Z270 Motherboard Round-Up: Competitors Compared
Performance Summary: The MSI Z270 XPOWER Titanium performed admirably and is a good choice that's chock-full of features and overclocking options. The more affordable ASUS and Gigabyte boards also proved to be solid offerings, however. Ultimately, the ASUS STRIX Z270F Gaming arguably has the best bang for the buck. As of this writing it's about $20 more than the Gigabyte board due to an active sale promotion that's currently underway, but that is $20 well spent. The STRIX Z270F outperformed the Gigabyte Z270X-Gaming K5 slightly, especially while overclocked. It lacks a few high end features and has fewer USB 3.1 and storage options, but there is still plenty available for a mainstream build.
All three boards overclocked to 4.7GHz without a hitch as well, using a simple ratio-based overclock (memory clocked at 2666MHz). With more powerful cooling, faster memory, and voltage manipulation, we suspect higher overclocks would be possible with all three boards. We didn't see anything out of the ordinary in terms of temperatures with any of the boards either, though it's worth noting that if you plan to install one of them into a smaller, more confining case, sufficient air-flow around the VRM and socket area will be necessary for sustained overclocking and long-term stability.
MSI Z270 XPOWER - Gigabyte Z270X-Gaming K5 - ASUS Strix Z270F Gaming
This quick roundup shows that this now mature setup (Z270 + Kayby Lake) still makes for a compelling and fun PC build, that is also affordable and widely available, comparatively versus more recent CPU and motherboard platform options to hit the market.
| MSI Z270 XPOWER|
Gigabyte Z270X-Gaming K5
|ASUS STRIX Z270F Gaming|