Intel Z370 motherboards round-up: 17 times Coffee Lake

The best motherboards with the Z370-chipset

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Conclusion

With 17 motherboards that vary in price from about 117 pounds / 130 euros up to nearly 450 pounds / 500 euros we can conclude that there is enough to choose from for Intel's new CPU-generation, and also that we have to discuss the boards in multiple price segments in order to judge them.

Basic boards

The cheapest motherboard in this round-up is the Gigabyte Z370-HD3. A stable board, but not really suited for overclocking and fairly bare in terms of features. If you absolutely do not want to spend more, it could be an option. We would prefer to spend a little bit more on the Gigabyte Z370-HD3P, with a better audio chip and USB 3.1-support, among other things - enough to take home a Great Value-award. 

Between 144 pounds / 160 euros and 150 pounds / 170 euros we find three motherboards: the MSI Z370 SLI Plus, the ASUS TUF Z370-Pro Gaming and the ASRock Z370 Extreme4. In our opinion the ASUS is lacking in terms of power supply and audio quality, which means we cannot recommend this board. The MSI Z370 SLI Plus has a rich feature set with two M.2-slots, USB 3.1, Intel Ethernet and good audio quality which makes it an excellent choice. The ASRock Z370 Extreme4 is slightly more expensive but adds DTS Connect-support and an even better power supply to the feature set which makes the increased price more than acceptable. Both motherboards receive an Excellent Choice-award. With the previous generation we were excited about the ASUS Prime, but this time around we find it is too expensive for what it offers - compared with the Extreme4 quite a bit of the features are missing, while the price is higher. 

Bling boards

A segment higher it is mostly about the aesthetics. Things like audio, network and USB 3.1 are always satisfactory when you spend this much on a motherboard. The ASRock Z370 Gaming K6 and the MSI Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon cost about 170 pounds / 190 euros. The Gigabyte Z370 Aorus Ultra Gaming costs slightly less. With a price of over 180 pounds / 200 euros the ROG Strix Z370-F Gaming is higher up the tree. Gigabyte unfortunately has a weak power supply, while ASRock stands out because it is the only one that offers a problem diagnosis-display and on-board power/reset buttons. However, this is the only board that does not have support for addressable RGB. If you do want this, we would choose the MSI Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon, which also has a WiFi version that is slightly more expensive. The ASUS ROG Strix Z370-F Gaming is significantly more expensive and therefore we would only consider it if you want to use the Aura Sync-feature with rgb-hardware for example. 

Upper-class boards

This leaves a few motherboards that are between the high mid-segment and the true high-end segment, such as the ASRock Z370 Taichi and ASUS ROG Strix Z370-E Gaming. While they have a rich feature set, with for example a USB 3.1-frontheader, there are still some compromises: the Taichi has a slow WiFi-chip and the Strix Z370-E Gaming does not have onboard buttons and problem diagnosis - ASUS exclusively uses those features on the 'real' ROG-boards. 

In the true high-end segment we find that the Gigabyte Z370 Aorus Gaming 7 and ASUS ROG Maximus X Hero are very competitive. All important parts are of excellent quality on these boards and we have nothing to complain about in terms of performance. Gigabyte has the advantage of the second Killer network chip, aside from the primary Intel-based connector, but unfortunately uses active cooling with a small fan for its power supply. ASUS also offers a version with integrated WiFi, which does have a higher price. All in all these are both excellent motherboards with different advantages and disadvantages that are small, but can individually determine what board you want to purchase. Because of this they both receive an Excellent Choice-award. 

MSI already sent us their absolute top model, the Z370 Godlike Gaming. Literally all of the features that you could wish for are found on this board, such as U.2, front USB 3.1 and three times M.2. They even include a separate insertion card that allows you to mount two extra M.2-SSDs. Because the three Ethernet connectors and the WiFi-chip are manufactured by Killer, you can use your pc as an access point for your wireless network - a unique feature. Furthermore it stands out that the Z370 Godlike has an amazing power supply, which means that together with all the extra features it should be a great board for overclocking. MSI did an awesome job and in our opinion the Godlike is worthy of an Ultimate Product-award.  

Last but not least we are impressed by the ASUS ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming, the first Mini-ITX motherboard for the new chipset. The performance and audio quality are excellent, while the M.2-heatsink is a welcome addition to a compact system. The power supply and WiFi leave nothing to complain about either. Next time we would prefer USB 3.1-connectors on the back over an internal header that is barely used at all at the moment, should that choice have to be made. 


Gigabyte Z370-HD3P


ASRock Z370 Extreme4
ASRock Z370 Gaming K6
ASUS ROG Maximus X Hero
ASUS ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming
Gigabyte Z370 Aorus Gaming 7
MSI Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon
MSI Z370 SLI Plus


MSI Z370 Godlike Gaming


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