GIGABYTE AX370 Gaming K7 AM4 Motherboard Review

GIGABYTE’s AX370 Gaming K7 is in many ways the motherboard the AX370 Gaming 5 should have been. GIGABYTE has a habit of creating multiple SKUs with differences that are so minor that one can’t help but wonder why two separate models exist when they are almost indistinguishable from one another.

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UEFI BIOS

The AX370 Gaming K7 uses dual 128Mbit American Megatrends Inc. UEFI flash ROMs. These are soldered onto the PCB and cannot be removed. These also support GIGABYTE’s "DualBIOS" feature. The following management standards are also supported: PnP 1.0a, DMI 2.7, WfM 2.0, SM BIOS 2.7, and ACPI 5.0. The UEFI BIOS is one aspect of the AX370 Gaming K7 that actually differs from the cheaper AX370 Gaming 5 in some subtle, but very important ways which I’ll cover in due time. Version F4 was used for all screenshots and testing.

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GIGABYTE’s UEFI hasn’t changed all that much in the last couple of product releases. The interface moved away from the orange and black, volcano themed GUI which didn’t work very well a couple of years ago. The user experience is solid, with mouse support being smooth and responsive. The interface has become a bit more consistent over the last few UEFI BIOS iterations. You can enter direct values for anything that’s numeric, but nothing that isn’t. You can type "auto" or part of the word and return a setting to automatic. Plus, and minus keys will alter the values as well. One thing I don’t like is that you can’t hit enter while an option is highlighted and see a list of potential choices. Like ASUS and MSI, GIGABYTE now has an "Easy Mode" version of its menus. GIGABYTE’s version is about as good as ASUS’ in my opinion but not as good as MSI’s despite being more succinct. I think the MSI version is more intuitive and you can do a lot more with it than you can GIGABYTE’s. GIGABYTE’s version also lacks the "F7" shortcut key for switching back and forth. Instead you must use the "alt" key to bring up the menu which allows you to switch from one mode to the other. Navigation is typically done via the tabs at the top which are marked with the specific categories of settings contained within. GIGABYTE still has an annoying habit of using excessive sub-menus for certain values. You may have to go one or two levels down for one or two settings that could have been placed almost anywhere.

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The UEFI on AX370 Gaming K7 differs from the AX370 Gaming 5 in a few areas. One of the ways it does that has to do with memory settings. There are a lot more of them on the AX370 Gaming K7, but this is likely due to potential changes in AGESA code since then and general updates that have occurred since I reviewed the Gaming 5. Specifically, the Gaming 5 had five or six settings for memory timings. These have been opened all the way on the Gaming K7. Still, the amount of available settings for tuning is quite a bit less than you’d find on an Intel system. It’s much the same with voltage settings. There aren’t nearly as many as we are used to seeing on this platform.

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GIGABYTE offers the bulk of the same tools found on other offerings by its competitors. This includes the ability to save and load settings as a profile or to This also includes similar levels of fan control and PC health monitoring. That said, the fan control is good but not as full featured as ASUS and MSI as those have fan speed ramp up and down control, and GIGABYTE doesn’t on any models I’ve seen so far. GIGABYTE also lacks a dust removal feature, which is unique to specific ASUS models at this point. PC health monitoring can be accessed anywhere from the UEFI BIOS. Clicking on the arrow on the far-right side of the screen will bring up PC health monitoring.

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Another difference with between the AX370 Gaming K7 and the AX370 Gaming 5 is regarding the EZOT-3200 setting. While XMP detection alone showed the right values, this didn’t lead to a stable system. The EZOT-3200 setting did. Once set, I didn’t have to do anything beyond setting the memory voltage to get a stable system. Lastly, this AX370 Gaming K7 will allow you to overclock in 1MHz increments due to the motherboard being equipped with GIGABYTE’s "Turbo B clock" generator. This is an external clock generator which makes tuning to this degree possible. It is both the most important software and hardware difference between the Gaming 5 and Gaming K7. The host clock speed shown in the UEFI shows as being 100.00MHz, but falls just under that according to CPU-Z. This results in an OC just under 4GHz on this CPU. On the Gaming K7, I can add 1MHz or so to the host clock and push past 4.0GHz.

I do like GIGABYTE’s UEFI well enough, though it isn’t my favorite UEFI implementation. Ultimately, I don’t think this is a big deal so long as you don’t have to spend too much time in the UEFI. Unfortunately, X370 motherboards make you do this sometimes to get the system stable with certain memory modules if it’s even at all possible. Some modules simply do not work well with some socket AM4 motherboards. As many of our readers know, AM4 is somewhat of a mess in that regard.