Gigabyte G1 Sniper M5 Review Z87 1150 Haswell
The tale of two halves on the M5 packaging. The front is clear and concise, whilst the rear is the usual scattergun arrangement of technology logos and product highlights.
In keeping with the usual G1.Sniper colour scheme the M5 is black and green. If you're someone who likes nVidia GPUs and Razer gaming gear, you wont have a problem in matching up your colours.
The Z87 utilises soundchips, and then a combination amplifier. This has brought some clever thinking from Gigabyte. If you can pick and choose which amplifier you want, then why not let the user pick and choose depending upon their requirements? To this end the M5 allows you to swap out amps, and their is one (of many) included in the M5 package.
Because of the naturally cramped conditions with a mATX motherboard the big gap is between the first PCIe and the second, with the third right up against it, and no legacy PCI. The soundcard section of the board is, as it was on the previous Sniper motherboards, a separate PCB to try and help reduce interference.
The CMOS clear, Reset switch and Power switch are on the top right hand corner of the M5. We know that real estate is hard to come by, but we're not convinced that having the CMOS clear and Reset switch barely a finger width apart is a good idea and can imagine many accidental CMOS clears.
Connections are in keeping with the new Z87 method of purely SATA 6Gbps ports. Round the back we have two USB 2.0's, 4 USB 3.0, the gold plated audio jacks and display connetions alongside the Gigabit LAN.