ASRock Z390 Motherboard Review [2022]

60 Second Review 

ASRock’s Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/AC is a well-rounded ITX motherboard for Intel’s 8th and 9th Generation processors. It offers great features, good looks, and a solid BIOS. 

ASRock is on a mission to cram as many top features as possible into their ITX small form factor boards. This includes things like 2.5G LAN, 2T2R Wi-Fi, and more. All of this is accomplished without sacrificing any features or quality. This allows you to have a top-performing board in a much smaller package.

One of the best things about the ASRock ITX boards is that they come with all the latest technologies. This means you won’t have to miss out on anything the bigger boards offer. You’ll still be able to enjoy features like USB 3.1, M.2 SSD support, and even Intel Optane support.

The motherboard does not have many extras, but the few it does have are well worth the price. Overall, this is a great motherboard for anyone looking to build a small form factor PC.

Price and Availability:

The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/AC is surprisingly affordable for all its features. You can get it for about $190 on Amazon and other e-commerce websites, making it one of the more affordable options in the ITX market.

Specifications

SpecificationsValue
(CPU)Processor Socket LGA1151
ChipsetsIntel Z390
Form FactorMini ITX
USB Ports10 Gbps: (4) Type A, (1) Type-C (via Thunderbolt 3) 5 Gb/s: (2) Type A
SATA ports (4) 6Gb/s (Port 0 shared w/M.2)
USB Header (1) v3.0, (1) v2.0
M.2 slots(2) PCIe 3.0 x4 / SATA* (*Consumes SATA Port 1)
Video PortsDisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 2.0, Thunderbolt 3 
Audio Jacks(5) Analog, (1) Digital Out
Other Ports/JackThunderbolt 3 at 20Gb/s max, CLR_CMOS Button
Wi-Fi / BluetoothIntel 9560 802.11ac 2×2 (1.73Gb/s) / BT 5 Combo

The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac is the only motherboard on the market with a rear panel Thunderbolt 3 USB Type-C port. This is a great feature for those who want to connect an external graphics card or other high-speed devices. The Thunderbolt 3 port is also compatible with the new USB Type-C standard and can provide up to 40 Gbps data transfer speed. The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac also includes an Intel 9560 802.11ac MU-MIMO Wi-Fi adapter for wireless connectivity. The motherboard also has a single HDMI 2.0 video output on the rear panel for connecting to a display.

It supports dual channel DDR4-4500 memory with up to a maximum of 32 GB over two memory slots. The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac supports dual channel DDR4-4500 memory with up to a maximum of 32 GB over two memory slots. This means that you can easily upgrade your memory in the future if you need more performance. The motherboard also supports Intel Optane Memory for a faster and more responsive system.

This motherboard has four SATA 3 ports for storage devices. Two SATA ports are shared with the M.2 slots, so you’ll have to choose between using SATA or M.2 for storage. The motherboard also has a single U.2 port for connecting a U.2 NVMe SSD.

With all these features, the ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac is one of the best ITX motherboards on the market. It has everything you need for a high-performance system in a small form factor.

Compatibility – Best Match

HardwareValue
CPUIntel Core i9-9900K
Memory Module (RAM)Ballistix Elite 3000MHz 16GB (2x8GB)
Power Supply Unit (PSU)Dark Power Pro 11 1000w
GPUZOTAC GTX 1060 6GB

Design:

The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac has a black and red color scheme with a gaming-themed design. The motherboard has a metal shroud over the I/O area and VRM heatsinks. The PCH heatsink is also metal and has a red color accent.

The VRM has a 4+2 phase design and is controlled by an Intersil ISL69138 PWM controller. The motherboard also has an ASP1405i DrMOS MOSFETs for improved power efficiency. For cooling, the motherboard has a large passive heatsink for the VRM area.

It’s the best-looking ITX motherboard on the market with a modern design that will look great in any gaming PC build.

Performance

In terms of performance, the ASRock ITX boards are on par with the market’s best. This is thanks to the high-quality components that they use. You can rest assured that your board will be able to handle anything you throw at it.

The ASRock boards are definitely one of the best-performing ITX boards you can buy. They offer everything you want and do it all without sacrificing features or quality.

Reasons to Buy it:

The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac is one of the best ITX motherboards you can buy. It has everything you need for a high-performance system in a small form factor.

A standout feature is the Thunderbolt 3 USB Type-C port which is great for those who want to connect an external graphics card or other high-speed devices. With a data transfer speed of 40 Gbps, you won’t have to worry about bottlenecking your system. You will all the latest features at a price range lower than most of the competition.

So, if you’re looking for a top-of-the-line mini-ITX motherboard, the Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac should definitely be at the top of your list.

Reasons to Avoid It:

The only real reason to avoid the ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac is if you need more than two SATA ports. If you need more than two SATA ports, you’ll have to use the M.2 slots, which share bandwidth with the SATA ports. Other than that, there are no real reasons to avoid this motherboard.

What is the difference between the ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac and the ASRock Z390 Taichi?

The main difference between the two boards is that the Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac has a Thunderbolt 3 USB Type-C port while the Taichi does not. Other than that, they are both very similar in terms of features and performance.

Can I use an M.2 SSD with the ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac?

Yes, the motherboard has two M.2 slots that support SATA and NVMe SSDs. You can use either type of SSD in either slot.

Does the ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac have Wi-Fi?

Yes, the motherboard has an Intel 9560 802.11ac MU-MIMO Wi-Fi adapter. With this, you’ll be able to connect to wireless networks and enjoy fast internet speeds.

What is the maximum capacity of memory that the ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac can support?

The motherboard can support up to 32 GB of DDR4-4500 memory over two memory slots. Everyone has different needs when it comes to memory, so you can always add more memory if you need it.

Conclusion:

The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac has all the latest features, great performance, and an affordable price tag. It’s got plenty of features that will appeal to gamers and enthusiasts, and it’s sure to fit into just about any case. 

The ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac is one of the best ITX motherboards available today. So, if you are looking for a small and feature-rich motherboard for your next Intel build, the ASRock Z390 Phantom Gaming-ITX/ac is definitely worth a look.