ASRock Fatal1ty FM2A88X+ Killer
We think that it's important to point out that it's been a while since we last had an AMD-based motherboard in our lab, let alone ASRock's gamingcentric Fatal1ty FM2A88X+ Killer. But, as luck would have it, we had gotten in AMD's A10-7870K ‘Godavari' APU and needed a motherboard. Here are our thoughts on it.
ASRock's design philosophy has, from our observation, always been that of a “keep it simple, keep it clean” approach. Looking at the FM2A88X+ Killer, there's isn't anything on the board that is garishly adorned, or even too extreme in its design. In fact, the only physical features that stand out on this motherboard are the brushed machine-cut aluminum heatsinks placed on the top of the board's VRM modules, and the two red PCIe slots that support a dual CrossFireX configuration.
The FM2A88X+ Killer's onboard soundcard is also a highlight for this motherboard, and like most ASRock motherboards, its audio quality was actually quite impressive.
While AMD's new AM4 and FP4 socket motherboards won't be arriving on the market anytime soon, there are still a couple of top-tier AMD A10APUs that are compatible with the FM2A88X+ Killer, chief among which being the A107870K (the APU that used for this review) and the A10-7890K, the last of the enthusiast-level APUs that's based on the 28nm die process and FM2+ socket.
When we paired this motherboard with the A107870K, we also paired the motherboard with 16GB of high-performance DDR3 RAM from Apacer, with a maximum clockspeed of 2,133MHz. For testing the APU, VRAM with high frequency clockspeed is essential, because they actually aid processors (CPU and APU alike) in processing data faster and more efficiently.
As an APU has both CPU and GPU Compute Cores built-in, we ran PCMark 8's Creative and Home benchmarks, and 3DMark's Fire Strike benchmark only. On PCMark 8, the FM2A88X+ Killer and A10-7870K scored 3,857 on the Home benchmark, and 2,576 on the Creative benchmark. On 3DMark's Fire Strike benchmark, the motherboard and APU scored a grand total of 1,599, which is really impressive.
Unsurprisingly, and due to the more power-efficient nature of the A10-7870K, the FM2A88X+ Killer's overall temperature were relatively warm to the touch, even while running games like and directly from the APU and motherboard.
Last but not least, because the APU was able to support resolutions of up to 4,096 x 2,160 via HDMI, we had no problem hooking up the FM2A88X+ Killer to our own 1,440p display.
That score, with just an APU and motherboard.