Here are key points about the GIGABYTE X99P-SLI.
Intel Thunderbolt 3.0/USB 3.1: The X99P-SLI is the first X99 motherboard with Intel's Thunderbolt 3 certification. The "Alpine Ridge" controller also provides USB 3.1 through the Type-C connector and Type-A connector on the IO panel. I have always looked at Thunderbolt 3 as a high-performance interface best paired with Intel's high-end platform (X99) as opposed to the mainstream (Z170) platform.
Socket with Extra Pins: GIGABYTE's X99P-SLI is towards the bottom of GIGABYTE's X99 lineup, but it carries the socket with extra pins and a switch to enable or disable them. Some people are afraid of the extra pins, and the ability to disable them is a pro for many.
Ultra-Fast M.2: The X99P-SLI carries a 32Gb/s M.2 slot. A lot of people are brand loyal, and those who are loyal to GIGABYTE will be excited to know the X99P-SLI's M.2 slot got an upgrade.
Strong VRM: Although some people might doubt six phases on an X99 motherboard, the X99P-SLI's VRM is quite formidable. It is all about component quality on X99; quantity doesn't provide much since the space for the VRM is so limited on X99. GIGABYTE has provided very high-quality components, even on this mid-range X99 motherboard.
Ready for Next-Gen: A lot of people will be looking to upgrade to the next generation of CPUs for the X99 platform, and the X99P-SLI is fully capable of supporting them with BIOS F20 and beyond.
No POST Code: I think any motherboard that costs north of $200 should come with a POST code display for the sake of debugging. It is not a requirement; I just feel more at ease with the codes since it saves a lot of time if you run into hardware issues.
Intel's X99 chipset is high-end, by definition, any motherboard carrying the X99 chipset is considered high-end. However, until now, Z170 motherboards had more high-end features such as Thunderbolt 3 and dual M.2 slots. The X99P-SLI is based upon the X99-SLI, but for $40 more, you get Thunderbolt 3, USB 3.1, and a 32Gb/s M.2 slot which is a pretty good value considering the cost of the Intel Alpine Ridge chip. The X99-SLI was an excellent value motherboard, and the X99P-SLI is an excellent replacement, especially with the high-end features.
GIGABYTE did not cut any corners to offset the cost of adding in the Thunderbolt 3 controller. Voltage regulator quality is still high, and tiny improvements were made such as swapping in RGB LEDs and adding PCI-E shielding. I was very impressed with the value that this motherboard provided regarding features compared to cost.
For an extra $40 over the X99-SLI, you get a lot of value. If you are looking for a motherboard with the latest in connectivity at an affordable price, the X99P-SLI is an excellent option.
|Performance (including Overclocking)||91%|
|Quality including Design and Build||93%|
|Bundle and Packaging||86%|
|Value for Money||93%|
|Overall TweakTown Rating||91%|
The Bottom Line: GIGABYTE's X99P-SLI motherboard offers the latest in high performance features, such as Thunderbolt 3 and 32Gb/s M.2, at a very fair price.
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- Page 1 [Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing]
- Page 2 [Packaging and X99P-SLI Overview]
- Page 3 [GIGABYTE X99P-SLI Circuit Analysis]
- Page 4 [GIGABYTE X99P-SLI Circuit Analysis Continued]
- Page 5 [BIOS and Software]
- Page 6 [Test System Setup]
- Page 7 [Overclocking]
- Page 8 [CPU, Memory, and System Benchmarks]
- Page 9 [System IO Benchmarks]
- Page 10 [Thermal Imaging and Power Consumption]
- Page 11 [What's Hot, What's Not & Final Thoughts]