Latest ProClockers Hardware Reviews
ASUS’s STRIX branded product line has been a popular choice for gamers the last few generations due to its affordable price tag attached to a product good looks, great performance, and unbeatable ROG bloodlines. ASUS now brings this pedigree to Intel’s new X299 platform in the form of the ROG STRIX X299-E Gaming. From the AURA Sync Lighting, to the reinforced metal reinforced SafeSlots, to the SupremeFX Audio, everything here is about serious gaming.
Few names in the industry stick out quite as much as Johnathan ‘Fatal1ty’ Wendel, arguably THE first professional gamer. For ASRock to collaborate and brand a motherboard with this moniker, you know they have to mean business. ASRock knows you are only as good as your foundation, so they loaded the X299 Professional Gaming i9 up with everything needed to make sure nothing stands in your way.
Intel’s X299 chipset provides support for Intel’s latest Kabylake-X and SkyLake-X CPU’s up to 18 cores, up to 128GB of Quad Channel DDR4, 4 PCIE x16 slots, triple Turbo M.2 slots, and Dual Intel Gigabit LAN ports. If that wasn’t enough for your, they even stuffed in the very latest Aquantia powered TEN gigabit networking, Intel dual band 802.11AC Wifi, Creative Sound Blaster Cinema audio, full RGB support and more super speed USB and connectivity options that you’ll know what to do with. Can it fight its way to the top of the scoreboard? We’re about to find out.
Nearly six years ago in November of 2011, Intel divided its lineup by releasing its first HEDT (High-End Desk-Top) in the form of the X79 platform and a trio of Sandy Bridge-E CPU’s with the flagship 6-core Extreme Edition Core i7-3960X. The platform eventually received an update to Ivy Bridge-E with three new CPUs. Three years later, the updated X99 platform was launched with another trio of Haswell-E CPU’s with the 8 core i7-5960X, later to be trumped with Broadwell-E’s 10-core i7-6950X. Fast-forward just under 3 years and Intel brings us X299. This time however, Intel changed the game and announced NINE different CPU’s over a stagger launch. Spanning 2 architectures at the same time, Skylake-X and Kaby Lake-X, X299 hits the ground with a starting lineup from quad core to 18 cores, up to quad channel ddr4 memory and up to a hefty 44 PCIe lanes.
While we wait for the remaining Sky Lake-X CPU’s to arrive, we’ll take a look at one offering near the middle of the shotgun pattern launch with the 8 core, 16 thread Intel Core i7-7820X. Does it compare to the retiring 8 core champion of X99? We certainly aim to find out!
With just how connected the world is today, a microphone is more of a necessity these days and less of a luxury. Applications such as TeamSpeak and Discord have made online gaming much easier and much more accessible while apps like Skype have moved meetings from conference rooms to living rooms. However, a low-quality mic can make you sound distorted and muffled, making it harder for people to hear you clearly. This can cause you to lose a match online, or make a bad impression on a potential employer.
As any streamer or YouTuber will tell you, a high-quality mic is a must have on the desk of any potential content creator. There are several viable options beyond integrated camera mics. You can always set up an audio interface with an XLR microphone but that can get very expensive even though it offers the best quality. Most people go with a simple plug and play USB mic, though they are usually hit or miss. I was very excited when ASUS launched their ROG Magnus USB microphone. Since ASUS doesn’t affix the ROG logo to just any old product, I expected nothing but good things from this mic. So, let’s see how it did.
ASUS’s STRIX line of products has been a popular choice on other platforms for bringing strong gaming oriented features and aesthetics to an affordable mid-range price point. Asus now brings that along to the AMD Ryzen ecosystem in the form of the ASUS ROG STRIX X370-F Motherboard. Packing AMD’s X370 Enthusiast Class chipset, It supports Dual graphics cards, NVMe SSD’s, Native USB 3.1 Gen 2 and all of AMD’s fully unlocked AM4 Based Ryzen CPU’s in an attractive, neutral, gray and black color scheme. Should the STRIX X370-F anchor your next Ryzen gaming build? Lets check it out and find out!