Gigabyte X570i ITX Aorus Pro WiFi Review
Published: 27th October 2019 | Source: Gigabyte | Price: |
Please note this review was written prior to the AGESA F6b BIOS update. Our graphs have been updated to reflect the new results, but the text remains the same as the fast single threaded stock performance affects so few of our results and none of our overall opinion.
The release of the X570 chipset and the 3rd Generation of Ryzen CPUs has been an undoubted success. The performance we've seen has been nothing short of spectacular, and the Ryzen processors which heralded a new dawn for AMD have been polished to a high sheen with the 3rd Generation, bringing PCI Express 4.0 and some serious performance to the table.
So far all of the motherboards we've looked at have been the ATX form factor which lets the designers have lots of PCB room upon which to arrange things. With the needs of the PCI Express 4.0 technology this has included some very beefy heatsink designs as well as some actively cooled chipsets as well as the usual trappings of modern motherboards with RGB lighting and plentiful fan headers.
If, however, you prefer something more compact then you have to look to the world of ITX motherboards and the latest addition to the Gigabyte Aorus range is their Aorus Pro WiFi ITX motherboard. Undoubtedly the thought uppermost in our minds is whether there is enough room on the PCB to feed the needs of the ultra-demanding Ryzen 9 3900X that forms the basis of our test system, and how well the Gigabyte engineers have managed to handle the thermal needs of the PCI Express 4.0 lanes.
There is, of course, only one way to find out.
Until now all the X570 motherboards we've been reviewing here at OC3D have been the full-size offerings, and the main thing they have in common is an active chipset cooling setup that includes a fan. Naturally, when the ITX Gigabyte Aorus turned up we were curious as to how they had managed to solve the cooling problem.
Despite being on the compact ITX form factor there is still the inclusion of PCI Express 4.0 on the X570 I. If you were unaware the PCI Express 4.0 specification has doubled the bandwidth when compared to the PCI Express 3.0 we're all used to now. So instead of topping out at 32 Gbps it now supports a massive 64 Gbps. Imagine products such as the Samsung 970 Pro M.2 drive, and making them twice as quick. Yes please. We can't wait for the drives to hit the market to be honest, and we are even more keen to discover if this expanded bandwidth allowance will bring new eye candy to us as the latest generation of GPUs appears which take full advantage of the PCI Express 4.0 format.
Other areas that remain as impressive on this ITX board as the full sized models is the inclusion of the Intel Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax specification which, if you've got the requisite hardware, can push the boundaries of wireless connection speeds to even greater heights, perfect for our cable free world.
With such a small footprint there will always be some areas of compromise and the Gigabyte Aorus ITX has just the two fan headers. This probably isn't the motherboard into which you should install one of AMD's Ryzen 9 CPUs with their 12 or 16 cores. Certainly not if you wish to keep it cool. But then the target audience for a product such as this isn't those users who prize performance above all other considerations.
Naturally we want to give the Aorus Pro the sternest test possible and we're sticking with our Ryzen 9 3900X. Spoiler alert, there might be a pleasant surprise in our immediate future.