Motherboard Reviews

MSI Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon Motherboard Review

« Bundled Software | System Benchmarks (CPU, Memory, Compression, Multimedia) »

Test System and Testing Procedures

Item Name Provided by:
Processor Intel Core i7-6700K (Retail)
CPU Cooler
Noctua NH-D15S with NT-H1 Thermal Compound Noctua
Power Supply
InWin Commander 1500W InWin
Memory Kingston HyperX Fury DDR4 2x8GB @ 2666MHz 15-17-17-35 2T (XMP) Kingston
Storage Samsung Evo 840 240GB SSD (OS) Samsung
Graphics Integrated CPU Graphics, Zotac GTX 690 Zotac
Drivers Intel (Z170), Intel (Z97),  NVIDIA 361.91 WHQL (Discrete)
Router Cisco Catalyst 2960 with 2x 6ft Cat5E cables for network testing. Asus RT-AC87U configured as wireless access point.
Motherboard(s) EVGA Z170 FTW (BIOS v1.03), ASRock Z170 Gaming-ITX/AC
Operating System Windows 10

Latest working BIOS, updates and drivers were used at the time of the review. Each test was conducted at least three times for accuracy with the exception of PCMark 8 which already does three sets per benchmark run. *All performance benchmarks in this review and all reviews going forward will be using the Windows 10 operating system. **Thanks to our sponsors who provided hardware for the test system.


System Benchmarks

  1. Aida64 Engineer 5.30
  2. CineBench R15
  3. PCMark 8 v2.4.304
  4. WinRAR 5.01
  5. x.264 FHD 1.0.1

Subsystem Testing

  1. CrystalDiskMark 5.0.3 for Storage tests
  2. LatencyMon for DPC monitoring
  3. Rightmark Audio Analyzer 6.4.1
  4. Passmark Performance Test 8.0 – Network Speed Graph

Gaming Benchmarks

  1. 3DMark Firestrike (Default)
  2. Unigine Heaven 4.0 (Max Settings, 1920 x 1080)
  3. Bioshock Infinite (Lowest Settings @ 640 x 480, Max Settings @ 1920 x 1080)


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Tom Brokaw

Tom is a network and computer hardware enthusiast. He has been reviewing hardware products around for various sites around the net since 1999. He has modded a few cases back in the day.
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