Gigabyte X99M Gaming 5 Motherboard Review
Gigabyte includes quite a bit of useful software. Their goal is to make things easy on the user.
First up, for most of the software you will need to install the app center. The app center is the main control hub for most of Gigabyte’s software.
@BIOS allows you to update or save your BIOS right from Windows.
USB Locker is a piece of software that allows you to lock down your USB ports. Quite handy at LAN parties when you’re away from your PC.
Easy tune is an auto overclocking utility from Gigabyte. It’s pretty simple to use Just pick your level of overclocking and the motherboard/software combo does the rest. You can also manually overclock the CPU and memory using the advance tabs.
The System Information viewer gives you info on components such as CPU speed, voltage, DDR4 voltage, speed, etc. Fan speeds can be customized as well. You can also record the information for playback later on.
V-Tuner while not specific to the Gigabyte Motherboard, is used to overclock the GPU.
Ambient LED allows you to control the lighting on the motherboard (if applicable). The Gigabyte X99M-Gaming 5 does have motherboard lighting along the audio path. The lighting can be turned off, solid, beat, or pulse mode. Some of Gigabyte’s motherboards come with a rear I/O shield LED light. That can be turned off or on here as well.
Gigabyte’s cloud station software is a combination of software. The cloud station server allows you to control certain aspects of your PC with a smartphone or tablet. The home cloud service allow you to share files between your PC and your tablet/phone. If you have a wireless card installed, the hot spot feature will allow you to share your internet connection with other devices via wireless. One caveat is the wired LAN must be plugged in as well. The Gigabyte remote feature allow you to remotely used the mouse and keyboard. Remote OC allows you to overclock your PC using your phone or tablet. The cloud station PC software allows all the same from above, just from a desktop PC.
The EZ Setup software allows you to quickly enable the Intel features of the motherboard suck as Intel Smart Response, Rapid Start, and Smart connect.
Fast boot allows you to change the boot speed options without going into the BIOS. This reduces the boot time. With Windows 8 and an SSD boot times are fast already.
The Game controller software allows you to set custom hot keys and/or change the mouse sensitivity.
For those of you that have teenagers at home, here’s a piece of software they will hate. The software is called Smart time lock. It allows you to set time limits per day and weekends on when the PC can be used. When the allotted time has been used up, the software will either shut down the network interface or shut the whole PC down. The software is password protected so that it cannot be modified or closed.
I had a rough time switching to Windows 8 as the user interface is completely different than Windows 7. Gigabyte Smart Switch brings back a Windows seven-esque Start Menu. Most everything that was in the Windows 7 Start menu is there.