GIGABYTE Z170X-UD5 LGA 1151 Motherboard Review

GIGABYTE’s mid-range Z170X-UD5 has some impressive specifications, a lengthy feature set, and comes in with a sub-$200 street price. This motherboard has all the ingredients for a spectacular enthusiast option on paper. But how does it do in the real world when you put it to the test? It actually does very well.


Motherboard Overclocking Software

GIGABYTE’s EZ-Tune software has remained relatively unchanged for quite some time. Recently, it’s had a bit of a face lift. The application’s color scheme has changed, the default window size shifted, and the menus rearranged somewhat. As always it launches from the App Center icon on the task bar. The app center is modular in that you can install specific applications or leave out ones you won’t use.

Article Image Article Image Article Image Article Image

The EZ-Tune software allows for real time overclocking and performance tuning within the Windows operating system environment. We have seen this utility from this generation’s Z170 lineup, but what I hadn’t seen before was the disclaimer about overclocking not being covered by warranty. Beyond that there are performance profile presets and an auto-tuning feature. You never lack for options as there are hosts of sliders and drop down menus for tuning frequencies, multipliers, and voltages. What I like about the application is that it’s generally easy to use and understand.

Article Image Article Image

Fan control is in a separate utility that has to be installed and accessed separately via the App Center. It’s in the System Information Viewer which makes absolutely no sense. The system information part of it should be in the EZ-Tune application and the fan control should stand alone. The system information makes poor use of the dialog window space. It’s unnecessarily spread out.

Article Image Article Image Article Image

Fan controls have automatic and preset profiles just like the CPU does under EZ-Tune. The names are similar, but not precisely the same. You can see correlations between them, but not direct links. I don’t think this is a problem, but consistency is always appreciated. There is no auto-tuning feature for the fans like there is for the CPU. Manual and fixed RPM modes are available as well if profile presets aren’t your thing. System alerts are available in this tool as well. You can configure the warning thresholds from a very efficient menu with simple sliders. This menu also displays your PC health information. Voltages, temperatures and fan speeds are all present here. Lastly there is a recording feature so that you can record the PC health data for viewing at a later time.