Category Archives for "Intel Motherboards"

Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 Motherboard Review

Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 4way SLI/CrossFireX Gaming Killer LAN Motherboards GA-X99-GAMING 5

The motherboard can be considered the central nervous system of a computer.

It is essentially responsible for relaying all important information across the different components of a computer.

Therefore, it is important to have a top notch motherboard that performs well and is stable.

However, with the amount of motherboards available on the market today, it can be quite daunting choosing one especially if you are building a PC for the first time.

Choosing a motherboard often comes down to personal preference. More and more manufacturers are creating motherboards with all kinds of features so it is just a matter of determining which one works for you.

You may want to consider the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99. This particular motherboard has a memory capacity of up to 64GB that supports Intel X99 Express. It also supports different multi-graphics from 4-way AMD CrossFire to NVIDIA SLI Technology.

Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99

Features

  • Brand: Gigabyte
  • Slots: 4x PCI-Express 3.0 x16 Slots (two run at x8), 3x PCI-Express 2.0 x1 Slots, 1x M.2 Slot (M.2 Wi-Fi)
  • Multi-Graphics: Support for 4-Way/ 3-Way/ 2-Way AMD CrossFire & NVIDIA SLI Technology
  • SATA: 10x SATA3 Ports, Six Support RAID 0, 1, 5, 10, Four Support IDE and AHCI modes only; 1x SATA Express Port
  • Form Factor: EATX, 30.5 x 25.9 cm

Pros

A few reviewers of the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 found that it is quite easy to install even for beginners. They also liked that this is an E-ATX which provides plenty of room for slots. Aside from ease of installation, they also find that setting up the BIOS is simple as well. The setting is very user-friendly so there is not much manipulation or confusion.

Probably one of the features reviewers liked most was the extra power connectors for the CPU and GPUs created for multiple cards and overclocking. This means that you are able to hook up your gaming computer to extra power connections providing your PC an extra power supply.

This ensures that you have sufficient power especially during heavy loads and when you use the overclocking feature. The GPUs are already SLI ready so it is easy to use if needed.

Some also found that there are plenty of USB 3 ports giving you the opportunity to transfer data faster without issue. It also has many SATA ports without sacrificing any USB ports. The push button overclocking feature is a nice addition to the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99.

They also liked the fact that the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 comes with built-in Wi-Fi and soundblaster hardware. The soundblaster produces great sound which brings the gaming experience to a whole new level.

Cons

One of the main issues that reviewers encountered with the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 is its boot capacity. They found that when you try to boot a computer while the USB drives are plugged in, the computer tends to be on a reboot cycle. Some have found that updating to an F10b solves this issue even when USB drives are plugged in.

Some also found that the RAM will simply fail to boot when overclock. This resulted in having to revert back to default settings. This can be a bit annoying if it keeps happening every time you overclock.

A few who have reviewed the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 also found that it takes a little bit of time and effort to actually get it set it up and running. It also takes a lot of energy to set it to the settings you want. Some have also reported that the motherboard crashed after only using it a few times.

Verdict

For its price, the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 is a little bit more expensive than some other motherboards available on the market today. There are also some booting issues which can take some effort to fix. Some find the installation of this motherboard to be a breeze while others found it to be time-consuming and energy-draining.

However, the Gigabyte Intel LGA 2011-3 X99 does have a few useful features including the extra power connectors, soundblasters and built-in wifi. Overall, this is a good motherboard if you are looking for one that is easy to overclock.

ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard Review

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS VIII HERO ALPHA ATX DDR4 3000 LGA 1151 Motherboards

You may have the top notch CPU, RAM or video card but without a quality motherboard to hold all of these together, you pretty much have useless pieces that may not work at their best.

The motherboard is the house that holds everything together. Whether you want to buy one for a full system upgrade or just to add some new abilities or features, choosing the right motherboard is crucial.

Nowadays, you can find motherboards with a variety of features to jack up your gaming experience from the video cards to the processor housed within it. Most brands would simply upgrade a previous version of their top selling motherboard and add in one or two features that will bring their brand to the next level.

This is the case for the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard which is an improved version of their award-winning ROG Maximus Hero motherboard.

The ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard features an improved USB 3.1 performance with an all new Aura RGB Strip headers so users can customize lighting. It has a 5-way optimization with a 1-click overclocking feature. It supports Intel Gb LAN and MU-MIMO 2T2R 802. 11ac.

ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard

Features

  • Brand: Asus
  • 5-way optimization with a 1-click overclocking
  • Intel Gb LAN and MU-MIMO 2T2R 802. 11ac
  • LED lighting and Aura Flex RGB headers
  • Dual U.2 + M.2 + SATA Express

Pros

The ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard takes pattern to its origins, the award-wining design of the ROG Maximus Hero motherboard making it a well-designed piece of equipment. It supports up to 64GB memory which allows more data.

A few who have reviewed and used this motherboard find it quite useful and it allowed them to download more games. They also found that this particular motherboard boots up quickly compared to other motherboards on the market today.

The RGB connectors are also a plus for those who have reviewed the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard. The lighting control software allows users to control lighting effects providing them several options on the type of light they want to illuminate their case.

Reviewers also found the BIOS interface to be very modern and easy to use. It is easy to update and manipulate minimizing the time to set up the settings to the desired preference.

The RGB option also gives users the option to add LED lighting. The 1-click overclocking feature was also a breeze to use. Some also found that it is easy to set-up making it a good option for those planning to build their own PC, especially beginners.

They also liked the additional built-in Wifi and Bluetooth features which gives the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard additional connectivity.

Cons

Some reviewers of the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard found that, although it does have 2x U.2 ports, one of them is shared with Intel SATA ports. This means if you want to use both ports you will lose the use of the 4 SATA ports.

Some also found that the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard would not recognize a Logitech unified receiver even when plugged into a USB port 7 or 8. It would not work even if you flash the chipset or pull the battery flash all over again.

Reviewers also reported that the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard only supports 8GB sticks at a speed of 3200.

Make sure that you read the user manual when buying this particular motherboard to ensure that you get the appropriate RAM for your gaming computer, especially if you are planning to build your own.

Verdict

The ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard is definitely an upgrade from the original ROG Maximus Hero motherboard. It is pretty easy to use and very well-designed.

It boots up pretty fast sometimes taking less than 5 seconds. The RGB, Wifi and Bluetooth addition to this motherboard are also attractive features.

There are a few concerns regarding this motherboard that may or may not be a major issue, depending on your preference. However, the ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Alpha Motherboard is a good option overall if you are looking for a motherboard for a PC build.

MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A Motherboard Review

MSI Enthuastic Gaming Intel Z170A LGA 1151 DDR4 USB 3.1 ATX Motherboard (Z170A XPower Gaming Titanium Edition)

UPDATED: 10/21/16 

When it comes to gaming, it really does pay to be a little picky when it comes to choosing a motherboard. Having a quality motherboard means an uninterrupted gaming experience.

You may have the best processor, graphic card or even RAM but the motherboard that houses everything can make or break your gaming computer.

Choosing a motherboard can be a little daunting if you are a first time or casual gamer. However, there are definitely some factors you should consider if you are planning to build a gaming computer that will meet all of your preferences.

There are motherboards that support all or many of the features you want in your gaming computer right down to the LED lighting you want.

There are definitely many brands available on the market today that will answer your needs including the MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard.

This particular motherboard supports the 6th generation Intel Core Trade i7, i5 and i3. It has a maximum memory capacity of 64GB and features several slots. It also supports two multi-graphics, AMD 4-way CrossFireX and NAVIDIA 2-way SLI technology.

MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A Motherboard Review

Features

  • Brand: MSI
  • LGA1151, Supports 6th Generation Intel Core Trade i7/ i5/ i3/ Pentium/ Celeron Processors
  • Memory: 4x DDR4-3600(OC)/ 3200(OC)/ 3000(OC)/ 2800(OC)/ 2600(OC)/ 2400/ 2133 MHz DIMM Slots, Dual Channel, ECC, Unbuffered, Max Capacity of 64GB
  • Slots: 4x PCI-Express 3.0 x16 Slots (run at x16/x0/x0/x4 or x8/x0/x8/x4 or x8/x4/x4/x4), 3x PCI-Express 3.0 x1 Slots
  • SATA: 8x SATA3 Ports, Support RAID 0, 1, 5, 10; 2x SATA Express Ports (PCI-Express 3.0 x2)
  • Audio: Realtek ALC1150 7.1-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC, Supports S/PDIF Output

Pros

Those who have reviewed and used the MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard found the LEDs on this motherboard water block that shines outward from the top corner to be very neat. It shines under all four corners of the heatsink at the bottom and under the DAC shielding providing a nice effect when in a dark space.

With an ATX, they also liked the fact that it can support several slots. This means you have the ability to get 2 M.2 SSDs in PCIe 3.0 x4. You also have the option to use only one allowing you to use 2-way SLI. This flexibility is great depending on your preferences.

Another good feature that reviewers pointed out is the water block. This means they do not have to install an aftermarket one. This also adds to the overall look of the MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard.

On top of that, this particular motherboard also features two USB 3.0 front panel headers, one of which puts out more power. This means you are able to use the port to charge your phone or your tablet which can come in handy.

Some also liked the fact that the UEFI Bios of the MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard is very easy to navigate compared to other motherboards. You can easily manage the settings for XMP profiles, the overclocking feature or even the fan speed curves.

Cons

A few who have reviewed and used the MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard found that it can only support Intel processors designed for an LGA 1151 socket. This can limit use especially if you are planning to build your own PC.

It also only supports the 6th Generation Intel Core processor so anything under will pose a problem.

They also found it surprising that it is quite heavy. Unlike other motherboards on the market today, the MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard does have some weight to it. This may be due to the fact that it was built for stability and to be a little sturdier in case it gets knocked down, for any reason, it will be fine.

Some also found that it is not as durable as they would have liked it to be. They found that after a few months the motherboard would just die down. The computer would no longer boot and a lot of the time will not even go to the Bios settings.

Verdict

The MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard is a sturdy unit that supports many features.

It is a good option for both advanced users and casual gamers. Although there are some concerns in regards to its durability, the MSI Enthusiastic Gaming Intel Z170A ATX Motherboard is overall a well-built sturdy product.

ASUS 970 Motherboard Review

ASUS 970 Pro Gaming/Aura ATX DDR3 AM3 Motherboard

Any gamer will tell you that one of the most important components of a gaming computer is the motherboard. Without a good motherboard, you can just kiss your gaming computer goodbye.

And, with more and more people getting into gaming, it is no wonder that there are now a variety of motherboards available offering all kinds of features that will bring your gaming experience to the next level, like the Asus 970 Pro Gaming/Aura ATX DDR3 AM3 Motherboard.

The Asus 970 Pro Gaming/Aura ATX DDR3 AM3 Motherboard features Aura RGB Lighting and audio that is designed to allow gamers the ability to build and customize an AMD FX gaming rig.

It supports SLI, AMD as well as NVIDIA. For faster data transfer, it has Dual USB 3.1 Type A ports and M.2.

ASUS 970 Motherboard

Features

  • AM3+ socket with 970 chipset for AMD FX processors
  • Aura RGB LED Lighting control
  • Dual USB 3.1 Type A ports and M.2
  • Intel Gigabit Ethernet with LANGuard

Pros

Probably one of the best features of the Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard that a few who have reviewed it have pointed out is the RGB LED lighting control. It has all the connections needed to set it up flawlessly and efficiently.

With the light customization options, this allows you to customize the LED lighting to your own personal preference.

A few who have reviewed and used the Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard found that it is quite sturdy and built well, fitting easily into the case. All ports matched up well in the case openings so they did not encounter any problems in making sure that all connections are all lined up.

They also liked the BIOS that is nicely laid out. It breathes life to the AM3+ quite well without much effort. The overclocking feature of the Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard is another attractive feature.

It has the ASUS AI suite which is a valuable tool for this motherboard. It proved to be quite powerful for both advanced gamers but easy enough to be operated by beginners or casual gamers. It has the option for ASUS EZ Mode as well which is a good plus.

The Dual USB port, especially the M.2 slot is a great bonus. These allow users to easily download data.

Cons

A few who have reviewed the Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard found that the software that comes with the board is quite basic so they had to do a bit of customization to bring it to where it should be and according to their preferences.

This can be a good and bad thing. Since it is quite basic, you do have the opportunity to update the board according to your needs and it is easy to manipulate any aspect you may need. However, at the same time, it will take a bit of time before you can actually use it.

Reviewers also found that the Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard initially exhibited some issues with stability as it tends to freeze at POST. However, this issue was resolved with a quick reset.

Some found issues with the temperature reader as it was not as accurate as they hoped. This could pose a problem especially with gaming where you might be online for hours on end and could overheat your unit.

Although a few who have used the Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard liked the RGB LED lighting, some find it a bit limiting since it is only on one spot and not on all of the heat sinks.

The settings also do not stay on after you shut down your computer and just revert back to the standard color setting so you will have to keep setting it.

Verdict

The Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard is a sturdy, well-designed MoBo that is a good option for both advanced and casual gamers.

It is stable and powerful enough to handle hard gaming without running into many issues.

The over clocking feature of this motherboard is probably one of its best features allowing you to boost your gaming experience. Although there have been a few issues on stability in terms of the initial boot, this could easily be resolved with a quick reset.

Overall, the Asus 970 Pro Gaming Motherboard is a good alternative if you are looking for a motherboard that you can manipulate to your own specifications.