Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Motherboards

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EVGA Z270 Classified K Motherboard Review

Back in January at CES 2017 EVGA showed us their Z270 motherboard lineup which they launched at the show. This included the Z270 Classified K, Z270 FTWK, and the Z270 Stinger. Today we have the chance to take a look at one of those boards, which is the Z270 Classified K. The Z270 Classified K currently sits as EVGA's flagship Z270 motherboard and it is jam packed with features! This E-ATX motherboard features Creative Sound Core3D audio, Killer E2500 gaming networking, Thunderbolt 3, U.2 as well as dual M.2 32 Gb/s ports, a 13-phase power delivery system and more! Let's get this board on the test bench and see what it can do!

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Aorus Z270X-Gaming 9 Motherboard Review

Aorus is here! If you are wondering what Aorus is, it is Gigabyte's new high-end gaming brand. It seems that Gigabyte wanted to really differentiate their different lines, so Aorus will effectively replace Gigabyte's G1 Gaming line. Not only for motherboards, but graphics cards and other products as well. The first Aorus motherboards come to us from the Z270 line, in which Aorus has six motherboards. Today we will be taking a look at the flagship Z270X-Gaming 9, which has everything you would want on a Z270 motherboard, plus a lot of extras. You have a PEX8747 to enable 4-way graphics, the Creative Sound Blaster certified ZxRi audio solution, integrated EKWB G-Frost hybrid water block, dual M.2 and U.2 connectors, Killer DoubleShot-X3 networking, RGB LEDs galore, and so much more! Let's jump in and see what this board is all about!

MSI X99A Tomahawk
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MSI X99A Tomahawk Motherboard Review

MSI introduced their Arsenal Gaming line not to long ago. The way it sits in their product stack is that you have Enthusiast Gaming, Performance Gaming, Arsenal Gaming, and then their Pro Series. Arsenal Gaming is positioned to give users many great gaming features, but at a good price as well. Today we are checking out the X99A Tomahawk, which offers a nice matte black PCB with black and grey accents. The board has three PCI-Express 3.0 x4 slots, an M.2 32 GB/s slot, a U.2 32 GB/s port, dual Intel LAN ports, USB 3.2 gen 2, and MSI's Audio Boost 3. Does the X99A Tomahawk have what it takes to make it into your X99 build? Read on as we take a look...

MSI X99A XPower Gaming Titanium Motherboard
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MSI X99A XPower Gaming Titanium Motherboard Review

Over the past couple of years MSI has really solidified themselves as a major player in the motherboard market. Their main focus with many of their motherboards has been gaming a recently they divided their gaming segment into three distinct series, Enthusiast Gaming, Performance Gaming, and Arsenal Gaming. Today we will be taking a look at a really unique motherboard which is part of the Enthusiast Gaming Series. It is not often we see motherboards with PCB's that differ from black, but MSI has gone Titanium with their X99A XPower Gaming Titanium as the name suggests. MSI did not just make the PCB of this board a Titanium color and expect people to buy it, they have decked it out with all of the options enthusiast gamers would want! You have Intel Gaming Networking, SLI and Crossfire support with steel-plated PCIe and DDR4 slots, 32 Gb/s M.2 and U.2 ports, USB 3.1 Gen 2 (Type-A and Type-C) ports, Audio Boost 3, powered by Nahimic Sound Technology, and so much more! This motherboard has pretty much everything you could ask for! Let's jump in and see what it is all about!

Gigabyte X99-Ultra Gaming Motherboard
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Gigabyte X99-Ultra Gaming Motherboard Review

Not that long ago Intel released their Broadwell-E high-end desktop (HEDT) processor family. Broadwell-E makes use of the same chipset and same socket as Haswell-E so can use the same X99 motherboards that were launched back in 2014. Of course since then we have seen improvements and features added to motherboards. So with that many companies have launched a second round of X99 motherboards that add these new features. One such company is Gigabyte and today we have their X99-Ultra Gaming motherboard. This motherboard is part of their G1 Gaming line and features ambient surround LEDs, RGB LED headers, quad-GPU SLI/CrossFire support, Killer E2400 gaming networking, NVMe PCIe Gen3 x4 U.2 and M.2 support, PCIe Gen2 x4 USB 3.1 support, and much more! Let's take a look and see what this motherboard is all about!

ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming K6+ Motherboard
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ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming K6+ Motherboard Review

ASRock has been collaborating with Fatal1ty on gaming motherboards for sometime now. For the Z170 series ASRock’s gaming line is made up of six motherboards. Today we will be taking a look at the Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming K6+ which sits right below the high-end Fatal1ty Z170 Professional Gaming i7. It has a very powerful feature-set included a 12-phase all digital power design, NVIDIA quad-SLI and AMD Quad CrossFire support, Killer E2400 gaming networking, ASRock’s Purity Sound 3 audio, USB 3.1 support and much more! Being a gaming board you get some extras too like ASRock’s F-Stream software and tools as well as 3-month premium license to XSplit broadcaster. Let’s jump in and see what the Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming K6+ Motherboard is all about.

EVGA Z170 Classified K Motherboard
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EVGA Z170 Classified K Motherboard Review

When EVGA first announced their Z170 motherboards they had the Z170 Classified at the super high-end and the Z170 FTW filling out the mainstream. Since there was quite a large gap between those two boards, EVGA recently announced the Classified K, which will sit in the middle of the two. This motherboard has many of the great features you would expect from a Z170 motherboard like 2-way SLI support, dual M.2 slots, SATA Express, USB 3.1, and isolated audio components. EVGA has also added Killer E2400 gaming networking, their own 6-layer PCB, on board power, reset, and clear CMOS buttons and much more. This should be the perfect motherboard for someone who does not need all of the features that the Z170 Classified has, but wants something a little more powerful and feature-rich than the Z170 FTW board. Let’s jump in and take a look at what the Z170 Classified K is all about!

Gigabyte X99P-SLI Motherboard
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Gigabyte X99P-SLI Motherboard Review

Lately we have seen a second wave of X99 motherboards from multiple manufacturers. This second wave adds new features, many of which we saw with the introduction of the Z170 chipset. Gigabyte is one such manufacturer who is releasing new X99 motherboards. Today we will be taking a look at their X99P-SLI. The biggest feature of this motherboard is that it features the world's 1st USB-IF certified Intel USB 3.1 controller with USB Type-C. This controller utilizes 4 PCIe Gen3 lanes, offering up to 32 Gb/s total bandwidth. Other new features on this board include an M.2 interface with up to 32Gb/s data transfer and NVMe support, PCI-Express metal shielding, and a multiple color LED trace path. Of course being a Gigabyte X99 motherboard you get the Ultra Durable design, an all digital power design with IR Digital PWM and IR PowIRstage ICs, 4-way graphics support, Realtek ALC1150 115dB SNR HD audio, and more! As you can see this motherboard is loaded with features so let’s jump in and see what it's all about!

Gigabyte Z170N-Gaming 5 Mini-ITX Motherboard
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Gigabyte Z170N-Gaming 5 Mini-ITX Motherboard Review

The mini-ITX form factor is becoming extremely popular with gamers who will be using a single graphics card because it allows them to build a system with premium components that is small and easy enough to take with them to LAN parties or other events. The problem with mini-ITX motherboards has been that they lack many features that their larger ATX counterparts offer. Well Gigabyte is changing that with their Z170N-Gaming 5 motherboard that has all of the features you would want in a full-size ATX motherboard, but in the tiny mini-ITX form factor. Gigabyte was able to pack in Killer E2200 gaming networking, Sound Blaster X-Fi MB3 support, a PCIe Gen3 x4 M.2 slot, two USB 3.1 ports (1x Type-C, 1x Type-A), and even 802.11ac dual band wireless. Gigabyte wants this to be the perfect board for gamers building in the mini-ITX form factor. Is it? Let’s take a look and find out!

MotherboardsReviews

MSI Z170A SLI Plus Motherboard Review

MSI’s Z170 motherboard product stack is pretty full, there are so many motherboards it is hard to narrow it down to a single board for your Z170 build. MSI has put a lot of focus on their Gaming Series that their Pro Series is often overlooked. Today we will be taking a look at a motherboard that has everything that you would want in a Z170 motherboard, without many of the extras that you won’t use. With that it comes in at a price that won’t break the bank. The motherboard I am talking about is the Z170A SLI Plus which features two shielded PCI-Express slots that support SLI and CrossFire, a 32 Gb/s M.2 slot, USB 3.1, and six SATA 6GB/s ports. As you can guess this board is designed for people who will be using two graphics cards and do not need all of the extra things on many of the motherboards we see on the market. Let’s see if the Z170A SLI Plus is the perfect board for your next Z170 build.

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