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ASRock Z390 Taichi (Intel Z390) Motherboard Review (Page 7)

Steven Bassiri | Oct 25, 2018 at 10:00 am CDT - 2 mins, 23 secs reading time for this page
Rating: 92%Manufacturer: ASRock

What's Hot

Strong VRM: The VRM on the Z390 Taichi is using Texas Instruments NexFETs, 60A inductors, and 12K capacitors. We found under thermal testing that while there was an increase in operating temperature, it wasn't more than 10C and maximum in our tests remained 20C below what we would consider the tipping point between excellent and above average. These tests are done in a controlled environment so results can be compared. We were very happy with the results.

Fan Headers and Amperage: ASRock added a secondary super IO controller just to increase the number of fan headers on their motherboard. They went from a standard five headers on their boards to a whopping eight, and seven of those eight support up to 2A. With so many people now using triple rads in their builds, they need more fan support than ever to cool that radiator that cools the toasty 9900K.

Feature Count: ASRock added in controllers to expand upon the number of features the motherboard can supply. For instance, they took a PCI-E hub and then attached three low bandwidth devices to it such as a controller to expand SATA count to eight, a 1x1 WIFI connector, and an extra x1 PCI-E slot. Internally they also added in a USB 3.0 hub, so you get two internal USB 3.0 headers. The use of the hub allows ASRock to route the better PCH native PCI-E for things such as dual Intel NICs.

What's Not

Wi-Fi: The WIFI on the motherboard isn't the best, but that's because it's a 1x1 (433Mbps) instead of 2x2 (866Mbps) we find on some other motherboards.

Final Thoughts

Hovering just above $200, the Taichi fills a role that has been in high demand for a long time; a solid motherboard that is like a Swiss army knife. Much like its predecessors, it employs a well doubled VRM that utilizes dual N-Channel MOSFETs, and in this case, they are the high-quality Texas Instruments variant with extremely high efficiency compared to other dual N-Channel MOSFETs at higher switching frequencies.

ASRock Z390 Taichi (Intel Z390) Motherboard Review 42 |

We like seeing ASRock provide a motherboard in this price range with those features, as the new CPUs use a decent amount of power and will strain VRMs. Feature-wise we really like how ASRock loaded a motherboard at this price point with so much extra stuff. We aren't sure why the color of two USB 3.1 ports isn't light blue and is instead dark blue like normal USB 3.0 ports. The aesthetics of the motherboard also remain quite solid, and the motherboard is on the more color neutral side of things. If you are looking for a motherboard in the $220 area for your $500+ CPU, give the Z390 Taichi a look.

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

TweakTown award
Overall Rating92%

The Bottom Line: Chiming in at a reasonable price point with a strong VRM and a healthy set of features, the Z390 Taichi fill its predecessors' shoes quite well, and it's a solid choice for a mid-high-end motherboard.

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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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