MSI 790GX-G65 ATX Motherboard Review

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The MSI 790GX-G65 Motherboard

AMD’s Phenom II has made it fashionable to sport AMD CPUs in the enthusiast market once again. Phenom II is currently split across two nearly identical sockets, AM2+ and AM3. Today we’ve got MSI’s 790GX-G65 motherboard, one of two AM3 motherboards they currently manufacture. The 790GX-G65 motherboard is a mid-range motherboard that shares some of the overclocking features of the more expensive MSI 790GX GD70 while maintaining a much lower price. Today we’ll show how a board with a modest price can still be successful at stock and overclocked speeds.

MSI 790GX G65 Motherboard with HD 4870x2 and Corsair Dominator GT


The 790GX + SB750 chipset that the 790GX-G65 is based upon is a familiar face with dozens of boards utilizing this chipset with AM2+ and AM3 sockets. Unlike motherboards of yore, the 790GX chipset has much less work cut out for it as the memory controller is integrated into the CPU. However, unlike past motherboards, the 790GX northbridge features an integrated HD3300 graphical processor with 128MB of DDR3 for superb onboard video performance and smooth high-definition video playback.

A buyer must be very careful with AMD’s current lineup of CPUs. Since the 790GX-G65 uses an AM3 socket, only AM3 Phenom II CPUs will physically fit in the socket and function properly. Currently, only the AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition, Phenom II X3 710, and Phenom II X4 810 will function in this motherboard. Don’t worry though, there are many upcoming AM3 CPUs and this board will support them all as it can support up to 140w CPUs. Below is a short chart highlighting the major features of the 790GX-G65. For additional board specifications and support, please visit MSI’s 790GX-G65 support page.


  • Socket AM3 socket for AMD Phenom II processors
  • High-performance HyperTransport 3.0 CPU Interface
  • Support transfer rate up to 5200 mega-transfers per second
  • Note: This board supports CPU up to 140W TDP only; you can refer to AMD website to check your CPU.


  • North Bridge: AMD 790GX
  • South Bridge: AMD SB750


  • Integrated HD3300 DirectX 10 graphics processor
  • 128MB of DDR3-1333 for enhanced graphics


  • Dual-channel DDR3 memory architecture
  • 4 x 240-pin DDR3 DIMM socket support up to 16GB
  • Support DDR3 up to DDR3 800/1066/1333/1600

Expansion Slot

  • 2 x PCI Express Gen 2.0 x16 slots(1×16, 1×8)
  • 2 x PCI Express x1 slots
  • 2 x PCI slots


  • Support by AMD SB750
  • 5 x Serial ATAII 3.0Gb/s devices
  • RAID 0/1/5/10/JBOD
  • 2 x IDE Ultra DMA 66/100/133
  • 1 x eSATA


  • Realtek ALC889 8-channel audio CODEC
  • Compliant with Azalia 1.0 Spec

Rear Panel I/O

  • 1 x PS/2 keyboard or PS/2 mouse connector
  • 1 x D-sub(VGA)
  • 1 x DVI
  • 1 x HDMI Port
  • 1 x RJ45 LAN connector
  • 1 x optical S/PDIF Out connector
  • 6 x Audio port (Line-in,4x Line-out, Mic_in)
  • 1 x eSATA
  • 6 x USB ports
  • 1 x FireWire 800

Internal I/O

  • 1 x 24-pin ATX Power Supply connector
  • 1 x 4-pin ATX 12V Power Connector
  • 1 x 4-pin CPU_FAN connector
  • 3 x 3-pin SYS_FAN connector
  • 1 x Power on button
  • 1 x Reset button
  • 1 x IDE connector
  • 1 x Speaker header
  • 1 x Front panel switch/LED header
  • 1 x Front panel audio header
  • 1 x SPDIF out header
  • 5 x Serial ATA 3Gb/s connectors
  • 3 x USB 2.0 headers supporting 6 additional ports
  • 1 x IEEE1394 header supports 1 additional port

Form Factor

  • ATX Size, 305mm*244mm
  • 9 mounting holes


  • 36 months on parts
  • 24 months for parts and labor
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