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ECS A990FXM-A Motherboard

cadaveca

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#1
Once again the dragons are upon us, and once again a challenger emerges to defend humanity from their wrath. ECS's A990FXM-A socket AM3+ has landed on our testbench, ready for battle, sword and shield in hand. Will the ECS A990FXM-A save us from the black hole that is slow computing? We find out.

Show full review
 
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bear jesus

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#2
I think i like the heat sensitive sticker a little too much :laugh: i think it would be a good addition to every company's heatsink stickers.
 

cadaveca

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#3
I really like it too. It's something I've never seen before on any PC component, and it's amaxing how something so small and simple can make such a difference.

I think it's popular enough that we will be seeing many more products from ECS to include similar things, as the X79 board I'm working with now from ECS also has the same sort of thing, although, with a bit more function.
 

bear jesus

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#4
I really like it too. It's something I've never seen before on any PC component, and it's amaxing how something so small and simple can make such a difference.

I think it's popular enough that we will be seeing many more products from ECS to include similar things, as the X79 board I'm working with now from ECS also has the same sort of thing, although, with a bit more function.
ECS really seam to be trying anything and everything to make great mid to high end board and apart from the lack of bios options i think they have done pretty well here although x79 boards are what have most of my interest right now so i'm very curious about what you are working with now, can you give any details on the more function part? or will i have to wait and read another great review ;)
 

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#5
Have a feeling I'm going to be sticking to my current unlocked for a while with that said: in your eyes worrth the switch over your old 970?
 
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#6
Man that implementation of the thermal sticker is SICK! Keep it up ECS! The overall theme is looking cleaner as compared to my P67 as well.
 

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#7
ECS really seam to be trying anything and everything to make great mid to high end board and apart from the lack of bios options i think they have done pretty well here although x79 boards are what have most of my interest right now so i'm very curious about what you are working with now, can you give any details on the more function part? or will i have to wait and read another great review ;)
I just got my SKT2011 CPU this morning. I'll be working hard all weekend on getting the upcoming reviews done ASAP; hopefully one week for the next few weeks. And yes, you'll have to wait, but it won't be a long wait, for sure. I did post a pic of part of what I refer to in the "Sexy hardware close-up" thread though. ;)

Have a feeling I'm going to be sticking to my current unlocked for a while with that said: in your eyes worrth the switch over your old 970?

AMD chipsets and supporting products, to me, each have a specific user base they are planned for. The AMD970 chipset is primarily for single card users, the 990X is for mid-range dual GPU users, while the 990FX is for high-end GPU users. I see them this way, as the only real differences between the chipsets themselves is PCIe connectivity.

So, if you are running a AMD 970 board with a single GPU, and have no plans to upgrade your VGA solution, then there's no reason to change boards. However, if you are in the market for a new motherboard, the 990FX-based boards have some of the best features added by board OEMs.

I've always been a proponent of building well-balanced systems, so my recommendations along those lines are always going ot be focused with that in mind. You pick a board, no matter the platform, based on what you plan to plug into it, whether it's an AMD product, or an Intel product.
 

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#8
I really like the sticker, too.


The ECS A990FXM-A also features an extra tall EPS 8-pin connector, a nice feature considering how close and how large the VRM cooler is to both the 8-pin connector, and the rear I/O.
8-pin?:confused:
 

cadaveca

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#9
There is a black plastic cap over the other 4 pins(with the numbers 13 on it). I always take pictures first. You can see teh edge of a sticker there on the rear I/O that is removed in some of the other pictures, for example. Many boards will come with the same sort of cover, although not all.

You can actually power the VRM using jsut a 4-pin plug, actaully, and the cover indicates which pins you need not fill, and is designed to not interfere with plugging in that 4-pin.
 
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#10
self change color sticker is cool
but i wish something better like they paint the whole hsf then we can see 'does it go overheat' easily
and its pretty nice if you have side window
 

cadaveca

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#11
self change color sticker is cool
but i wish something better like they paint the whole hsf then we can see 'does it go overheat' easily
and its pretty nice if you have side window
I'll definitely mention that to ECS when I talk to them next. :rockout:
 
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#12
when did you become skizofrenic?

When we began our overclock testing with the ECS A990FXM-A, we were left quite disappointed. We found that although we were able to adjust voltages on the CPU proper,
:roll:
 

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#13
:laugh:


It's always been "we".

As is "TPU".
 

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#14
:rockout:

Thanks D. No plans on multi-gpu, you already know my standpoint there. Can't wait to see your 2011 board reviews. Must ask, 3770K?
 

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#15
3770K is the 2600K replacement, as far as I understand. I've got a 3960X for 2011.
 
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#16
Just needed to ask

ECS has been my fall back if Gigabyte proves to be too pricy, and MSI doesn't have what I need. He's been a faithful 3rd fallback for ages.

But as the review said about the power failure, can you confirm that ECS hasn't done Anything?

I have a MSI K9a-platinum, and I installed a HIS 5770, it died on my power button press. But the guys at MSI helped me with a new BIOS that helped.

If ECS isnt helping then I'd gladly buy the BIOSTAR TA990FXE, and use the surplus funds for better RAM and even buy me a 6950.

I got an old AUDIGY 2 PCI card, and it sound well, thats why none of the other board makers have what I need, which is a 2 PCI-E X16 (gen 2.0) slot running full speed, and a PCI slot.

My cards are going to use 2 slots due to the cooling, please tell me if ECS has repaired the problem, or should I not wait and go for BIOSTAR instead?
 

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#17
I did talk to ECS about the problem, and they explained they would try to duplicate the issue using hardware they have on-hand. Other than that, I haven't had any response or been provided with a fix. At the same time it is possible they have duplicated the issue and are looking into a fix; I am not sure.

The difference between the Biostar board and this one are in the PCIe lane splitting to the third slot, which on the Biostar board, is not there, with the slots being x16/x16/x4. The ECS board does x16/x8/x8. It seems to me ECS made this design choice because of all the additional drive and network controllers, and has then running form the x4 link on the southbridge, where the Biostar board simply doesn't have as much of these things.

The Biostar board is about $100 cheaper, too. But considering all the stuff on the ECS board, the price seems justified.
 
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#18
ECS motherboard is ok to use but for overclocking i guess they're not as good as biostar .
Nice review :)
 
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#19
ECS motherboard is ok to use but for overclocking i guess they're not as good as biostar .
Nice review :)
but ECS offers longer warranty period, so i guess they are pretty confident with their product :D
 
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#20
Here is what I need

Due to recent FX news, and that I really want to update my AMD athlon X2 64 5200+

I gave up and wanted to buy Phenom X4 955, but what board to buy.

I wanted to build a crossfire between a new 6950 and my old 5770, so I need two PCI-E (gen2) slots running at full X16. with a PCI for my old AUDIGY2, can the BIOSTAR board give me satisfaction? my overclock requirements are nill but a 10 - 20 % increase would be nice.

I wanted to buy 4X4 Gbyte corsair XMS3 or Vengeance, with my Hyper 212 still help me cool my processor.

Can you advise me in this? I just want to make this an ironclad decission, thank you :banghead:
 

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#21
This is a pretty good review,but i wonder why you didnt use Bulldozer chip to test it when i know you have one?
 

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#22
You didn't read the review, obviously.:laugh: The board gave every CPU 1.5v. I'm not about to subject my BD chip to that voltage under load. Thuban is fine with it, however.

Also, an FX-4100 shows very little difference in board performance due to how turbo works. The differences between boards are generally so small that it takes a decent CPU to show what's what. An "quad" FX chip under default settings will not run all four cores @ full speed, leading to a situation where you are really only using a dualcore.:laugh:


I dunno what AMD was thinking with these chips.:confused:

Plus when two of the boards were tested, BD didn't exist.
 
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#23
Due to recent FX news, and that I really want to update my AMD athlon X2 64 5200+

I gave up and wanted to buy Phenom X4 955, but what board to buy.

I wanted to build a crossfire between a new 6950 and my old 5770, so I need two PCI-E (gen2) slots running at full X16. with a PCI for my old AUDIGY2, can the BIOSTAR board give me satisfaction? my overclock requirements are nill but a 10 - 20 % increase would be nice.

I wanted to buy 4X4 Gbyte corsair XMS3 or Vengeance, with my Hyper 212 still help me cool my processor.

Can you advise me in this? I just want to make this an ironclad decission, thank you :banghead:
You cannot Crossfire a 5770 and a 6950. The only cards that are Crossfire capable with a 5770 is another 5770 or a 5750, or their 6000 series counterparts (6770 and 6750).

Source: http://sites.amd.com/PublishingImag.../WebBannerJPEG/AMD_CrossfireX_Chart_1618W.jpg
 
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#24
OK then..

I should sell the old 5770 and buy 6950, but can anyone tell me should I go with BIOSTAR or ECS, sorry, the lingering feeling is bursting now.

I should still be able to use 6950 in my mobo right? *Gulp*, as I said the first time my mobo meet 5770, it went to a coma, now? I dont want him to die yet.

Oh last question, I wanted two slots (gen 2.0) running full X16, the ecs runs at X16 at first slot and X8 at the second right? that said I REALLY better buy the BIOSTAR? correct?

:banghead::nutkick::banghead::nutkick::banghead::nutkick::rockout:
 
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#25
You got an update from ECS yet?

Seems quite a serious issue!

Seems the lower end bulldozers are even buggier than the top end ones from you comment: /