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ASUS Strix Z270E Gaming Motherboard Review

Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: ASUS

Introduction and Technical Specifications

Introduction

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The Strix Z270E Gaming motherboard is among the Z270-based offerings in ASUS ROG Strix product line. The board's integrated Intel Z270 chipset integrates support for the latest Intel LGA1151 Kaby Lake processor line as well as Dual Channel DDR4 memory. With an MSRP of $199, the Strix Z270E Gaming board comes at a premium, more than justified by its feature set.

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The new Strix board does not disappoint with its sleek black appearance and 10-phase digital power delivery system. ASUS integrated the following features into the Prime Z270-A board: six SATA 3 ports; two M.2 PCIe x4 capable ports; an Intel I219-V Gigabit NIC; 2x2 802.11ac WiFI adapter; three PCI-Express x16 slots; four PCI-Express x1 slots; two RGB 12V headers; Supreme FX 8-channel audio subsystem; integrated DisplayPort, HDMI, and DVI video ports; and USB 3.0 and 3.1 Type-A and Type-C port support.

Continue reading our review of the ASUS Strix Z270E Gaming motherboard!

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ASUS enhanced several design aspects with the Strix Z270E Gaming including integrated RGB support into the PCB separator line and rear panel cage, mount points for custom 3D printed panels along the top of the board, and metal reinforced PCIe x16 slots for the primary and secondary slots.

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The Strix Z270E Gaming's rear panel has an integrated plastic cover panel and all the ports you've come to expect in an ASUS Strix board, including USB 3.0 and 3.1 ports, a variety of video ports, an RJ-45 GigE port, 2x2 802.11 Wi-Fi ports, and both digital and analogue audio ports.

Technical Specifications (taken from the ASUS website)

CPU Intel® Socket 1151 for 7th/6th Generation Core™ i7/Core™ i5/Core™ i3/Pentium®/Celeron® Processors
Supports Intel® 14 nm CPU
Supports Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0

* The Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 support depends on the CPU types.
* Refer to www.asus.com for CPU support list

Chipset Intel® Z270
Memory 4 x DIMM, Max. 64GB, DDR4 3866(O.C.) / 3733(O.C.) / 3600(O.C.) / 3466(O.C.) / 3400(O.C.) / 3333(O.C.) / 3300(O.C.) / 3200(O.C.) / 3000(O.C.) / 2800(O.C.) / 2666(O.C.) / 2400(O.C.) / 2133(O.C.) MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory
Dual Channel Memory Architecture
Supports Intel® Extreme Memory Profile (XMP)

** Refer to www.asus.com for the Memory QVL (Qualified Vendors Lists).
* Hyper DIMM support is subject to the physical characteristics of individual CPUs.

Graphic Integrated Graphics Processor - Intel® HD Graphics support
Multi-VGA output support : HDMI/DVI-D/DisplayPort ports
- Supports HDMI with max. resolution 4096 x 2160 @ 24 Hz
- Supports DVI-D with max. resolution 1920 x 1200 @ 60 Hz
- Supports DisplayPort with max. resolution 4096 x 2304 @ 60 Hz *1
Maximum shared memory of 1024 MB
Supports Intel® InTru™ 3D, Quick Sync Video, Clear Video HD Technology, Insider™
Supports up to 3 displays simultaneously

*1 DP 1.2 Multi-Stream Transport compliant, supports DP 1.2 monitor daisy chain up to 3 displays.

Multi-GPU Support Supports NVIDIA® 2-Way SLI™ Technology
Supports AMD 3-Way CrossFireX™ Technology
Expansion Slots 2 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (x16 or dual x8)
1 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (x4 mode)
4 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x1
Storage Intel® Z270 Chipset :
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M Key, type 2242 / 2260 / 2280 storage devices support (PCIE mode only) *2
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M Key, type 2242 / 2260 / 2280 / 22110 storage devices support (both SATA & PCIE mode) *3
6 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s)
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10
Supports Intel® Smart Response Technology *4
Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready *5

*2 The M.2_1 socket shares SATA_1 port when use M.2 SATA mode device. Adjust BIOS settings to use a SATA device.
*3 The M.2_2 socket shares SATA_56 ports when use M.2 PCIE mode device in X4 mode. Adjust BIOS settings to use SATA devices.
*4 These functions will work depending on the CPU installed.
*5 Intel® Optane Technology only supported when using 7th Generation Intel® Processors. Before using Intel® Optane memory modules, ensure that you have updated your motherboard drivers and BIOS to the latest version from ASUS support website.

LAN Intel® I219V
Anti-surge LANGuard
ROG GameFirst Technology
Wireless Data Network Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Supports dual band frequency 2.4/5 GHz
Supports MU-MIMO
Bluetooth Bluetooth V4.1

*10 Support for the Bluetooth specification depends on the Windows version. Win7/8.1 support up to Bluetooth 4.0.

Audio ROG SupremeFX 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC S1220A
- Dual Headphone Amplifiers
- Impedance sense for front and rear headphone outputs
- Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
- High quality 120 dB SNR stereo playback output and 113 dB SNR recording input
- SupremeFX Shielding Technology
- Supports up to 32-Bit/192kHz playback *6
*6 Due to limitations in HDA bandwidth, 32-Bit/192kHz is not supported for 8-Channel audio.

Audio Feature :
- SupremeFX Shielding™ Technology
- Optical S/PDIF out port(s) at back panel
- Dedicated audio PCB layers: Separate layers for left and right channels to guard the quality of the sensitive audio signals
- Premium Japanese-made audio capacitors: Provide warm, natural and immersive sound with exceptional clarity and fidelity
- Sonic Radar III
- Sonic Studio III

USB Ports Intel® Z270 Chipset :
6 x USB 3.0 port(s) (4 at back panel, blue, 2 at mid-board)

Intel® Z270 Chipset :
6 x USB 2.0 port(s)

ASMedia® USB 3.1 controller : *7
1 x USB 3.1 front panel connector port(s)
*7 The USB 3.1 front panel connector shares bandwidth with PCIE_x1_2 and PCIE_x1_4. If the USB 3.1 front header is connected, PCIE_x1_2 and PCIE_x1_4 will be
disabled.

ASMedia® USB 3.1 controller :
2 x USB 3.1 port(s) (Type-A + Type-C, Support 3A power output)

ROG Exclusive Features ROG RAMCache II
ROG CPU-Z
ROG CloneDrive
Overwolf
GameFirst IV
*9 ROG GameFirst IV is only available for Windows® 10/8.1 64-bit
ROG Aura
- Aura Lighting Control
- Aura RGB Strip Headers
Special Features OC Design - ASUS PRO Clock Technology
- Full BCLK range for extreme overclocking performance
5-Way Optimization by Dual Intelligent Processors 5
- Whole system optimization with a single click! 5-Way Optimization tuning key perfectly consolidates TPU, EPU, DIGI+ Power Control, Fan Xpert 4, and Turbo App together, providing better CPU performance, efficient power saving, precise digital power control, whole system cooling and even tailor your own app usages.
TPU
- Auto Tuning, TurboV, GPU Boost
- Fan Xpert 4 featuring Fan Auto Tuning function and multiple thermistors
Gamer's Guardian:
- DRAM Overcurrent Protection
- Stainless Steel Back I/O
- Highly Durable Components
- DIGI+ VRM
- SafeSlot
ASUS Exclusive Features :
- AI Suite 3
- Ai Charger
- ESD Guards
- PC Cleaner
ASUS EZ DIY :
- ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3
- ASUS EZ Flash 3
ASUS Q-Design :
- ASUS Q-Shield
- ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
- ASUS Q-Slot
- ASUS Q-DIMM
Gaming Aesthetics :
- 3D printing friendly
- AURA-RGB Lighting
Digi+VRM
Turbo APP
M.2 Onboard (The latest transfer technologies with up to 32Gb/s data transfer speeds)
Back I/O Ports 1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse combo port(s)
1 x DVI-D
1 x DisplayPort
1 x HDMI
2 x USB 3.1 Type-A + Type-C
4 x USB 3.0 (blue)
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
5 x Audio jack(s)
1 x ASUS Wi-Fi GO! module (Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth v4.0
Internal I/O Ports 1 x AAFP connector
2 x RGB Header(s)
1 x USB 3.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 2 USB 3.0 port(s)
3 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 6 USB 2.0 port(s)
1 x M.2 Socket 3 with M Key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (PCIE mode only)
1 x M.2 Socket 3 with M Key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 storage devices support (SATA mode & X4 PCIE mode)
6 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
1 x CPU Fan connector(s)
1 x CPU OPT Fan connector(s)
2 x Chassis Fan connector(s)
1 x 24-pin EATX Power connector(s)
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
1 x Front panel connector(s)
1 x System panel(s) (Chassis intrusion header is inbuilt)
1 x 5-pin EXT_FAN(Extension Fan) connector
1 x Thermal sensor connector(s)
1 x CPU OV
1 x Clear CMOS jumper(s)
1 x ROG extension (ROG_EXT) header(s)
1 x 14-1 pin TPM connector
1 x COM port header
1 x High AMP Fan header (4-pin)
1 x T_Sensor Connector
1 x AIO PUMP Header
3 x 3D Mount screw port(s)
1 x USB 3.1 front panel connector
Accessories User's manual
ASUS Q-Shield
4 x SATA 6Gb/s cable(s)
1 x M.2 Screw Package
1 x CPU installation tool
1 x Supporting DVD
1 x ASUS 2T2R dual band Wi-Fi moving antennas (Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac compliant)
1 x SLI HB BRIDGE(2-WAY-M)
1 x ROG Strix stickers
1 x 10-in-1 ROG cable label
1 x Extension Cable for RGB strips (80 cm)
1 x 3D printing mount package
1 x ROG coasters
BIOS 128 Mb Flash ROM, UEFI AMI BIOS, PnP, WfM2.0, SM BIOS 3.0, ACPI 6.0, Multi-language BIOS, ASUS EZ Flash 3, CrashFree BIOS 3, F11 EZ Tuning Wizard, F6 Qfan Control, F3 My Favorites, Last Modified log, F12 PrintScreen, and ASUS DRAM SPD (Serial Presence Detect) memory information.
Manageability WfM2.0, DMI3.0, WOL by PME, PXE
Operating System Support Windows® 10 64-bit
Windows® 8.1 64-bit *8
Windows® 7 32-bit *8
Windows® 7 64-bit *8

*8 Windows® 8.1 64-bit and Windows® 7 32/64-bit are only supported when using 6th Generation Intel® Processors.

Form Factor ATX Form Factor
12 inch x 9.6 inch ( 30.5 cm x 24.4 cm )

April 3, 2017 | 07:09 PM - Posted by CNote

Lack of SATA-Express... That's not a con.

April 4, 2017 | 12:34 AM - Posted by Fane (not verified)

I have yet to see one single sata express device on the market.

April 4, 2017 | 04:14 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

This board is all positive for me:
- I am happy to see a board WITHOUT sata express - A useless added expense
- Could not care less about any RGB lighting - just an unnecessary added expense.
- My Memory will be less than 3866 MHz
So all good

April 4, 2017 | 08:43 AM - Posted by Moyeni (not verified)

Has Asus completely dropped Alpine Ridge for Z270 ? They had it on the Maximus Formula for Z170.

April 4, 2017 | 10:06 AM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

For this board, it looks like it, but not sure about the rest of them...

April 4, 2017 | 11:40 AM - Posted by Moyeni (not verified)

Haven't been able to find one... maybe it's unjustified, but for me Asmedia and premium don't go together.

April 4, 2017 | 03:25 PM - Posted by ASUSTECHMKTJJ (not verified)

ASUS supports TBIII via theThunderbolt EX III add in card. This is done via firmware and PCH design support. All that is required is connecting the corresponding cable from the TB header to the card and you are good. It is natively on the board due to it's inclusion would considerably increase the cost of the board. It is not on this board but you can at the similar Z270-A if you want support for it or any ASUS board that supports the TB header.

April 4, 2017 | 09:29 PM - Posted by CB (not verified)

Is the CMOS battery thing a joke?

I see that as a pro or con in every review. At first I thought you were joking, but now I'm thinking you are serious. What a miniscule issue. My current build is 3+ years old and still on the original CMOS battery.

April 5, 2017 | 09:53 AM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Not a joke, a minor inconvenience and pet peeve of mine. You normally don't have to mess with the battery, but when you do, its a PITA if you have to take apart half your system to get to it...

April 13, 2017 | 07:21 PM - Posted by natepayne

Remember having to do this last year on an older system it really was a pain!

Looks like a lot of reviewers are liking the Strix z270e, have read a few and they all seem to speak highly... Off to amazon I go :)

https://www.esportsource.net/best-gaming-motherboards/z270/

April 6, 2017 | 02:29 AM - Posted by Greg (not verified)

This is perhaps the worst review I've seen on this site. Hopefully it was from an unpaid freelancer.

April 7, 2017 | 05:58 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

DVI? really? be done with it already!

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