MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X Motherboard Review: Page 3 of 8

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Posted by Heath Coop on Tuesday, May 3, 2016 - 8:00am

A Closer Look

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

The most noticeable feature of the MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X is quite obviously the black and white color scheme. MSI has chosen a black and red color scheme for all its current Gaming Series motherboards, with the exception of the Krait series.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

A quick walk around the motherboard shows there is certainly no shortage of connectors. We will get to those in detail later. A new cosmetic design debuts with MSI’s Z170 motherboards.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

The lower rear of the motherboard contains most of the front panel audio connections. Audio on the Krait Gaming 3x is provided by MSI’s Audio Boost 3 which is powered by Realtek’s ALC1150 chipset. The two upper PCI-E slots are steel reinforced to reduce tear out during transport.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

The lower front of the motherboard contains most of the rest of front panel connections, as well as a SATA Express connector.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

Things are a bit snug around the CPU socket, which is not uncommon with modern motherboards. The M.2 port resides below the CPU socket and just behind the top PCI-E 3.0 1X slot. The M.2 connector supports all common standards and is capable of up to 32 Gb/s.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

The lower front of the motherboard has the 24 pin power connector and two fan connectors.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

The upper front of the motherboard contains 4 SATA 6.0 connectors, as well as dual USB 3.0 front panel connectors.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

There are two USB 3.0 ports, as well as Type-A and Type-C USB 3.1 ports. There are also four USB 2.0 ports. A PS/2 keyboard/mouse port allows for legacy input device connectivity. The RJ-45 port is driven the I219-V Intel chipset. Five audio jacks and an optical port provide option for audio connections. There are also HDMI and DVI video connections.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

MSI has  included a User Guide, a Registration Card, and handy SATA Cable Labels.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

There is also a driver disk and Quick Installation Guide.

MSI Z170A Krait Gaming 3X

Two SATA cables, the rear I/O shield, and a SLI bridge round out the included accessories.

 

System Configuration, BIOS, and Software are up next.

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