Opinions have undoubtedly shifted over the years on what is expected from entry level motherboards. While many will not argue about the appropriate price, the functional aspects such as overclockability, storage options, expandability, and sub-system performance are affected so much with every concession made to fit the budget that designing the perfect budget model can be a nightmare for manufacturers. That is probably why most of them just simply opt to flood the market with multiple budget models offering different features within the same price point. With the latest Z97-D3H from Gigabyte, they have attempted to find a balance offering the latest storage options in the form of M.2 and SATA Express support as well as high-quality audio and high-speed Gigabit network on a price that is a lot less than expected.
Review Sample Provided by: Gigabyte
Product Name: Gigabyte GA-Z97-D3H Motherboard
MSRP: $118.99 USD
Product was given in exchange for work done to produce this review.
Despite the lack of “U” in the D3H name, the Gigabyte Z97-D3H still enjoys some Gigabyte Ultra Durable design components. The extra copper on the PCB traces and customized Japanese capacitors are missing, but the D3H still uses all solid capacitors, glass fabric PCB, gold plated CPU socket and dual-BIOS. As far as I know, the “X” in the naming scheme stands for fully digital control (at least it was in the Z87 series) so we’ll see what the scheme is like once we look at the motherboard layout.
Accessories for the Gigabyte Z97-D3H include the essential driver disc, IO shield, a user’s guide, Gigabyte Ultra Durable sticker and two latching SATA cables (one angled, one straight).
The full official specifications table can be seen below.
(Please refer “CPU Support List” for more information.)
(Please refer “Memory Support List” for more information.)
|Integrated Graphics Processor:|
Internal IO Connectors
Back Panel Connectors
* The entire materials provided herein are for reference only. GIGABYTE reserves the right to modify or revise the content at anytime without prior notice.
* Advertised performance is based on maximum theoretical interface values from respective Chipset vendors or organization who defined the interface specification. Actual performance may vary by system configuration.
* All trademarks and logos are the properties of their respective holders.
* Due to standard PC architecture, a certain amount of memory is reserved for system usage and therefore the actual memory size is less than the stated amount.