eight-main, sixteen-thread Main i9-9900K into the scaled-down “mainstream” socket remaining ASRock in a bind: Did Intel really count on worth-searching for enthusiasts to pay back an added twenty five p.c for increased-ability voltage regulation? ASRock does not appear to be to feel so.

The Z390 Extreme4’s bigger heatsinks are supposed to deal with the increased continual power draw of the newer Main i9 CPU, and the Z370-version’s USB three.one Gen2 controller disappears in favor of the Z390’s integrated Gen2 aid, but we reduce an interior USB 2. header. Scaled-down improvements these as the addition of addressable LED and a second RGB connector might be far more pertinent to the existing market.

Two twin-port USB 2. headers continue being, as do the Z370-version’s first two USB three. and solitary Gen2 front-panel header–and that Gen2 header however operates at Gen1 pace (5Gb/s), just like on the Z370 design. The two metal-reinforced PCIe slots operate at possibly x16/x0 or x8/x8 mode, based on whether a card occupies the second slot. The bottom PCIe slot operates at x4 mode off the chipset’s integrated hub, and the a few PCIe x1 slots are ocne again open-finished to aid lengthier playing cards. The Z390 Extreme4 adds a decorative aluminum “heat spreader” cover above its lower M.2 storage slot, and repositions its Crucial-E slot (ordinarily utilised for Wi-Fi/Bluetooth playing cards) to the middle of the board whilst including the CNVi mode that is exceptional to Intel’s newer chipsets.

The Z390 Extreme4 loses the Z370 version’s DVI-D output, but gains DisplayPort, all whilst keeping the legacy VGA port. The two-gap Wi-Fi antenna bracket is continues to be, but the motherboard’s set up kit does not include the required cables to operate amongst the bracket and any Wi-Fi card that a builder might otherwise be tempted to spot at the mid-board Crucial-E slot.

The USB port configuration matches that of the old board, aside from its two Gen2 ports staying connected to the Z390’s freshly-integrated controller. The PS/2 keyboard/mouse port is however there, Gigabit Ethernet however arrives from Intel’s i219 PHY, and the ALC1220 audio codec is however bolstered with DTS Connect to output stay multichannel streams by means of the board’s digital optical port (to a DTS receiver, of course).

Z390 Extreme4 customers get the great total structure of the preceding Z370 design, with all of the rigid perpendicularly-oriented cable headers paced above the top x16 slot to avoid card conflict. There is however the possibility of a fan connector standing as well tall beneath the most affordable slot to allow for a graphics card to be shoved in all the way, but a four-lane slot that shares people four lanes of bandwidth with all M.2 slots and SATA ports is not accurately exceptional for graphics card placement in any case. ASRock adds a four-pin ATX12V connector to the 8-pin EPS12V, but we’re far more concerned with the board’s ability than that of our cables (however your cables might be a lot less robust than ours).

Z390 Extreme4 customers get a driver disc, printed documentation, an I/O shield, four SATA cables, a legacy higher-bandwidth SLI bridge, and a circumstance badge to go with their board.

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