The Gigabyte Z370 Aorus Gaming 5 is the company’s flagship Intel Z370 motherboard. It comes with a decent selection of features, boasting generous storage expansion and connectivity options, customizable LEDs, and a beefed-up onboard audio solution.
Once upon a time, lively and eye catching colours were once all the rage in the motherboard sector but now, the likes of GIGABYRE are applying subtle and understated designs in order to blend in with other hardware. This makes a lot of sense, particularly when we consider the Ultra Gaming, because we can inject some colour by modifying the RGB lighting and create a highly decorative theme without being constrained to the heatsink/PCB styling. The overall layout and styling on Ultra Gaming is eye-catching and certainly one which is up there as one of the more favourable designs that we’ve looked at thus far.
The Z370 AORUS Gaming 5 has a whopping eight fan headers, like its big brother. However, unlike its big brother, all eight are usable since there is no VRM fan plugged into one of the system fan headers. All fan headers can work in either PWM or DC mode.
The Gaming 5 keeps the black PCB and the AORUS falcon stenciled across the bottom but the stencil appears to be shifted a bit lower on the board, ending at the top PCIe x1 slot. RGB LEDs populate the same locations as on the Ultra Gaming and add more to the I/O shroud and the VRM heatsink. Both the VRM heatsink and shroud have silver colored design elements and a slightly different shape to some of the other GIGABYTE models. The PCH heatsink has an angular aesthetic as well as additional RGB LEDs. The Gaming 5 also has two RGB LED headers (both RGBW headers) all controlled by the RGB Fusion Software.
ATA for the Gaming 5 involves six ports supporting RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10. The Gaming 5 places all six together and oriented the same way on the board. The board has three M.2 slots (1x 110mm, 2x 80mm), .Honestly this Aorus Gaming 5 is a bit of a rough diamond. The rough part is the BIOS and the fact that tweaking is a bit harder to do compared to the competition. Once you have manually tweaked your processor, you will not look back though. You have seen the tweaking performance.
- Supports 8th Gen Intel® Core™ Processors
- Dual Channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
- Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready
- ASMedia 3142 USB 3.1 Gen 2 with USB Type-C™ and Type-A
- Front USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C™ Header
- Multi-Way Graphics Support with Dual Armor and Ultra Durable™ Design
- ALC1220 120dB SNR HD Audio with Smart Headphone AMP and WIMA audio capacitors
- Sound BlasterX 720°, the top-of-the-line audio engine solution for 4K gaming and entertainment
- Intel GbE LAN Gaming Network with cFosSpeed Internet Accelerator Software
- Intel® 1x1 802.11ac Wireless – AC 3165
- RGB FUSION with Multi-Zone Digital LED Light Show design, support digital LED & RGB LED strips
- Swappable Overlay for Accent LED
- Smart Fan 5 features Multiple Temperature Sensors and Hybrid Fan Headers with FAN STOP
- Triple Ultra-Fast M.2 with PCIe Gen3 x4 & SATA interface
- USB DAC-UP 2 with Adjustable Voltage
- Anti-Sulfur Resistors Design
- Ultra Durable™ 25KV ESD and 15KV Surge LAN Protection
- Lightning-Fast Intel® Thunderbolt™ 3 AIC Support
- APP Center Including EasyTune™ and Cloud Station™ Utilities
Although Ultra Gaming is a mid-tier Intel Z370 motherboard it packs in quite an assortment of features. GIGABYTE has included a USB 3.1 front panel header on the board, which is omitted on some rival motherboards at this price point. Although most cases lack USB 3.1 on the front panel, we are starting to see some newer chassis releases adopt USB 3.1 – so this will undoubtedly future proof the system. The inclusion of twin M.2 slots is a feature that is becoming standard on motherboards nowadays and being able to RAID0 such a device is very useful for those wishing to maximise their storage bandwidth. We were also mightily impressed with the included audio solution, sound is crisp, relatively noise-less and offers a good balance of low, mids and highs.
On the performance front, Ultra Gaming is a strong performer which delivers consistently good results throughout a range of scenarios. Overclocking is one particular area which this board is predominantly optimised for and it had no problems shifting up to 5GHz with the all-new 8700K. Thanks to a well-laid out BIOS we were able to jump in and out without any hitches – the interface should suit both novice and advanced users wanting to adjust any settings.
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