ASUS Z97-K Review

Published by Hiwa Pouri on 17.03.15
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Conclusion

Overall   + -
At a first glance the Z97-K leaves a good impression. You get a reasonable feature mix and it won't take long until you realize that ASUS created a decent product, which is available for a very reasonable price. Since this is an entry level Z97 product, there is only a four phase power design. In terms of storage connectivity there are six straight SATA connectors and an M.2 slot. In case of the color scheme we're happy to see that the new Z97 Classic-Series from ASUS isn't as flashy as the Z87 motherboards anymore.   - Design
- Layout
- M.2 Slot
- Price
 
       
Layout   + -
On this board there are no angled SATA connectors. In this case you could usually run into compatibility issues with long graphics cards, but ASUS positioned the SATA ports wisely, so this is not going to happen, except you'd be using a triple slot card in the second PCI Express slot. Unfortunately there are no power- and reset buttons and there is also no CLR-CMOS button. What we liked for instance is the fact, that there are six SATA ports, as well as an M.2 slot. Furthermore the placement of the PCI-Express x16 slots is well thought an therefore nothing needs to be criticized at this point. Another good thing with this board is that there is plenty of space between the CPU socket and the heatsinks on the power design as well as between the CPU socket and the DIMM slots.   - Space around the CPU socket - SATA connectors not angled - No Power/Reset-Button onboard
- No debug display
       
Performance  
+
-
Let's have a closer look at overall 3D performance. Calculating the average of all 3D benchmarks we ran, we see that this board ranks in the bottom quarter of our comparison tables. Concerning the average of all 2D benchmarks the results are similar to the ones in our 3D benchmarks. Overall we would love to see ASUS improve the performance of this board. On another note we had a look at power consumption and in this case we see that the values in idle are good and the ones under load are average.   - 3DMark Vantage
- PCMark
- SuperPi 32M
- SiSoft Sandra Memory bandwidth
- SiSoft Sandra Memory Latency
- Metro Last Light
- Bioshock: Infinite
       
BIOS  
+
-
As you might have expected from ASUS you get an excellent BIOS which offers not only lots of tuning and tweaking options but is also very easy to use. Especially with the entry screen ASUS is trying - and also succeeding - to add elements which make the BIOS much easier to use also for unexperienced users. For example the feature that the boot order can be changed by drag'n'drop is a neat addition.   - Clear arrangement
- Sheer amount of options
 
       
Recommendation   + -
Should you be looking for a very aggressively priced Z97 motherboard, then the Z97-K can be a good choice. Checking Geizhals we find this particular model listed for 103 Euro, which makes it actually cheap.   - Office 
 
 
       
Rating
We give the ASUS Z97-K good 4 out of 5 stars.




Page 1 - Introduction Page 14 - SiSoft Sandra 2
Page 2 - Specs and Delivery Page 15 - UC Bench
Page 3 - Features Page 16 - Super Pi 1M / 32M
Page 4 - Layout Page 17 - wPrime 1024M Multi Core
Page 5 - Connectors and I/O Page 18 - Cinebench
Page 6 - BIOS Page 19 - Bioshock: Infinite
Page 7 - Test setup Page 20 - Metro Last Light
Page 8 - Preview / Gallery Page 21 - Sleeping Dogs
Page 9 - 3D Mark Page 22 - Power Consumption
Page 10 - 3D Mark 11 Page 23 - Performance Rating
Page 11 - 3D Mark Vantage  Page 24 - Price Comparison
Page 12 - PC Mark 7 Page 25 - Conclusion
Page 13 - SiSoft Sandra 1  


Author: m.buechel@ocaholic.ch




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