‘Mini-Mighty’ MSI Z97I Gaming AC Motherboard Review

Ever-increasing popularity of mini-ITX mainboards is accounted for the augmentation of small-sized PC systems, work- and multimedia stations, as well as gaming platforms. The latter lay down specific demands towards hardware base, requiring the combination of high performance, durability and price-efficiency. MSI is ready to satisfy those demands, by offering ‘mini, but mighty’ Z97I Gaming AC system board. Being a part of Intel Z97 chipset family, this tiny tot owns all ‘Gaming’ series facilities, despite compact dimensions. Let’s check them out.

Specs Overview

MSI Z97I Gaming AC is based on Intel Z97 chipset targeting Haswell-based CPUs for Socket LGA1150 platform (Celeron, Pentium, Core i3/i5/i7 series). The implemented PCB accommodates a pair of DIMM slots for DDR3 SDRAM modules (16 GB volume) with the clock frequencies from 1333 MHz to 3300 MHz. Expansion facilities are introduced by a single PCI-e 3.0 x16 slot with no backup from PCI slots. The board comes …

Lian Li Launches New Full-Tower Chassis PC-A79

Lian Li has recently launched a new PC chassis, entitled PC-A79. The chassis is designed in full-tower format, featuring 230x618x596 mm dimensions. As a result, it supports a full range of motherboard standards, including micro-ATX, ATX, E-ATX, XL-ATX, and HPTX. According to Lian Li, the product is distinguished primarily by a well-considered cooling system and the availability of a removable motherboard tray. All potential customers are free to choose between a black variation (PC-A79B) and a silver variation (PC-A79A).

The case of PC-A79 chassis is made of brushed aluminum. Its spaciousness can’t but be distinct from similar products offered by competitors. Hence, it is able to accommodate nine drives of 3.5-inch standard and eight drives of 2.5-inch standard; all of them might be adjusted without any tools. The availability of eleven expansion slots provides for the installation of several lengthy graphics cards (up to 350 mm). The maximal height of supported CPU coolers …

Motherboard Gigabyte GA-F2A85X-UP4 Review

The second generation of AMD A-Series hybrid processors, announced earlier in October, are already integrated in a number of graphics solutions. The newly appeared products are compatible with Socket FM2 only and cannot be applied for Socket FM1 infrastructure. This implies that a number of motherboards lose their upgrade facilities and can't be updated with a new advanced solution. Still, the market is currently ready to present a few boards destined to operate with the updated AMD A-Series. Gigabyte is one of the pioneers in this respect, introducing its motherboard GA-F2A85X-UP4, developed specifically for Socket FM2.


Gigabyte GA-F2A85X-UP4 is designed in ATX form-factor with 305x244 mm PCB dimensions. AMD A85X chipset is a heart of the motherboard; it secures the compatibility with A-Series (second gen.) APU and Athlon CPUs in the implementation of Socket FM2. The overall TDP level claimed for the model is not more than 100W. The PCB allots four DIMM slots …
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Registered at: 17 November 2011, 13:08
Last visit: 17 November 2011, 13:26