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Item#: N82E16813128709

GIGABYTE GA-Z97X-Gaming 5 LGA 1150 Intel Z97 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

  • Intel Z97
  • Core i7 / i5 / i3 / Pentium / Celeron (LGA1150)
  • DDR3 3200(OC)/3100(OC)
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Learn more about the GIGABYTE GA-Z97X-Gaming 5

Quick Info

Warranty

  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 3 years
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 3 years


Customer Reviews of the GIGABYTE GA-Z97X-Gaming 5

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  • greg l.
  • 7/24/2014 10:40:28 PM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggs

Pros: Board has lots of features

Cons: Board is smaller than advertised. My case had a mount though to secure the back end, its just something that you'll need to pay attention to when installing.

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  • Michael M.
  • 7/20/2014 3:29:10 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsStill Learning

Pros: Lots of tune ablity.
Has most of the bells and whisles.

Cons: Lack of real information on setting up the BIOS.

Other Thoughts: They need a detailed video on setting the BIOS and printable instructions. The manual does not cover how to setup the BIOS for overclocking the the 'k' version of processors. The 'K' processors will run at higher speeds even with a stock heatsink/fan. Same goes for the SDRAM

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4 out of 5 eggsVery good for gaming; UEFI BIOS and Killer NIC software could use improvement

Pros: This board is thicker and more rigid than the ASRock fatal1ty H97 motherboard I previously reviewed. With the ASRock I was concerned by the board flexing while just lifting it to install it in a case. Here I had no such concerns. Physically, it appears to be a quality component.

I tested this under three scenarios:
1) Memtest86+ v5.01, stable and error-free for 24 hours, or 68 iterations of the memory test.
2) Debian Linux testing (“jessie”) installed with no problems and completely stable while running BOINC for 48 hours.
3) Windows 7 installed with no problems, except for some issues with the included Qualcomm Atheros Killer E2201 network interface driver (see below). Stable for 48 hours running BOINC and Steam.

With the Z97 chipset and Killer NIC this is well-suited for gaming. The Z97 brings support for overclocking and for SLI or Crossfire video rigs. (An SLI bridge connector is included.)

The feature set of the Killer NIC software is really very good once you get past the setup issues and the Metro-like interface. It shows the bandwidth used by individual applications and allows you to fine-tune the maximum upstream and downstream bandwidths on a per-application basis. You can also assign priorities to streams, for example to give higher priority to streaming video or online games. This makes so much sense that now I'm annoyed every NIC doesn't provide these features.

The Gigabyte “App Center” software allows you to change many BIOS settings from within Windows. It includes a “Live Update” function that checks your driver versions against those on the Gigabyte web site and updates them for you, and a “@BIOS” application to check for, and install, BIOS updates. Aside from a bit of weirdness with the Killer NIC driver upgrade, these all worked very well.

Sound quality is excellent under Windows and Linux, although Linux needs a tweak to achieve this (see below).

There are five well-placed fan headers: two for the CPU (one each for air and water cooling) and three for the chassis.

There is an M.2 connector to add a compatible module. An M.2 connector includes four PCI-Express lanes and an SATA port. The main benefit is that M.2 modules can access PCI-Express lanes directly for higher bandwidth. However, some M.2 SSD modules use the SATA port only, so if you want the higher bandwidth make sure your M.2 module specifically states that it uses the PCI-Express lanes. M.2 also makes for a cleaner install with no cables to mess with.

I encountered no problems under Windows while entering or waking up from sleep (S3).

Cons: The red LEDs along the audio circuitry for "bling" are ridiculously bright underneath. If your case has any visibility to the underside, don't even think about putting this in a bedroom.

Gigabyte has implemented no fewer than three different interfaces in the UEFI BIOS: the normal (default), Classic, and ST Mode. None are as good as the ASRock I tested previously. The default has a Metro-like interface and provides access to only the most basic settings. Both Classic and ST Mode are more fully featured. The Classic mode is the more straightforward of the two, but even so, the interface is inconsistent from one screen to another. For example, some areas use double-click to select, while other areas expect a single-click. When you get in the habit of double-clicking and then switch to an area that expects a single-click, you find yourself making choices you didn't intend. On some screens there is a vertical scroll bar, but it doesn't let you move the scroll bar itself. Instead, you have to click the up/down arrows repeatedly to change the viewing area. These issues and others like them are all minor, and you'll never see them once the computer is configured the way you like it, but I was disappointed by the inconsistencies and poor design choices.

I don't know if this was due to the motherboard or my monitor, but under both Linux and Windows 7, the HDMI video stream would not reappear after the computer turned off the video for power saving (e.g. after a period of inactivity). However, the video stream would reappear if I power cycled the monitor. This did not occur while using the same monitor, processor, and HDMI cable to evaluate the ASRock fatal1ty H97 motherboard.

I encountered several minor issues with the bundled software for the Qualcomm Atheros Killer E2201 network interface. For example:
1) On a fresh Windows 7 installation, when I first installed the device drivers (and .NET 4.0) from the included disc, I received a “.NET framework initialization error” while installing the network driver. After a reboot, this driver installed successfully.
2) The Killer Network Manager program once prevented the computer from shutting down, forcing me to do a hard reset.
3) While updating the NIC device driver using the App Center's “Live Update,” a dialog box titled “Program Maintenance” appeared and offered four choices without guidance: Modify, Repair, Remove, or Cancel. Apparently, the correct answer is to select Modify, because then (and only then) is the driver properly updated.
The Killer NIC has great functionality, but the software lacks a certain finesse.

The audio jacks are all the same gold color. It looks nice but they are easier to use when they are color coded.

Other Thoughts: The Qualcomm Atheros Killer E2201 network interface is new and not recognized while installing Debian stable (wheezy). It is recognized and works fine under Debian testing (jessie).

Out of the box, the analog sound output is very distorted under Debian Linux. After some searching I found the following workaround in an Ubuntu forum, which I can confirm also works in Debian testing (jessie):
echo "options snd-hda-intel vid=8086 pid=8ca0 snoop=0" > sudo /etc/modprobe.d/fix-sound-intel97

The included disc lists Google Drive, Google Chrome, Google Toolbar for IE, and Norton Internet Security under “Chipset Drivers,” and the GUI attempts to steer you toward installing all of these so-called drivers. This strikes me as an underhanded attempt to include unwanted applications (with some kind of kickback to Gigabyte, I presume) along with the necessary device drivers.

As others mentioned this motherboard is a little narrower than full ATX, so the end is unsupported while installing memory and connecting the power. I installed the memory before putting the motherboard into a case, and it's easy enough to support the board edge while inserting the power connector. I didn't see the board size as a problem, but if you swap memory frequently, you may prefer a board that reaches the 3rd row of screws.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • tan n.
  • 7/16/2014 2:28:13 PM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsAwesome

Pros: It works good
It price is cheap
the build is very solid

Cons: no system fan on the top right corner
It set the default voltage for the i7 4790k too high at 1.4V (it could be because of the turbo boost 4.4GHz which lead it to increase the voltage to 1.4V)

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  • Andrew F.
  • 7/15/2014 7:52:58 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsUpdate BIOS

Pros: - Nice Layout on board
- Visually looks well
- Lots of options in BIOS
- Good performance so far

Cons: Had a lot of trouble with figuring out how to configure a RAID and booting to USB.

- Just finding the option to configure a RAID is not straight forward and you will need to read the manual to get all the steps.

- After setting up my RAID I then tried to install Windows using a USB flash drive. Spent two hours trying to figure out how to make it work. Read forums and went through the manual several times. My board came with BIOS version F3. As a last resort I updated to F5 (latest at the time) and this resolved my issue.

Other Thoughts: All in all it is a good board and would recommend. But it was a headache trying to get RAID and just booting to the USB to work.

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  • Tim P.
  • 7/12/2014 6:21:31 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsDecent Mid-Range MB

Pros: -Price (this was purchased as part of a combo with an i7, with an amazing discount - 100% worth the price from that discount).
-Very nice BIOS, with extensive features and options
-LED / Board lights are really nice (Red)
-Spacing/GAP from first PCIe to second is great, allows airflow between SLI/Crossfire setups
-Running an i7-4790k, 16GB RAM, GTX 760's in SLI with no issues, and great performance so far.

Cons: - Not full sized, inserting RAM and power cable can flex the board if you don't provide additional support.
- SATA ports shared, M.2, eSATA, and ports 4 & 5 - the manual states only one of those can be run at a time. That limits you to 5 SATA III ports (out of the 8 specified available on the specs page)
- There is no eSATA on the external connectors (usb/Network ports area)
- No color coding on audio ports, just the little symbols on the back plate

Other Thoughts: Windows 8.1 install did not pick up the NIC, and a manual driver install was needed for that. The "BigFoot LAN Driver" from the Gigabyte website is a 100mb+ DL, that also installs some network monitoring software, showing bandwidth usage and app data.. it could be cool, or just junkware - so far though, I kind of like the stats it provides.

Closing thoughts - ranked 4/5 due to few cons I mentioned. The number of SATA devices allowed is clearly stated on their website for the product and in the manual however.

This board is a great mid-level gaming board, that supports the latest and greatest of processors (intel haswell i7-4790K as of this writing) and provides plenty of BIOS options for OC-ing and tweaking your system.

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  • Heath D.
  • 7/10/2014 5:12:23 PM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

3 out of 5 eggsnot an ATX

Pros: See below

Cons: Its not a full ATX board like it would lead you to believe. Since its not a standard size, you end up with a fairly large unsupported section of the motherboard. Doing something as simple as connecting the 24 pin flexes the board substantially.

Other Thoughts: It works. The BIOS is nice and board has good features, but the size issue just really turned me off on this board. I would look for something else, IMO.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Frank S.
  • 7/9/2014 10:57:31 AM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsUpgrade to a new socket

Pros: Tons of features in the BIOS including the ability to switch between the old school look and a more modernized, sleek version. Find myself going back and forth. Can also look at system info and tweak BIOS settings from the desktop after installing software from the disk.

Board temps are quite cool considering it is summer here. Much cooler than my ASUS Sabertooth X58 which this replaced.

Cons: Apparently there is an issue with the default BIOS bumping the voltage way higher than it needs to be. My 1st boot had the vcore set at 1.42 volts which is way higher than it needs to be at stock clocks. I quickly dropped it down and am running 1.11v at stock clocks.

Other Thoughts: The memory I installed is 1866 but it was only set to 1333 by default. This is fairly common and a quick bump in the BIOS has it running at 1866.

If you don't need a uber high end board with all the bells an whistles this is a great board to pair with any Haswell chip.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Jason Y.
  • 6/15/2014 9:57:12 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week

5 out of 5 eggsFantastic Motherboard

Pros: This board is laid out quite nicely. Audio hardware is fantastic, AKG sound amazing driven by the high quality on board op amp. It looks stunning. Plenty of 4 pin fan headers. Included Creative software is actually quite good. Installation a breeze, no hiccups.

Cons: My only con comes from the board being a small bit more narrow than most other ATX boards. This means the front 2' of board fall short of risers and mounts in most cases, just hanging out there. Not enough for me to deduct any eggs, just a little disconcerting to me.

Other Thoughts: Purchased from Am****n, not Newegg. Running i7-4770k, G.Skill Sniper 1866 RAM, Gigabyte 660 Ti's in SLI, Crucial SSDs,

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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Item#: N82E16813128709
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