Page 1:The Mini-ITX Market Is Small, But Growing...
Page 2:ASRock Z87E-ITX
Page 3:Z87E-ITX Software
Page 4:Z87E-ITX Firmware
Page 5:Asus Z87I-Deluxe
Page 6:Z87I-Deluxe Software
Page 7:Z87I-Deluxe Firmware
Page 8:EVGA Z87 Stinger
Page 9:Z87 Stinger Software
Page 10:Z87 Stinger Firmware
Page 11:Gigabyte Z87N-WiFi
Page 12:Z87N-WiFi Software
Page 13:Z87N-WiFi Firmware
Page 14:MSI Z87I
Page 15:Z87I Software
Page 16:Z87I Firmware
Page 17:Test Hardware And Benchmark Settings
Page 18:Results: 3DMark And PCMark
Page 19:Results: SiSoftware Sandra
Page 20:Results: Audio And Video Encoding
Page 21:Results: Adobe Creative Suite
Page 22:Results: Productivity
Page 23:Results: File Compression
Page 24:Energy, Heat, And Efficiency
Page 26:Which Mini-ITX Motherboard Would We Buy For Haswell?
MSI’s Z87I puts Gigabyte in a tight spot by providing a nearly identical feature set and price. Using the same 802.11n wireless card from Intel as its competition, MSI adds teaming support to its dual GbE ports by leaning on a matched pair of less expensive controllers.
MSI adds DisplayPort to facilitate higher resolutions from the board’s second video output than Gigabyte enables, but joins the Z87N-WiFi in leaving out the rarely-needed DVI-to-VGA adapter block. We even find four USB 3.0 and two USB 2.0 ports on the I/O panels of both boards.
You get six analog audio outputs from the Z87I, compared to Gigabyte's five. This is achieved by relocating the Z87I’s optical audio output. MSI also finds room for two easy-access buttons on its I/O panel: CLR_CMOS and the firm’s aptly-named “Go2BIOS”.
Similarities between competing models don’t end at the I/O panel. The Z87I also has the same CPU-to-graphics slot crowding issue, and is even limited to two fan headers. I'd like to offer the same tip about offset measurements from Eight Low-Profile CPU Coolers For Your Compact PC, Reviewed, though the Z87I does have slightly more room between its CPU interface and ATX12V connector.
We're pointing out an awful lot of similarities here, but also like Gigabyte's board, MSI only exposes four internal SATA 6Gb/s ports, highlighting a lack of eSATA on the Z87I. Both platforms go so far as to use the same ALC892 audio codec, so we’re left to check overclocking and efficiency before we can choose a leader.
You only get two SATA cables with the Z87I, an I/O shield, and a pair of Wi-Fi antennas to complete the installation. Aside from antenna style, this is an almost exact match to its closest competitor.
- The Mini-ITX Market Is Small, But Growing...
- ASRock Z87E-ITX
- Z87E-ITX Software
- Z87E-ITX Firmware
- Asus Z87I-Deluxe
- Z87I-Deluxe Software
- Z87I-Deluxe Firmware
- EVGA Z87 Stinger
- Z87 Stinger Software
- Z87 Stinger Firmware
- Gigabyte Z87N-WiFi
- Z87N-WiFi Software
- Z87N-WiFi Firmware
- MSI Z87I
- Z87I Software
- Z87I Firmware
- Test Hardware And Benchmark Settings
- Results: 3DMark And PCMark
- Results: SiSoftware Sandra
- Results: Audio And Video Encoding
- Results: Adobe Creative Suite
- Results: Productivity
- Results: File Compression
- Energy, Heat, And Efficiency
- Which Mini-ITX Motherboard Would We Buy For Haswell?