- Premium price on the Gaming G1
Specifications – IO and Expansion
IO and expantion are pretty par for the course. But for the best result, check Gigabyte Z170 Gaming Series Comparison and look through the list to ensure the model you want has the right amount of IO. The Gaming G1 comes with the most IO connectivity. Gamers will get ten USB (six USB 3.0 and four USB 2.0 which includes two DAC-UP ports), PS/2 port, faux gold amplified analog audio ports, and dual Bluetooth/WiFi 802.11n connectivity. For video output, you get a mini-display and HDMI port.
For a summary of the specs that make the board a bit more gamer oriented, just look above.
The Gigabyte GA-Z7170X-Gaming G1, Gaming GT, and Gaming 7 all sport the red on white heat sinks. However, any other Gaming SKU will sport the red on black heat sink. Additionally, most of the Gaming series includes the OP-AMP except for the GA-Z170N-Gaming 5 mini-ITX and GA-Z170 G.1 Sniper ATX motherboards. It’s understandable why the mini-ITX doesn’t have it. But with a name like the G.1 Sniper, it’s a little confusing.
The Gaming 7 offers six USB (four USB 3.1 and two 2.0 which includes two DAC-UP ports), faux gold amplified analog audio ports, dual NICS (Intel and Killer), and PS/2 port. Gigabyte reps said that gamers still like the older PS2 port to support high DPI gaming mice. For video output, you get a mini-display, HDMI, and display port.
The Gaming G1 has hybrid liquid capable heat sinks around the CPU socket. Gamers don’t have to liquid cool these unless you’re going for more extreme overclocks.
Test Systems and Setup Notes
The new Z170 chipset now requires a new Skylake LGA-1151 processor. It’s a whole new game of drivers and features to test. Here are the specs for the two boards on the battlefield.
- Processor: Intel Core i7-6700K Skylake
- Motherboard 1: Gigabyte GA-Z170X-Gaming G1
- Motherboard 2: Gigabyte GA-Z170X-Gaming 7
- Memory 1: Corsair Vengeance LPX 2666 MHz 16GB DDR4 (dual channel)
- Memory 2: Kingston HyperX Fury 2666 MHz 32GB DDR4 (quad)
- Graphics: NVidia GeForce GTX 980
- Storage: Kingston HyperX Savage 240GB SSD
- Storage: Plextor 256GB AG256M6E M.2 PCIe SSD
- Power: be quiet! Dark Power Pro 80Plus Gold 850 Watt
- Cooling: be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 3
- OS: Windows 8.1 Patched
Set up for both boards went as expected. The Gaming G1 took about 60 minutes from start to finish given all the extra features and connectivity. The Gaming 7 took about 40 minutes. It should also note that the Dark Rock Pro 3 is quite large. It gets right up on the rear Gaming heat sink(s).