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MSI X299 Gaming M7 ACK Motherboard Review (Page 11)

Steven Bassiri | Aug 2, 2017 at 11:55 am CDT - 2 mins, 36 secs time to read this page
Rating: 90%Manufacturer: MSI

Here are key points about the MSI X299 Gaming M7 ACK.

What's Hot

Beautifully Bright: I really like how MSI has implemented their built-in RGB LEDs, but I also really respect how MSI has designed the motherboard to offer a totally black approach when it comes to allowing the motherboard to fade into a case. The was the RGB LEDs are diffused under the heat sinks and shields allows for a subtle yet recognizable design, and the dragon on the PCH heat sink is one of the most beautiful things I have seen on a motherboard.

M.2 Shield System: MSI has done a fine job with the M.2 shields. Both of them are attached by a strong hinge to the PCH heat sink, and a large thermal pad sits under each section of the shield to make great contact with the M.2 drive. The hinge mechanism is a nice touch; the only downside is that you have to remove your GPU to change or install M.2 drives.

The Latest USB Technologies: MSI offers both USB 3.1 on the rear and through an internal header on the inside of the motherboard, but they also offer both a right angled USB 3.0 internal header and a normal straight header. The rear of the motherboard also has a special USB 2.0 port that doubles as the port you can use for USB BIOS flash recovery.

OC Features: The OC Knob is a nice touch, but the POST code display, power button, reset button, and BIOS selection switch are also nice. The clear CMOS button on the back is nice. One thing that sticks out is the voltage read points, which isn't a common sight on X299 motherboards. MSI's BIOS settings also make overclocking very easy; I really like their fixed and dynamic frequency settings.

What's Not

Expensive: At almost $400 the X299 Gaming M7 ACK is one of the most expensive motherboards, and compared to many other X299 motherboards, it offers extra features to increase its price point. Whether you need those features is up to you.

Final Thoughts

MSI's X299 Gaming M7 ACK is not only sexy, but it's also loaded with features. I really like how the motherboard looks, and while MSI didn't go overboard with the RGB LEDs, they do offer some really nice LED effects, such as the dragon on the PCH. I am a huge fan of their new M.2 shield, and only one other brand has a solution I like to the same extent, and that solution is $100 more than this one.

VIEW GALLERY - 97 IMAGES

The quality on this motherboard is top notch, everywhere from the CPU and memory VRMs to the re-driver used on the USB 3.0 ports on the rear. I was also impressed with the Killer Wireless AC module and the dual audio codecs. The amount of metal in the PCH/M.2 heat sink is surprising, especially taking into account the amount of metal in the VRM heat sink.

MSI didn't cheap out when it comes to how the motherboard looks or how it performs, and it's a quality product with some stellar looks.

Last updated: Nov 15, 2019 at 01:16 pm CST

TweakTown award
Performance90%
Quality95%
Features91%
Value85%
Overall Rating90%

The Bottom Line: With a really crazy custom M.2 shield mechanism, solid components in power delivery, and components to improve signaling, MSI's X299 Gaming M7 ACK is a quality product with fantastic looks to match.

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Steven Bassiri

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Steven Bassiri

Steven went from a fledgling forum reader in 2003 to one of the internet's brightest tech stars by 2010. Armed with an information systems degree, a deep understanding of circuitry, and a passion for tech, Steven (handle Sin0822) enjoys sharing his deep knowledge with others. Steven details products down to the component level to highlight seldom explained, and often misunderstood architectures. Steven is also a highly decorated overclocker with several world records.

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