How are the Asus Z390 boards?

lopoetve

Fully [H]
Joined
Oct 11, 2001
Messages
30,115
Replacing my Ryzen system as I'm tired of troubleshooting stability issues.

Need 8C/16T, so going with a 9900K. Video card will either be an RX580 or the 5700XT I have coming (last troubleshooting step on Ryzen before it becomes a server forever).
Stability and speed are key - lots of video and audio editing, some gaming. Two M2 NVMe slots, lots of USB3 ports, need a good audio DAC as well (when I'm not using a USB headset for things). Basically, looking for similar specs the the MSI X370 Gaming Pro Carbon I currently have, although with better software (I hope), and not crashing.

Looking between these three, as this is what Microcenter locally has in stock:

https://www.microcenter.com/product...uf-gaming-wifi-intel-lga-1151-atx-motherboard
https://www.microcenter.com/product...pecial-edition-intel-lga-1151-atx-motherboard
https://www.microcenter.com/product...g-strix-gaming-intel-lga-1151-atx-motherboard

Sadly, they're totally out of everything else except Asrock, and I'm not going there for anything but a true server (like their server boards, not so much consumer).

I'm having a bit of trouble figuring a couple of things out.
1. The TUF board says it supports Optane; something I'd actually be able to use in the future- the other two don't say so, although it's just an NVME interface and chipset feature normally - do they actually support it and just not talk about it?
2. Is there any feature that the maximus has that the others don't? It looks very similar to the STRIX on the website, and even the comparo page on Asus isn't super clear (when it loads).
 

Wheels617

Limp Gawd
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Messages
400
I've got the Strix Z390-E, also paired with a 9900k. It's been a very problem free board. I believe the main difference between the strix and maximus is the VRMs. The maximus has an additional 8pin eatx power connector that the strix lacks, this equates to tighter voltage regulation if you are doing heavy overclocking and not much else.
 

mda

[H]ard|Gawd
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Mar 23, 2011
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1,902
This answer probably isn't what you want to hear... but

Video, audio editing and some gaming....

3900X (12c/24threads at $430)? or 10th Gen Intel in about a month (i7 8c/16t at about a little less than 400)?

First gen Ryzen systems were really finicky but with 3rd gen... has come a long way. I have 2nd and 3rd gen Ryzens and the systems are solid -- running my 2700X F@H, and 2600X as an ESXI server.

Since you are considering microcenter -- 3900X and the ASUS X570 TUF should be nice.
 

lopoetve

Fully [H]
Joined
Oct 11, 2001
Messages
30,115
This answer probably isn't what you want to hear... but

Video, audio editing and some gaming....

3900X (12c/24threads at $430)? or 10th Gen Intel in about a month (i7 8c/16t at about a little less than 400)?

First gen Ryzen systems were really finicky but with 3rd gen... has come a long way. I have 2nd and 3rd gen Ryzens and the systems are solid -- running my 2700X F@H, and 2600X as an ESXI server.

Since you are considering microcenter -- 3900X and the ASUS X570 TUF should be nice.

If someone gave me a Ryzen Gen3 proc I'd consider it, but otherwise I'm not giving AMD any more of my money right now. Once is happenstance, twice coincidence... but three times is enemy action, and this is three in a row of problem AMD children. If I'm replacing the motherboard and CPU, I'm going Intel this time. I've got 4 of those around right now, and not a single one has ever given me the slightest bit of trouble. Every AMD system I've build since my 3800X2 has been a problem (that 3800 was stupid stable for me, and for the guy I sold it to afterwards, as were all the others before it - I was an AMD guy for 15 years).

Oh, and it'll take Intel a few months to work out all the bugs/drivers/firmware just like anyone else. Need this fixed sooner than that.

I've got the Strix Z390-E, also paired with a 9900k. It's been a very problem free board. I believe the main difference between the strix and maximus is the VRMs. The maximus has an additional 8pin eatx power connector that the strix lacks, this equates to tighter voltage regulation if you are doing heavy overclocking and not much else.

Perfect. I run 100% stock, so definitely don't need the extra power.
 

D-EJ915

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jan 31, 2003
Messages
1,211
TUF is a bargain board for Z390 I'd avoid that. Strix E has 45A power stages, Hero has 50A power stages and a bigger heatsink. Also Hero has an ESS DAC chip on it so if you want to use onboard sound that one will be better.
 

E4g1e

Supreme [H]ardness
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May 21, 2002
Messages
7,225
Every company has its good (or at least decent) budget boards and its lousy budget boards. The trouble is that Asus' lower-end Z390 motherboards miss the mark more often than not. You'd need to go with the Strix or higher line just to avoid potentially crap components crapping out on you. This choice is made somewhat easier due to the fact that you already have RAM that's compatible with the platform. In my case (as I stated in the CPU state game), however, I had to buy not only a motherboard and a CPU, but also new RAM and an updated GPU. And based on my total combined budget of about $1,000 for everything, an Intel i9-9900K upgrade with the exact same components other than the CPU and motherboard would have put me much, much closer to $1,500. That's way above what I could afford to spend all at once. The CPU that would have fit inside that $1,000 budget with a decent motherboard would have been an i5-9400, which would not have been big enough of an upgrade (performance-wise) over a 6-year-old quad-core i7 to justify the total upgrade cost. Even an i5-9600K wouldn't have been much of an improvement compared to a Kaby Lake quad-core i7-7700 (non-K) PC that I have in a mini-ITX box. I do not use that PC at all for anything besides watching streaming videos, as it is too weak for any modern video editing software.

Simply put, the strict $1,000 upgrade budget had wedged me in between a rock and a hard place, with regards to an Intel platform upgrade: All of the ones within that low of a total budget did not offer sufficient performance improvement over my older systems that I had at the time to justify spending that much, and the one CPU that did would have required me to either cheap out on the rest of the upgrade or omit critical or important core upgrade components. For example, with that low of a total upgrade budget, getting an i9-9900K plus a decent-quality $250 motherboard would have left me with only enough money to buy a GTX 1650 SUPER and only 16 GB of DDR4-2666 RAM (which would have been a downgrade from the 32 GB of RAM that I had in my old Haswell quad-core PC), or buy 32 GB of RAM but either sticking with my old GeForce GTX 1060 6 GB card (which would have severely bottlenecked the rest of my would-have-been-planned i9-9900K build) or buying an el cheapo GPU that's so outdated or obsolete that even the integrated Intel UHD Graphics beats it or foregoing a discrete GPU altogether. That is what we all consider poor component budgeting, as that would have left me with a woefully imbalanced and heavily bottlenecked build (performance-wise).
 
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JCNiest5

2[H]4U
Joined
Apr 25, 2005
Messages
3,924
I've just checked my local MC, all Z390 boards are MIA. Only the H310 and B360/365 are still being sold. Not sure what's going on. And I'm sorry to hear your bad luck with AMD. For me, I've been a fan of both companies and I never have problem with either. I must just have been lucky, I guess.

EDIT: I think due to the upcoming Z490 and 10th Gen CPU (launching soon), they are are getting rid of all Z390 boards in anticipating of this event. That's my wild guess.
 

Keljian

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Nov 7, 2006
Messages
1,225
Replacing my Ryzen system as I'm tired of troubleshooting stability issues.

Need 8C/16T, so going with a 9900K.
Stability and speed are key - lots of video and audio editing, some gaming. Two M2 NVMe slots, lots of USB3 ports, need a good audio DAC as well (when I'm not using a USB headset for things). Basically, looking for similar specs the the MSI X370 Gaming Pro Carbon I currently have, although with better software (I hope), and not crashing.

I'm having a bit of trouble figuring a couple of things out.
1. The TUF board says it supports Optane; something I'd actually be able to use in the future- the other two don't say so, although it's just an NVME interface and chipset feature normally - do they actually support it and just not talk about it?
2. Is there any feature that the maximus has that the others don't? It looks very similar to the STRIX on the website, and even the comparo page on Asus isn't super clear (when it loads).

Ok some points:
  • Software from Motherboard manufacturers is patchy at best, don't use it.
  • Optane "storage" can be used on any motherboard with NVME or pci-e depending on the type - this includes AMD systems
  • Optane as tiered storage can be used on either platform using software like Primocache (which is better than Intel's software imo)
  • Z390 boards should be seen in light of the VRMs they have on them, per this list: https://i.redd.it/6j8i71dbrxv11.png - especially for the 9900k - I like gigabyte boards for the z390 generation
  • I recommend hardware per my sig, cause I know it works.
 

Niner21

Limp Gawd
Joined
Aug 26, 2018
Messages
260
I second the Gigabyte Z390 boards for the 9900K. Not saying the other brands don't work, but I don't have any issues with the Gigabyte boards. My Z370 Gaming 5 was a rock solid board with my 8700K as well. Memory doesn't seem finicky with these boards as well.
 

jacuzz1

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Feb 14, 2004
Messages
6,907
I have run mulitple generations of thier Tuff series boards and they are excellent for stability if you are not overclocking the hell of it( Mine dynamically clocks to 5 ghZ on air when gaming with no issues). I used a z390 for a recent build because of my success and and my client loves it. Zero problems. Just an FYI.
 

Dan_D

Extremely [H]
Joined
Feb 9, 2002
Messages
57,016
I've got the Strix Z390-E, also paired with a 9900k. It's been a very problem free board. I believe the main difference between the strix and maximus is the VRMs. The maximus has an additional 8pin eatx power connector that the strix lacks, this equates to tighter voltage regulation if you are doing heavy overclocking and not much else.

Unfortunately, the Maximus XI Hero and Formula both have weaker VRM implementations. These are four phase boards just like the lower end parts. You need the ROG Maximus XI APEX or Extreme to get good VRM's in the ROG lineup.

If your not pushing the CPU's hard, you can get away with any of the ASUS four phase boards. Although my personal Maximus XI Formula didn't last long.
 
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lopoetve

Fully [H]
Joined
Oct 11, 2001
Messages
30,115
Oh wow this was a long ass time ago. :p

3 months, but I already did a Zenith II Alpha + 3960X (best system I've owned in years) for the workstation, and a 10700K for the gaming box :p The TR box is perfect for what I wanted - I've got 6-7 VMs up at a time (even a whole nested virtualization cluster for my wife to use for training), a movie playing, a game running, and other stuff - never even blinks.
 
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