AMD X399 Redux: The New & Updated Motherboards for Second-Generation Threadripper CPUs

It's been a long time coming, but AMD has finally announced its highly-anticipated Threadripper 2000-series processors. Whether you're here for a new X399 motherboard, or just curious to find out what the new boards bring to the platform, you've come to the right place.

Enthusiasts who already own an X399 motherboard have life easy. The new processors will work properly on existing motherboards after an easy BIOS update. However, overclocking aficionados should "thread" with caution. 

The first wave of X399 motherboards were designed to house Threadripper 1000-series processors where the highest-end SKU had a 180W TDP. The second-gen Threadripper processors reportedly push over the 200W TDP threshold, so many power delivery subsystems on current X399 motherboards might not be up to the task for serious overclocking. Naturally, power delivery subsystems vary from board to board. If you plan to embark on an overclocking journey with the second-gen Threadripper processors--particularly the highest-end new chips--it would be a wise decision to make sure the power delivery subsystem on your motherboard is beefy enough.

X399 motherboards are among the brawniest on the market, but they are also the most expensive, especially when compared to mainstream platforms. Be sure to factor the extra cost into your build budget.

MSI


ModelMEG X399 CreationX399 Gaming Pro Carbon AC
X399 SLI Plus
Form FactorTBAATXATX
DDR4 DIMM Slots888
PCIe x16444
PCIe x4xxx
PCIe x1122
CrossFire / SLI SupportTBA4x / 4x4x / 4x
M.2 Slots333
U.2 Slotsxxx
SATA III Ports
888
USB Ports
TBA

2 x USB 2.0 Type-A
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
2 x USB 2.0 Type-A
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
USB Headers2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
Fan Headers10 x 4-pin6 x 4-pin6 x 4-pin
Wi-Fi / Bluetooth Controllers
TBAIntel 802.11ac / BT 4.2 Combo
x
Network Jacks2 x Gigabit LAN 
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
1 x Gigabit LAN 
1 x Gigabit LAN 
Ethernet Controller
TBAKiller E2500
Intel I211-AT
Audio Jacks5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
HD Audio CodecTBAALC1220
ALC1220 

MSI's current-gen boards can accommodate the 2000-series Threadripper processors, but the company has made sure you can push the overclocking boundaries with its muscular MEG Creation.

The MEG Creation features massive beefy heatsinks over the 19-phase digital power delivery subsystem, along with dual-eight-pin connectors and ten PWM fan connections. The large heatsink over the chipset conceals three M.2 slots.

Other accommodations include eight USB 3.0 ports, a USB 3.1 Type-A port, a USB 3.1 Type-C port, dual Ethernet LAN ports, two Wi-Fi antenna ports, five audio jacks, an optical S/PDIF out, a reset button, and a power button.

MSI hasn't revealed the official MSRP yet, but we will update with the likely heart-palpitating price tag when it becomes available.

Meanwhile, we've already taken a look at MSI's X399 Gaming Pro Carbon AC, head to our review for the full details.

Gigabyte


ModelX399 Aorus ExtremeX399 Aorus Gaming 7
X399 Designare Ex
Form FactorTBAATXATX
DDR4 DIMM Slots888
PCIe x16455
PCIe x4xxx
PCIe x11xx
CrossFire / SLI SupportTBA4x / 4x4x / 4x
M.2 Slots333
U.2 Slotsxxx
SATA III Ports
688
USB Ports
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1

1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1
USB Headers2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
Fan HeadersTBA8 x 4-pin8 x 4-pin
Wi-Fi / Bluetooth Controllers
TBAIntel 802.11ac / BT 4.2 Combo
Intel 802.11ac / BT 4.2 Combo
Network Jacks2 x Gigabit LAN 
1 x 10 Gigabit LAN
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
1 x Gigabit LAN 
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
2 x Gigabit LAN 
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
Ethernet Controller
TBAKiller E2500
Intel I211-AT
Audio Jacks5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
HD Audio CodecTBAALC1220
ALC1220 

Gigabyte already has a solid roster of X399 offerings, but its new X399 Aorus Extreme takes things to, well, the extreme. Gigabyte hasn't officially announced the full specs yet, but we know from our Computex coverage that the massive E-ATX board comes equipped with a 10+3 VRM power phase arrangement that's cooled by full copper heatsinks and direct-touch heatpipes. A dual eight-pin connector powers the board.

It's got plenty of connectivity options, too. The board comes with three Ethernet ports, including a 10GbE Aquantia LAN port. Three M.2 ports are shrouded by aluminum heatsinks to prevent thermal throttling, and the board features a subtle LED--for Gigabyte, that is--lighting scheme. 

ASRock


ModelFatal1ty X399 Professional GamingX399 TaichiX399M Taichi
Form FactorATXATXMicroATX
DDR4 DIMM Slots884
PCIe x16443
PCIe x4xxx
PCIe x111x
CrossFire / SLI Support4x / 4x4x / 4x
2x / 2x
M.2 Slots333
U.2 Slots111
SATA III Ports
888
USB Ports
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C 
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C 
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C 
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
USB Headers2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
Fan Headers5 x 4-pin5 x 4-pin5 x 4-pin
Wi-Fi / Bluetooth Controllers
Intel 802.11ac / BT 4.3 Combo
Intel 802.11ac / BT 4.3 Combo
Intel 802.11ac / BT 4.3 Combo
Network Jacks2 x Gigabit LAN 
1 x 10 Gigabit LAN
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
2 x Gigabit LAN 
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
2 x Gigabit LAN 
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
Ethernet Controller
Intel I211-AT
Aquantia AQC107
Intel I211-AT
Intel I211-AT
Audio Jacks5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
HD Audio CodecALC1220ALC1220
ALC1220

ASRock has three motherboards that were built for the existing Threadripper products. But as mentioned, they will support the new chip lineup after the requisite BIOS update. The MicroATX X399M Taichi is a wonderful solution if you're looking to pack in the most threads possible in the smallest amount of space. But be aware that you'll lose four DIMM slots as a trade-off for the extreme motherboard performance density.

ASRock also has its full-size X399 Taichi motherboard on offer. Head over to our review for the full rundown.

Asus


ModelROG Zenith ExtremeROG Strix X399-E GamingPrime X399-A
Form FactorE-ATXE-ATXE-ATX
DDR4 DIMM Slots888
PCIe x16444
PCIe x4111
PCIe x1111
CrossFire / SLI Support4x / 4x3x / 3x3x / 3x
M.2 Slots322
U.2 Slots111
SATA III Ports
666
USB Ports
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1


1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C 
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A 
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C 
8 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
USB Headers1 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
2 x USB 2.0 
2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 
Fan Headers6 x 4-pin7 x 4-pin5 x 4-pin
Wi-Fi / Bluetooth Controllers
Intel 802.11ad / BT 4.1 Combo
Intel 802.11ac / BT 4.2 Combo
x
Network Jacks1 x Gigabit LAN 
3 x Wi-Fi Antenna
1 x Gigabit LAN 
2 x Wi-Fi Antenna
1 x Gigabit LAN 
Ethernet Controller
Intel I211-AT
Intel I211-AT
Intel I211-AT
Audio Jacks5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
5 x Analog
1 x Digital Out
HD Audio CodecS1220
S1220A
S1220A 

Asus' ROG X399 Zenith Extreme isn't new: In fact, it's been our mainstay Threadripper testing platform for some time. But Asus is beefing up its (already pretty beefy) motherboard with the new Zenith Extreme cooling kit that promises to boost power delivery capabilities. This handy kit includes a big heatsink for the SOC power delivery and a fan that you can attach to the VRM heatsink nearest the TR4 socket. The combination provides the board with improved cooling capacity, which in turn kicks the eight-phase digital VRM circuitry and three-phase SOC power delivery up a notch. That should provide extra headroom for some Threadripper overclocking action on this expansive E-ATX board. But we'll have to put the cooling kit to the test to make sure.

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