MSI always has a popular product at hand with the GD65 series motherboards. It sits in-between mainstream and extremely high-end, both performance and pricing wise. What you get is a very versatile motherboard with some enthusiast options like the onboard buttons, USB 3.0, voltage monitoring, extra SATA3 ports and sure, a mainboard that looks rather sexy.
Overall non-overclocked performance seems to fall in the same baseline as all other Z77 motherboards we tested, with an offset here and there of course.
If that's not enough for you then press the OC Genie button, power up and after a few seconds your motherboard all of the sudden will be mildly overclocked, a performance boost at very little extra power consumption as the CPU will now be throttled to 4200 MHz.
Throughout the review we have shown you that the motherboard can run a 3770K processor at 5 GHz, this however required a dual-fan Noctua D12 heatpipe cooler. Temps where still too high, so really in the 5 Ghz region, liquid cooling is the only logical way to go.
The overclock itself takes merely a few minutes to setup in the BIOS, but really after that you are good to go. Again I do have to say though that Ivy bridge processors run hotter when overclocked opposed to Sandy Bridge, reaching 5 GHz is fairly easy to accomplish with the motherboard but you'll find yourself needing juice in the 1.425~1.45 Volts range of the processor. So be prepared for processor heat, and proper liquid cooling -- or settle for a lower clock frequency and voltage.
Now we didn't highlight the results in this review, but we did quickly popped in G.Skill's new Trident X 2666 MHz memory as well, and in the BIOS we simply flicked the XMP profile to on and boom, the memory was running at a rather amazing clock frequency of 2666 MHz. Astonishing really, though that alone will not bring you heaps of extra performance.
So its time to round things up, the price point of the MSI Z77A-GD65 is 165 EUR. For that amount of money you'll receive a complete motherboard with a wide variety in terms of connectivity, design and features. Truth be told, all the Z77 motherboards we have had in our hands are able to at the very least reach 4700 MHz on the 3770K processor, but is was very easy to setup with this motherboard. Fiddle around with the multiplier and voltages alone is enough to reach 5 GHz on heatpipe based cooling. Notable was the power consumption when overclocked BTW, with the CPU stressed at 5 GHz the PC consumed only 233 Watt.
We can explain all features over and over again, but I'll keep this conclusion simple. The GD65 offers everything you need from a proper Ivy Bridge platform, in terms of features, multi-GPU support, USB 3.0, SATA3, PCIe Gen 3.0, ease of tweaking and sure, the design is done right as well. We spotted this motherboard with a 165 EUR price tag, and feel that's absolutely worth the money. Very much recommended.
MSI Z77A GD80 review We review the MSI Z77A GD80 motherboard. Albeit the GD80 shares 95% of the DNA of the GD65 it comes with one feature that some of you will be very interested in, a ThunderBolt controller. So
have a peek at what was just released, this is the MSI Z77A-GD80 motherboard. Onwards to the next page please.
MSI Z77A-GD65 motherboard review We review the MSI Z77A-GD65 motherboard. The MSI Z77A-GD65 is intended for Intel's 22nm Ivy Bridge processors on Socket LGA1155, and they tend to overclock rather well as we'll show you. Even on air cooling you can reach 5 GHz with a motherboard as used today. Have a peek at what was just released, this is the MSI Z77A-GD65 'Ivy Bridge' motherboard.
MSI Z77A GD65 motherboard preview In this MSI Z77A GD65 motherboard preview we look at the hardware that will empower future Ivy bridge processors. Obviously we can't share any details, but have a look at the pretty pictures.