Tech content trusted by users in North America and around the world
7,296 Reviews & Articles | 53,195 News Posts

BIOSTAR GAMING Z170X (Intel Z170) Motherboard Review

By: Steven Bassiri | Socket LGA 1150/1151 in Motherboards | Posted: Sep 28, 2015 2:17 pm
TweakTown Rating: 91%Manufacturer: BIOSTAR

Thermal Imaging and Power Consumption

 

System power usage measurement occurs at the AC/DC PSU (the Corsair AX1200i) which I have connected to another system to measure the test system. And, as a backup, I have a wall meter to verify. The CPU power measurement occurs through the 8-pin connector, which is hooked up to a Hall-effect IC, which measures current and puts out a voltage in proportion to the current. That voltage is logged by a National Instruments ADC, which logs the DC voltage level that I then convert into current.

 

biostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-review

 

Note on Thermal Images: In the temperature section, we use a Seek thermal imaging camera to capture the surface temperatures of major components on the board. I look at the VRM and then all other things that light up the screen. If there is something to worry about, then I will state it. Otherwise, I will just show the hotter-running parts of the board for fun. Unless some component is over 80-90C, then there isn't any need for concern.

 

 

All systems will act differently, so I will look for commonalities. Such as how far from the VRM the heat spreads through the PCB and the difference in temperature between the front side and backside of the PCB. Keep in mind, the majority of the heat from the VRM goes into the PCB as it is a giant soldered-on copper heat sink. A larger difference in temperature between the back and front of the PCB points towards a more effective heat sink.

 

Without-Shield Thermal Testing at Stock Speeds:

 

The image on the left is always at idle, and the image on the right is at load. During ALL TESTS, fans above the VRM that cool the CPU cooler's (Corsair H110i GT) radiator are turned on to high (12v).

 

biostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-reviewbiostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-review

 

Full frontal.

 

biostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-reviewbiostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-review

 

Up-close of the front of the VRM.

 

biostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-reviewbiostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-review

 

Up-close of the back of the VRM.

 

With/Without Shield Thermal Testing at 4.5GHz Overclocked Speeds:

 

The image on the left is without the shield, and the image on the right is with the shield.

 

biostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-reviewbiostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-review

 

Full frontal.

 

biostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-reviewbiostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-review

 

Up-close of the front of the VRM.

 

biostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-reviewbiostar-gaming-z170x-intel-z170-motherboard-review

 

Up-close of the back of the VRM.

 

The shield doesn't hurt nor help. The temperature on the front might look lower with the shield because it blocks the thermal camera, but the back of the PCB has relatively the same temperature for both scenarios. That means the shield doesn't help or hurt cooling, so you can leave it on. The VRM on the GAMING Z170X is more than enough to get the job done. While it might seem like it runs hot, that is because of the cluster of ICs right behind the VRM. Both HDMI 2.0 controllers, the single USB 3.1 controller, and their BIOS ROMs and circuitry add a tiny bit of heat to the VRM area. But it isn't something to be concerned about because temperatures stayed under the "Great" range the entire time. That means that this VRM is better than you think since it is running cool enough not to let the other components raise its temperatures, resulting a level "below-Great."

 

Anything under 60C is great, 60-80C is acceptable, and anything above 80C is a bit worrisome (if at stock).

    PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.


    United States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon's website.

    United Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon UK's website.

    Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon Canada's website.

    We at TweakTown openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion of our content. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here.

Related Tags

Got an opinion on this content? Post a comment below!
Subscribe to our Newsletter

Latest News Posts

View More News Posts
View Our Latest Videos

Forum Activity

View More Forum Posts

Press Releases

View More Press Releases
loading