I really like what Gigabyte has done with the X99-Gaming 5P. You have to remember this is the second round or batch of X99 motherboards from Gigabyte so they have fixed and optimized many things. The biggest changes over its predecessor (X99-Gaming 5) is that it is an E-ATX motherboard, has the enhanced CPU socket, and native support for DDR4-3333 XMP profiles. I feel that these upgrades set this board apart from its predecessor and make it worth purchasing.
Of course this is a gaming board so what gaming-specific features does it have. I would say the best feature is the true x16 slot. The third PCI-Express slot will always operate at x16 speeds, even with 4 cards installed. This is because this slot has a direct connection to the CPU. The PCI-Express slots are also perfectly spaced for multi-card setups. You have the Killer E2200 networking chipset which has been proven to provide better online gaming and online media performance compared to standard solutions. The audio solution on the board is excellent and its accompanying software really allows you to customize your listening experience. There are LEDs on the audio PCB isolation, PCH heatsink and I/O shield. These make the board look quite cool especially if you have a case with a side panel window. I already mentioned it too, but the board natively supports XMP profiles up to 3333 MHz, which is great for gamers looking to build the most powerful system out there.
This motherboard is rock solid as well. I was easily able to bring our Intel Core i7-5960X up to 4.4 GHz without any issues. And as I talked about with the OC Mode switch turned on the board was more stable. Even though there is a 6-phase VRM the new socket with extra pins and revised DDR4 tracerouting kept things nice and stable.
Gigabyte has done a great job bringing their motherboard companion software up to date and actually making it useful. The EasyTune software easily allows you to overclock your system while in Windows. The APP Center keeps all of the apps organized in one place and Live Update keeps all of the software updated for you.
There were some things missing from this motherboard that I would have liked to have seen. There are no power and reset buttons on the board or a POST code display. Also I would have liked to have seen an M.2 X4 slot (32 Gb/s) rather than the 10 Gb/s slot. I am still not the biggest fan of Gigabyte’s BIOS implementation either.
Regardless of the things I did not like this is a very solid motherboard and one I can completely recommend to any gamer out there looking to build a system on the Haswell-E platform. Right now the board is selling at my favorite online retailer for $309.99 at my favorite online retailer. Overall ThinkComputers gives the Gigabyte X99-Gaming 5P a 9 out of 10 score and our Recommended Award!
– Solid performance
– New improved CPU socket
– Audio solution based on Creative Sound Core 3D chip
– True x16 PCI-Express slot (direct connection with CPU)
– Lights on the PCH heatsink, PCB isolation, and rear I/O
– Killer E2200 networking
– Perfect spacing for multi-GPU setups
– No power or reset buttons on the board
– M.2 slot is only a 10 Gb/s slot
– BIOS could still use some work