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Old 17th Mar 2014, 09:59   #1
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MSI Z87I Gaming AC Review

Can MSI's new 120 enthusiast mini-ITX board better Asus and EVGAs premium boards?
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/mot...ng-ac-review/1
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 11:22   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Article
The INtel Z87 chipset has bee a fantastic
May want to have a glance at that part again

These MSI boards are great for the money, but it's the layout that leaves them dead in the water for me. When I was shopping around for one, I ended up opting for the Asus Z87 I-Pro (despite the higher price tag and non-matching colour scheme) simply because it's layout was that good. Having all the power connectors on the edge of the board (and on a handy side too) just makes things look that much cleaner, plus it means you don't have cables in hard to reach areas.

Would be nice if the wireless card didn't stick out so much on this one too, would definitely need to give it a bit of TLC if it were to be on show through a window or something.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 11:31   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Article
The INtel Z87 chipset has bee a fantastic
May want to have a glance at that part again
.
Fixed, thanks!
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Is the res loud, like, constantly making you need a piss loud?
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 12:20   #4
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It seems ironic that my first comment is regarding the 'wires' for the 'wireless' adapter. How half arsed is that? Could MSI not have even tried to route the cables more effectively? Even to have them clipped around the perimeter would have been better than two lose wires running straight across the board and close to the CPU cooler area.

Hands down it is a great board but those layout choices really do affect it for me and I believe they should have counted more against it. Especially as an Mini-ITX board where neatness and tidyness are so much more important.

Hopefully though this board's price will help ASUS to reduce their 'Impact' (?) Z97 version slightly although I doubt it will be a significant discount due to their better circuitry, more features along with the daughter board for improved sound.

Although having seen the specs of the 750Ti, I like may others, am eager to see what the higher end GPUs bring to the table and us such I have decided to hold my new build until the new Maxwell chips arrive as I believe they will bring a significant performance boost along with massive efficiency benefits which over time will be well worth the wait.
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:28   #5
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My dream board for the past couple months.... just need to save up enough budget to purchase the CPU + RAM as well.

....but then you guys got an article on possibly-Z97 mini ITX.............
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 13:38   #6
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Upon further thoughts, I can't help but feel a little let down too by the use of only a dual channel wireless unit, especially for AC. Or am I not understanding something about it?
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 16:39   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SchizoFrog
Upon further thoughts, I can't help but feel a little let down too by the use of only a dual channel wireless unit, especially for AC. Or am I not understanding something about it?
AFAIK the Intel 7260 is the only third party mini PCI-E 802.11ac adaptor out there - obviously going a little more customised and including something with triple antennas and the like would only push the price up but yes, I for one would like to see some higher-end WiFi kit with some of the mini ITX boards seeing as there's no way to use a PCI-E WiFi card if you're also using a graphics card.

Also SchizoFrog, like you I would also hope to see some cheaper enthusiast mini-ITX boards - the Stinger and Impact are a pretty darn expensive!
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 18:57   #8
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Old 17th Mar 2014, 19:17   #9
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Ha ha! I didn't even think that was possible. Thanks!
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Old 20th Mar 2014, 11:14   #10
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The Z87I Gaming AC is certainly much better looking than its cheaper sibling too and the heatsinks that are included shouldn't interfere with any coolers. Layout on the hole is good, although there are a couple of bones to pick here.
Which hole are you referring to?
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