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ASUS ROG STRIX Z270I Gaming Mini-ITX Motherboard Review

By: Steven Bassiri | Socket LGA 1150/1151 in Motherboards | Posted: Mar 22, 2017 1:22 pm
TweakTown Rating: 92%Manufacturer: ASUS

Here are key points about the ASUS ROG STRIX Z270I Gaming.


What's Hot


Dual M.2 with Heatsink: Most Mini-ITX motherboards only have a single M.2 slot, if even that. The STRIX Z270I Gaming offers two 32Gb/s M.2 slots, one on the front of the motherboard and another on the back. The heat sink for the one on the front is beefy, uses a nice thermal pad, and does seem to absorb a decent amount of heat from the M.2 drive's controller.



USB 3.1 Internal Header: The motherboard offers an internal USB 3.1 header, and it's currently the only Mini-ITX motherboard with a USB 3.1 internal header.


Solid Quality: The VRM uses high-quality parts for the power stage components such as Texas Instruments NexFETs. The motherboard's construction also is very solid, the single ASUS Safe-Slot is a nice touch, and ASUS has done a nice job of balancing quality with price.


Layout Considerations: ASUS has done a nice job of revising layout to expand the usability of the motherboard's features. For starters, they have taken advantage of the fact that the PCH needs a heat sink, and designed a double decker heat sink so you can mount an M.2 drive over the PCH. The left VRM heat sink has also been designed to rise a few inches and then span outwards, allowing the heat sink to maximize its surface area in a tight space. A lot of the headers are in easily accessible areas, and ASUS has provided a fan out cable for the front panel connectors.


What's Not


USB 3.1 Only Through Header: While there is a type-C port on the rear IO panel, it's only USB 3.0 and not USB 3.1. The motherboard has a USB 3.1 controller, but it is only connected to the USB 3.1 internal header, and there are not many cases with front panel USB 3.1.



Final Thoughts


The ASUS STRIX Z270I Gaming is a ROG Mini-ITX motherboard that looks to offer a high number of features and connectivity at a slightly lower price point than a ROG Impact motherboard would. It forgoes overclocking features, such as a POST code display and on-board buttons for extra features such as a USB 3.1 internal header, two M.2 slots, and WIFI.




ASUS has kept the price of the motherboard in a reasonable range. The color-neutral theme of the motherboard allows you to easily match it to other case accessories. The rear RGB LEDs up and down the right side of the back of the PCB produce a really awesome lighting effect when the motherboard is turned on.


If you want a solid Mini-ITX motherboard with a good number of features at a reasonable price, the STRIX Z270I Gaming is worth a look.

Product Summary Breakdown

TweakTown award
Overall TweakTown Rating92%

The Bottom Line: ASUS's first-rate design and engineering come to light in this mini-ITX motherboard with dual M.2 ports, a USB 3.1 internal header, and solid construction.

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