Gigabyte Z97X G1 Gaming 5 Motherboard Review


Gigabyte Z97X Gaming 5 Review


The Gigabyte branding department seem to be a little drunk of late. G1.Killer motherboards that have lost the reason everyone bought them, the green. Now we have a motherboard with the 'Gaming' subtitle, which surely makes us think of MSI motherboards. If their next motherboard is called the Rampage we'll probably pack up and go home through sheer confusion. With brand identity being so vital it seems odd to replicate the looks and name of a motherboard which is already popular, just made by another manufacturer. Is the whole point of these boards now to hope people get confused and buy them by mistake? Sure we understand the reason a brand would want a black and red range 'too' and by this we mean because everyone else does they are feeling a little left out. We can only imagine being unique doesnt matter anymore and this is why the green has also been lost. All of you looking to build a black and green Nvidia themed system, Gigabyte HQ obviously has no idea the ONLY reason you bought your motherboards was the colour co-ordination so you are now going to have to wait for one of the other manufacturers to release something for you or Gigabyte do whats needed and sack what ever idiot thought this was a good idea.

Perhaps this sin could be more easily forgiven if the Gaming 5 had such incredible performance that we were left in no doubt about it. As it is the Gigabyte Z97X Gaming 5 is solid without ever being great. Part of that is, of course, down to the overclocking capabilities. Knowing that we have a great CPU and having spent a lot of time overclocking it on a lot of motherboards we know that, as a general rule, 4.8GHz is attainable on anything, 4.9GHz on the quality models and 5GHz on the very finest. So far on the Z97's we've seen 4.9 stable on nearly all of them so the 4.8GHz that was stable on the Gigabyte naturally means that there is a small performance deficit which shows up in our benchmarks. The downside to still having a small sample size is that this meant the Gaming 5 was at the bottom of our graphs in nearly every test.

If we can imagine our graphs as a race then, thankfully, the Gigabyte was never tailed off at the rear. It was always hanging very close to the other motherboards we've tested. The looks are fine without being offensive, and we know that not everyone will object to the eye logo as much as we do even if it does look like a cheap ROG logo or the Big Brother eye #cannotbeunseen. Yes there the IO department has some strange choices with two PS2 ports rather than a single combined, and as many USB 2.0 ports as there are USB 3.0. It's hardly bristling with the latest technologies and putting the old ones in a bin. Rather it's a halfway house between the old and the new. So with decent looks and decent performance it would be easy to assume that you should just ignore it and choose a different one.

Don't be so fast to dismiss it though as the Gigabyte Z97X Gaming 5 has an ace up its sleeve. The price. £112. Let that sink in for a moment. £112 for a motherboard with SATA Express, a great BIOS and a decent selection of connectivity is extremely tempting. This is very much a motherboard for those of you who want a no-fuss basis to your system. It doesn't have any particular highlights, beyond that low price-tag, but neither does it have any gaping flaws. Everything performs as well as you would expect at this end of the market. Nowhere is this more clearly demonstrated than in the gaming results which is, let's be honest, the thing most of us spend the majority of our time using our PCs for.

For this reason, and with that almost unbelievably low price, the Gigabyte Z97X Gaming 5 receives our OC3D Gamers Choice Award.


Thanks to Gigabyte for supplying the Z97X Gaming 5. Discuss your thoughts in the forums.

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Most Recent Comments

19-05-2014, 12:16:40


Today we're reviewing the first of the Gigabyte Z97X motherboards, the Gaming 5. How does it stack up?

Continue ReadingQuote

19-05-2014, 13:11:41

gigabyte need to bring back green boards Quote

19-05-2014, 13:35:22

Definitely green ties in so well with the Nvidia stock cooler.Quote

19-05-2014, 14:10:37

You were right! We need those green and black stuff back...
I also like the blue and black ones too... Theres a lack of those boards to.
If i were in the place of Gigabyte i would push out a white and black stuff as well... I think it might be working... Quote

19-05-2014, 14:17:34

I have to say, with the last two motherboards i purchased, I bought my motherboards based on their colour.

My Gigabyte 990FXA-UD3 was all black, because i wanted all-black, and I recently purchased a Gigabyte Z87-G1 SNIPER because it was green.

I think Gigabyte will miss out on the many users that want green systems, then again red is much more mainstream and could attract more users to Sniper series boards.

Personally, I'll miss the green colouring. It was something that ONLY a gigabyte Sniper board can give you. RIP Sniper green, you will be missed.Quote

19-05-2014, 14:25:45

One good thing about that board is that it has a standard PCI slot. I thought they were obsolete now? If I had known then I wouldn't have thrown my X-Fi elite pro sound card away Quote

19-05-2014, 14:30:47

Epic Conclusion Tom. A truly Dumbass move to put yourself into the crowd rather than standing out from the crowd. Could not agree more with what you said. Someone saw that ASUS and MSI had Red/Black "gaming" range and said "we want that money" Not gonna work peeps! Please 'O please bring back the green. Be proud, stand out, be yourself!Quote

19-05-2014, 14:44:08

As I said in the other thread about this board, it's a shame that Gigabyte have seen the success of red and black boards with a gaming suffix (MSI and ROG) and decided to copy it. The green sniper boards were awesome and the way everything is becoming more similar is disappointing from a consumers point of view.

Hopefully its a really bad seller so Gigabyte get the message that different is good and go back to the green colour.Quote

19-05-2014, 18:51:25

Dark NighT
Why o why is this black/red?

Gigabyte please bring back the black/green motherboards.Quote

19-05-2014, 19:13:23

Blue, Green, Black, Red, Yellow, Gold... It's just a colour, don't like it? Change it simples. Gigabyte ran with Green for a long while and everyone moaned they wanted Blue or Red, now everyone seems to want Green again, swings & roundabouts. Personally I'd like to see chromed heat sinks or gun metal grey.Quote

19-05-2014, 20:58:32

I think all companies should take a look at this and grow a pair... there should be more color choices and the more unique the better (for example the gigabyte orange is great)Quote

19-05-2014, 23:12:48

I am currently gathering parts for a green build. Nvidia gpus with the green lettering, green sleeving and coolant, shiny new Enthoo Pro case on order.

And in it will be a USED G1.Sniper because of this stupid, cowardly decision to abolish years of branding success and chase ASUS down the path.

I am tired of red and black builds, but I am NOT going to do a f'ing gold build.

Hey! Gigabyte Green with some lovely Nvidia graphics cards in SLI. Easy decision.

But why buy a Z87 board that won't support DC?

So, off to the classifieds for a used G1.Sniper and a sale lost for Gigabyte.

Sad, sad choice. Please Gigabyte Corporate, please bring back the green and black we all really truly love AND completely identify with YOU.

Go Tom! Great video.

- samwisekoiQuote

20-05-2014, 06:39:06

oh so many red choicees now, but i still wouldnt go beyond ASUS/MSI. while i didnt have a hankering for a green board, it was the only one worth getting, so..Quote

20-05-2014, 12:21:14

I'm really really glad to hear that I'm not the only one thinking that black and green should come back. I really liked that Gigabyte had the balls to pull of the (at that time) provocative color scheme and it did become popular.

I can understand the orange and black, it's not my cup of tea but it looks alright. But to go from a company who has worked hard to create a trademark for their gaming boards to this I mean come on not even your G1 black edition is all black.

The person or people that made the corporate decision to be F'ing up this badly should be sacked no questions asked and what is up with the copy cat of the ROG emblem ASUS has? I mean it is a little bit conspicuous in my opinion that it is so similar or maybe I'm just nitpicking here.

I was looking forward on doing a green and black build with a gigabyte board with the Z97 chipset which apparently won't happen now, gotta say I'm really disappointed in Gigabyte.Quote

20-05-2014, 20:03:30

You took the words right out of my mouth Tom. And yes I can say what you couldn't, with my money I wouldn't buy any of their gaming boards, they are far too plain looking, #1 on the list is the ROG Maxi 7 Formula, #2 would be the MSI Z97 Gaming 7. That is if I was in the market for a Z97 and wanted black and red. But at the moment, I am EXTREMELY HAPPY with my black and green Sniper M5. I hate to say it because I've liked and been using Gigabyte for 11 years but they are going to fall right on their asses with this one. I sincerely hope I'm wrong about that too. I want to see them be successful but not riding the wake of another companies success. They had their own color, logo, most importantly, identity. This nonsense spilled over into the UD boards too. They are using the same exact boring heatsinks (and I do realize you could whiz them off and paint them but why would you want to?) on every board now just anodizing them different colors. You had a choices with Z87, the blue UD3, the red UD4, the gold UD5 and UD7, the green G1 and orange OC. Each and every one was amazing looking. More choices than lots of others. Now it's lets do what Asus does but as little thought into it as possible. Please wake up Gigabyte.Quote

21-05-2014, 06:59:28

You guys need to bring back green. I have wanted to make a upgraded system for a while. once the new devils cpu's come out i want to make a really nice system with duel nivida grafic cards, with green being the main colour. if u stop making green borads i will need to get the new msi green board that has been leaked. i have been loyal to gigabyte but with this change i am questioning it.... atleast keep the green and black for the sniper assassin, g1 gaming boards. i currently have a g1 sniper 2 and i really like it.Quote

21-05-2014, 13:14:32

The green went with the corsair PSUs which meant you could have a lowish cost but still somewhat colour matched system. I hope they don't do it to their AMD line too.Quote

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