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MSI X299 Gaming M7 ACK Motherboard Preview

Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: MSI

Introduction and Technical Specifications

Introduction

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The MSI X299 Gaming M7 ACK motherboard features a black PCB with a black chrome overlay covering the board's heat sinks and rear panel cover. The chipset overlay has fingers that extend in between the PCIe x16 slots in the areas just under the two PCIe x1 slots. Further, there is a plastic overlay protecting the audio components above the PCIe slots. MSI integrated LEDS into the rear panel cover, the VRM heat sink, the chipset cover, and the audio cover for a unique look. The board is designed around the Intel X299 chipset with in-built support for the latest Intel LGA2066 Skylake-X and Kaby Lake-X processor line and Quad Channel DDR4 memory running at a 2667MHz speed. The X299 M7 Gaming ACK can be found in retail with an MRSP of $399.99.

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Courtesy of MSI

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Courtesy of MSI

MSI integrated the following features into the X299 Gaming M7 ACK motherboard: six SATA III 6Gbps ports; two M.2 PCIe Gen3 x4 32Gbps capable ports with Intel Optane support built-in; one U.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 32Gbps port; a Killer E2500 Gigabit controller; a Killer 802.ac wireless controller; four PCI-Express x16 slots; two PCI-Express x1 slots; a Realtek ALC1220 8-Channel audio subsystem; and USB 2.0, 3.0, and 3.1 Type-A and Type-C port support.

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To power the X299 Gaming M7 ACK motherboard, MSI integrated a 12 phase digital power delivery system dubbed Military Class VI. The Military Class VI integrated components included Titanium Choke II chokes, 10 year-rated Dark capacitors, and Dark chokes.

Continue reading our preview of the MSI X299 Gaming M7 ACK motherboard!

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MSI built the audio subsystem to meet the demands of the most hardcore gaming enthusiast. They included de-pop protection, separate right and left audio layers on the dedicated audio PCB, separate front and rear HI-FI audio processors and amplifiers, and Chemi-Con audio capacitors for exceptional audio output. MSI bundled in their Nahimic 2 software for the best in-game audio experience.

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The X299 Gaming M7 ACK motherboard contains the following ports integrated into its rear panel: a PS/2 hybrid keyboard / mouse port, three USB 2.0 ports (black), four USB 3.0 ports (red), two USB 3.1 10Gps ports - one Type A and one Type C, a Killer E2500 RJ-45 port, Killer 1535 802.11ac antenna ports, a CMOS clear button, a BIOS Flashback button, an S/PDIF digital audio output, and five analogue audio outputs.

Technical Specifications (taken from the MSI website)

CPU • Supports Intel® Core™ X-Series Processor Family for LGA2066 Socket

* This function will be supported depend on the CPU.

Chipset • Intel® X299 Chipset
Main Memory • 8 x DDR4 memory slots, support up to 128GB*
- X-series processor support DDR4 4266+(OC) / 4133(OC) / 4000(OC) / 3866 (OC) / 3733(OC) / 3600(OC) / 3466(OC) / 3400(OC) / 3333(OC) / 3300(OC) / 3200(OC) / 3000(OC) / 2800(OC) / 2666 / 2400 / 2133 MHz*
• Quad channel memory architecture with the CPU that supports up to 4-channels DDR4**
• Dual channel memory architecture with the CPU that supports up to 2-channels DDR4**
• Supports Intel® Extreme Memory Profile (XMP)

* For the latest information about memory, please visit http://www.msi.com
** Please refer the DIMM Slots section for more details.

Slots • 4 x PCIe 3.0 x16 slots
- Support x16/ x4/ x16/ x8 mode with the 44-lane CPU.
- Support x16/ x4/ x8/ x0,x8/ x4/ x8/ x8 modes with the 28-lane CPU.
- Support x8/ x0/ x8/ x0, x8/ x4/ x4/ x0 modes with the 16-lane CPU.
• 2 x PCIe 3.0 x1 slots

* Please refer to manual for PCIe 3.0 bandwidth table.

Multi-GPU • Supports 3-Way AMD® CrossFire™ Technology
• Supports 3-Way NVIDIA® SLI™ Technology
Storage • Intel® X299 Chipset
• 8 x SATA 6Gb/s ports*
• 2 x M.2 slots (Key M)*
- Supports up to PCIe 3.0 x4 and SATA 6Gb/s
- M2_1 slot supports 2242/ 2260 /2280 storage devices
- M2_2 slot supports 2242/ 2260 /2280/ 22110 storage devices
- Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready**
• 1 x U.2 port *
- Supports PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe storage
• Supports Intel® Smart Response Technology***

* M.2 slots, U.2 port and SATA ports share the same bandwidth.
** Please refer to manual for Intel® Optane™ Memory Configuration.
***The functions will be supported depend on the CPU.

RAID • Intel® X299 Chipset
• Supports RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5 and RAID 10 for SATA storage devices
• Supports RAID 0 and RAID 1 for M.2 storage devices*

* M.2 PCIe RAID volume can be created with M.2/Optane Genie. Please refer to manual for M.2 PCIe SSD RAID.

USB • ASMedia® ASM3142 Chipset
- 1 x USB 3.1 Gen2 (SuperSpeed USB 10Gbps) Type-A port on the back panel
- 2 x USB 3.1 Gen2 (Super Speed USB 10Gbps) Type-C ports(1 port on the back panel, 1 port available through the internal USB connector)

• ASMedia® ASM1074 Chipset
- 3 x USB 3.1 Gen1 (SuperSpeed USB) Type-A ports on theback panel

• Intel® X299 Chipset
- 5 x USB 3.1 Gen1 (SuperSpeed USB) ports (1 port on the back panel, 4 ports available through the internal USB connectors)
- 7 x USB 2.0 (High-speed USB) ports (3 ports on the back panel, 4 ports available through the internal USB connectors)

Wireless LAN & Bluetooth® • Killer™ Wireless-AC 1535 module
- The Wireless module is pre-installed in the M2_3(Key-E) slot.
- Supports Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual band (2.4GHz,5GHz) up to 867 Mbps speed.
- Supports Bluetooth® 4.1
Audio • Dual Realtek® ALC1220 Codec
- 7.1-Channel High Definition Audio
- Supports S/PDIF output
LAN • 1 x Killer™ E2500 Gigabit LAN controller
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
- 8 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors
- 3 x M.2 slots (Key M x2, Key E x1)
- 1 x U.2 port
- 2 x USB 2.0 connectors (supports additional 4 USB 2.0 ports)
- 2 x USB 3.1 Gen1 connectors (supports additional 4 USB 3.1 Gen1 ports)
- 1 x USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C port
- 1 x 4-pin CPU fan connector
- 1 x 4-pin Water Pump connector
- 4 x 4-pin system fan connectors
- 1 x Front panel audio connector
- 2 x Front panel connectors
- 1 x TPM module connector
- 1 x Virtual RAID on CPU connector
- 1 x Clear CMOS jumper
- 1 x Slow mode booting jumper
- 1 x GAME BOOST knob
- 1 x Power button
- 1 x Reset button
- 1 x Multi-BIOS switch
- 1 x RGB LED connector
- 1 x 2-Digit Debug Code LED
Back Panel I/O Ports - 1 x Clear CMOS button
- 1 x BIOS FLASHBACK+ button
- 1 x PS/2 keyboard/ mouse combo port
- 3 x USB 2.0 Type-A ports
- 2 x Wi-Fi Antenna connectors (optional)
- 4 x USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A ports
- 1 x LAN (RJ45) port
- 1 x USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-A port
- 1 x USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C port
- 1 x Optical S/PDIF OUT connector
- 5 x OFC audio jacks
Dimension • 12 in. x 9.6 in. (30.5 cm x 24.4 cm)
• ATX Form Factor
Mounting • 9 mounting holes

August 8, 2017 | 12:18 PM - Posted by Chaitanya Shukla

Could you add testing those M.2 coolers with motherboards that come with those for future motherboards? It seems like those coolers and claims made by manufacturers regarding those coolers vary wildly and having a clear idea on how they perform would be useful shoppers.

August 8, 2017 | 04:02 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

I will make sure to add some testing for that when we do the full review of the board.   Thanks for the feedback...

September 8, 2017 | 06:11 AM - Posted by Neeraj Rathor (not verified)

MSI X299 Gaming M7 ACK Motherboard is damn awesome! it is one of the best for the gaming. people who are interested in hardcore gaming those can look for it to buy.
gaming chair

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