Overclocking and Conclusion

Overclocking

To give a feel for the overclocking performance potential of the X299 AORUS Gaming 3 motherboard, we attempted to push it to known CPU-supported performance parameters with minimal tweaking. At the stock base clock speed of 100Mhz, we pushed the CPU to 4.7GHz with a 3.0GHz mesh bus frequency and 3000MHz memory speeds. This was done at a 1.26V CPU voltage, a 1.20V Mesh voltage, and a 1.355V memory voltage with all other values left at default settings. Unforturnately, the board would not stabilize with memory settings above 3000MHz, even though the memory has run at its full 3200Mhz on other boards. Further, the CPU speed was downclocked to 4.4-4.5GHz with AIDA64 running because of a bug with the AVX code in the BIOS version used for testing. All overclocking sessions remained stable for over 4hrs. System stability was tested running the AIDA64 stability test in conjunction with EVGA's OC Scanner X graphical benchmark running at 1280×1024 resolution and 8x MSAA in stress test mode. Note that 16GB (4 x 4GB) of Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4-3200 memory modules were used for the overclocking tests

100MHz Base Clock Stats with 5.1GHZ CPU speed

Note that this is is meant only as a quick preview of the board's performance potential. With more time to tweak the settings to a greater extent, pushing to a higher base clock and ring bus speed may have been achievable, in addition to an overnight stability run without issue.

Pricing

As of June 02, the GIGABYTE X299 AORUS Gaming 3 motherboard was available from Newegg.com for $279.99.

Conclusion

The GIGABYTE X299 AORUS Gaming 3 is a solid starting point for the launch of GIGABYTE's Intel X299-based board line. The board features the neutral black board aesthetics, ensuring visual compatibility with most builds in addition to the highly configurable integrated RGB LEDs. The board was well designed with high quality power components used to ensure CPU stability, as well as structural enhancements to the PCIe and memory slots to ensure component stability in a vertical orientation.

The biggest challenge with this board was with overclocking. The AVX issue discussed previously causes the CPU frequency to be downclocked during high utilization scenarios. However, GIGABYTE is currently working on this issue and assures us that an updated BIOS is in the works to address this issue.

We will be taking a more in-depth look into this board and its features in the near future, which should uncover even more strengths with this board and its new branding than was discussed in this preview article.

Strengths

  • Stock performance
  • Overclocking potential
  • Board aesthetics, layout, and design
  • Price
  • UEFI BIOS design and usability
  • Configurable RGB LEDs using RGB Fusion through both UEFI and Windows app
  • Dual RGBW headers
  • Design of metal reinforced PCIe and memory slots

Weaknesses

  • CMOS battery placement
  • Lack of third onboard M.2 port
  • SATA ports 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 disabled with M.2 drive seated in M.2 port by CPU socket
  • Platform maturity
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