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MSI X99A GODLIKE GAMING (Intel X99) Motherboard Review

By: Steven Bassiri | Socket LGA 2011 in Motherboards | Posted: Aug 3, 2015 9:08 pm
TweakTown Rating: 96%Manufacturer: MSI

Circuit Analysis




This board is loaded with circuitry especially in the audio area. The board also has two add-in cards which are built in, one on the IO panel which is the Killer Wireless AC card and the second is a specific Bluetooth LED controller.





The VRM on this board consists of 12 phases of 55A DrMOS and MSI's Super Ferrite Choke power inductors which MSI states are rated 60A. The output capacitor bank is made up of 11x 330uF Tantalum capacitors for a total of 3630uF output capacitance. This is MSI's standard top of the line X99 VRM, the VRM on the X99S-MPower I reviewed months ago is very similar and has proven it can handle harsh overclocks. The PWM only supports 6 phase operation, so MSI doubles the phases through 6x Intersil ISL6617 phase doublers.




The Intersil ISL6388 is one of Intersil's first digital PWMs under their own brand name. It provides pretty solid performance. The power stages integrate one high-side and one low-side MOSFET along with a driver. These are from Fairchild Semiconductor. The FDMF5823DC are capable of outputting up to 55A each. They seem to also have an extra pad on the top, perhaps to act like a heat sink.




This is the second time I have seen a Powervation branded PWM used on a motherboard (first was X99S-MPower); they seem to be focused only on DC/DC buck controllers. MSI is using two of them here, one for each memory set. The PV3203 is a dual phase digital PWM. Each memory phase is made up of two Fairchild FDMS3668S which each consist of two MOSFETs.




Here is another PV3203 and more dual n-channel MOSFETs, most of the memory VRM is located on the backside of the PCB to make room for OC features.




MSI is using the Killer Wireless-AC 1535, which is a brand new Wireless AC card from Killer.




MSI is also using the brand new Killer e2400 which is the next-generation Killer gaming NIC. Using two of them with the Killer Wireless AC provides Killer Double Shot X3 Pro which allows all three NICS to work simultaneously to allocate bandwidth to different applications through hardware and not only software.

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