Brand. Model name. It’s redundant and doesn’t roll off the tongue but GIGABYTE has successfully pushed AORUS to be its own brand so much so that it actually sells these boards without the GIGABYTE branding. And that happened in the span of just a few years. But has AORUS products built enough of a reputation to maintain the head to head battle the GIGABYTE and ASUS holds every release? Indeed it is so, as AORUS is going head-on with ASUS’ Z490 line-up with their own offerings and here we have the flagship of the AORUS family: the Z490 AORUS XTREME.
GIGABYTE will be releasing a good selection of boards for the Z490 and the majority of those boards will be under the AORUS brand. AORUS will probably release boards a little bit later on as well to fully complete the stack but they have decidedly and brazenly went against Intel’s better wishes with the inclusion of PCIe gen4 marketing on their motherboards. We’re not sure if the board will support Gen4 PCIe outright but the fine print suggests otherwise. So we’re really itching to travel forward in time in an age that Intel has Gen4 PCIe just to see if they’ll hold their own in that area of connectivity performance.
Dreaming aside, check-out our unboxing below as well as motherboard images for the Z490 AORUS XTREME.
Let’s get started!
Z490 AORUS XTREME – Product Image Gallery
Z490 AORUS XTREME – First Impressions
AORUS has made a de-facto flagship with the XTREME and thankfully I did a double-take on that rear I/O to see that the board features Thunderbolt, something that it doesn’t scream about in marketing but it should. This board screams Designare in terms of feature and usability but that AORUS brandind has given a nice shroud and a nice clean layout as well. While my opinion about screwed-on shrouds are a bit on the “don’t like it” side, the Z490 AORUS XTREME manages to make up for it just for the sheer usability of the board and while it’s a screwed-on shroud, if you’re after the most on this board, a triple M.2 storage RAID would be the best choice to simply get the most performance especially for 4K editing.
I’m still indifferent about the look as AORUS has been doing this since last generation and there’s certainly something they can do to make it a bit more interesting to really change the game. Anyway, there’s more to see once performance gets tested on these boards so stay tuned for that.
Follow us on social media, @back2gaming, to stay updated.