990FX Partner Boards
AMD 990FX boards have been on the loose for some time now -- we've had the Asrock Fatal1ty 990FX Professional for about two months. Along with its Fatal1ty- branded board, Asrock offers two other 990FX-based motherboards: the 990FX Extreme4 and 990FX Extreme3. The company also has a couple of AMD 970 motherboards available.
The Fatal1ty 990FX Professional is currently retailing for $190, which is very affordable for a high-end motherboard. The price is especially impressive considering the included features, such as USB 3.0, SATA 6Gb/s, 8-channel audio, dual Gigabit LAN with Teaming function, 12 + 2 power phase design as well as Quad Crossfire and SLI support.
Despite being a Fatal1ty-branded product, we like the look and design of Asrock's premium board. It has an excellent layout and UEFI BIOS interface.
We also included the Asus Crosshair V Formula in our review kit. This board costs considerably more at $230, but doesn't seem to justify that premium.
Features such as USB 3.0 remain the same, while the Crosshair V Formula drops one of the two gigabit Ethernet jacks and eSATA ports. The audio has been upgraded to the SupremeFX X-Fi 2 codec, while the board also features an extra full-length PCIe 2.0 x16 slot. Overall, we prefer Asus' aesthetics, but its board about equal in terms of functional design.
Asus also has the Sabertooth 990FX available, as well as various 990X and 970 motherboards. The Sabertooth 990FX is a cheaper alternative to the Crosshair V Formula, as it costs just $190 yet it is still very well equipped.
Although we've only received boards from Asrock and Asus so far, other manufacturers such as MSI and Gigabyte already have their flagship 990FX boards in stores, including the $145 MSI 990FXA-GD65 and $250 Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD7.