Gigabyte G1.Sniper3 Z77 Motherboard Review

Layout and Features

Gigabyte didn’t reinvent the wheel with the G1.Sniper3, as its PCB is quite similar to other boards in the Sniper series. The basic color scheme starts with a black board onto which is mounted black and neon green components with black heatsinks. Unlike the slightly more gun-themed G1.Sniper2, which had a banana clip (with a bullet sticking out of the top) chipset heatsink and gun barrel-looking heatsinks around the CPU socket, the G1.Sniper3 has more traditional-looking fins for both. It’s not as sexy, but it’s not as silly, either; plus, the gold skull emblem on the G1.Sniper3’s southbridge heatsink is pretty sharp.

Another feature the G1.Sniper3 does not share with previous motherboards in the family are onboard buttons, which is a new (and welcome) thing for Gigabyte. There’s a large power button that glows orange, and right below that is a debug LED. The nearby reset switch and CMOS buttons are more inconspicuous, and there’s a manual switch to toggle between the main BIOS and backup BIOS, as well.

The back panel has plenty going on; there’s a PS/2 port; six USB 3.0 ports; two LAN ports; optical S/PDIF out; a quintet of audio jacks; and D-Sub, DVI-D, DisplayPort, and HDMI ports.

Gigabyte did its customers a solid on the audio side by including Creative Sound Core3D audio, which features THX TruStudio Pro and CrystalVoice technologies for enhanced gaming audio performance as well as a built-in headphone amp on the front panel. There are four additional amps supporting the speaker outputs.


The G1.Sniper3, like other Gigabyte boards, features an all-digital PWM controller array, which users can control via Gigabyte’s 3D Power utility. The utility is pretty and simple, with just three sections--phase, voltage, and frequency--each of which has a handful of settings users can adjust using simple sliders.

As always, Gigabyte included a truckload of other software and utilities. Intel Rapid Start and Intel Smart Connect, which enable fast boot times and keep communications like email and social media connected with the cloud even while the system’s asleep, are both there, as is Gigabyte’s EZ utility which is designed to make it even easier to use the aforementioned features.

Other goodies include Xpress Recovery2, for compressing and backing up data; EasyTune 6, for tweaking system performance in the Windows environment; Q-Share, which enables data sharing on a network; easy RAID configurations through XHD; and more.

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