MSI X299 XPOWER Gaming AC Preview
Published: 13th July 2017 | Source: MSI | Price: |
Accessories are one of the easiest ways to tell the difference between a more affordable motherboard and a flagship one such as the XPOWER Gaming AC. The amount of stuff in the box is exceptional, from WiFi antennae to the dual M.2 expansion we saw on the previous page. It's not just the numbers of things that you get, but the quality of them too. Take a close look at that expansion card. It's something you'd expect to pay £50 for, let alone get 'free' with the motherboard.
The XPOWER reverts to the black PCB more common amongst the high end MSI motherboards. If you were expecting the X299 XPOWER to have the silver PCB we saw on the Titanium then the combination between the difficulty of applying the silver coating, as well as some tiny reduction in absolute performance at extreme overclocking end of the scale meant that MSI committed to the ease of production and higher performance that is available from a black PCB.
That doesn't mean the XPOWER is blacker than the cover of a Metallica album though, with silver heatsinks and every slot being reinforced, there is a lot of elements to attract the eye. We really like the use of circles too, something that is so rare on motherboards we're struggling to remember the last one that had them. No matter, the design of the XPOWER is fantastic, from the placement of the M.2 slots, the blending between the heatsinks, and the placement of everything. It looks amazing.
Including a sturdy backplate is vital for heat dispersion as well as rigidity. Given that the MSI X299 XPOWER Gaming AC is aimed squarely at the extreme enthusiast this is exactly the feature you'd hope to find.
Let's look more closely at a few of those features before showing you how it lights up.