Motherboards

Aorus Z390 Pro Motherboard Review

Redefining the "Budget" Motherboard

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Just about everyone who builds a PC out of pocket wants the same thing. The best possible performance at the lowest possible price. However, that can be tricky at times. When I’m asked by someone what the best price to performance motherboard they can buy is, I always say Aorus. We were first introduced to Aorus branded motherboards in January of 2017, at CES when the 7th generation of Core processors launched alongside the Z270 chipset. Previously, Gigabytes gaming quality motherboards were reflected by the name, G1 Gaming, and the Aorus name was reserved for higher-end laptops. Late last year, Intel launched the Z370 chipset. The Z370 chipset was compatible with Intel’s 8th generation of Core Processors. This included Intel’s first hex-core processor, the I7 8700k.  At the beginning of October, we attended Intel’s Fall Desktop launch event in New York. This was where we got our first look at the I9 9900k. Not only Intel’s first consumer I9 but also their first consumer octa-core processor. At this same event, they also showed off an array of motherboards sporting their all-new Z390 Chipset. There really isn’t too much difference between the Z370 and Z390 chipsets. However, the Z390 chipset does have support for USB 3.1 Gen 2 and support for gigabit WIFI.

There are a few differences between the Z390 Aorus Pro and its Z370 counterpart, the Z370 Aorus Gaming 5. These differences go deeper than the naming scheme and the aesthetics of the boards. The Z390 Aorus Pro has a beefed up, 12+1 phase power delivery, compared to the 8+3 power phase on the Z370 Gaming 5. The Z390 Aorus Pro has also added multi-cut heatsinks with heat pipe to cool the VRMs. Both of the boards M.2 slots come equipped with thermal guards which are M.2 heatsinks. Unlike past generations, every Aorus board in the Z390 line up is built with the same, high-end components. In the past, lower tier boards were constructed with lower grade parts. However, this generation, each tier going up has a few things added. So, in theory, this should make the Z390 Aorus Pro one of the best “budget” motherboards that Gigabyte has ever produced.

 

Review Sample Provided by: Gigabyte
Product Name/Link to Website: Z390 Aorus Pro
Product was given in exchange for work done to produce this review.

Specifications

  • CPU
    1. Support for 9th and 8th Generation Intel® Core™ i9 processors/ Intel® Core™ i7 processors/ Intel® Core™ i5 processors/ Intel® Core™ i3 processors/ Intel® Pentium® processors/ Intel®Celeron® processors in the LGA1151 package
    2. L3 cache varies with CPU

    (Please refer to “CPU Support List” for more information.)

  • Chipset
    1. Intel® Z390 Express Chipset
  • Memory
    1. 4 x DDR4 DIMM sockets supporting up to 64 GB of system memory
    2. Dual channel memory architecture
    3. Support for DDR4 4266(O.C.) / 4133(O.C.) / 4000(O.C.) / 3866(O.C.) / 3800(O.C.) / 3733(O.C.) / 3666(O.C.) / 3600(O.C.) / 3466(O.C.) / 3400(O.C.) / 3333(O.C.) / 3300(O.C.) / 3200(O.C.) / 3000(O.C.) / 2800(O.C.) / 2666 / 2400 / 2133 MHz memory modules
    4. Support for ECC Un-buffered DIMM 1Rx8/2Rx8 memory modules (operate in non-ECC mode)
    5. Support for non-ECC Un-buffered DIMM 1Rx8/2Rx8/1Rx16 memory modules
    6. Support for Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) memory modules

    (Please refer to “Memory Support List” for more information.)

  • Onboard Graphics

    Integrated Graphics Processor-Intel® HD Graphics support:

    1. 1 x HDMI port, supporting a maximum resolution of 4096×2160@30 Hz
      * Support for HDMI 1.4 version and HDCP 2.2.

    Maximum shared memory of 1 GB

  • Audio
    1. Realtek® ALC1220-VB codec
      * The back panel line out jack supports DSD audio.
    2. High Definition Audio
    3. 2/4/5.1/7.1-channel
    4. Support for S/PDIF Out
  • LAN
    1. Intel® GbE LAN chip (10/100/1000 Mbit)
  • Expansion Slots
    1. 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x16 (PCIEX16)
      * For optimum performance, if only one PCI Express graphics card is to be installed, be sure to install it in the PCIEX16 slot.
    2. 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x8 (PCIEX8)
      * The PCIEX8 slot shares bandwidth with the PCIEX16 slot. When the PCIEX8 slot is populated, the PCIEX16 slot operates at up to x8 mode.
    3. 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x4 (PCIEX4)
    4. 3 x PCI Express x1 slots
      (All of the PCI Express slots conform to PCI Express 3.0 standard.)
  • Storage Interface

    Chipset:

    1. 1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 SATA and PCIe x4/x2 SSD support) (M2A)
    2. 1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280 SATA and PCIe x4/x2 SSD support, prepared for Intel® Hybrid SSD) (M2M)
    3. 6 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
    4. Support for RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, and RAID 10
      * Refer to “1-8 Internal Connectors,” for the installation notices for the M.2 and SATA connectors.

    Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready

  • Multi-Graphics Technology
      1. Support for NVIDIA® Quad-GPU SLI™ and 2-Way NVIDIA® SLI™ technologies

    Support for AMD Quad-GPU CrossFire™ and 3-Way/2-Way AMD CrossFire™ technologies

  • USB

    Chipset:

    1. 1 x USB Type-C™ port with USB 3.1 Gen 2 support on the back panel
    2. 1 x USB Type-C™ port with USB 3.1 Gen 1 support, available through the internal USB header
    3. 2 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports (red) on the back panel
    4. 5 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports (3 ports on the back panel, 2 ports available through the internal USB header)

    Chipset+USB 2.0 Hub:

    1. 8 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports (4 ports on the back panel, 4 ports available through the internal USB headers)
  • Internal I/O Connectors
    1. 1 x 24-pin ATX main power connector
    2. 1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
    3. 1 x 4-pin ATX 12V power connector
    4. 1 x CPU fan header
    5. 1 x water cooling CPU fan header
    6. 4 x system fan headers
    7. 2 x system fan/water cooling pump headers
    8. 2 x digital LED strip headers
    9. 2 x digital LED strip power select jumpers
    10. 2 x RGB LED strip headers
    11. 6 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
    12. 2 x M.2 Socket 3 connectors
    13. 1 x front panel header
    14. 1 x front panel audio header
    15. 1 x S/PDIF Out header
    16. 1 x USB Type-C™ port, with USB 3.1 Gen 1 support
    17. 1 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 header
    18. 2 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
    19. 1 x Thunderbolt™ add-in card connector
    20. 1 x Trusted Platform Module (TPM) header (2×6 pin, for the GC-TPM2.0_S module only)
    21. 1 x Clear CMOS jumper
    22. 2 x temperature sensor headers
  • Back Panel Connectors
    1. 4 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
    2. 1 x HDMI port
    3. 1 x USB Type-C™ port, with USB 3.1 Gen 2 support
    4. 2 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports (red)
    5. 3 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports
    6. 1 x RJ-45 port
    7. 1 x optical S/PDIF Out connector
    8. 5 x audio jacks
  • I/O Controller
    1. iTE® I/O Controller Chip
  • H/W Monitoring
    1. Voltage detection
    2. Temperature detection
    3. Fan speed detection
    4. Water cooling flow rate detection
    5. Overheating warning
    6. Fan fail warning
    7. Fan speed control
      * Whether the fan (pump) speed control function is supported will depend on the fan (pump) you install.
  • BIOS
    1. 2 x 128 Mbit flash
    2. Use of licensed AMI UEFI BIOS
    3. Support for DualBIOS™
    4. PnP 1.0a, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0, SM BIOS 2.7, ACPI 5.0
  • Unique Features
    1. Support for APP Center
      * Available applications in APP Center may vary by motherboard model. Supported functions of each application may also vary depending on motherboard specifications.
      3D OSD
      @BIOS
      AutoGreen
      Cloud Station
      EasyTune
      Easy RAID
      Fast Boot
      Game Boost
      ON/OFF Charge
      Platform Power Management
      RGB Fusion
      Smart Backup
      Smart Keyboard
      Smart TimeLock
      Smart HUD
      System Information Viewer
      Smart Survey
      USB Blocker
    2. Support for Q-Flash
    3. Support for Xpress Install
  • Bundle Software
    1. Norton® Internet Security (OEM version)
    2. cFosSpeed
  • Operating System
    1. Support for Windows 10 64-bit
  • Form Factor
    1. ATX Form Factor; 30.5cm x 24.4cm
  • Remark
    1. Due to different Linux support condition provided by chipset vendors, please download Linux driver from chipset vendors’ website or 3rd party website.
    2. Most hardware/software vendors may no longer offer drivers to support Win9X/ME/2000/XP. If drivers are available from the vendors, we will update them on the GIGABYTE website.
* The entire materials provided herein are for reference only. GIGABYTE reserves the right to modify or revise the content at any time without prior notice.
* Advertised performance is based on maximum theoretical interface values from respective Chipset vendors or organization who defined the interface specification. Actual performance may vary by system configuration.
* All trademarks and logos are the properties of their respective holders.
* Due to standard PC architecture, a certain amount of memory is reserved for system usage and therefore the actual memory size is less than the stated amount.

Z390 Chipset

Essentials

Supplemental Information

Memory Specifications

Processor Graphics

  • # of Displays Supported ‡ 3

I/O Specifications

Security & Reliability

 

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Paul Malfy

I started building computers in 1994. I studied journalism and computer science in college. I love gaming but hardware is my true passion. Especially video cards.

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