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MSI MSI Gaming 970 Gaming AM3+/AM3 AMD 970 and SB950 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

1 out of 5 eggs Five Boards with 100% Problems 11/27/2015

This review is from: MSI MSI Gaming 970 Gaming AM3+/AM3 AMD 970 and SB950 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard

Pros: 1. Beautiful black board with red trim.
2. Highest rated AMD FX based MB on several vendor web sites.
3. Professional evaluations on several publications recommended it as the "best value" among "gaming boards."

Cons: Board #1: Five random shut offs on 3rd day. A few sporadic self rebootings afterward.
Board #2: Non-stop random shut offs ended with a total crash in week 2. NEWEGG quickly replaced it with another board.
Board #3: (REPLACEMENT): Three random shut offs on 2nd day. A few sporadic shutoffs and rebootings afterwards.
Board #4: USB 3.0 went dead.
Board #5: Internet went out on 2nd week. One day later, MB burned up my AMD 8120 CPU and become completely non-functional on 3rd week.

Other Thoughts: Five boards went bad in three weeks - a new record for me! I thought that Asus was bad. MSI is even worse.

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MSI MSI Gaming 970 Gaming AM3+/AM3 AMD 970 and SB950 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: Among the AMD motherboards that employed the FX 8-core CPU and Phenom II, Athlon II and Sempron processors, this may be the best of the bunch. Users gave this MB their highest ratings. In the Newegg website, 78% awarded three stars and above. In the Am***n website, it received 89% with 75% five stars. Only 11% reported two stars or below. . . . All other competing motherboards from Asus and Gigabyte suffered 20% or more dissatisfaction. Most complaints were DOAs and component failures.
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Unfortunately, it is not perfect. Here are the "good" and "bad" on this product.
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ADVANTAGES
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1. The board is visually beautiful. It is dark black with red trimmings.
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2. The parts are Military Class 4 grade.
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3. It supports AMD CrossFire and NVidia SLI.
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4. The audio is Sound Blaster Cinema 2 with 7.1-channel high definition.
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5. The internet LAN controller is Killer E2205 Gigabit LAN.
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6. There are plenty of slots for various types of expansion boards: 2 PCIe x 16, 2 PCIe, and 2 PCI.
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7. It is a full-sized MB. As a result, the components are not cramped together; they are spread out.
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8. Installation was very easy. There were no problems, and the MB booted immediately. After a week, the board remained stable. There were no crashes, rebooting on its own, freezing, or exhibiting the "blue screen of death."

Cons: DISADVANTAGES
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1. My two previous encounters with MSI motherboards were bad. All were DOA. With such bad experiences, I stayed with ASUS since 1980. When the company switched manufacturing from Taiwan to Red China, the quality took a huge plunge - motherboards lasted only 1.5 years. My last experience was 2013, I purchased two ASUS CM1833 computers - each employing the M5A78L budget motherboard. One lasted 2.1 years, and the other still operates.
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Afterwards, I bought the Gigabyte 970A-D3P to replace the Asus unit and was quite pleased. In 2015, I anticipated that the other Asus CM1833 would also go out. So, I bought the MSI 970 Gaming because of high user ratings.
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2. The SATA connections are horribly designed. Six ports are mounted side-ward on a metal box. As a result, it is impossible to see the connector openings and mount hard drive cables to the ports. In addition, the metal box is located on the MB edge, next to the computer case hard drive cage. The location blocks the mounting of two 3.5" hard drives.
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3. It is $10 higher than the competing motherboards from Asus and Gigabyte. The lowest price was $80 on a special one week sale on Am***n and Newegg during the last week of September, 2015. I took a chance and purchased two. The extra $10 premium was a good investment.

Other Thoughts: When Newegg has a sale on this motherboard again, I will probably buy a third.

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ASUS M5A78L-M/USB3 AM3+ AMD 760G + SB710 USB 3.0 HDMI uATX AMD Motherboard
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: 1. Good price for an Asus brand motherboard.
2. Four memory slots.

Cons: 1. PS/2 port is flaky. It works 50% of the time.
2. During boot, pressing F12 does not work for a majority of the time.
3. The layout is cramped with very little space.
4. Customer Service is bad. The wait time for an agent is usually 45 minutes or more.
5. You pay for mailing DOAs to factory. Repaired motherboard comes back within 30 days and malfunctions within 1-to-to months. The constant shipping back and forth will cost more than the original price of the MB.

Other Thoughts: Quality has gone down significantly when Asus and other motherboard makers switched production to Red China.

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Gene L.'s Profile

Display Name: Gene L.

Date Joined: 10/09/01

  • Reviews: 28
  • Helpfulness: 4
  • First Review: 02/02/03
  • Last Review: 11/27/15
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