Review Index:

MSI Z77A-GD65 Gaming Motherboard Review

Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: MSI

Introduction and Technical Specifications


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Courtesy of MSI

With the Z77A-GD65 Gaming motherboard, MSI takes is award-winning Intel Z77-based board design and melds it with a Killer - a Killer NIC that is. MSI integrated the Killer e2205 GigE NIC into the board's design for the ultimate solution for online gaming. The Killer NIC is well known in gaming circles for its superior hardware-based network traffic prioritization engine, making it a natural integration choice for a top-end gaming board. We put the MSI Z77A-GD65 Gaming through our rigorous suite of tests to measures is performance and were not disappointed. At a retail price of $179, this board is a steal.

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Courtesy of MSI

In designing the Z77A-GD65 Gaming board, MSI provided a total of 12 digital power phases for the CPU. MSI packed this board full of features: SATA 2 and SATA 3 ports; a Killer e2205 GigE NIC; three PCI-Express x16 slots for up to tri-card support; and USB 2.0 and 3.0 port support.

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Courtesy of MSI

Continue reading our review of the MSI Z77A-GD65 Gaming motherboard!

Technical Specifications (taken from the MSI website)


Supports 3rd Gen Intel® Core™ i7 / Core™ i5 / Core™ i3 / Pentium® / Celeron® processors for LGA 1155 socket
Please refer to CPU Support for compatible CPU; the above description is for reference only.


Intel® Z77 Chipset


Support four DDR3 DIMMs 1066/1333/1600*/1866*/2000*/2133*/2200*/2400*/2600*/2667*/2800*/3000*(OC) DRAM (32GB Max)
- Supports Dual-Channel mode
* To support DDR3 2200*/2400*/2600*/2667*/2800*(OC), you must install an Intel 22nm CPU


3 x PCIe 3.0 x16 slots
4 x PCIe 2.0 x1 slots

On-Board SATA

SATAIII controller integrated in Intel® Z77 chipset
- Up to 6Gb/s transfer speed.
- Supports two SATA ports (SATA1~2) by Z77

SATAIII controller integrated in ASMedia® ASM 1061 chipset
- Up to 6Gb/s transfer speed.
- Supports two SATA ports (SATA7~8) by ASM 1061
(If you set external SATA 6Gb/s ports to AHCI mode, we highly recommend that you install Windows 7 or Windows 8.)

SATAII controller integrated in Intel® Z77 chipset
- Up to 3Gb/s transfer speed.
- Supports four SATA ports (SATA3~6)

- SATA1~6 ports support Intel Rapid Storage Technology enterprise (AHCI / RAID 0/1/5/10) by Intel Z77

USB 3.0

2 USB 3.0 rear I/O ports by Intel® Z77
1 USB 3.0 onboard connector by Intel® Z77


Chipset integrated by Realtek® ALC898
-Supports Sound Blaster Cinema


Supports one PCI Express LAN 10/100/1000 Fast Ethernet by Killer® E2205 Gigabit*
*The Killer Network Manager is only available for Windows 7 and Windows 8 currently. The supported drivers for other operating systems would be available on the website if provided by vendor.


Supports ATI® CrossFire™ Technology
Supports NVIDIA® SLI™ Technology
Supports Lucid® Virtu Universal MVP

Internal I/O Connectors

ATX 24-Pin power connector
8-pin ATX 12V power connector
CPU x 1 / System x 4 FAN connectors
3 x USB 2.0 connectors
1 x USB 3.0 connector
1 x IEEE 1394 connector
1 x Multi BIOS Switch
1 x TPM Module connector
1 x Front Panel connector
1 x Front Panel Audio connector
1 x Chassis Intrusion connector
1 x Debug LED panel
1 x Voice Genie connector (optional)
1 x MultiConnect Panel connector (optional)
1 x V-Check Points Set
1 x Power button
1 x OC Genie button
1 x Reset button
1 x Clear CMOS jumper

Back Panel I/O Ports

1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse port
1 x Clear CMOS button
1 x Coaxial S/PDIF-out port
1 x Optical S/PDIF-out port
4 x USB 2.0 ports
2 x USB 3.0 ports
1 x RJ45 LAN jack
1 x 6 in 1 audio jack
1 x HDMI® port with max. resolution up to 1920x1200 @60Hz
1 x DVI-D port with max. resolution up to 1920x1200 @60Hz
1 x VGA port with max. resolution up to 2048x1536 @75Hz

MSI Reminds You...
HDMI, DVI-D & Graphics Card support dual-display function by any two output ports (HDMI+DVI, DVI+VGA or VGA+HDMI).


•The motherboard BIOS provides "Plug & Play" BIOS which detects the peripheral devices and expansion cards of the board automatically.
The motherboard provides a Desktop Management Interface(DMI) function which records your motherboard specifications.


30.5cm(L) x 24.5cm(W) ATX Form Factor


9 mounting holes


Video News

May 20, 2013 | 12:58 PM - Posted by pdjblum

Nice job indeed.

Should be "red" rather than "read" when describing color scheme early on in the review.

May 20, 2013 | 03:25 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Thanks for the kind words and pointing out the wording issue.  It has been corrected...

October 27, 2014 | 05:40 PM - Posted by Susan40 (not verified)

Very awesome blog post. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work.

May 20, 2013 | 01:16 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

How can you release something under NDA?

May 20, 2013 | 01:17 PM - Posted by loppe (not verified)

This is NDA!!!

May 20, 2013 | 06:41 PM - Posted by raxx (not verified)

This is a Z77 board, not a Z87 board.

May 21, 2013 | 12:54 AM - Posted by JOE_E

Very nice review of the MSI Z77A-GD65 gaming motherboard. I am thinking of buying one of these when I do my next build and i really appreciate the thorough article. Keep up the great work Morry!

May 21, 2013 | 01:26 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Thank you.  Glad to help.  Make sure to check out reviews on other sites - others may have run into things that we didn't see in our review sample...

May 21, 2013 | 03:01 AM - Posted by KF (not verified)

I am curious... This is a gaming motherboard. So, I have to assume one would install a gaming video card. Is there a specific reason for the DVI and VGA ports on the back? Does the gamer actually use those ports?

I suppose one can connect other monitors up to those ports in a pinch, but does anybody use VGA any more?

Personally, I would rather see extra USB ports than a VGA port.

May 21, 2013 | 04:08 PM - Posted by Andre RH (not verified)

Thanks for the review,

I just bought the GD65 standard board from Newegg yesterday (it was a bit cheaper than the gaming board and gave me 8 gigs or ram free). Aside from the better network chip and cooler paint job, is there any other difference?

Also MSI: support the PC Perspective Podcast! I exclusively bought from MSI as a thank you for their support(...and also I could not get Alex's voice out of my head).

May 21, 2013 | 08:56 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

We didn't review the plain GD65, but from what I can tell from the GD65 specs, the differences are the paint job and coloration, heatsinks, Killer NIC, and inclusion of Sound Blaster software pack.

May 21, 2013 | 08:02 PM - Posted by ServerStation668 (not verified)

This overview of a Dell server PowerEdge R720 makes an interesting comparison:

May 28, 2013 | 06:44 PM - Posted by Robert (not verified)

This is a really nice board, and a nice price! I have been behind on gaming machines for a while and wonder what video cards go well with it in SLI?

May 30, 2013 | 10:35 PM - Posted by Offerlyneancy (not verified)

A dozen Los Angeles-area residents—including the state's second-largest biller for chiropractic services—were taken into custody Tuesday in connection with seven criminal cases alleging they cumulatively submitted more than $22 million in false billings to Medicare.

Those arrested also include a physician's assistant and owners of durable medical equipment and ambulance companies, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

In one of the cases, three defendants affiliated with Gardena-based ProMed Medical Transportation, an ambulance company, were charged with submitting more than $5.9 million in false claims to Medicare between 2008 and 2011.

ProMed's owner, Yaroslav Proshak, 45, of Valley Village, general manager Sharetta Wallace, 35, of Inglewood, and office manager and biller Sergey Mumjian, 40, of West Hollywood submitted claims for medically unnecessary transportation services and then created fake documentation purporting to support those claims, the government alleges.

The charges filed in Los Angeles federal court are part of a nationwide crackdown by Medicare Fraud Strike Force operations in eight cities that led to charges against 89 people for their alleged participation in schemes to collectively submit about $223 million in phony claims to Medicare, federal prosecutors said.

The 12 Southland arrestees are among 13 defendants charged in Los Angeles in cases that allege health care fraud. The dozen either were arrested or surrendered to authorities after learning that they had been charged. The 13th defendant is a fugitive.

The defendants include Dr. Houshang Pavehzadeh, of the Sylmar Physician Medical Group, who allegedly billed Medicare more than $1.7 million for chiropractic treatments he never performed.

During the scheme, which ran from 2005 through 2012, Pavehzadeh, 40, of Agoura Hills, became the second-largest Medicare biller in California for chiropractic services—even though he was not in the United States when some of the services were performed, prosecutors allege.

In addition to being charged with health care fraud, Pavehzadeh is charged with aggravated identity theft related to Medicare beneficiaries whose information he used to bill Medicare as a part of the alleged scheme.

When investigators tried to conduct an audit of Pavehzadeh's claims, he falsely reported to the Los Angeles Police Department that he had been carjacked and that patient files requested by the auditors had been stolen from his car, according to federal prosecutors.

Nine defendants affiliated with durable medical equipment companies were also charged in five separate indictments.

Olufunke Fadojutimi, 41, of Carson, a registered nurse; Ayodeji Temitayo Fatunmbi, 41, formerly of Carson, and now believed to be living in Nigeria; and Maritza Velazquez, 40, of Las Vegas, were charged with health care fraud.

The scheme allegedly revolved around Lutemi Medical Supplies, a company Fadojutimi owned and where Fatunmbi and Velazquez worked. According to the indictment in the case, Lutemi billed Medicare more than $8.3 million in claims, primarily for medically unnecessary power wheelchairs.

Fadojutimi and Fatunmbi allegedly laundered Medicare funds in order to purchase fraudulent prescriptions for the power wheelchairs and pay illegal kickbacks to recruit Medicare beneficiaries.

Fadojutimi and Velazquez was arrested today and Fatunmbi is currently a fugitive, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Susanna Artsruni, 45, of North Hollywood, and Erasmus Kotey, 76, of Montebello, a licensed physician's assistant, allegedly worked together to commit health care fraud out of a medical clinic on Vermont Avenue where they both worked.

Kotey allegedly prescribed medically unnecessary equipment, including power wheelchairs, for Medicare beneficiaries. Many of those power wheelchair prescriptions were then used by Artsruni's company, Mid-Valley Medical Supply, to support fraudulent claims to Medicare, prosecutors allege.

In only four months, the clinic and Mid-Valley billed Medicare more than $525,000 for the bogus claims, prosecutors allege.

Artsruni was previously convicted of health care fraud and was on pretrial supervision at the time she allegedly laundered some of the proceeds of the latest fraud.

Three other medical equipment cases were also brought, alleging fraudulent Medicare billing for medically unnecessary power wheelchairs that were sometimes never even delivered.

In one case, Akinola Afolabi, 53, of Long Beach, owner of Emmanuel Medical Supply, allegedly submitted more than $2.6 million in in false and fraudulent billing to Medicare.

In another case, Queen Anieze-Smith, 52, of Encino, and Abdul King- Garba, 47, of Westwood, owner-operators of ITC Medical Supply, allegedly submitted more than $1.8 million in false and fraudulent billing to Medicare, according to court documents.

In the third case, Clement Etim Aghedo, 53, of Fontana, owner of Ace Medical Supply Co., allegedly submitted more than $1.8 in false and fraudulent claims to Medicare.

The charge of health care fraud carries a potential maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison; money laundering carries a potential 20 years in prison; and aggravated identity theft carries a mandatory two-year prison term.
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