ASUS Z97 TUF Sabranco White Motherboard Review
There are two particular reasons why anyone would be interested in the ASUS Z97 TUF Sabranco.
Firstly you're after a new motherboard and you want it to be based upon a Z97 chipset. We've often said about the robustness of the latest variant of Intel's Chipsets but it bears repeating here. Barring spending a positively paltry amount on a motherboard (under £100), you can be guaranteed that whatever you choose will be a good decision. The main differences are always the amount of USB and SATA ports, the amount of PCI Express slots, and the ultimate overclocking performance. Given that the very best ones we've tested manage 5.1GHz and the average is 4.9GHz then going with one that's affordable and is what you desire will lead you to be happy.
That is a rather general statement though, but it also neatly encapsulates the performance of the ASUS Z97 Sabranco. It's not the balls-to-the-wall winner of our tests, but equally it has no weak spots at all as befits a TUF/Sabertooth motherboard. They've been fantastic from day one and the Sabranco does nothing to sully the excellent reputation that ASUS have built up. No matter what you ask of it, it gets it done.
We believe though that most of you will be interested in the Sabranco for the second reason, namely you love a white system but haven't, until now, been able to supply it with a suitably white motherboard.
By that marker the Sabranco is an unqualified success. We've seen motherboards that were yellowish, or sort of grey, but never one that was so piercingly white in every possible area. If what you want is a motherboard that resembles the Antarctic then this is the very chap. To say so little almost seems dismissive, but in fact making a white motherboard, and particularly a white PCB, has proven so difficult in the past that until now nobody had managed it. Yet the definition of a white motherboard is so simple that the question "is it white?" can be answered with "yes, very" and that be an end of it. Add to this the white thermal armour and back plate that give this board an almost Z97 ROG Formula feel and the quality feel starts to ooze through the lashing of white. Some may say its a little too much white, as a fan myself I do think a little contrast may have been required rather than the "make it ALL white!!!1!!!11" approach but from the reactions seen online many of you absolutely love it. All we need now is for Asus to get their arse in gear and release a white graphics card because otherwise it means if you want a matching system every single person purchasing this board will be lusting after one of the KFA2/Galaxy HOF cards....
Going slightly away from the review of the motherboard quickly we also found recently that OCUK managed to get Avexir to put their limited Sabranco memory into full production and now have stock! We got our hands on a kit and think that its a match made in heaven! You can find more photos in our Avexir article here and buy the kit at OCUK here.
So if you want a Z97 motherboard, this will tick every box. If you want a white motherboard, the ASUS Z97 TUF Sabranco is the first motherboard in history that has accurately achieved that goal, and for that reason it wins our OC3D Innovation Award and predictably the TTL White Gold award for being........ And EPIC!
Thanks to ASUS for supplying the Z97 TUF Sabranco for review. Let us know your thoughts in the OC3D Forums.