Here are all of GIGABYTE’s New X299 AORUS Gaming Motherboards

At COMPUTEX 2017, we were introduced to many new motherboards that are based on the new Intel’s X299 enthusiast chipset. Despite the various controversy on the strategic decisions made by Intel, motherboard manufacturers were still able to make do with what they have on hand, and deliver the best possible solutions for enthusiasts. Let’s take a look at the four new GIGABYTE AORUS Gaming X299 motherboards that are designed very specifically for different types of gamer.

An X299 build on a budget – X299 AORUS Gaming 3

If you are simply looking for a new and reliable motherboard with very capable features supporting the new Skylake X and Kaby Lake X CPUs, the GIGABYTE X299 AORUS Gaming 3 will be an excellent choice. Despite being more affordable that other models, GIGABYTE did not scrimp on the different components on the Gaming 3. Thus, many premium features are still found on this motherboard.

The X299 AORUS Gaming 3 motherboard features 2 x M.2 connectors for two super-fast NVMe based SSDs. It also has the latest USB 3.1 ports for ultra-fast 10Gbps connections to compatible devices. Like any other gaming motherboard of 2017, the X299 AORUS Gaming 3 also features RGB lighting. These RGB LEDs are found on the chipset’s heatsink, PCI-e slots and to the left of the audio components.

Since this motherboard is made for gamers, all the different hardware components are selected based on their performance for games. For a start, the Gaming 3 motherboard has an Intel Gigabit Ethernet network chip for great wired network performance. It also uses higher grade audio components for great audio quality. The ALC 1220 codec is said to have improved its signal to noise ratio from its predecessors. A built-in headphone amp will also determine the impedance of the headphones and provide optimal amplification for the best possible experience.

For a decent X299 Gaming Setup with superb Network and Audio Capabilities – X299 AORUS Gaming 7

The GIGABYTE X299 AORUS Gaming 7 motherboard is the big brother of the Gaming 3. While most of the core gaming features remain, the Gaming 7 motherboard has a dedicated ESS SABRE 9018 DAC. This reference DAC design from ESS enables high-end audiophile grade quality of sounds coming out directly from the motherboard. It even supports 32-bit audio streams.  

As for storage, the Gaming 7 motherboard has one more M.2 slot than the Gaming 3. Oh yes, in case you didn’t know, all the SSDs installed in these M.2 slots will support RAID for the ultimate storage performance.

Other than the Intel Gigabit LAN chip, the Gaming 7 also includes a Rivet Networks Killer E2500 LAN chip. These Gigabit network chips are known to work exceptionally well with games, providing very low latency therefore, allow networked games to be very responsive. This motherboard also supports 802.11AC wireless out of the box with the Killer Wireless-AC 1535 chip onboard.

Feature-Packed System – X299 AORUS Gaming 9

The Gaming 9 is an improved version of the Gaming 7 motherboard. Firstly, it has got more RGB LEDs that are found throughout the motherboard. The RGB lightings are now found on the I/O plate, all PCI-e slots, the RAM slots and the chipset’s heatsink.

Secondly, the Gaming 9 also features an Armor that keeps the whole motherboard sturdy and more reliable. At the same time, the integrated base plate which is part of the whole armor set-up, also allows the whole motherboard to support heavier coolers and graphics cards, while increasing the heat dissipation's effectiveness. The I/O shield is also now directly integrated onto the motherboard.

Thirdly, in terms of audio, the Gaming 9 has taken it up a notch by introducing more components to improve the intricate details of the sounds coming out from the system. For example, this motherboard has an additional TI Burr-Brown audio chip which is said to reduce cross talk (i.e. interference), an independent analog power design to provide power directly to the audio chipset, dedicated left and right signal processing with two processors, an anti-pop circuit design and a regulator that enhances power delivery to the whole audio architecture.

Network components and features are the same as those on the Gaming 7 motherboard.

Budget Bling Blings – X299 AORUS Gaming Ultra

Do not be fooled by the word “Ultra”. The GIGABYTE X299 AORUS Gaming Ultra is NOT the flagship motherboard in the whole series. This motherboard is targeted for those who would enjoy all the basic gaming features, while require better aesthetics than the Gaming 3 motherboard.

The Gaming Ultra motherboard has more RGB LEDs that are found across the whole motherboard, similar to that of the Gaming 7 and Gaming 9. It also has 3 x M.2 slots too.

However, the X299 AORUS Gaming Ultra comes only packed with the standard components like the ALC1220 audio codec, instead of having the premium ESS chip. It also only has a single Intel Gigabit LAN chip instead of the Killer NIC that was featured in both the Gaming 7 and Gaming 9 motherboards. Despite that, do take note that this motherboard has slightly more I/O ports that the Gaming 3 motherboard. 

More to come...

Realized that Thunderbolt 3 ports were excluded from all these motherboards? From what we understand from the manufacturers, Thunderbolt ports were not included initial X299 motherboard releases because they have failed to get the respective Thunderbolt certification in time for the launch. If you are eyeing for a new motherboard with Thunderbolt ports, we are quite sure that some of them will be out very soon in the coming months. 

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