Gigabyte Z270X Designare Preview
Published: 8th June 2017 | Source: Gigabyte | Price: |
With silver being the main theme of the motherboard it isn't that surprising to find the packaging resplendent in shade. It gives a lot of hope for the insides, particularly as a cheaper packaging effort at silver might have ended up being battleship grey, but here it is as shiny as the back of your iPhone. Accessories are somewhat limited, but as long as we've got a manual and IO shield then the rest is gravy. We don't know anyone who hasn't got a draw full of unused SATA cables, let alone strange adaptors that don't seem to be good for anything, so the less weight inside the box, the less damage done to the environment whilst moving it about the world, and that's good for all of us.
It's quite a difficult PCB to photograph without it coming out grey, or having such a bright light upon it that the heatsinks are totally washed out, so mentally combine the two images below and you'll get a closer idea of how it is in the flesh. The rule with pretty much all things is that they are nicer in reality than they look in a photograph, which is not only good for things like this, but quite depressing when you consider how staggeringly attractive supercars and supermodels are in photographs, let alone in front of you.
Gigabyte have utilised the increasingly popular reinforced sockets for all the DIMM and PCI Express slots, which has the dual benefit of assisting the overall silvery nature of the Designare as well as being more robust and thus extending its lifespan in your system. We can't decide if we like the Designare font or not, but it is rather odd to find it printed on the underside of the PCB where even those of you with Lian Li PC08 cases wont see it. Additionally there are fewer fan headers on this particular motherboard than we've seen on some other offerings of late. That isn't to say that it is short of them, but rather than there are just about enough.
Much like the fan headers, the SATA ports are also somewhat fewer in number than we have become accustomed to. We have four SATA ports horizontally and two in the old fashioned vertical style, and it is strange to see a motherboard that has M.2 and U.2 storage options still sticking with the SATA Express technology which went almost as quickly as it came.
Around the back are the usual selection of USB 3.1 ports - in both flavours - as well as USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 options. The Designare also has the combined PS2 port so beloved of people with long lived favourite keyboards. There are both HDMI and DVI outputs should you wish to take advantage of them, and the Gigabit LAN that those of us who don't like sending precious data across the airwaves love so deeply.