Biostar Gaming Z170X Motherboard Review: Page 4 of 7

Posted by Heath Coop on Friday, August 28, 2015 - 8:00am

System Configuration, BIOS, and Software

Testing Hardware

  • Gigabyte Gaming Z170X Motherboard
  • Intel Core i7 6700K Processor
  • Kingston HyperX Fury 2666MHz DRR4 Memory
  • PowerColor Radeon R9 285 TurboDuo Graphics Card
  • Crucial M550 256GB Solid State Drive
  • Spotswood Small Tech Station
  • XFX PRO850W XXX Edition 850w Silver Power Supply

Drivers

  • Radeon Catalyst 15.7

CPU Cooling:

  • XSPC X20 750 pump/reservoir combination
  • XSPC RS360mm Radiator
  • 6 Corsair 120MM .38A fans in push/pull configuration

Testing Operating System:

  • Microsoft Windows 10 Home

General System Benchmarks:

  • PCMark 8
  • Super Pi

CPU Benchmarks:

  • Fritz Chess
  • Handbrake
  • Cinibench R15
  • 7-Zip

Memory Benchmarks:

  • AIDA64 Engineer
  • Passmark Performance Test 8.0
  • SiSoft Sandra

Storage Benchmarks:

  • ATTO Disk Benchmark
  • CrystalDiskMark 3.0
  • AS SSD
  • Passmark Performance Test 8.0

Game Benchmarks:

  • 3Dmark
  • Bioshock: Infinite
  • Metro: Last Light
  • Thief
  • Tomb Raider

BIOS

Biostar has done little refinement with the Gaming Z170X BIOS over the previous generation. The sheer number of screens and settings are far too numerous to display here, so we will just take a look at the basics. The screens are fairly self-explanatory.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

UEFI BIOS is where all the overclocking action really happens. Every imaginable setting for clock speed or voltage is available, for both the CPU and the memory. Multiple profiles can be saved and named. Recent settings can be recalled. There is even a search feature included, to assist in finding any setting needed.

I found the BIOS to be a bit counterintuitive, though still easy to use. I did have some difficulty finding the settings that I wanted to change and everything seemed to be laid out backwards.

Software

Biostar has included several software utilities.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Toverclocker is a one stop source area for almost every major performance settings the Gaming Z170X has to offer. The simple and easy to use interface gets the job done.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

There is also a very simple BIOS update tool.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

eHot-Line allows the user to contact Biostar customer support quickly and easily if assistance is ever needed.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

The Bio Remote 2 application is where all the overclocking fun happens via a remote iPhone or Android application. All the basic settings are included. I found it rather easy to use and was particularly helpful when reaching those higher clocks.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

The Magix application allows for some basic multimedia fun.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Green Power Utility creates various power profiles depending on the user’s needs.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Smart Speed LAN has real-time analysis interface ensures you to obtain control of web related programs. With the status window, you can recognize which data streams you are currently transferring

Biostar Gaming Z170X

Smart Ear 3D provides virtual 3D space using any headphones. It does its job quite well and worth a look, especially if you have never experienced this kind of acoustic manipulation before.

Biostar Gaming Z170X

The Gaming Commander is designed for use with the Gaming Commander front panel. The software has a user friendly interface with equalizer function which allows users to add effects to his or her voice. The Gaming Commander front panel, when tied to the software, creates a very functional design. The front panel is also easy to use and quite informative.

 

Now onto Performance Testing.

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