Review: EVGA X570 DARK

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EVGA X570 DARK:

The architecture :

This EVGA X570 DARK is built on AMD X570S chipset (passively cooled chipset). This motherboard has an AM4 socket which can accommodate third generation Ryzen, as well as second generation Ryzen processors. Yet, it is mainly built for the Ryzen 5000 processors lineup. As it is always the case, we advise you to update your BIOS directly with the latest available on the manufacturer’s website.

This has been the first chipset to support PCIe 4.0, offering higher storage performance than the previous generation. The PCIe 4.0 in this X570 chipset doubles the bandwidth compared to PCIe 3.0. As a reminder, in order to take advantage of PCIe 4.0, you’ll need at least a third-generation Ryzen processor.

The dimensions of the board are getting larger as we are now on an E-ATX format, i.e. dimensions of 305 mm x 277 mm. The dominant colors on the PCB are black and grey. A design that preserves the spirit of the DARK series, even if the PCB is for once, less cut out.

The bundle :

Now let’s take a quick look at the EVGA X570 DARK bundle to see if it has any « special features ». Overall, we find a fairly standard bundle : the usual SATA cables, a Wi-Fi antenna, some stickers, the motherboard manual, etc. However, the design of the box is really well done. When you first open the box, you will find a USB key containing the motherboard drivers.

Underneath contains the motherboard and below, we find the box with the accessories but also we also discover a full size plastic PCB copy of our EVGA X570 DARK. This is really an item we like as it provides a lot of useful information.

This PCB can also be used as a bench table as large spacers are provided in the bundle to maintain your motherboard. The complete bundle list and pictures can be found directly on EVGA’s website.

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The different heatsinks :

The first thing that strikes you about this X570 DARK is the layout of the PCB in its upper part. This has been completely redesigned by EVGA and has 10 layers. The socket and the two memory slots have been rotated 90° counter-clockwise. This choice allows the power connectors to be placed in a horizontal position in order to facilitate cable management. Personally, at first, I found it quite confusing visually, but really well thought out ! The 24-pin ATX power connector and the two 8-pin CPU connectors are located side by side.

Let’s start the tour with the upper part. We can see there are two overlapping radiators. They will be in charge of keeping the power supply stages cool. Their position is unusual but also due to the rotation of the socket. The power supply stages have also been rotated by 90°.

Although one might think that this is passive cooling, it is not. Two 30mm fans are concealed and will only activate when necessary. This is rarely the case.

Finally, the third one is the one that covers the chipset and has a fairly large surface area, but a low height to allow easy placement of the graphics cards. It is an integral part of the cooling system as it is connected to the other two radiators by a heat pipe.

Two M.2 SSD slots :

An aluminium plate with the name DARK, which acts as a heat sink, perfectly matches the one on the chipset. It covers the two M.2 SSD slots (one above and one below).

These two SSD slots are therefore positioned between the two PCI-e ports. They are compatible with the Gen4 standard. As for the PCIe slots, there are two PCIe 4.0 16x slots that will work in x8/x8 if you use SLI or CrossfireX technologies, and a third slot in PCIe 4.0 x4.

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The socket and memory slots :

The space around the socket is very clear and will be easy enough to isolate with rubber for testing under LN2. Our EVGA X570 DARK has only two DDR4 memory slots for a maximum of two memory sticks.

Why not four of them? This is clearly a motherboard for overclockers and RAM is one of the components you want to overclock as much as possible to boost your benchmark scores. Having only two slots means that the distance to the socket is smaller, which makes it easier to stabilise the RAM but also limits disturbances. It supports memory kits up to 4800 MHz+ for a maximum of 64 GB.

The fact that the two memory slots have been moved to the upper part of the case also allows for better air circulation between the front of the case and the fan on the CPU, as the memory kit is no longer in the way.

A tad bit of RGB :

A new feature on the DARK series motherboards is the introduction of an RGB backlight button. Personally, I think we could have done without it on this type of motherboard. In the case of our EVGA X570 DARK, it is the name of the model placed on the radiator above the external connectors that will light up when the motherboard is powered up.

It’s quite simple and it will make the backlight enthusiasts pleased. Now let’s take a closer look at the overclocking tools on the PCB.

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