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MSI MAG Z390 Tomahawk not recommended to run i9?

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I got a commission build for an i9 with MSI MAG Z390 Tomahawk. When I read tomshardware review of the motherboard they didn't recommend it to run the i9. But then I read another review by Bit-tech that the motherboard runs i9 just fine, can even overclock it well but requiring more tuning.

Obviously I've been out of the loop from anything Intel the last 2 years because of Ryzen. But now I got this build request. All I know there's a VRM issue with Z390 boards, but with tomshwardware and Bit-Tech stark difference in review result is quite disturbing.

I posted on MSI forum, probably going to be replied by a representative that will say everything will be fine.
 
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i think it's clear why not recommended
  • Poor voltage regulator cooling
  • Poor thermal transfer to voltage regulator heat sink
  • Not enough power for Core i9-9900K
it can run i9 pretty good but if you want to use it's power you need to tweak little bit more
 
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i think it's clear why not recommended
  • Poor voltage regulator cooling
  • Poor thermal transfer to voltage regulator heat sink
  • Not enough power for Core i9-9900K
it can run i9 pretty good but if you want to use it's power you need to tweak little bit more
Thanks, forgot to link bit-tech article here. As you can see, the article tone is totally different than tomshardware's. Aside from the lower grade sound chip, everything else is just fine, even got a recommended seal of approval.

P.S. Ooh, a fellow Jakartans, greetings.
 
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The VRM is a critical part if you choose a i9 CPU. Looking at the VRM tier list from overclock.net (here), you can see that the Tomahawk isn't a great choice for a i9. For the Z390 series, the Aorus series have received a lot of praise, they are pretty good. I have a Z390 Aorus Pro and it's pretty nice board! If you are going MSI, try at least aiming for the Pro Carbon.
 
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I mean the tiers of boards for each manufacturer exist for a reason... this is no different than if I bought Asus's budget $145 board and was like enjoy your i9 overclocking... but sure...
 
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If you're not overclocking the i9, any Z390 motherboard will run it. I'm assuming you're not going to overclock it because you said you're out of the loop.
 
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and even if he does overclock, 4.9 is the real max, as temps become stupid to hit 5ghz. the vrm's should hold fine at 4.9 all 6 cores, no voltage bump
 
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Check out something like a Gigabyte Z390 Gaming X
 
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Thanks all, I'll order the MSI and i9. The person isn't an overclocker anyway, probably best to give a heads up though.
 

Kevin C.

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Hey all, just a follow up to the i9 issue. I did read the Bit-tech review, bought the i9 9900K, dropped it on this Tomahawk and it worked like a charm. For a while. Then OC'd to 4.2, ran fine for about 3 hours and then everything just quit. PSU wasn't the problem, even tried another. Power switch not the problem, but even jumped the pins to make sure. RAM wasn't the problem, but tried Corsair vs. G.Skill Trident, just for kicks. The only thing done was to O.C. a fraction of what this board should handle, not even close to max, and this board is dark. Waiting on MSI, but wanted to get this out there. I'm a builder for 20+ years now and have pretty much seen it all, but I didn't see this coming.
 
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If you want an affordable Z390 with excellent VRM then i highly recommend the Asrock Z390 extreme 4. for its modest price it you get 60 amps power inductors, dual stack power stages which are cooled by massive heatsinks and a industry high 12000 hours long life capacitors in addition to 8 sata ports. Asrock always overbuilt their VRM for their asking price and the extreme 4 is no expectation
 

Kevin C.

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Thanks. I've built an X99 Extreme 4 (for a 5930K, I think), and remember it being bare bones and efficient. I'll add it to the list. I've got another ASRock Pro 4, but it's a Z370M. I've also got an ASUS TUF Z370 Plus I was about to try, depending on what I see when I look for bios on it, but I'll look at the Extreme 4. I do like the dual stack stages because they run cooler. If all else fails, I have an Aorus z390 with an 8600K that I may swap out. I don't hold out much hope for MSI to do anything but dance around this issue. Thanks again!
 

RickJamesBish

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I know this thread is a little old but having the Tomahawk Z390 and the i9-9900k I wanted to put my two cents in. I have had this system now for over a year. I don't know if the built in Game-Boost counts as OC vs actually setting OC values yourself or not but... I run HWinfo and check it frequently after gaming sessions. It is generally running a tad over 5ghz max and a little over 4.8, sometimes 4.9 average. I have had no issues with it.
 
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