Best Gaming Motherboards of 2017

The motherboard also known as mainboard or system board is the backbone of the computer. If the CPU is the brains of the computer, then the motherboard is the nervous system, it connects it all together.

Thus, for everything to run smooth and fast, you need a good nervous system, so today I will show you a few of the best gaming motherboards out there. A few years back it was a real mind-melter to find a good motherboard for gaming in a specific price range, but nowadays even the lower end manufacturers can make a good motherboard that can easily go toe to toe with the big dogs.

Proper motherboard shopping isn`t complicated, but it still requires some solid enough knowledge about other computer components you are planning to buy, or already have since you could waste time, money and potential performance. If you know what to look for you will not have much of a problem finding the perfect motherboard for your setup.

 

Tips on finding the best motherboard for gaming

These are just a few main things to look into when scouting for the right motherboard for you.

  • Intel or AMD motherboard?: The first thing should be making the decision between Intel or AMD type motherboards. This largely depends on what kind of budget you have (because we all know that Intel CPUs costs a decent amount of cash more than AMD, and both of them has their ups and downs), and what kind of CPU you want or already have.
  • Know your CPU Sockets: Know what kind of socket your CPU has. There are mostly 5 CPUs sockets AM3 or AM3+ and FM1 for AMDs, or LGA 1155 and LGA 2011 for Intel CPUs.
  • Does size matter? (Form Factor): A motherboard’s form factor kinda determines its capabilities, dimensions, power supply type, port quantity and even mounting holes. So, you should keep in mind what size your motherboard is when buying a case or looking for one to fit the case you already have, so you can fit it, plus the size determines how much expansion slots there is going to be. Nowadays there are mainly four types of form factors used: ATX, ETX, Micro ATX and Mini ITX
  • RAM Bays: In almost every situation the more Random Access Memory (or RAM) you have, the more efficient your computing is going to be. Most motherboards hold from 2 to 8 expansions slots, each one holds single memory module (aka DIMM) of a certain type, capacity, and speed (nowadays most used types are DDR3 and DDR4 with about 8 Gb size per slot). You should know what kind of speed your motherboard can take and in what types, so you can make the best of both component capabilities because you really would not want to buy the wrong type and waste the money.
  • Expansion slots: A motherboard expansion slot gives you the option to add additional capabilities to your computer, the most common being PCIe (PCI Express) which comes in four (x16, x8, x4 and x1) port sizes and is a standard for video cards, and backward compatible in size. So you should know how much expansion slots you have and what type they are. Note that if you are building a PC for gaming, you need at least one x16 slot for more powerful gear.
  • Storage: Many Hard Drives (or HDDs) and Solid State Drives or (SSDs) are connected to your motherboard by Serial ATA (SATA) ports, running either at speed of 3 Gb/s or 6 Gb/s and most commonly requiring from 2 to 8 of these connectors.
  • Power Connectors: Like everything else inside your PC, the motherboard needs power too, and just about every motherboard will have two power connectors: a larger one with 24 pins and a smaller one with 4 to 8 pins. Older motherboards used a 20 pin connector, so you should know what kind of power connectors your motherboard will have, so you can miss a nasty surprise after buying all your gear. Also, before buying you should figure out the power wattage that suits your build so that all of your devices have enough power to work.

 To calculate your power consumption visit this site here.

  • Extras: There is still a lot of other extras that are nice, and can save few bucks for your build. When you have decided what kind of motherboard you need or want, you can check if the motherboard has wireless network antennas (although you will be connecting your computer via cable, it is still nice to have such technology, because you never know where you might run into a piece of gear that needs this kind of connection), a built in audio card (there are going to be a lot of motherboards that have a really high-quality audio card built into them and you won’t need to buy a new audio card for those High-Quality music moments) and RGB strips (for those who want to have some cool colour in their build). Also worth knowing is whether the motherboard allows overclocking of your CPU and RAM to get just a little bit more out of your PC build. There are still a ton of extras that manufacturers add on their motherboards and going through all of them would need a whole book, which is why we’ve mentioned just a few.

Best gaming motherboard reviews


 

1. ASUS ROG MAXIMUS VIII FORMULA motherboard review

Asus ROG MAXIMUS VIII FORMULA DDR4 ATX Motherboard review

ROG Maximus VIII Formula 

One of the best gaming motherboards for I7 that support 6th generation Intel processors. Although there are a lot of other competitors, it excels a bit over them all mainly because of carefully picked parts and software that allows complete customization for your computer. ROG armor with reinforced back plate gives it a decent protection and stability, plus it has some of the undeniable ASUS durability and quality.

Features and Extras

It comes with free Kaspersky Anti-Virus (1 year), Daemon tools pro (1 year), PC Cleaner, Crosschill EK cooling that supports both air and liquid cooling, Gamerfirst IV Beta (allows you to optimize your network traffic to ensure that you get the best latency possible), and Keybot 2 that allows you to use Macros to control your computer, provides one click overclock, changes computer profiles and enables special functions. Maximus VIII comes with 3-year manufacturer warranty (although ASUS claims that warranty may change for some regions).

Conclusion

Asus Maximus VIII Formula is a ROG motherboard so it is dedicated to gamers and overclockers. Its most important aspect is the EK VRM water block which can cool down the temperature and provide better stability even in the most demanding situations. Also, a ROG Armor covers most of the PCB electronics and gives the board a nice look. The newest addition to the pack is the RGB illumination capability which is good news for modders. It’s difficult to pinpoint any area that the Maximus VIII Formula doesn’t excel in. In fact, it’s fantastic in pretty much every area from performance to audio and with overclocking too. It lacks nothing in terms of features you’d likely need. The overall price is pretty high compared to others, however, if you look at performance/price it is not so bad since ASUS comes packed with features and does not lack performance in any way.

Pros

What to like about Maximus VIII:

  • UEFI interface
  • Performance
  • Overclocking
  • Power consumption
  • Accessories
  • EK VRM water block
Cons

What to consider:

  • Nothing really except the price

 

  • CPU Socket Type
    • LGA 1151
  • CPU Type
    •  Core i7 / i5 / i3 / Pentium / Celeron (LGA1151)
  • Supported CPU Technologies
    •  Turbo Boost Technology 2.0
  • Intel Z170
  • Integrated Graphics Processor
  • Multi-VGA output support: HDMI/DisplayPort ports
    • Supports HDMI with max. resolution 4096 x 2160 @ 24 Hz
    • Supports DisplayPort with max. resolution 4096 x 2304 @ 60 Hz
  • Maximum shared memory of 512MB
  • Supports Intel InTru 3D, Quick Sync Video, Clear Video HD Technology, Insider
[tab title="Memory"]
  • Number of Memory Slots 
    • 4×288pin
  • Memory Standard 
    • DDR4 3733*(*O.C.)/ 3600*/ 3500*/ 3466*/ 3400*/ 3300*/ 3200*/ 3000*/ 2800*/ 2666*/ 2400*/ 2133
  • Maximum Memory Supported
    • 64GB
  • Channel Supported
    • Dual Channel
  • PCI Express 3.0 x16
    • 2 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (x16 or dual x8, gray)
    • 1 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (x4 mode, black)
  • PCI Express x1
    • 3 x PCIe 2.0 x1 (black)
  • Other Slots
    • 3 x PCI Express 2.0 x1
  • SATA 6Gb/s
    • 6 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), by Intel Z170 chipset
    • 2 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), black, by ASMedia ASM1061 controller *3

*3: These SATA ports are for data hard drives only. ATAPI devices are not supported.

  • SATA Express
    • 2 x SATA Express port
  • M.2
    • 1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M Key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 storage devices support (both SATA & PCIE mode) *1

*1: The The M.2 slot shares bandwidth with U.2 slot and SATA Express 1 slot.

  • SATA RAID

    • 0/1/5/10

 

  • Audio Chipset
    • ROG SupremeFX 2015
  • Audio Channels
    • 8 Channels
  • LAN Chipset
    • Intel I219-V
  • Max LAN Speed
    •  10/100/1000Mbps
  • Wireless LAN
    • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
    • Supports dual band frequency 2.4/5 GHz
    • Supports MU-MIMO
  • Bluetooth
    • Bluetooth V4.1
  • PS/2
    • 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
  • HDMI
    • 1 x HDMI
  • RJ45
    • 1 x RJ45
  • DisplayPort
    • 1 x DisplayPort
  • USB 3.1
    • 1 x USB 3.1 (red) Type-A
    • 1 x USB 3.1 (black) Type-C
  • USB 3.0
    • 8 x USB 3.0 (blue)
  • S/PDIF Out
    • 1 x Optical
  • Audio Ports
    • 5 Ports
  • Antenna Connectors
    • 2 x Wi-Fi antenna port(s)
  • Onboard USB
    • 2 x USB 3.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 4 USB 3.0 port(s)
    • 2 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 4 USB 2.0 port(s)
  • Other Connectors
    • 1 x U.2 port
    • 1 x Aura RGB Strip Headers
    • 1 x CPU Fan connector(s) (4-pin)
    • 1 x CPU OPT Fan connector(s) (4-pin)
    • 4 x Chassis Fan connector(s) (4-pin)
    • 1 x 24-pin EATX Power connector(s)
    • 1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
    • 1 x Front panel connector(s)
    • 1 x Front panel audio connector(s) (AAFP)
    • 1 x MemOK! button(s)
    • 3 x Thermal sensor connector(s)
    • 1 x Power-on button(s)
    • 1 x Reset button(s)
    • 1 x Water Pump header (4-pin)
    • 1 x LN2 Mode jumper(s)
    • 1 x ROG extension (ROG_EXT) header(s)
    • 1 x System panel connector
  • Form Factor
    • ATX
  • Dimensions (W x L)
    • 12.0" x 9.6"
  • Power Pin
    • 24 Pin

Multi-GPU Support:

  • Supports NVIDIA Quad-GPU SLI Technology
  • Supports AMD 3-Way CrossFireX Technology

ROG Exclusive Features:

  • CrossChill EK (Hybrid air and liquid cooling)
  • ROG Armor (including top cover and SECC steel backplate)
  • ROG RAMCache
  • Start Button
  • Reset Button
  • ROG Aura
    • Aura Lighting Control
    • Aura RGB Strip Headers
  • Extreme Engine Digi+:
    • - MicroFine Alloy Chokes
    • - NexFET Power Block MOSFET
    • - 10K Black Metallic Capacitors
  • Mem TweakIt
  • KeyBot II
    • - One-click Overclocking
    • - X.M.P.
    • - DirectKey
    • - ClrCMOS
    • - Power On
  • UEFI BIOS features:
    • - O.C. Profile
    • - GPU.DIMM Post
    • - Tweakers' Paradise
    • - ROG SSD Secure Erase
    • - Graphic Card Information Preview
  • ROG RAMDisk

Special Features:

  • OC Design - ASUS PRO Clock Technology
    • - Full BCLK range for extreme overclocking performance
  • 5-Way Optimization by Dual Intelligent Processors 5
    • - 5-Way Optimization tuning key perfectly consolidates TPU, EPU, DIGI+ VRM, Fan Xpert 3, and Turbo App
  • ASUS Wi-Fi GO!
    • - Wi-Fi GO! Function: Cloud GO!, Media Streaming Hub, Smart Sensor Control, Remote Desktop, Remote Keyboard & Mouse, File Transfer, Capture & Send
    • - Wi-Fi GO! & NFC Remote app for portable smartphone/tablet, supporting iOS 7 & Android 4.0 systems
  • ASUS Exclusive Features:
    • - MemOK!
    • - AI Suite 3
    • - Ai Charger+
    • - Anti-Surge
    • - USB 3.1 Boost
    • - Disk Unlocker
    • - Mobo Connect
    • - PC Cleaner
  • Remote Entertainment
    • - Media Streamer
    • - HyStream
  • ASUS Quiet Thermal Solution:
    • - ASUS Fan Xpert 3
  • ASUS EZ DIY:
    • - ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
    • - ASUS EZ Flash 3
    • - ASUS USB BIOS Flashback
    • - ASUS UEFI BIOS EZ Mode
    • - Multi-language BIOS
    • - Push Notice
    • - Media Streamer
  • ASUS Q-Design:
    • - ASUS Q-Shield
    • - ASUS Q-Code
    • - ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
    • - ASUS Q-Slot
    • - ASUS Q-DIMM
    • - ASUS Q-Connector
  • RAMCache
  • Operating System Support:
    • - Windows 10, 64bit
    • - Windows 8.1, 64bit
    • - Windows 7, 32bit/64bit
    • - Manageability:
    • - WfM2.0, DMI3.0, WOL by PME, PXE
  • Accessories
    • User's manual
    • I/O Shield
    • 8 x SATA power cable
    • 1 x ASUS 2-Way/3-Way SLI bridge
    • 1 x M.2 Screw Package
    • 1 x CPU installation tool
    • 1 x Supporting DVD
    • 1 x ASUS 2T2R dual-band Wi-Fi moving antennas (Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n compliant)
    • 1 x Q-connector(s) (1 in 1)
    • 1 x 12 in 1 ROG Cable Label(s)
    • ROG Fan Label
    • 1 x ROG Door Hanger(s)
    • 1 x Extension Cable for RGB strips (80 cm)

 

2. ASUS MAXIMUS IX FORMULA review

maximus ix boards

ASUS MAXIMUS IX Formula

Maximus IX is the best gaming motherboard for I7 7th generation Intel processors and just as VIII, even with a lot of competitors, it still excels at performance/price ratio and the build quality is top of the ROG line. Upgraded with top of the line safety systems and surge protections to ensure easier mounting and protection of your system. With incredible durability and strength, courtesy of ROG armor, you get one powerful, mean and lean looking motherboard with the armor acting as a heat shield at the same time.

Features and Extras worth mentioning

It comes with a lot of included extras, for example, Languard which ensures safer and more stable connections, improved GamerFirst 4 that optimizes trafficking and ensures faster and lag free online gaming plus with added Multi-Gate Teaming it allows you to team up 4 networks. ROG CPU-Z helps to keep an eye on your system, RAMDisk allows you to boost your applications and it comes with Kaspersky Anti-Virus (1 year), Daemon Tools and PC Cleaner to accelerate your PC, as well as standard ASUS 3 year warranty (although ASUS claims that warranty may change for some regions).

Conclusions

Asus Maximus IX Formula is a great motherboard for gamers, modders, and overclockers alike. It is loaded with features and ASUS stripped away features we did not really need like SATA Express and made space for ones that make sense like M.2 slots and extra fan headers etc. The armor is the part that defines the motherboard together with the integrated EK water block, although maybe few are going to use it, it still is a huge improvement in my opinion. These two features work together both in the aesthetics department, but most importantly in regards of cooling, keeping the main heating components to a lower temperature. It has a high price, but the price includes the EK water block. As for closest alternatives, the MSI and ASRock don’t have water cooled motherboards, Gigabyte Z270X-Gaming 9 is the only similar solution and Gigabyte is still a bit behind on performance, features, and has a higher price.

Pros

What to like about Maximus IX :

  • UEFI interface
  • Integrated water cooling
  • Performance
  • Overclocking
  • Power consumption
  • Accessories
Cons

What to consider:

  • Nothing in my opinion

 

  • CPU Socket Type
    • LGA 1151
  • CPU Type
    • -Core i7 / i5 / i3 / Pentium / Celeron (LGA1151)
  • Supported CPU Technologies
    • -  Turbo Boost Technology 2.0
  • Intel Z270

 

  • Integrated Graphics Processor
  • Multi-VGA output support: HDMI/DisplayPort 1.2 ports
    • - Supports HDMI with max. resolution 4096 x 2160 @ 24 Hz
    • - Supports DisplayPort with max. resolution 4096 x 2304 @ 60 Hz
  • Maximum shared memory of 1024MB
  • Number of Memory Slots
    • 4×288pin
  • Memory Standard
    • DDR4 4133(O.C.)/ 4000(O.C.)/ 3866(O.C.)/ 3733(O.C.)/ 3600(O.C.)/ 3466(O.C.)/ 3400(O.C.)/ 3333(O.C.)/ 3300(O.C.)/ 3200(O.C.)/ 3000(O.C.)/ 2800(O.C.)/ 2666(O.C.)/ 2400(O.C.)/ 2133
  • Maximum Memory Supported
    • 64GB
    • Dual Channel
  • PCI Express 3.0 x16
    • 2 x PCIe 3.0 x16 slots (support x16, x8/x8)
    • 1 x PCIe 3.0 x16 slot (max. at x4 mode)*

*The PCIe x4_3 slot shares bandwidth with PCIex1_3. The PCIe x4_3 is default set to x2 mode.

  • PCI Express x1
    • 3 x PCIe 3.0 x1 slots
  • SATA 6Gb/s
    • 6 x SATA 6Gb/s
  • M.2
    • 1 x M.2 Socket 3 with M Key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110(PCIe 3.0 x4 and SATA modes_M.2_1)*
    • 1 x M.2 Socket 3 with M Key, type 2242/2260/2280(supports PCIe 3.0 x4 mode_M.2_2)**

* When the M.2_1 Socket 3 is operating in SATA mode, SATA port 1 will be disabled.
**When the M.2_2 Socket 3 is operating in PCIe 3.0 x4 mode, SATA ports 5 and 6 will be disabled.

  • SATA RAID
    • 0/1/5/10
  • Audio Chipset
    • ROG SupremeFX S1220
  • Audio Channels
    • 8 Channels
    • Onboard LAN
  • LAN Chipset
    • Intel I219-V
  • Max LAN Speed
    • 10/100/1000Mbps
  • Wireless LAN
    • Wi-Fi with MU-MIMO 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac supports dual frequency band 2.4/5 GHz
      Up to 867Mbps transfer speed
  • Bluetooth
    • Bluetooth v4.1
  • HDMI
    • 1 x HDMI 1.4b
  • RJ45
    • 1 x Anti-surge LAN (RJ45) port
  • DisplayPort
    • 1 x DisplayPort 1.2
  • USB 3.1
    • 2 x USB 3.1 ports (1 x Type-A [red] and 1 x Type-C [black])
  • USB 3.0
    • 4 x USB 3.0 ports [blue]
  • USB 1.1/2.0
    • 4 x USB 2.0 ports [black]
  • S/PDIF Out
    • 1 x Optical
  • Audio Ports
    • 5 x Gold plated audio jacks
  • Onboard USB
    • 1 x USB 3.1 front panel connector
    • 1 x USB 3.0 header supports additional 2 USB 3.0 ports
    • 1 x USB 2.0 header supports additional 2 USB 2.0 ports [ via ROG_EXT header]
  • Other Connectors
    • 1 x ROG extension (ROG_EXT) header
    • 1 x 4-Pin CPU fan connector
    • 1 x 4-Pin CPU_OPT fan connector
    • 3 x 4-Pin Chassis fan connectors
    • 1 x EXT_Fan header
    • 1 x 4-Pin W_PUMP+ connector
    • 1 x W_IN header
    • 1 x W_OUT header
    • 1 x W_FLOW header
    • 1 x 4-Pin AIO_PUMP connector
    • 1 x H_AMP fan connector
    • 1 x Thermal sensor connector
    • 1 x 24-pin EATX power connector
    • 1 x 8-pin EATX 12V power connector
    • 1 x Start button
    • 1 x Reset button
    • 1 x Safe Boot button
    • 1 x Retry button
    • 1 x LN2 mode jumper
    • 1 x Slow mode switch
    • 1 x MemOK! Button
    • 1 x Front panel audio connector (AAFP)
    • 1 x TPM connector
    • 1 x System panel connector
  • Form Factor
    • ATX
  • Dimensions (W x L)
    • 12.0" x 9.6"
  • Power Pin
    • 24 Pin

Multi-GPU Support:

  • Supports NVIDIA 2-Way/Quad-GPU SLI Technology
  • Supports AMD 3-Way/Quad-GPU CrossFireX Technology

ROG Exclusive Features

  • Extreme Engine Digi+
    • - MicroFine Alloy Choke
    • - NexFET MOSFETs
    • - 10K Black Metallic Capacitors
  • Crosschill EK
  • ROG RGB Armor
  • Pre-mounted I/O Shield
  • ROG Aura
    • - Aura effects (LOGO + ROG Armor RGB lighting)
    • - 2 x Aura RGB strip headers
  • Start Button
  • Reset Button
  • Safe Boot Button
  • Retry Button
  • BIOS Flashback Button
  • Clear CMOS Button
  • MemOK! Button
  • LN2 Mode
  • ROG RAMDisk
  • ROG CloneDrive
  • ROG RAMCache II
  • KeyBot II
    • - X.M.P.
    • - Clr CMOS
    • - Power On

UEFI BIOS features:

  • - Extreme Tweaker
  • - Tweakers' Paradise
  • - ROG SSD Secure Erase
  • - GPU.DIMM Post
  • - O.C. Profile
  • - Graphics Card Information Preview

Special Features

  • ASUS Dual Intelligent Processors 5
    • - 5-Way Optimization tuning key perfectly consolidates TPU, EPU, and Turbo App
  • ASUS Exclusive Features
    • - AI Suite 3
  • ASUS EZ DIY
    • - USB BIOS Flashback
    • - ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
    • - ASUS EZ Flash 3
    • - ASUS C.P.R.(CPU Parameter Recall)
    • - MemOK!
  • ASUS Q-Design
    • - Q-Code
    • - Q-Shield
    • - Q-Connector
    • - Q-LED (CPU [red], DRAM [yellow], VGA [white], Boot Device LED [yellow green])
    • - Q-DIMM
    • - SafeSlot
  • BIOS
    • 1 x 128MB Flash ROM, UEFI AMI BIOS, PnP, DMI3.0, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 3.0, ACPI 6.0, Multi-language BIOS, ASUS EZ Flash 3, CrashFree BIOS 3, F11 EZ Tuning Wizard, F6 Qfan Control, F3 My Favorites, Last Modified log, F12 PrintScreen, F3 Shortcut functions and ASUS DRAM SPD (Serial Presence Detect) memory information.
  • Manageability
    • WfM2.0, DMI3.0, WOL by PME, PXE

Software

  • Drivers
    • ROG GameFirst IV
    • ROG RAMDisk
    • ROG RAMCache II
    • ROG CPU-Z
    • ROG Mem TweakIt
    • Overwolf
    • ROG Keybot II
    • CloneDrive
    • Kaspersky Anti-Virus
    • DAEMON Tools Pro
    • ASUS WebStorage
    • Sonic Studio III
    • Sonic Radar III
    • RAMDisk
    • AURA
    • WinZip
    • ASUS Utilities
  • Operating System Support
    • Windows 10 64-bit
    • Windows 8.1 64-bit
    • Windows 7
  • Accessories
    • User guide
    • Support DVD
    • 3 x 2-in-1 SATA 6Gb/s cables
    • 1 x SLI HB Bridge
    • 1 x Q-Connector
    • 1 x ROG Coaster
    • 1 x 10-in-1 ROG cable label
    • 1 x CPU Installation Tool
    • 1 x M.2 Screw Package
    • 1 x Extension Cable for RGB Strips (80cm)
    • 1 x ROG sticker

 


 

3. ASRock Z170 Gaming K4

asrock fatality board
Z170 Gaming K4

This gaming motherboard for I5 was released back in 2015, and is still one of the best gaming motherboards for Intel I5 processors in my opinion, even though there are a lot of new boards that have come out since. ASRock is and always has been looking for value awards and Gaming K4 is no different, as it is one of the cheapest boards on this list. The biggest strength of this board would be its CPU clocking capabilities, as it can go toe to toe with higher price boards. New design and features mostly are aimed to protect your motherboard and components from power surges, as ASRock has included many upgrades and built in safety keys to protect your system from unwanted power surges, guarantee more stable and smoother power delivery to the components, and to expand its lifespan.

Features and Extras

With 10 Power phase design Gaming K4 allows smoother power delivery to the CPU which allows better clocking capabilities than other competitors in its range. The M.2 32 Gb/s interface helps to push the transfer speed up to 32 Gb/s, and there are still other features built into this board to enhance your gaming and to protect your system.

Conclusions

Definitely the best gaming motherboard under 200$. The red accents are nice if you’re after a good-looking board as well. It can hang occasionally in the BIOS but not very often. It will provide gamers with decent CPU clocking and really good overclock for two memory modules. Gaming K4 is not made for elite overclockers but focused more on average overclockers with its built-in features, which, without a doubt, make it the top value choice when compared to its competitors.

Pros

What to like about  Z170 Gaming K4:

  • Easy UEFI interface
  • Performance
  • Excellent power consumption
  • Accessories
  • Price
Cons
What to consider:

  • There are users complaining about BIOS and few features freezing or crashing
  • Few problems with overclocking
  • No USB 3.1 front panel header

 

  • CPU Socket Type
    • LGA 1151
  • CPU Type
    • Core i7 / i5 / i3 / Pentium / Celeron (LGA1151)
  • Supported CPU Technologies
    • Turbo Boost Technology 2.0
  • Intel Z170
  • Onboard Video Chipset
    • - Supports Intel HD Graphics Built-in Visuals: Intel Quick Sync Video with AVC, MVC (S3D) and MPEG-2 Full HW Encode1, Intel InTru 3D, Intel Clear Video HD Technology, Intel Insider, Intel HD Graphics 510/530
    • - Pixel Shader 5.0, DirectX 12
    • - Max. shared memory 1792MB
    • - Dual graphics output: Support DVI-D and HDMI ports by independent display controllers
    • - Supports HDMI with max. resolution up to 4K x 2K (4096x2304) @ 24Hz
    • - Supports DVI-D with max. resolution up to 1920x1200 @ 60Hz
    • - Supports Auto Lip Sync, Deep Color (12bpc), xvYCC and HBR (High Bit Rate Audio) with HDMI Port (Compliant HDMI monitor is required)
    • - Supports Accelerated Media Codecs: HEVC, VP8, VP9
    • - Supports HDCP with DVI-D and HDMI Ports
    • - Supports Full HD 1080p Blu-ray (BD) playback with DVI-D and HDMI Ports

*Intel HD Graphics Built-in Visuals and the VGA outputs can be supported only with processors which are GPU integrated.
**Due to chipset limitation, the Blu-ray playback of Intel HD Graphics is only supported under Windows 8 / 8 64-bit / 7 / 7 64-bit.
***Intel InTru 3D is only supported under Windows 8 / 8 64-bit / 7 / 7 64-bit.

  • Number of Memory Slots
    • 4×288pin
  • Memory Standard
    • DDR4 3866+*(*OC)/ 3600*/ 3200*/ 2933*/ 2800*/ 2400*/ 2133
  • Maximum Memory Supported
    • 64GB
  • SATA 6Gb/s
    • 6 x SATA3 6.0Gb/s Connectors, support RAID (RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10, Intel Rapid Storage Technology 14 and Intel Smart Response Technology), NCQ, AHCI and Hot Plug
  • SATA Express
    • 2 x SATA Express 10Gb/s Connectors**
      ** If M2_1 is occupied by a SATA-type M.2 device, SATA3_0 and the SATA function of SATA3_2_3 and SATA3_4_5 will be disabled.
  • M.2
    • 1 x Ultra M.2 Socket, supports M.2 SATA3 6.0Gb/s module and M.2 PCI Express module up to Gen3 x4 (32Gb/s)***
      ***Supports ASRock U.2 Kit
  • SATA RAID
    • 0/1/5/10
  • LAN Chipset
    • Killer E2400 Series
  • Max LAN Speed
    • 10/100/1000Mbps
  • PS/2
    • 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
  • Video Ports
    • 1 x DVI-D Port
  • HDMI
    • 1 x HDMI
  • RJ45
    • 1 x RJ-45 LAN Port with LED (ACT/LINK LED and SPEED LED)
  • USB 3.0
    • 5 x USB 3.0 Type-A Ports (Supports ESD Protection (ASRock Full Spike Protection))
    • 1 x USB 3.0 Type-C Port (Supports ESD Protection (ASRock Full Spike Protection))
  • USB 1.1/2.0
    • 1 x USB 2.0 Port (Supports ESD Protection (ASRock Full Spike Protection))
    • 1 x Fatal1ty Mouse Port (USB 2.0) (Supports ESD Protection (ASRock Full Spike Protection))
  • S/PDIF Out
    • 1 x Optical
  • Audio Ports
    • HD Audio Jacks: Rear Speaker / Central / Bass / Line in / Front Speaker / Microphone
  • Form Factor
    • ATX
  • Dimensions (W x L)
    • 12.0" x 8.6"
  • Power Pin
    • 24 Pin
  • Gaming Armor
  • Memory - 15µ Gold Contact in DIMM Slots
  • VGA Card
    • - 15µ Gold Contact in VGA PCIe Slot (PCIE2)
    • - PCIe Power Connector
  • Internet - Killer E2400 LAN
  • Cooling - XXL Aluminum Alloy Heatsink
  • Audio - Purity Sound 3

Unique Feature

  • ASRock Super Alloy
    • - XXL Aluminum Alloy Heatsink
    • - Nichicon 12K Platinum Caps (100% Japan-made high-quality conductive polymer capacitors)
    • - I/O Armor
    • - Matte Black PCB
    • - High-Density Glass Fabric PCB
  • ASRock Ultra M.2 (PCIe Gen3 x4 & SATA3)
  • ASRock Full Spike Protection
  • ASRock Live Update & APP Shop

BIOS

  • - 2 x 128MB AMI UEFI Legal BIOS with multilingual GUI support (1 x Main BIOS and 1 x Backup BIOS)
  • - Supports Secure Backup UEFI Technology
  • - ACPI 1.1 Compliant wake-up events
  • - SMBIOS 2.3.1 Support
  • - CPU, GT_CPU, DRAM, VPPM, PCH 1.0V, VCCIO, VCCPLL, VCCSA Voltage Multi-adjustment

Software

  • - ASRock F-Stream
  • - ASRock Disk Health Report
  • - ASRock USB Key
  • - ASRock Key Master
  • - ASRock APP Charger
  • - ASRock XFast RAM
  • - ASRock Fast Boot (Fast Boot, Restart to UEFI, Instant Boot)*

UEFI

  • - ASRock Full HD UEFI
  • - ASRock My Favorites in UEFI
  • - ASRock Instant Flash
  • - ASRock Internet Flash
  • - ASRock Crashless BIOS
  • - ASRock OMG (Online Management Guard)
  • - ASRock UEFI System Browser
  • - ASRock UEFI Tech Service
  • - ASRock Dehumidifier
  • - ASRock Easy RAID Installer
  • - ASRock Easy Driver Installer

Support CD

  • - Drivers, Utilities, AntiVirus Software (Trial Version), Google Chrome Browser and Toolbar, XSplit, Killer Network Manager

Hardware Monitor

  • - CPU/Chassis temperature sensing
  • - CPU/Chassis Fan Tachometer
  • - CPU/Chassis Quiet Fan (Auto adjust chassis fan speed by CPU temperature)
  • - CPU/Chassis Fan multi-speed control
  • - Voltage monitoring: +12V, +5V, +3.3V, CPU Vcore, GT_CPU, DRAM, VPPM, PCH 1.0V, VCCIO, VCCSA

OS

  • - Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit / 8.1 64-bit / 7 32-bit / 7 64-bit

Certifications

  • - FCC, CE, WHQL
  • - ErP/EuP ready (ErP/EuP ready power supply is required)

Accessories

  • - Quick Installation Guide, Support CD, I/O Shield
  • - 4 x SATA Data Cables
  • - 1 x Screw for M.2 Socket