Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review

ASUS Z390 Strix-E

Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review

ASUS Z390 Strix-E

As we're using the latest Z390 Strix Extreme for our baseline motherboard it's worth taking a moment to quickly give it the once over. The Strix packaging is up to their usual high standards with the attention grabbing multi-hued ROG logo and clear product shots a common feature of the Strix ideology. Lifting the lid reveals the Strix itself, all wrapped up and ready for attention. 

Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review  

Take a moment to drink in the design of the Strix-E. The fan and pump headers are well positioned, two fans at the top right of the CPU area and a pair of AIO headers at the bottom left. The heatsinks are the perfect combination of form and function, even the black capacitors help give a 'none more black' aesthetic to the PCB. The M.2 drive beneath the CPU socket is supplied with a heat spreader, just like the one at the bottom half. 


Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review  

Often the lower half of a motherboard has fewer detail touches just because of the need to provide so many headers, but the Z390 Strix-E still manages to squeeze in some interesting elements. The chipset heatsink looks fantastic and, somewhat surprisingly, eschews the ROG eye in favour of just the ROG letters and Strix branding. Whenever we see "The X of Champions" we can't help but mentally fill in the word breakfast, although that might be because we're 50% caffeine. The main two PCI Express slots have the all-important bracing that has greatly reduced the number of graphics cards that have pulled the slot off the PCB. It's only when you reach the SupremeFX audio section of the Z390 Strix-E that any caps appear which aren't black. It's a very nice looking thing. 


Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review  

You'll note that the Z390 Strix now has a built-in IO shield saving your fingers and any potential electrical shorts. With all the IO sections in cases being a uniform size we don't understand why this wasn't the only way that motherboards came, but we're glad they got there in the end. This is also the place in which you can spot the main two benefits the Z390 chipset has over the Z370, namely a significant number of USB 3.1 Gen2 ports and built-in AC WiFi.


Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review  

There is no denying the richness of the lighting on the Z390 Strix-E. We think it looks tremendous and will work in perfect harmony with your RGB LED Strips. If you desire even more lighting effects the addressable headers on the Strix-E support up to 120 LEDs, albeit in a manner that requires more than just off the shelf hardware. Still, the IO section looks splendid. 


Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review  
Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review  
Intel Core i9-9900K and ASUS Z390 Strix-E Review  

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Most Recent Comments

19-10-2018, 10:10:32

AngryGoldfish
Very impressive performance. I mean, it's not surprising given the core count, clock speed, and price, but it's great to finally see that kind of performance on the 'mainstream' platform. Buying this over the 8700K or 9700K for gaming doesn't make very much sense (even over the 9600K), but still, it's a very powerful processor and handily beats AMD in all tasks. Zen 2 will need to bring the pain.

Thanks very much for the review. Excellent work.Quote

19-10-2018, 10:16:49

AlienALX
Honestly at this price I would expect everything. Not just a cardboard cop out reviewer's edition and then tray OEM for retail.

I know none of it matters, but it kinda does. If you are charging a premium people expect a premium product. It's kinda compounded by the fact that it does nothing the 2700x can't do. Sure it may do it a little faster but at that price?

CPUs are just not important. Not any more. You could still run games on an old quad core S775 and people know this because there are many Youtubers still building rigs like that.

I used to love Intel launches but over the past few years there have simply been far too many and all of the excitement has evaporated.

I also have a feeling AMD may respond with some sort of 2800x, but we'll see. Right now if I were them? I wouldn't bother.

Thanks for the review Tom.Quote

19-10-2018, 10:46:30

AngryGoldfish
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlienALX View Post
Honestly at this price I would expect everything. Not just a cardboard cop out reviewer's edition and then tray OEM for retail.

I know none of it matters, but it kinda does. If you are charging a premium people expect a premium product. It's kinda compounded by the fact that it does nothing the 2700x can't do. Sure it may do it a little faster but at that price?

CPUs are just not important. Not any more. You could still run games on an old quad core S775 and people know this because there are many Youtubers still building rigs like that.

I used to love Intel launches but over the past few years there have simply been far too many and all of the excitement has evaporated.

I also have a feeling AMD may respond with some sort of 2800x, but we'll see. Right now if I were them? I wouldn't bother.

Thanks for the review Tom.
High FPS gaming (90+) still benefits noticeably with a modern Intel CPU. For me personally, my sweet spot is 90 FPS. That would be easier to hit with my graphics card if I had an 8700K instead of a 1600X. Much easier. The problem is, I don't want to support Intel. Also, I haven't played a game in almost a year.Quote

19-10-2018, 17:08:43

Zoot
5GHz single core and 4.7GHz all core was always going to make it top dog in pretty much everything.


It's an extremely impressive processor, with the single threaded and multi-threaded grunt. There always was a compromise between the two, but this one really does away with that.


Problem with me though is I'm a bit of a cheap-ass, I figure if I'm not going to notice the performance difference then there's not much point in spending the extra cash.


My 6700k will probably have to last me for another year or longer with buying a house. However 60FPS in games is fine for me though, so I'd be fine on lots of CPUs now which is such a nice change from 3/4 years ago.Quote

19-10-2018, 17:19:39

AlienALX
Quote:
Originally Posted by AngryGoldfish View Post
High FPS gaming (90+) still benefits noticeably with a modern Intel CPU. For me personally, my sweet spot is 90 FPS. That would be easier to hit with my graphics card if I had an 8700K instead of a 1600X. Much easier. The problem is, I don't want to support Intel. Also, I haven't played a game in almost a year.
How many monitors are 90hz though? Most would be 60 or 70.

Sure, if you bought one of those 144hz monitors it may benefit you, but most big games are designed to run much lower any way. Like, in my instance I can not actually run the games I play at 90hz because they break.

I don't understand this obsession with high FPS. I really thought my Xbox was going to absolutely and utterly suck at sub 30 but it is perfectly fine.

Big problem of course is could this CPU maintain a game at 90 FPS? I highly doubt that.Quote
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