Review: EVGA Z690 DARK KingPiN


The PCB and connectors:

The tools for clocker:

Why this EVGA Z690 DARK K|NGP|N is certainly one of the best cards for overclocking? First of all because it has many tools inserted directly on its PCB that will make your life much easier.

  • The power button: allows to power on the motherboard.
  • The reset button: allows to restart the motherboard in case of failure.
  • CLR CMOS : allows to erase the BIOS parameters in case of a boot failure.
  • 2 Debug LED: allows to identify the component responsible for the error during the boot, but also to display the temperature of the CPU and the voltages.
  • Status LED : which according to their color allows you to identify a problem or to know at what level the voltage of the component is.
  • ProbeIT: via the cables included in the bundle, you can easily read the different voltages with a multimeter
  • BIOS switch : to switch from one bios to another, there are three of them !
  • PCI-e 16x Switch: allows you to activate or deactivate the PCI Express 16x ports. This allows for example to test several configurations without having to remove the graphics card each time.
  • Slow mode: allows you to boot with a 16x coefficient and once in the OS to put back the one chosen in the bios. In cold mode, if you want to reach 6GHz in 60x100MHz, by activating the Slow Mode, you boot in 16×100 and in the OS, you go back to 60×100. It’s mostly for max screens.
  • Safe Boot: allows you to restart the card even if the settings chosen in the bios do not allow booting. This avoids having to do a CMOS Clear and therefore losing your settings.
  • USB BIOS Update port: as its name suggests, it can be used to flash your BIOS.

If you have the opportunity to acquire a multimeter, it is an essential tool to accurately measure the voltage of your processor. Personally, I can’t do without it anymore and it also allows me to see the impact of the ” LoadLine calibration ” which I’ll tell you about during our overclocking tests. With this Z690 DARK and the ProbeIt tool, it’s child’s play to measure the different voltages.

The PCB:

The power supply stage has been further enhanced and is based on an 18 + 2 + 1 phase power supply (CPU + VCCIN + MEM). The part in charge of the CPU consists of 18 phases. And what better way to illustrate this than by using a picture of the plastic PCB of our motherboard in the bundle!


The digital controller is a Renesas RAA229131. The mosfets are Intersil ISL99390 of 90A, what to have largely margin for the overclocking of the 12900KS.

An ultra complete connectic:

As far as the connectors of our EVGA X570 DARK are concerned, it is of course quite complete and largely sufficient for overclocking. One of the particularities of the card is to have a PS/2 slot in order to connect a keyboard or a mouse. But why still use this type of connector in 2021? Simply because some benchmarks are more powerful under XP (Super Pi) and the use of non-USB peripherals greatly facilitates the installation of the OS.

There are also two 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet controllers. As for the USB, we have 2 USB 3.2, four USB 3.2 Gen2 as well as a type-C. Then we find the antenna supports for the dual band Wi-Fi as well as the audio outputs.

Finally, note that our motherboard is a 1.2.0 revision but that there are 1.1.0 versions. We asked Vince aka KingPiN to find out the difference between these two versions and here is his answer: ” We added some extra implementation for PWM. Proprietary stuff. The boards are indentical though. This extra hw is more future looking and you may see it on next gen KP DARK “.