Gigabyte Z170X Gaming 7 Motherboard Review: Page 3 of 8
Posted by Heath Coop on Wednesday, August 12, 2015 - 8:00am
A Closer Look
Gigabyte has chosen to make a cosmetic change with the new Z170 chipset motherboards. The Z170X Gaming 7 sports a new white and red color scheme. Combined with the new motherboard armor design, the upper end Gaming line is a real standout.
A quick walk around the motherboard shows there is certainly no shortage of connectors. We will get to those in detail later. The heatsinks are mostly black with white and grey aluminum highlights. While it may not be noticeable at first glance, the “Gaming Eye” logo is gone. This is quite a departure from Gigabyte’s previous cosmetic designs.
The heart of any Z170 motherboard, the Intel 1151 socket.
The lower end of the motherboard contains most of the front panel connections. New one-piece metal EM shields are installed on the 16x PCI-E slots.
Amp-up Audio is the primary source of sound. Powered by the Creative Sound Core3D quad-core audio processor and features an upgradable OP-AMP. The motherboard audio trace is lit with RGB LED’s and is controllable via included softer, which we will cover later.
Above the first and behind the third PCI-E 16X slots are the Ultra M.2 connectors.
There are eight SATA ports that can be combined into four SATA Express ports.
A set of lit power button resides at the top right corner of the motherboard. Just next it is the reset and CMOS reset switches. A debug LED, ECO button and OC button are next to the 24 pin header and two USB 3.0 front panel headers.
The rear I/O has quite a few ports. There a two USB 2.0 and three USB 3.0 ports, as well as a Type-C USB 3.1 port. A PS/2 keyboard/mouse port allows for legacy input device connectivity. The one RJ-45 port is driven by the Qualcomm Atheros Killer chip while the other is driven by an Intel chip. A S/PDIF Out and 5 audio jacks provide option for audio connections. There are also a full set of video connections.
Gigabyte has included standard driver/software disc package.
There are 4 SATA cables and an SLI bridge.
The rear I/O panel is RGB lit to match the motherboard. A set of connector dust covers and an easy connect of that front panel are the final accessories.
Our version is a “Heroes of the Storm” edition and includes a couple bonuses.
System Configuration, BIOS, and Software are up next.