Why you can trust Tom's Hardware Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.
How We Test
For this article, we’ve let the Corsair H110i take a breather to run some different heatsink solutions through their paces. We had very good success with the Noctua NH-D15 SE-AM4, so we thought we'd give its little brother, the NH-U12S SE-AM4, a shot. Being roughly half the size of its larger sibling, we hope that it can still perform adequately enough on our test processor. With its reduced size, we also gain visibility to more motherboard planar and thus, more RGBness from the G.Skill Trident-Z kits.
The HyperX kits are our primary test vehicle this time because for some reason we could not run DDR4-2400 on this board with both Trident-Z kits installed. Regardless, both kits get adequate testing in this review. The “Tumbler” is still our enclosed test rig, hosting our GTX 970 GPU, OCZ RD400 M.2 drive, Corsair AX860 PSU, and various other drives.
Test System Configuration
|Sound||Integrated HD Audio|
|Network||Integrated Gigabit Networking|
|Synthetic Benchmarks and Settings|
|PCMark 8||Version 2.7.613 Home, Creative, Work, Storage, Applications (Adobe & Microsoft)|
|SiSoftware Sandra||Version 2016.03.22.21 CPU Arithmetic, Multimedia, Cryptography Memory Bandwidth|
|DiskSPD||4k Random Read, 4k Random Write 128k Sequential Read, 128k Sequential Write|
|Cinebench R15||Build RC83328DEMO OpenGL Benchmark|
|CompuBench||Version 1.5.8 Face Detection, Optical Flow, Ocean Surface, Ray Tracing|
|3D Tests and Settings|
|3DMark 13||Version 4.47.597.0 Test Set 1: Skydiver, 1920x1080, Default Preset Test Set 2: Firestrike, 1920x1080, Default Preset Test Set 3: Firestrike Extreme, 2560x1440 Default Preset|
|Application Tests and Settings|
|HandBrake CLI||Version: 0.9.9 Sintel Open Movie Project 4.19 GB 4k mkv to x265 mp4|
|LAME MP3||Version 3.98.3 Mixed 271MB WAV to mp3 Command: -b 160 --nores (160 Kb/s)|
|Adobe After Effects CC||Release 2015.3.0 Version 18.104.22.168 PCMark driven routine|
|Adobe Photoshop CC||Release 2015.5.0 20160603.r.88 x64 PCMark driven routine (light and heavy)|
|Adobe InDesign CC||Release 2015.4 Build 22.214.171.124 x64 PCMark driven routine|
|Adobe Illustrator||Release 2015.3.0 Version 20.0.0 (64-bit) PCMark driven routine|
|Blender||Version 2.68a BMW 27 CPU Render Benchmark BMW 27 GPU Render Benchmark|
|7-Zip||Version 16.02 THG-Workload (7.6 GB) to .7z, command line switches "a -t7z -r -m0=LZMA2 -mx=9"|
|Game Tests and Settings|
|Ashes of Singularity||Version 1.31.21360 High Preset - 1920x1080, Mid Shadow Quality, 1x MSAA Crazy Preset - 1920x1090, High Shadow Quality, 2x MSAA High Preset - 3460x1920, Mid Shadow Quality, 1x MSAA Crazy Preset - 3460x1920, High Shadow Quality, 2x MSAA|
|F1 2015||2015 Season, Abu Dhabi Track, Rain 1920x1080 - UltraHigh Preset, 16x AF 3460x1920 - UltraHigh Preset, 16x AF|
|Metro Last Light Redux||Version 3.00 x64 High Quality, 1920x1080, High Tesselation Very High Quality, 1920x1080, Very High Tesselation High Quality, 3460x1920, High Tesselation Very High Quality, 3460x1920, Very High Tesselation|
|The Talos Principle||Version 267252 1920x1080 - Medium Preset, High Quality, High Tesselation, 4x AF 1920x1080 - Ultra Preset, VeryHigh Quality, VeryHigh Tesselation, 16x AF 3460x1920 - Medium Preset, High Quality, High Tesselation, 4x AF 3460x1920 - Ultra Preset, VeryHigh Quality, VeryHigh Tesselation, 16x AF|
MORE: Best Motherboards
MORE: All Motherboard Content
Current page: How We TestPrev Page Software & Firmware Next Page Benchmark Results & Final Analysis
Stay on the Cutting Edge
Join the experts who read Tom's Hardware for the inside track on enthusiast PC tech news — and have for over 25 years. We'll send breaking news and in-depth reviews of CPUs, GPUs, AI, maker hardware and more straight to your inbox.
WD's 18TB external hard drive is on sale for an incredible $199 — only 1 penny per GB — and it's shuckable
Intel's Overclockable 13th-Gen CPUs are up to 18% off for Cyber Monday, often with nearly identical performance to Intel's 14th-Gen CPUs
Black Friday Tech Deals Live: Latest PC hardware, CPU, GPU, SSD, and laptop sales still available today
I used to use nothing but biostar, in the AM2/AM2+ days. They were great boards, for the money.Reply
Only had problem with one Biostar mobo. It was a G41-M7 the capacitors smoked right next to the pcie slotReply
Always using biostar since 790 series..880, and 990.Reply
All dead due to bad PWM controller..
The only motherboard company I'd absolutely avoid is ECS. Let them supply the crap boards to HP, Dell, e-Machines, Gateway etc. I only bought biostar when I wanted a basic board with no fuss. They must be trying to move up market.Reply
19808151 said:The only motherboard company I'd absolutely avoid is ECS. Let them supply the crap boards to HP, Dell, e-Machines, Gateway etc. I only bought biostar when I wanted a basic board with no fuss. They must be trying to move up market.
The ECS K7S5A was a great board, back in the day. They never did repeat that success, sadly.
I have been keeping on eye on Biostar for the last couple years, because they have been doing a lot to adapt to the market and change their image. It's been a struggle for them, because they've always been known for their budget solutions, so often get snubbed by enthusiasts.Reply
It's nice to see their efforts bear some fruit for the mainstream - more competition is never a bad thing.
One nit to pick: "The GT7 also includes Infineon’s PowIRstage IC, which is reported to increase response time within the voltage regulator circuit, reduce regulator temperature, and provide up to 60A of power delivery from each phase."Reply
Increasing response time would not be desirable; did you mean decreasing response time / increasing responsiveness?
Otherwise, it's good to see a brand come back from poor quality. I look forward to the day a CoolerMaster PSU gets a recommendation.
Not sure what you consider basic x370 here. usb c included on all x370's? lightning charger ? dual bios? debug led? power on / reset buttons on the motherboard?Reply
led headers? the fan headers? alc1220? better power delivery? (news flash. am4 power delivery isn't usually this good)
then we get to "flair" First you say it has extra flair, then you state it falls short in the flair department. Maybe they needed to add some case stickers, or a lollipop?
or some of the above mentioned features are 'flair' done better or equally well by less expensive competitors?
100c overnight. One word for that. Not Genius... starts with M