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Alex C.

Alex C.

Joined on 02/18/10

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 3
Most Critical Review

This board has voltage issues but a couple workarounds

ASUS ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming LGA 1151 (300 Series) Intel Z370 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard
ASUS ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming LGA 1151 (300 Series) Intel Z370 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard

Pros: Great board layout. If you are using a noctua nh-d15 your DIMMS will get the full 60ish mm of clearance because they are tucked in underneath the radiator cutout, not underneath the fan. Included 5.0 gHz profile for the 8700k is surprisingly good. More on this below.

Cons: The voltages...oh the voltages. This board has voltage issues. It does not adhere to your manually set voltages. Setting a MANUAL voltage of 1.300 I am seeing in Aida64 and Intel XTU that my voltages go as high as 1.415v idle and under load with temps to match. This is kind of a big deal as people may even fry their CPU's if they MANUALLY set 1.4v and then the board runs them up above 1.5v. Thankfully I always take it slow when overclocking and use tools like Aida64 to monitor my voltages rather than take the BIOS at its word. And yes I went through the bios and made sure to turn off every possible source of overvolting like C-states and TPU and SVID, even though all this shouldn't be necessary when setting a MANUAL VOLTAGE. None of it seemed to make any difference. This board simply doesn't respect your manually set voltage....in the bios at least. So after spending like 10 hours tinkering with this thing I discovered the only way I could get it to respect my MANUALLY set voltage is to use intel XTU to set the voltage. Then it behaved like every other board I have ever owned, ie setting a 1.3v manual with level 5 LLC gets me 1.310ish constant operating voltage. To get my 8700k to 5.0 gHz stable I ended up needing 1.36v. Just for kicks I thought I would investigate ASUS's included 5.0 gHz OC profile. Much to my surprise it works amazingly well. Idles around 1.25v and under load it hangs around 1.31ish. This is kind of crazy given how much more voltage (1.36) I needed for my own 5.0 gHz overclock. So all in all we have a pretty wacky board here. I assume these issues with manual overclocking will be sorted out in future bios updates.

Deafening coil whine

MSI GeForce GTX 980 Ti GAMING 6G
MSI GeForce GTX 980 Ti GAMING 6G

Pros: Great thermal performance, beastly overclocks, manages to keep me above 40 fps most of the time on heavily modded (200+ with ENB) Skyrim @ 1080, also looks good with my MSi mobo

Cons: Coil whine was insanely loud so I RMA'd it. The new one I received is somehow even louder. Its really obnoxious, and is going to get me in trouble with the neighbors since the only way to not hear it is to turn up my sound system to 80 db or so. I doubt RMA'ing it again is going to fix it so time to return it and try a different brand.

Don't be fooled

Corsair Vengeance K90  Black/Metal USB Wired Gaming Performance, MMO Mechanical Keyboard
Corsair Vengeance K90 Black/Metal USB Wired Gaming Performance, MMO Mechanical Keyboard

Pros: The volume slider is amazing. The key action on keys that are mechanical feel great, but that praise is more aimed at Cherry than Corsair. The cable is extremely solid feeling. The metal base the keys are mounted on is great feeling as well. Having onboard macro capability (vs. software) is nice since it allows you to sneak past some macro detection in certain games.

Cons: All the macro keys, the F1-F12 keys, Insert, Home, Page Up, Delete, End, Page Down, and even the Esc key ARE NOT MECHANICAL. I repeat 40 KEYS ON THIS BOARD ARE NOT MECHANICAL!!! If that doesn't bother you then this is a great board but for me this is a deal breaker and I am returning the board because of this. If you are like me you will be furiously typing away on great feeling mechanical keys and then you hit Escape key and it totally kills your buzz with its squishy mush feeling. YUCK!!! Talk about penny pinching!!! How much could it have really cost to just go ahead and make the board full mechanical? And trust me when I say mushy, because the non mechanical keys on this board are incredibly mushy. Another gripe about the mixed key types is that a keyboard only really lasts as long as its lowest quality key. Maybe you will get lucky and have the F7 key or Page Up key fail on you, but most likely it will be the Esc, Delete, or G1 (first macro) keys since these are most likely going to be the most frequently used non-mechanical keys on this board. Aside from Corsair's mixed key switch shenanigans, the keycaps themselves are nothing special, being made of the cheapest of the cheap ABS plastic. At this price range and for the other features you get on this board its to be expected but I still would prefer the PBT plastic keycaps.