Review: ASUS TUF Z370-Pro Gaming

For the first time in more than a decade, AMD’s Ryzen processors are already taking back some of the CPU market share pie from Intel. These CPUs have caused quite a stir among the computer hardware enthusiasts, the industry, and investors. In response to the rising threat from AMD’s Ryzen, Intel has pulled forward its 8th-gen Core processors in and now released the Coffee Lake CPUs rather than waiting until January 2018.

The biggest transformation of Coffee Lake from the previous-gen Kaby Lake desktop CPUs is that the Intel has increased the core count of its mainstream lineup to a maximum of 6 cores for the Core i7 and i5 models as well as 4 cores for the Core i3 models. Then we have a new Z370 chipset to accommodate the new chips alongside the LGA1151 CPU socket, which is physically identical to the last-gen Z270 but electrically incompatible with the old Kaby Lake CPUs.

Overall, the new Z370 chipset is not much different from the old Z270 in terms of features. Besides the support for Coffee Lake processors, the other major changes made are the native support for USB 3.1 Gen2 and PCIe RAID. Other notable change is the native support for DDR4-2666 memory as compared to Kaby Lake that only supported up to DDR4-2400.

The first Z370 motherboard to have arrived our test lab is the ASUS TUF Z370-Pro Gaming, which also turns out to be the subject in today’s review. For Coffee Lake, it appears that ASUS has decided to reshuffle their Z370 series segmentation, moving the TUF Gaming series into an entry-level and first-time builder segment, sitting at the bottom of the pyramid that was previously occupied by the Prime series. However, most of the existing TUF features are still retained, which include the TUF Protection (SafeSlot, ESD Guards, DDR4 overvoltage protection, Digi+ VRM, and stainless-steel back I/O for long-term reliability) and TUF Components (TUF LANGuard, TUF Chokes, TUF Capacitors, and TUF MOSFETs for maximum durability).

In this review, we will check out the ASUS TUF Z370-Pro Gaming and pair it with the new 6-core Intel Core i7-8700K to see how much is the performance gain over the Kaby Lake and also the Ryzen platform from AMD. Read on to find out more.

Product Link: https://www.asus.com/Motherboards/TUF-Z370-PRO-GAMING/

Suggested Retail Price: $159.99 USD


 

Specifications

 

 

Product Features

Arm Your Battlestation

TUF Gaming motherboards are built to survive and thrive on every battlefield. Infused with the military spirit of The Ultimate Force (TUF) and styled to strike fear into the hearts of every enemy, TUF Z370-Pro Gaming is the perfect foundation for your ATX battle rig: a solid, durable and camouflaged force that’s fit for today’s fights, and with the durability to handle multiple upgrades for the campaigns of tomorrow.

 

GAME YOUR WAY
Gaming Audio

DTS CUSTOM FOR GAMING HEADSETS

Hone your battleskills with exclusive DTS Custom onboard audio. Utilizing advanced emulation techniques to create positional cues via stereo headphones, DTS Custom takes onboard audio to a new frontier. With three presets ― Aerial, Soundscape, and Tactical ― for different genres, you’ll have a distinct advantage in every game.
SOUNDSCAPE MODE
The ideal audio envelope for MMO, RPG, action and horror games — your ears will put you in the center of the action!

TACTICAL MODE
Shhh — is that an enemy just around the corner? DTS Custom emphasises detail for stealthy play, so you’ll detect and locate every footstep!

AERIAL MODE
Experience audio as though hovering above the game world, with sound coming from ahead — perfect for MOBA, RTA, strategy and sports titles!

SOUNDSCAPE MODE
The ideal audio envelope for MMO, RPG, action and horror games — your ears will put you in the center of the action!

TACTICAL MODE
Shhh — is that an enemy just around the corner? DTS Custom emphasises detail for stealthy play, so you’ll detect and locate every footstep!

AERIAL MODE
Experience audio as though hovering above the game world, with sound coming from ahead — perfect for MOBA, RTA, strategy and sports titles!

SHIELDED AUDIO, SUPERIOR SOUND

Intelligent design and premium hardware create audio quality unlike anything you’ve ever experienced!
AUDIO SHIELDING
Separates analog/digital signal domains, significantly reducing multi-lateral interference.

DEDICATED CHANNEL LAYOUTS
Separate layers for left and right channels to preserve the quality of the sensitive audio signals.

TUF GAMING AUDIO COVER
Effective shielding preserves the integrity of audio signals to ensure best quality.

AUDIO ENJOYMENT
Premium Japanese audio capacitors provide warm, natural, and immersive sound with exceptional clarity and fidelity.

 

BRIGHTEN UP YOUR BUILD

LED-ILLUMINATED CONTROL FOR PCB EDGE

TUF Z370-Pro Gaming’s color accents are complemented by an edge-side LED that glows in attention-grabbing orange. Instruct it to shine continuously for always-on atmosphere, extinguish it for twilight play, or have it pulse as though alive — a machine that appears to breathe!

 

GAMING NETWORKING
Intel Ethernet

MORE THROUGHPUT, LESS CPU USAGE

TUF Z370-Pro Gaming features the very latest Intel Ethernet. Intel’s LAN has the advantage of reducing CPU overhead and offering exceptionally high TCP and UDP throughput for faster, smoother data transfer.


TUF LANGuard

BEST SURGE PROTECTION

TUF LANGuard is a military-grade innovation that integrates advanced signal-coupling technology and premium surface-mounted capacitors to improve throughput, protecting the motherboard from lightning strikes and static electricity.

Turbo LAN

NETWORK-OPTIMIZATION SOFTWARE FOR CUSTOMIZABLE PACKET PRIORITIZATION

Turbo LAN with cFosSpeed traffic-shaping technology adds even more lag-reducing support and an intuitive user interface, so you’ll reduce lag by up to 1.45X — with no expert knowledge. It even includes Game mode to prioritise game-related data transmissions, smoothing network operations every time you play!

 

PERFORMANCE LEVEL UP
Make Your Memory Go Faster

ASUS OptiMem preserves memory signal integrity by routing memory traces and vias to the optimal PCB layer, and our T-Topology layout ensures time-aligned signaling by balancing trace lengths between memory slots. These enhancements lead to more headroom for overclocking and improved stability, allowing DDR4 memory speeds of 4000MHz with all slots populated — and even beyond!


Improved stability and overclocking
With all slots populated

DDR4 – 4000MHz

CPU: Intel i7-8700K | Motherboard: TUF Z370-Pro Gaming |
DRAM: Corsair CMK32GX4M4B4000C19R Ver 4.31 |
Power: Corsair AX1500i | Water-cooling: Corsair H115i

One Click Overclocking

You don’t need to be a technical expert to experience exhilarating overclocking performance. TUF Z370-Pro Gaming incorporates the OC Tuner feature for efficient operation with precise voltage control and monitoring. OC Tuner takes all the hassle out of complex tuning by overclocking your system with a single click — it couldn’t be easier!


Multi-GPU support

With support for both NVIDIA® SLI™ and AMD CrossFireX™ 2-way configurations, TUF Z370-Pro Gaming enables multi-GPU setups so you can harness the full power of the latest graphics technologies to drive games at 4K resolutons and greater. The board even comes with the ASUS SLI HB Bridge, making it easy to combine the power of your NVIDIA graphics cards!

 

ULTRAFAST TRANSFER SPEED
10Gbps USB 3.1 Gen 2 Onboard

With backward-compatible USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A, you’ll experience ultimate connection flexibility and blazing data-transfer speeds of up to 10Gbps — or twice as fast as USB 3.1 Gen 1!

Speed up with onboard M.2 (up to 32Gbps)

With x4 PCI Express 3.0 bandwidth, M.2 supports up to 32Gbps data-transfer speeds. It’s the perfect choice for an operating system or application drive, making your PC and apps work as fast as possible.

 

Intel Optane Memory ready

Intel® Optane™ is a revolutionary non-volatile memory technology supported by TUF Z370-Pro Gaming. Intel Optane memory modules accelerate attached storage to reduce boot and load times, so everything feels faster and more responsive.

 

Flexible Cooling Controls
TUF Z370 Pro Gaming

 

RELIABILITY AND STABILITY

TUF Gaming motherboards are engineered to be as strong and as dependable they appear. TUF Protection is the name of TUF Z370-Pro Gaming’s hardware safeguards that ensure long-term durability and stability, while the board’s complement of military-grade TUF Components are manufactured and tested to exacting standards — providing the confidence you need to create a gaming system that’ll go the distance.

TUF PROTECTION

SAFESLOT

Protect your graphics card investment

SafeSlot is the PCIe slot reinvented by ASUS and engineered to provide superior retention and shearing resistance. Manufactured in a single step using a new insert-molding process, SafeSlot integrates fortifying metal for an inherently stronger slot, which is then firmly anchored to the PCB through additional solder points.


ESD GUARDS

Electrostatic discharge protection

ESD Guards prolong the life of components while preventing damage from electrostatic discharge, providing protection for up to +/- 10kV of air discharge and +/- 6kV of contact discharge.


LAN PORT

ESD TVS diode protection on the LAN Circuit.
USB CONNECTORS

TVS diode for surface-mount and dual-inline package.
DIGI+ VRM
Precision control for stable power

The Digi+ VRM voltage-regulator module (VRM) is one of the finest in the industry, ensuring ultra-smooth and ultra-clean power delivery to the CPU at all times.
DRAM OVERVOLTAGE PROTECTION
Short-circuit damage prevention

Onboard resettable fuses prevent overcurrent and short-circuit damage. This extends beyond I/O ports to DRAM to safeguard the lifespan of your system and connected devices.

STAINLESS-STEEL BACK I/O
3X corrosion-resistance for greater durability

TUF’s corrosion-resistant stainless-steel back I/O panels bonded with chromium oxide have a lifespan that’s 3X longer than traditional panels.

TUF COMPONENTS

TUF CHOKES

Certified military-grade TUF chokes deliver rock-steady power to the CPU, helping to improve system stability.

TUF CAPACITORS

+20% temperature tolerance and 5X-longer lifespan.
TUF MOSFETS

Certified military-grade MOSFETs with lower RDS(on)*.
*Lower RDS(on) results in better power efficiency and reduced heat generation.

 

Intel CPU and Chipset features

INTEL CPU AND CHIPSET FEATURES

The Intel® Z370 chipset supports 8th Generation Intel® Core™ processors. It provides improved performance by utilizing serial point-to-point links, allowing increased bandwidth and stability. Additionally, the Z370 provides a maximum of 10 USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, six SATA 6Gbps ports, and 32Gbps M.2 and PCIe 3.0 lane speed support, for faster data retrieval. Intel Z370 also supports integrated-graphics, so you’ll enjoy the very latest in graphics performance.

READY FOR 8TH GENERATION INTEL CORE LGA1151 PROCESSORS

This motherboard supports 8th Generation Intel® Core™ processors in the LGA1151 package, with integrated graphics, memory and PCI Express controllers to support onboard graphics output with dedicated chipsets, dual-channel (4-DIMM) DDR4 memory and 16 PCI Express 3.0/2.0 lanes for great performance.


owikh84

owikh84

OverClocker, Reviewer at OCDrift.com
A humble guy born in a town called "Mache", loves technologies, willing to learn new stuffs and share latest product updates to all readers in OCDrift.com
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