Gigabyte G1.Sniper2 Z68 Motherboard Review

Intro, Specs, and Bundle

We’ve looked at our share of Z68-based motherboards here at HotHardware, and the Gigabyte G1.Sniper2 is another stand-out to consider.

The G1.Sniper2 is in Gigabyte’s line of Sniper/Guerilla/Assassin gaming motherboards, although it’s currently the only one in the family with the Z68 chipset.

Gigabyte G1.Sniper2
Specifications & Features
CPU  -Supports 2nd Gen Intel Core i7/i5/i3/Pentium/Celeron processors, LGA1155 package
-L3 cache varies with CPU 
Chipset Intel Z68 Express 
Memory -4 x 1.5V DDR3 DIMM sockets supporting up to 32 GB of system memory
-Dual channel memory architecture
-Support for DDR3 2133/1866/1600/1333/1066 MHz memory modules
-Support for non-ECC memory modules
-Support for Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) memory modules  
Onboard Graphics -1 x HDMI port, supporting a maximum resolution of 1920x1200 
Audio -1 x Creative CA20K2 chip
-Support for Dolby® Digital Live and DTS™ Connect
-Support for X-Fi Xtreme Fidelity® and EAX® Advanced HD™ 5.0 technologies
-High Definition Audio
-Support for S/PDIF Out 
LAN -1 x Bigfoot Killer E2100 chip (10/100/1000 Mbit) 
Expansion Slots -1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x16 (PCIEX16)
-1 x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x8 (PCIEX8)
-2 x PCI Express x1 slots
-2 x PCI slots 
Multi-Graphics  -Support for AMD CrossFireX™/NVIDIA SLI technology 
Storage Marvell 88SE9172 chip:
-2 x SATA 6Gb/s connector (GSATA3_6, GSATA3_7) supporting up to 2 SATA 6Gb/s devices
-Support for RAID 0 and RAID 1
Chipset ICH:
-2 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors (SATA3_0, SATA3_1) supporting up to 2 SATA 6Gb/s devices
-3 x SATA 3Gb/s connectors (SATA2_2~SATA2_4) supporting up to 3 SATA 3Gb/s devices
-1 x eSATA 3Gb/s connector (eSATA/USB Combo connector) on the back panel supporting up to 1 SATA 3Gb/s device
-Support for RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, and RAID 10
USB 2 x Etron EJ168 chips:
Up to 4 USB 3.0/2.0 ports (2 on the back panel, 2 available through the internal USB header)
Up to 14 USB 2.0/1.1 ports (8 ports on the back panel, including 1 eSATA/USB Combo connector, 6 ports available through the internal USB headers)
Interior I/O iTE IT8728 chip 
Form Factor ATX Form Factor; 30.5cm x 26.4cm 

This ATX board supports the gamut of Intel socket LGA1155 chips, from the mighty Core i7 on down to Celeron processors, as well as up to 32GB of DDR3-2133 memory over four DIMM slots. On the graphics side, the G1.Sniper2 offers Intel’s integrated graphics of course (which powers an HDMI port with a maximum resolution of 1900x1200) as well as two PCI-E x16 slots (one x16 and one x8), two PCI-E x1 slots, and two PCI slots, with support for two-way SLI/CrossFireX.

For storage, the chipset powers a pair of SATA 6Gbps connectors, three SATA 3Gbps connectors, and one 3Gbps eSATA/USB combo connector (on the back panel), while a Marvell 88SE9172 chip delivers another couple of SATA 6Gbps connectors. The former supports RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10, while the latter supports RAID 0 and 1.


The G1.Sniper2 comes with a driver/utilities/software disc and a trio of manuals--one for the motherboard in English, a multilingual installation guidebook, and an Intel SRT installation guide. Predictably, it also has a rear I/O panel, a two-way SLI bridge, and a smattering of SATA cables.

Like some of its predecessors, this motherboard has a 5.24-inch front panel that you can install. The panel sports a pair of USB 3.0 ports, an eSATA/USB port, and a Quick Boost overclocking button.

And for those who love to trick out their cases, bedrooms, basements, or what have you, Gigabyte included a colorful poster (one side is scary-looking men, and the other is a human-shaped target) as well as a cornucopia of death-y, bullet-y stickers.

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