Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

PCI-E lanes, nothing out of the ordinary.

Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

See the AMP-UP word there? The Gaming 3 comes with GIGABYTE AMP-UP Audioâ„¢ Technology with Realtek ALC1150 115dB SNR HD Audio and ALC1150 high-performance multi-channel High Definition Audio Codec to delivers exceptional audio listening experience with up to 115dB SNR.

It also has a Built-in Rear Audio Amplifier, utilizing a high-capacity amplifier which is able to drive 600Ω loads, giving gamers a fuller range of dynamic sound with crisper details and less distortion when using high quality professional headphones.

In Addition, the package is also bundled with Sound Blaster X-Fi MB3 software suite.

*NOTE : I’m writing a REVIEW, not a PRODUCT GUIDE. 🙂 You won’t see me talking about the software part unless it’s really necessary.

Here are the I/O ports, I’m pleasantly surprised to see 2x PS/2 ports and a VGA output. I don’t know whether people still use PS/2 keyboard and mouse but hey, it’s a good thing to have them just in case.

Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

The board also comes with a red colored LED strip at the back, pretty much like the ASUS Maximus VII Ranger board I reviewed a few weeks ago.

Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

More details at the official product page.

Use Experience

The board refused to work with my Kingston HyperX RAM that I used with the ASUS Maximus VII Ranger but it has no problems at all with the Avexir CORE RAM kit

I have no idea why. Overclocking was a breeze, I can’t get it to run my Intel Core i5-4670K at 4.4Ghz with 1.25vcore as I did with some other high end boards but I could do 4.3Ghz with ease and it even passed my video encoding test.

Another impressive part about the board is the UEFI. Put it simple – I’m in love with the UEFI layout. (You may Click on those images to enlarge)

What I like is that it has all the key details displayed on both left and right side of the screen. At the center, the interface is pretty much like a website. One just has to go through the tabs to adjust the settings.

Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

I think what impressed me the most in the already impressive UEFI interface is the description, I really hate it when the description just says something like “This one adjusts the VCore” – WTH!?!?! It’s obvious isn’t it? What I want to know is what the setting does, and Gigabyte did a great job on this one.

Gigabyte GA-Z97X-Gaming 3 (LGA 1150) Motherboard Review

The Verdict

The board retails at RM 529, which is a very attractive price given that the board is not only feature-rich when it comes to gaming experience but it also has plenty of settings in UEFI for one to delve into overclocking.

goldfries recommended

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