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Pros: - Budget Friendly
- Z97 Chipset
- M.2 Sata Express
- It's primarily black
- Intel Ethernet port
- Overclocked ram from 1600 to 2400 with 1.64v. (Although this is more likely to depend on the Integrated Memory Controller on your processor, as well as the ram itself)
- Error code readout on board as well as power button.
Cons: - The audio chip is in a questionable position. The problem with it being at the bottom of the board is an analog audio signal is more prone to interference with other components which can result in background noise. With it having to travel further, it more likely to be a problem. There is a reason they're placed on the far left side of a motherboard near the IO on most other motherboards. Luckily I haven't noticed too much excess noise.
- The straight sata connectors may conflict with a 2nd GPU. It seems to be spaced enough that it would probably only conflict with 2.5 or 3 slot cards.
Other Thoughts: My last review may have been done without enough use of the product. It has gained some points as I have used it more. According to the ECS website, the motherboard apparently now supports SLI. In contrary to the email I received that said SLI support wasn't a thing they were looking at adding. I still question this because there hasn't been a bios update since the board was released, or any other driver updates for that matter.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: - It looked nice.
- It had decent features compared to other boards.
Cons: - Broke after one year, Asus asked for $120 to fix it.
- Incredibly over priced for what you get. You end up paying for all the R&D that ASUS spends on stuff like AI Suite and ROG Supreme FX audio. Which is just a Realtek audio codec with a fancy name. AI Suite is the slowed lamest piece of software I ever used.
- The PCI lanes are mind boggling. I pay over $200 and all I get is the x16 3.0 lane supported by the Z87 chipset, and only half of the 2.0 lanes supported by Z87? Where the heck is the other 4 lanes?
Other Thoughts: Sent away for an RMA, Asus emails me asking for $120 dollars to fix it. $120 to fix a 1 year old $210 motherboard. I'm not about to put over $330 into a already over priced Sh!tfest. Get real ASUS.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: - Low Price
- Good Z97 chipset features, including M.2.
Cons: The motherboard is cheap. It is easy to tell that it was designed on a budget. It's slimmer than most ATX motherboards, it's got a 4+2 power phase, (which is mind boggling for Z97) It's SATA connectors aren't angled and there are only 4, 2 less than what Z97 chipset offers, IT DOESN"T SUPPORT SLI and they said they don't plan to either. It lacks a bottom PCI-E slot, even a x1 or PCI would be nice. The mosfets look and feel incredibly cheap, it's got a mix of PWM fan headers and 3 pin. The Audio chip location is questionable. The first two DDR3 slots are closer than the other two for some reason. And it's front panel headers are longer than normal.
Other Thoughts: What the heck is with no SLI support? Obviously to save money and not have to pay royalties to Nvidia. But still absolutely mind boggling since Nvida dominates the dedicated GPU market.READ FULL REVIEW