Intel’s upcoming Haswell-E HEDT (high-end desktop) platform will be launching soon and with it so will the X99 chipset. Of course that means a whole slew of new X99 motherboards. While some X99 motherboards were shown at Computex this year they were prototypes and not final versions. In a recent press briefing in Taiwan, ASRock showed off three of their X99 motherboards, which look to be the final versions.
The three motherboards that were shown off were the X99 Extreme4, X99 Extreme6 and Fatal1ty X99 Killer. All of these will sport the X99 chipset and Intel’s LGA 2011-3 socket which supports Intel’s Haswell-E processors. The X99 xhipset has several new features including ten SATA 6GB/s ports, 14 USB ports (6 of which are USB 3.0), Intel’s new Clarksville gigabit Ethernet, and DDR4 memory support.
The ASRock X99 Extreme4 will sit at the bottom of ASRock’s X99 series motherboards. This was the only motherboard that did not have heatsinks installed, but they will be very similar to the ones that you see on the X99 Extreme6 below. This motherboard features the black and blue color scheme that ASRock used on their Z97 chipset motherboards. This board will have a 12 phase power design which gets its power from a single 8-pin EPS connector. The CPU socket is at the center of the board with the power delivery components and EPS connector located above it. On each side of the CPU socket you have four DDR4 DIMM slots. This board will support DDR4 memory up to 2800 MHz.
As far as expansion slots go you have three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots, a PCI-Express 2.0 x16 slot, and a PCI-Express 3.0 x1 slot. The board is capable of running 4-way AMD CrossFireX or 3-way NVIDIA SLI setups. Below the first PCI-Express slot is the M.2 connector for M.2 solid state drives. The board will have 10 SATA ports and we can also see a USB 3.0 header. The board will also feature premium alloy chokes, dual-stack MOSFETs and the Purity Sound 2 chip.
The ASRock X99 Extreme6 will be the mid-range offering for the X99 series motherboards. It is shown with its included heatsinks, which are the same color blue that we saw on the ones on their Z97 motherboards. Just like the X99 Extreme4 this motherboard will feature a 12 phase power delivery system and the 8-pin EPS connector is located in the same spot. I rather do like the center placement as it will make it easier to actually connect your EPS wire.
The X99 Extreme6 is very similar to the X99 Extreme4, but there are some changes. First the PCI-Express layout is different, it has three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots and two PCI-Express 3.0 x1 slots. The board will still support 4-way AMD CrossFireX and 3-way NVIDIA SLI setups. The M.2 slot is again located under the first PCI-Express slot. Two USB 3.0 headers, 10 SATA ports and a debug LED are spotted as well.
The Fatal1ty X99X Killer will be ASRock’s gaming offering for the X99 chipset. If you are familiar with the Fatal1ty line of motherboards from ASRock then you know they use the red and black color scheme. The Fatal1ty X99X Killer will have the same 12 phase power delivery system as the other two motherboards.
Expansion is the same as the X99 Extreme6 so you will have three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots and two PCI-Express 3.0 x1 slots. This will of course give you support for 4-way AMD CrossFireX and 3-way NVIDIA SLI setups. The M.2 slot is also located under the first PCI-Express slot. 10 SATA ports, two USB 3.0 headers and a debug LED are also spotted on the board. The board switches out Intel’s networking for the Killer E2200 chip and also has ASRock’s Purity Sound 2.
These motherboards will launch in the coming months along with Intel’s Haswell-E processors.
Jan 30, 2015 0