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GIGABYTE X470 AORUS Gaming 7 WIFI Motherboard Review

Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: GIGABYTE

Introduction and Technical Specifications

Introduction

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The GIGABYTE X470 AORUS Gaming 7 WIFI board features a matte black PCB with with a black armor overlay protecting the rear panel and audio components, as well as an integrated rear panel shield. In keeping with their previous AORUS series board designs, GIGABYTE spread RGB LEDs throughout the board's surface, configurable via the UEFI or the windows app. The board supports the AMD Ryzen 2 series processor line and Dual Channel DDR4 memory via the AMD X470 chipset. The X470 AORUS Gaming 7 WiFi motherboard can be found at most retailers with an MRSP of $239.99

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The following features have been integrated into the board: six SATA III 6Gbps ports; two M.2 PCIe x4 capable ports (one PCIe 2.0 and one PCIe 3.0); an RJ-45 port featuring an Intel I211-AT Gigabit NIC; dual antennae ports tied to the Intel 802.11ac WiFi controller; three PCI-Express x16 slots; two PCI-Express x1 slots; a Realtek audio CODEC; an integrated HDMI video port; and USB 2.0, 3.0, and 3.1 Type-A and Type-C port support.

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To power the board, GIGABYTE integrated integrated a 12-phase (10+2) digital power delivery system into the X470 AORUS Gaming 7 WIFI board's design. The digital power system was designed with IR digital power controllers and PowIRstage ICs, Server Level Chokes, and Durable Black capacitors. The power components used are the same as those used to great effect on their AORUS Intel boards.

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GIGABYTE integrated a variety of fan headers and temperature sensors into the board They integrated temperature sensors into the CPU socket, VRMs, and chipset. Additionally, there are monitored fan headers spread throughout the board's surface, all supporting high current devices (fans or water pumps), rated for up to 24W (2A at 12V).

Continue reading our preview of the GIGABYTE X470 AORUS Gaming 7 WiFi motherboard!

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GIGABYTE integrated multiple zones of RGB LEDs into the board's surface, including the the audio chipset PCB and around the primary and secondary PCIe x16 slots, integreated into the rear panel cover, in between the memory slots, and underneath the chipset cooler. The LEDs can be configured in up to eight pre-configured operation modes or configured for independent operation using the Advanced mode. GIGABYTE supports LED configuration via the UEFI or the RGB Fusion Windows applet.

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Along the bottom edge of the board below the DIMM slots, GIGABYTE integrated an illuminated overlay area where customized overlays can be used to spice up the appearance of your board. Design templates for printing out customized overlays are available from the product page on the GIGABYTE site.

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The board's rear panel contains the following integrated ports: USB 2.0, USB 3.0, and 3.1 ports, an Intel I211-AT RJ-45 GigE port, dual antennae ports for the Intel 802.11ac controller, Power and CMOS Clear buttons, and both digital and analogue audio ports.

Technical Specifications (taken from the GIGABYTE website)

CPU CPU AM4 Socket:
AMD Ryzen™ processor

(Please refer "CPU Support List" for more information.)

Chipset AMD X470
Memory 4 x DDR4 DIMM sockets supporting up to 64 GB of system memory
Dual channel memory architecture
Support for DDR4 3600+(O.C.) / 3400(O.C.) / 3333(O.C.) / 3200(O.C.) / 3000(O.C.) / 2933 / 2667 / 2400 / 2133 MHz memory modules
Support for ECC Un-buffered DIMM 1Rx8/2Rx8 memory modules
Support for non-ECC Un-buffered DIMM 1Rx8/2Rx8/1Rx16 memory modules
Support for Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) memory modules

(Please refer "Memory Support List" for more information.)

Audio Realtek® ALC1220 codec
ES9018Q2C chip
High Definition Audio
2/4/5.1/7.1-channel
Support for S/PDIF Out
LAN Intel® GbE LAN chip (10/100/1000 Mbit)
Wireless Communication module Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, supporting 2.4/5 GHz Dual-Band
BLUETOOTH 5
Support for 11ac 160MHz wireless standard and up to 1.73 Gbps data rate

* Actual data rate may vary depending on environment and equipment.
* Intel WIFI driver only support for Win10-64bit

Expansion Slots 1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x16 (PCIEX16)
* For optimum performance, if only one PCI Express graphics card is to be installed, be sure to install it in the PCIEX16 slot.

1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x8 (PCIEX8)
* The PCIEX8 slot shares bandwidth with the PCIEX16 slot. When the PCIEX8 slot is populated, the PCIEX16 slot operates at up to x8 mode.

(The PCIEX16 and PCIEX8 slots conform to PCI Express 3.0 standard.)
1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x4 (PCIEX4)
* The PCIEX4 slot becomes unavailable when a device is installed in the M2B_SOCKET connector.

2 x PCI Express x1 slots
(The PCIEX4 and PCI Express x1 slots conform to PCI Express 2.0 standard.)

Storage Interface 1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 SATA and PCIe x4/x2 SSD support) (M2A_SOCKET)
1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280 PCIe x4/x2 SSD support)
(M2B_SOCKET)
6 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
Support for RAID 0, RAID 1, and RAID 10
Multi-Graphics Technology Support for NVIDIA® Quad-GPU SLI™ and 2-Way NVIDIA® SLI™ technologies
Support for AMD Quad-GPU CrossFire™ and 2-Way AMD CrossFire™ technologies
USB ASMedia® USB 3.1 Gen 2 Controller:
1 x USB Type-C™ port on the back panel, with USB 3.1 Gen 2 support
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A port (red) on the back panel

Chipset:
1 x USB Type-C™ port with USB 3.1 Gen 2 support, available through the internal USB header
6 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports (2 ports on the back panel, 4 ports available through the internal USB headers)
6 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports (2 ports on the back panel, 4 ports available through the internal USB headers)

CPU:
4 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports on the back panel

Internal I/O Connectors 1 x 24-pin ATX main power connector
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector
1 x 4-pin ATX 12V power connector
1 x CPU fan header
1 x water cooling CPU fan header
4 x system fan headers
2 x system fan/water cooling pump headers
1 x CPU cooler LED strip/RGB LED strip header
2 x digital LED strip headers
2 x digital LED strip power select jumpers
2 x RGB (RGBW) LED strip headers
2 x M.2 Socket 3 connectors
6 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
1 x front panel header
1 x front panel audio header
1 x S/PDIF Out header
1 x USB Type-C™ port, with USB 3.1 Gen 2 support
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 headers
2 x USB 2.0/1.1 headers
1 x Trusted Platform Module (TPM) header (2x6 pin, for the GC-TPM2.0_S module only)
1 x Clear CMOS jumper
1 x OC button
1 x BIOS switch
1 x DualBIOS™ switch
2 x temperature sensor headers
Back Panel Connectors 1 x power/reset button
1 x Clear CMOS button
2 x MMCX antenna connectors (2T2R)
6 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports
1 x USB Type-C™ port, with USB 3.1 Gen 2 support
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A port (red)
2 x USB 2.0/1.1 ports
1 x RJ-45 port
1 x optical S/PDIF Out connector
5 x audio jacks
I/O Controller iTE® I/O Controller Chip
H/W Monitoring Voltage detection
Temperature detection
Fan speed detection
Water cooling flow rate detection
Overheating warning
Fan fail warning
Fan speed control

* Whether the fan (pump) speed control function is supported will depend on the cooler (pump)you install.

BIOS 2 x 128 Mbit flash
Use of licensed AMI UEFI BIOS
Support for DualBIOS™
PnP 1.0a, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0, SM BIOS 2.7, ACPI 5.0
Unique Features Support for APP Center
* Available applications in APP Center may vary by motherboard model. Supported functions of each application may also vary depending on motherboard specifications.
  • 3D OSD
  • @BIOS
  • AutoGreen
  • Cloud Station
  • EasyTune
  • Fast Boot
  • Game Boost
  • ON/OFF Charge
  • RGB Fusion
  • Smart Backup
  • Smart Keyboard
  • Smart TimeLock
  • Smart HUD
  • System Information Viewer
  • USB Blocker
  • USB DAC-UP 2
  • V-Tuner

Support for Q-Flash
Support for Xpress Install

Bundle Software Norton® Internet Security (OEM version)
cFosSpeed
XSplit Gamecaster + Broadcaster (12 months license)
Operating System Support for Windows 10 64-bit
Support for Windows 7 64-bit

* To support Windows 7 64-bit, you must install an AMD Pinnacle Ridge & Summit Ridge CPU.
* Intel WIFI driver only support for Win10-64bit

Form Factor ATX Form Factor; 30.5cm x 24.4cm

August 3, 2018 | 07:17 PM - Posted by BobFusedBoutThat (not verified)

"Support for NVIDIA® Quad-GPU SLI™ and 2-Way NVIDIA® SLI™ technologies

Support for AMD Quad-GPU CrossFire™ and 2-Way AMD CrossFire™ technologies"

With only 3 PICe X16 Slots(Whatever electrical) how is Quad GPU SLI/CF support possible on this MB? Can this board somehow be plugged into the Delorean and initiate time travel, it sure has enough LED Bling to qualify as a prop for a 1980s SIFI comedy.

August 3, 2018 | 09:52 PM - Posted by Anonymousnameisalreadyused (not verified)

No you dr emmet brown wannabe. Quad sli/xfire is for cards that have TWO gpus on each card, like the titanz( must say titanz wirh heavy german accent) or like the 295 x2.

August 4, 2018 | 12:53 AM - Posted by DaftFoolzAboundAroundThePCsGamingInterwebz (not verified)

Really the drivers are going to abstract away Ze dual GPUs on Ze one PCIe card mostly so that's not what CF/SLI is about. AMD's CF uses XDMA while Nvidia uses a hardware bridge. But still you are wrong about this MB as it has only 3 PCIe x16(whatever electrical slots) and some folks in the past have had 4 of those Dual GPU on one PCIe card SKUs on a single system. This MB can not support 4 different cards at the same time so that's just BS on your part!

CF and SLI are still not very good at milti-GPU load balancing but maybe with DX12/Vulkan and that explicit GPU Multi-Adaptor managed by these new Graphics APIs and some games programmers that are competent and not whining script Kiddies then there can be more progess. It should not be a problem for most GPUs that can work with DX12/Vulkan to have proper APIs developed to hand hold the stupid script kiddies hands and automate the process of proper GPU load balancing under DX12/Vulkan or even Apple's metal. Poor little "programmers" so wedded to OpenGL's complex and software abstracted state machine design that they can not deal with any GPU metal. But that's OK as there will be middleware and Game Engine's SDKs to help.

CF/SLI is not so good for games because of all that single threaded latency issues in dealing with milti-GPUs but really GPUs are parallel beasts and newer CPUs are getting way more cores and threads on mainstream CPU SKUs. So with proper programmers and DX12/Vulkan/etc that can be fixed over time. Nvidia sure is not receptive to more than 2 GPUs for SLI and AMD needs to maybe go back to using Bridge Connectors instead of XDMA and make use of Infinity Fabric instead. Nvidia has NVLink that it could speak across its bridge connectors but Nvidia appears to not be as interested in muiti-GPU uasge for gaming just yet.

The entire gaming/gaming engine industry mostly is really not taking the time to properly hide the latency issues with their games and are relying too much on the CPU and GPU makers to throw ever more powerful hardware their way so they do not have to worry about optimizing PC games as much as the console games/gaming engine makers have to do in order to eke out every last bit of performance on those consoles relatively weak hardware.

Really both AMD and Nvidia maybe need to slow down on the New hardware features and spend more time optimizing their GPUs firmware/driver and API support but Nvidia makes loads of dosh with its new hardware sales at the expense of its older GPU hardware while maybe AMD open sourceing most of their Vulkan driver development will see some Older AMD hardware(GCN 1.2/later) continue to net performance gains over time.

Poor AMD(At the Time) bit off more than they could chew trying to get That Implicit primitive shader API layer to work for legacy games that are not written to take advantage of the Explicit Primitive Shader hardware in AMD's Vega GPU micro-arch. But gaming engine makers are still free to target Vega's Explicit Hardware Primitive Shaders even if that's going to not catch on as soon as AMD had hoped for PC gaming. Maybe the Open Source community can get around to targeting Vega's explicit primitive hardware shaders or that Chinese Console maker that's using That New AMD Semi-Custom Zen/Vega APU. Once the Console Makers switch over to all Zen/Vega based console hardware you can be damned sure that they will target Vega's Explicit Primitive Hardware shaders and Rapid Packed Math/etc.

August 4, 2018 | 01:21 PM - Posted by JustIgnoreCamelCaseGuysRamblings (not verified)

The marketing wank is "NVIDIA Quad-GPU SLI". It is not "NVIDIA® Quad-card SLI". How do you get Quad-GPU SLI on a system that features 2-way SLI? Get two graphics cards with two GPUs each, and there you have Quad-GPU SLI. Also, from the horses mouth: http://www.nvidia.com/object/slizone_quadsli.html

So yes, that "dr emmet brown wannabe" is right, you annoying brat...

August 4, 2018 | 01:24 PM - Posted by JustIgnoreCamelCaseGuysRamblings (not verified)

Oopsie, the "Anonymousnameisalreadyused" was right, not the "dr. emmet brown wannabe"... Argh...

August 4, 2018 | 01:29 AM - Posted by pdjblum

thanks for the review

morry, do you know what the 'EDC %' is at stock and when overclocking? ryzen master monitors this metric

i am running a 2700x on a asrock fatality mini itx 470 in an in win 901 case and at stock 'EDC' is hitting max, so i am assuming that is why it is stuck at around 3900 on all cores when running cinebench

it could be temps as well, but the noctua i am using is excellent, and it is the same with the cooler master aio i tried before the noctua

i think the issue is that the vrm is not beefy enough to fully max out the cpu because i believe 'EDC' is the max current the vrm is able to handle

August 4, 2018 | 08:43 PM - Posted by Tim (not verified)

Just a slight correction you might want to make in the Features and Motherboard Layout section. I was a bit confused when I read the below, so I doubled checked this in the manufacturers manual.


Note that the port M2A_SOCKET and the tertiary PCIe x16 slot share bandwidth. The PCIe x16 slot is disabled with an M.2 drive seated in that port.

This should read that the "M2B_SOCKET and the tertiary PCIe x16 slot share bandwidth."

Sourced from the manufacturers manual, Page 7, Expansion Slots section:

1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x4 (PCIEX4)
* The PCIEX4 slot becomes unavailable when a device is installed in the M2B_SOCKET connector.

Hope this clears up any confusion.

August 4, 2018 | 10:34 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Thanks for pointing this out.  It has been updated...

August 5, 2018 | 02:10 AM - Posted by Sirrus

Any thoughts on getting around the M.2 80mm slot performance problem by using a PCI-E 3.0 compliant adapter card in the second 16x slot? I know this would drop the first two slots to 8x speeds, but most real world bench marking seems to suggest only little performance loss overall if a graphics card is in the first slot?

Anyone think it's worth the trade off?

August 5, 2018 | 07:18 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

worth it if you need to run two or more M.2s in raid mode.  You won't see much if any performance loss between 16x and 8x on the video card unless you are running 4k most likely....

August 5, 2018 | 11:35 PM - Posted by Sirrus

Thanks for the reply on this one Morry.

August 6, 2018 | 12:11 AM - Posted by Sirrus

One more question I had was around RAM and this board. Given what you noted in the review about the memory speeds and this board, is there much point in going above DDR4-3200? I'm planning to overclock my Ryzen 2700X to around 4.2 GHz paired with a GTX 1080Ti. I had been looking at some Corsair Vengeance DDR4-3600 up until I read through the review. Thoughts?

August 6, 2018 | 02:57 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

no, not much point going above stock speeds on memory, you see little improvement performance wise.  Best to try to maximize your core speeds...

August 6, 2018 | 03:09 PM - Posted by Sirrus

Appreciate the quick reply again Morry!

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