CPU Cooler Fit & Included Accessories
CPU Cooler Fit
To test the amount of space surrounding the CPU socket, we mounted a Noctua NH-D15 cooler to the CPU socket. Both a overly large CPU air coolers, sporting a dual fan construction and two huge vertical cooling towers.
With the NH-D15 oriented to blow air towards the board's rear panel, the cooler does not come into direct contact with any of the memory modules or heat sinks surrounding the CPU socket. While a graphics card does not conflict with the heat sink in the primary PCIe x16 slots, the card may require using an alternate slot if it contains large components on the rear side of the PCB or backplate.
The side views illustrate that the memory slot layout is designed to be usable with even the largest CPU coolers, as long as the cooler is designed to adhere to the Intel design spec. The fit between the front fan and the front memory modules could be tight, depending on the cooler's front fan seating height.
Noctua SecureFirm2 mounting system
Noctua's SecureFirm2 mounting system is a good method to quickly determine how well the CPU socket laid out to accommodate a larger cooler. The mount easily fits within the constraints of the upper and lower memory modules, as well in the VRM heat sink and power chokes located just under the heat sink.
To further reinforce the X99-A's positioning as a base level board, ASUS included only the bare necessities needed to get the board up and running.
ASUS is well known for the level of detail and thoroughness provided in their user guides. The X99-A's manual lives up to this legacy, detailing out all board functionality and the UEFI features. ASUS also includes an install disk containing all necessary hardware drivers and application software for board functioning. Additionally, a "Powered by ASUS" branded metallic case badge and an ASUS performance-branded case sticker are bundled in with the board.
ASUS includes a flat black colored rear panel shield with the ports labeled via white colored text and graphics and specialized coloring to differentiate the BIOS Flashback button and port. The coloration of the rear panel shield fit in nicely with board.
ASUS included a total of four 6Gb/s rated SATA cables for use with the integrated port. The black colored cables have white colored ends with integrated port locks and a mix of straight and 90 degree port connectors.
For multi-GPU use, GIGABYTE includes a single two-way NVIDIA SLI cable, for using the board with multiple graphics cards.
For use with the on-board front panel and USB 2.0 headers, ASUS included their Q-Connector header plugs. You simply plug the front panel and USB 2.0 plugs into the Q-Connector, then plug the Q-Connector into the appropriate board header. It makes the installation of the front panel and USB plugs much easier.