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Gigabyte Z370 AORUS Gaming 7 review: Adapting to the 8th generation

By John Law - 5 Oct 2017
Launch SRP: RM1299

Benchmark Performance and Conclusion

Benchmark performance

To test the Z370 AORUS Gaming 7, we used the following components in our testbed:

  • Intel Core i7-8700K
  • Corsair H75 Dual-fan 120mm AiO Cooler
  • 2x 8GB Apacer Blade DDR4-3200 (CL timings: 18-18-18-42)
  • Palit GeForce GTX 1080 GameRock Premium Edition
  • Corsair RM1000 PSU
  • Plextor M6S 128GB
  • Kingston HyperX Predator 480GB
  • WD Caviar Black 6TB
  • Windows 10 Professional (Creators Update)

The Intel Core i7-8700K that we're using for benchmarking was provided along with the motherboard, courtesy of Gigabyte. And on that somewhat related note, we can gladly tell you that this review will also serve as our official review of Intel's new top-of-the-line 8th generation 'Coffee Lake' Core i7 processor. To that end, we also overclocked the CPU's boost clock speed to a maximum of 5.0GHz via the Z370 AORUS Gaming 7's on-board overclocking tool (found inside the BIOS), with the voltage manually set to 1.2v.

During our testing period, we read multiple reports that there were some overclockers who were able to surpass the 5.0GHz ceiling on air with their CPUs, but as luck would have it, our CPU wasn't able to. We clocked out at the suggested overclocking headroom of 5.0GHz, as anything higher than that would cause our system to crash and reset.

For our synthetic benchmarks, we used the following programs:

  • Cinebench R15
  • Futuremark 3DMark 2013 (CPU and Physics test only)
  • Futuremark PCMark 8 (Home and Creative Accelerated)
  • Futuremark PCMark 10 (Extended)

You’ll notice that besides the first three benchmarks, PCMark 10 is the only benchmark that we’ve not provided a chart for. The reason for this is because, when the PCMark 10 test became available, we did not have an appropriate motherboard for last generation's Core i7-7700K. So, to keep the flow of the article uniformed, we've simply provided the end result of the Core i7-8700K.

We also tested the motherboard with three games in resolutions of WQHD (2,560 x 1,440) and Full HD (1,920 X 1,080). The games are:

  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
  • DOOM (with Vulkan API)
  • Hitman

Combined with Intel's highest-range CPU, the Z370 AORUS Gaming 7 showed a significant performance improvement in almost every aspect. In the 3DMark's CPU and Physics tests, the installed CPU pulled ahead by miles, and was only closely tied by AMD's own Ryzen 7 1800X. In the PCMark 8 test, the Core i7-8700K and Z370 AORUS Gaming 7 was the clear winner in both the Creative and Home Accelerated benchmarks.

In Cinebench R15, the Core i7-8700K only lost out to the Ryzen 7 1800X, but in comparison to the Core i7-7700K, the CPU was, again, pulling ahead of it by leaps and bounds.

 

Futuremark 3DMark, PCMark 8, and PCMark 10

 

Cinebench R15

 

Games

On the subject of gaming, the Core i7-8700K clearly showed a marked improvement in the framerate department, with it pulling ahead in almost all of the titles, both on 1440p and 1080p resolutions. Surprisingly, DOOM was the only title where the one-generation-old Core i7-7700K was able to put up a fight, with its average frame rate actually coming close to its successor by several frames.

 

Conclusion

In closing: there was never any doubt that the Gigabyte Z370 AORUS Gaming 7 was anything short of a capable motherboard. As we mentioned in the earlier page, the motherboard is practically a mirror of the motherboard of the previous Z270X chipset, and the only difference is that it is made to accommodate the new Z370 chipset. Simply put: the stability and power efficiency of this motherboard is just as impressive as the last.

Regarding the Core i7-8700K: we're glad to see Intel kept its promise in ensuring that the Core i7-8700K would be significantly better than its predecessor, and the results do speak (loudly, even) for themselves. That being said, there isn't a doubt in our minds that we could've pushed the CPU's clock speed a little further with the Z370 AORUS Gaming 7.

Naturally, both the motherboard and CPU will cost a pretty penny, with the motherboard set to retail at an SRP of RM1,299. But, considering the kind of performance you're getting, we dare say that consumers looking for the most premium of components wouldn't think twice.

P/S: We're doing a little giveaway over on our forum, where you can stand to win one of two AORUS Gift Packs (worth US$80 each)! Just answer two simple questions the answers which you'll find in this review itself, fill in your particulars, and submit your entries before October 19, 2017. Good luck!

8.5
  • Performance 9
  • Features 8.5
  • Value 8.5
The Good
Impressive stability
Instant overclock feature is a godsend
Lots of NVMe storage options
The Bad
Rear I/O still lacking ports