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Item#: N82E16813188158

EVGA Z97 Stinger (111-HR-E972-KR) Core 3D LGA 1150 Intel Z97 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard

  • Intel Z97
  • Core i7 / i5 / i3 / Pentium / Celeron (LGA1150)
  • DDR3 2666+/2400/2133/1600/1333/1066/800
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Engineered for the mITX enthusiast with an ultra-compact form factor that still runs at full performance. Experience a GUI BISO that is focused on functionality, new software interface for overclocking in the O.S.,high quality components, premium Creative Core3D audio and more.

It starts with a full 10 Layer PCB, improving overall overclock stability and PCB cooling. The memory trace layout is optimized for compatibility, improved overclocking and 2 DIMM memory support. The Z97 MICRO also features a 6 Phase PWM for the cleanest variable power switching and efficient power to your CPU. A slew of great onboard devices including 4 SATA 6G ports, Intel Gigabit LAN, Creative Core3D and a USB 3.0 controller for a total of 6 USB 3.0 devices.

The GUI BIOS has been further enhanced, and is brought down to a very lean state while achieving its main goal of keeping it easy to use and follow while not compromising at all on functionality. The way a modern BIOS should be.

Features

  • 10 Layer PCB
  • 2 DIMMs for up to 16GB of DDR3 RAM
  • Memory speeds up to 2666MHz and above
  • Intel Gigabit NIC
  • 4 total internal SATA3/6G ports
  • Native USB3 support
  • Creative Core3D
Z97
  • 10 LAYER PCB

High layer count enhances stability both for heavy loads as well as high over-clocks.

Z97
  • HIGH GOLD CONTENT FOR CPU SOCKET

Higher volume of precious metal (Gold) used in the sockets greatly improves the conductivity and produces a cleaner signal due to less resistance/impedance.

Z97
  • ONBOARD POWER,RESET AND CMOS REST BUTTONS

When testing on the Z97, or running it in a benching environment where you do not need to worry about wiring the board to a case to have access to power and reset buttons, they are built onto the board.

Z97
  • 6 PHASE PWM

A 6 Phase PWM helps to ensure that the power reaching the processor is clean and stable.

Z97
  • M.2 SUPPORT

The Z97 MICRO supports the newest slot architecture with support for several device types, including Wifi and Bluetooth.

UEFI

Z97

These motherboards also feature EVGA's new GUI BIOS that focuses on the best overclocking support, functionality, and are straight and to the point, the way a modern BIOS should be.


Learn more about the EVGA Z97 Stinger Core 3D

Quick Info

Warranty

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


Customer Reviews of the EVGA Z97 Stinger Core 3D

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  • Payton H.
  • 5/12/2015 5:54:32 PM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsI love this little board!

Pros: This board is pretty freaking cool. My last motherboard was able to get my Pentium G3258 from 3.2GHz to 3.7GHz, and I thought that was all I was going to be able to get. The 10 layer PCB on this board says that it will give higher overclocks, and it delivers. I got 4.2GHz from my CPU with this board.

Also, I have a bit of an obsession with having a black motherboard. They just look so cool, and go with any color parts you want to put on them. There is only one spot on the entire board that isn't black, and that is the dark brown piece on the chipset heat sink, which you really have to look at to notice it isn't black.

Cons: None that I can think of at all. Size? I mean, if you're getting a board this small, its size is probably a pro.

Wait, I got one. If you are using the front panel audio, which is probably 99% of people, then be careful. You probably saw, but the board come with a metal cover for the rear I/O ports, so as to keep the black look inside the case (which is really cool, btw). However, it does come down fair close to the front panel audio. I was still able to plug mine in, but the cable on my chassis for the fp audio was pretty flexible at the end. I don't think many people will have any issue with this at all, so I am not taking of any stars. But it's worth noting.

Other Thoughts: The USB 3.0 is in an odd spot (right next to the PCIe x16 slot). This would be a con on an ATX or mATX board, but Mini-ITX boards are VERY pressed for space. It was no issue, though, to route the cable over my video card. I'm using the Thermaltake Core V1 case (if you want some context), and when I routed the front USB 3.0 cable over the GPU, I couldn't even tell the cable was there.

Also, the LED read-out is not a debug LED, while the board is in normal operation. It will flash error codes, if something were to go wrong. The description says this, but I glanced over that part. I was quite confused for a day or two as to why my LED read-out kept only saying "30," instead of something else. :p

Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

  • Lyle R.
  • 4/27/2015 5:51:08 PM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month

3 out of 5 eggsDo your research

Pros: It looks cool and runs good.

Cons: Even for an ITX this board greatly lacks USB headers. I wish I would have done a little more reading on it. If you have USB ports on the front of your case you will find this board is greatly lacking in a way to hook them up. I suppose you can always nix having a video card and buy a PCI-E usb card. :-(

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

  • Anonymous
  • 4/26/2015 9:16:46 PM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsBuy if Audio is a Concern

Pros: Like others below, I decided to sacrafice the onboard WiFi for the Sound Blaster Core 3D, and when pitted against standard (Realtek) onboard audio, it is a night and day difference. Stable board, one click overclock of my RAM from 2,400 to 2,600 and it automatically adjusted timings for stability. This bios does work with my single 21:9 monitor no problems (stretches to fit) but may not work with ultrawide dual monitor setup as posted below. 8 seconds from button push to Windows 7 being usable which is insanely fast, especially with a budget SSD. Very solid board, which stiffened even more once the waterblock backplate was installed. This computer was built with the use inside a semi truck in mind and I was pleased with the board's construction overall.

Cons: Header placement is kinda awful. Especially for the SATA ports. There is no hiding those cables. In my Corsair Obsidian 250D, the fan headers and CPU power cable was dangerously close to the water cooler's fans. You will need small fingers and cable ties. Other cables are routed between the water block and the RAM, sadly blocking my nice KLEVV memory. I/O cover shield is useless, especially if you got fans above it. You also cannot use a full sized M-SATA SSD in this either...

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  • Aaron H.
  • 4/21/2015 7:02:42 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsFantastic overclocker!

Pros: Fantastic overclock! 4.8ghz without trying on an ITX air cooler. Looks good also

Cons: None that I saw, fit great in my Hadron Air.

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  • Jordan W.
  • 4/16/2015 7:03:20 AM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsGood board, with a few quirks

Pros: - Solid motherboard. Heavy, does not flex easily.
- It's the only Z97 mITX board sold by Newegg that doesn't use a Realtek sound solution (Creative instead). Since it's mITX, a gaming system built with this board doesn't have the spare PCI-e slot for an internal sound card, so this is as good as it gets for internal use. This was my primary reason for purchase
- Built-in amp is sufficient to power my higher-than-usual-resistance headphones.
- BIOS is quite usable and posts quickly; it's far faster to boot than my mATX ROG was.
- Colors are black and a very subtle gold, but the gold just kind of disappears when it's in a case. So there's slight contrast, but this will work visually with anything that isn't a white build.
- EVGA support is, as usual, completely awesome.

Cons: None of these are major detractors from the board, but definitely design considerations and things that may matter to your build. They ended up being mostly non-factors for me (USB plug still bugs me).

- The board will not output BIOS graphics (internal or external) to a 2560x1080 resolution through HDMI, DVI, or Displayport on either the internal ports or the graphics card. It just doesn't like that resolution. My non-ultrawide secondary monitor serves as the primary until Windows boots. If all you have is a single ultrawide monitor available to you, this may be an issue.

- The 8-pin EPS plug is to the upper left of the CPU socket. This is like every other board I've used, so it's "standard", but ASUS mITX boards place theirs near the 24-pin ATX plug, which is more convenient for cable management and generally better looking. In my 250d, it's not really an issue as I can route the EPS beneath the radiator that gets placed above the board, and you only see a bit of it. Front audio is actually placed beneath the black shroud, which is great for hiding cables, but USB 3.0 plug is on the bottom left instead of the right edge. Just be aware if you're trying to build a sexier system that you're going to have to work to hide cables, or you're going to have one or two running over the board, especially compared to some of the ASUS offerings that will let you just drape everything right over the edge.

- The M.2 slot is...E-keyed? Buh? Kind of an odd decision, since the options for E-keyed SSDs are...slim? None? At least, there aren't enough of them that I would consider the market mature enough for me to buy in. It has plenty (4) of SATA ports, but anyone wanting to do a super tiny build and use an M.2 SSD should probably look elsewhere.

Other Thoughts: Neither pro nor con:

- New BIOS versions must be flashed using an executable; there's no way to flash from within the BIOS itself, so you have to do a full OS install before updating the board. The executables are probably a positive for users that don't want to tool around in the BIOS, but may be a negative if you're tech-savvy and want/need to flash BIOS before installing an OS.

- No clips on the memory sockets due to space constraints. Make sure you've got those chips seated. It's not like the memory's coming out on its own, just don't expect a click when you push it in.

In general:
It's a board with some quirks, but it's the only mITX board with high-quality, amplified internal sound when using a graphics card, and it does everything other than cable management well, to boot. Add EVGA's stellar support, and I'm very happy with this hardware.

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  • Shane Q.
  • 11/8/2014 6:53:38 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

2 out of 5 eggs

Pros: The board is visually fantastic.
The layout is great and it fit very nicely into my EVGA Hadron Air case, which I'm sure is by design.
There are no legacy ports taking up space where more useful interfaces could be added. (Huge plus in my book)

Cons: The board is unfortunately very unstable. After installation, the system would reboot randomly and the whole system ran incredibly slow. Over a period of about 2 weeks, I installed windows multiple times (several failed) and replaced every piece of hardware on the system including the CPU. No matter what I did, the board still ran unstable. I gave up and sent it back to Newegg for a refund and got the other board I was originally considering.

Manufacturer Response:

Dear Shane Q.,

We do apologize for the troubles you experienced with your EVGA Z97 Stinger motherboard. I can assure you that we are here to assist you as best we can in order to work with you and resolve any issues. Should you require any assistance in the future, then I would encourage you to contact our 24 hour Technical Support team by phone 1.888.881.3842 and pressing option 1 or by email: Newegg@EVGA.com, so that we can further assist you.

Sincerely,
EVGA Customer Support

4 out of 9 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • David M.
  • 9/14/2014 10:59:47 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsUnderrated and surprisingly good.

Pros: Excellent overclocking ability.
-3 onboard 4pin fan headers.
-Rear I/O CMOS clear button (invaluable for overclocking)
-Onboard debug LED & temp monitor.
-Onboard power & reset buttons.
-Rear I/O is free of DVI/VGA legacy inputs (could be a con for some)
-UEFI bios is very clean and easy to navigate.

Some thing that aren't mentioned on the specs sheet:
-Removable BIOS chip.
-6 phase digi-power
-Headphone amplifier (MAX97220 which is DirectDrive line)
-Z97 chipset (supposedly CPU is upgradeable to broadwell when released)
-10 layer PCB

Cons: -Creative Sound Core3d buggy drivers (see other thoughts)
-Included manual is very generic (seems to be designed to cover the whole EVGA lineup -stinger/FTW/classified)
-No included mSATA WiFi/bluetooth combo card (no included wifi on mITX? I guess they had to save costs somewhere)
-Only 4 SATA ports (how many do you really need in an SFF build anyways?)

Other Thoughts: Overall the board exceeded my expectations. You can tell by the features what this board primarily focuses on - overclocking. It has an excellent power phase design for overclocking (I was able to achieve 4.7Ghz @ 1.35v stable on a Pentium G3258 4.2Ghz uncore & 2133 on ram).
Aside from the Asus Impact VII, the z97 stinger has the highest quality power phase design that I've seen.

The only major issue I had with the board so far is after initial instillation and updating the drivers on Creative's sound core3D I lost sound output to my front speakers, to fix this I had to rollback my drivers.

However, creative's newest driver release has fixed this, but this isn't EVGA's fault more of a driver issue with creative. Otherwise the sound on this board is distinctly better than most other onboard options, and the headphone amp (not listed in the spec page) was a huge surprise major bonus - it drives my ATH-A700s nicely =).

I would definitely recommend this board to any SFF overclocking enthusiast.

6 out of 7 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • patrick g.
  • 8/30/2014 11:52:20 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsGreat so far

Pros: This board is small, sleek, fast and all at a reasonable price. I got this up and running in my EVGA Hadron case. Hardware wise, it was easy to work with and the BIOS is more than enough for a light overclocker.

Cons: the metal IO shield it came with is totally not needed at all and just gets int he way. I found it presses down on the front audio wire and also makes it more of a pain to install the rear mounting screws. Considering this thing does absolutely nothing expect make it look somewhat cooler, I would rather they take a few bucks off the price and leave it out.

This is just a personal gripe and not with the mobo persay; but the Mini ITX fan EVGA sells is a pain in the *** to install on this board without breaking the plastic clips. Unless you're going to overclock, just stick with the stock Intel. They have been proven to work :)

Other Thoughts: I did have a TON of issues installing windows without getting a BSOD half way in, but through some troubleshooting I found it was ironically enough, the Microsoft Arc mouse I had plugged in during install was causing some sort of driver conflict.

Not sure if it's a compatibility issue with this board or not, but as soon as it was removed, the install was flawless.

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

  • Donald B.
  • 8/22/2014 5:05:29 AM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsFast & Amazing MB

Pros: *Update* This board is incredibly fast when paired with a I7 Haswell and SSD. My boot time is just under 6 seconds and O/Cing is a breeze. The BIOS is easy to use/update.

Cons: None so far

Other Thoughts: *Update* It was the Delete key to enter BIOS (The system was running so fast I didn't know which key entered the BIOS lol.

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

  • Donald B.
  • 8/21/2014 7:04:35 PM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsFast!!!

Pros: This motherboard (paired with a SSD and I7-4770k) is ridiculously fast. When I was able to get into the bios it was very simple and easy to use compared to other MB's I've had.

Cons: *See Other Thoughts*

Other Thoughts: So this board actually may be too fast lol. It boots up to desktop in under 6 seconds when paired with a samsung 840 pro and a i7-4770k. It's so fast that I haven't been able to access the bios after installing Windows 7 and updating the bios through evga's desktop program which im sure is fine for some people but I'd like to eventually O/C my processor. I will contact evga's support team to get an answer and will update ASAP. Other then the system booting to fast it is a amazing MB!

Manufacturer Response:

Dear Donald B.,

Thank you for your positive review regarding the EVGA Z97 Stinger motherboard. If you are having any troubles accessing your BIOS then you may want to try disconnecting your SSD, and by default the system should take you directly to BIOS. Alternatively, I would encourage you to contact our 24 hour Technical Support team by phone 1.888.881.3842 and pressing option 1 or by email: Newegg@EVGA.com, so that we can further assist you.

Sincerely,
EVGA Customer Support

0 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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