MSI Brews Up A Pot Of Hot Z370 Coffee Lake Motherboards For Intel 8th Gen Core
MSI announced more than a dozen Z370 motherboards spread out across its Enthusiast Gaming, Performance Gaming, Arsenal Gaming, and Pro Series lines. Starting at the top, MSI unveiled its Z370 Gaming M5 and Z370 Godlike Gaming, the latter of which it bills as "one board to rule them all" and the "most extreme Z370 motherboard available."
Those are some bold claims. The Z370 Godlike Gaming attempts to live up to them with high end components and heavily plated heatsinks. Underneath it all is an 18-phase DrMOS PWM design for stable power delivery and "Military Class V" components for extreme overclocking—MSI is not shy to point out it built this board with "record breaking overclocking" attempts in mind.
This is feature-packed board contains four reinforced PCIe x16 slots and five M.2 slots with shields, three of which are onboard (the other two are included on an PCIe add-in card). It also boasts onboard Killer 1535 Wi-Fi (802.11ac), three Killer E2500 LAN connectors, premium audio with dual dedicated ALC1220 Hi-Fi audio processors and a dedicated ESS amplifier, and a bunch of USB ports.
Moving down a tier, most of MSI's new Z370 motherboards fall under its Performance Gaming category, including the Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC, Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon, Z370I Gaming Pro Carbon AC, Z370M Gaming Pro AC, Z370 Krait Gaming, and Z370 Gaming Plus.
Most of these are aimed at bringing the bling. The Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC, for example, uses carbon elements and offers up customizable RGB lighting through MSI's Mystic Light utility. Users have 16.8 million color options and 17 LED effects. Colors and effects can also be synced with external RGB strips, and certain third-party gear from the likes of Corsair, Cooler Master, Kingston, and others.
"Besides being designed for personalization and to show off a gaming rig, the new Z370 GAMING PRO CARBON AC also comes with plenty of features, tailored to give gamers the best possible gaming experience," MSI says.
The Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC has three PCIe x16 slots to play with, two of which are reinforced. It also has three PCIe x1 slots and two M.2 slots, one of which sits atop the upper PCIx16 slot and is shielded to whisk away heat and prevent data throttling.
MSI's Arsenal Gaming line consists of two motherboards, the Z370 Tomahawk and Z370M Mortar. The Z370 Tomahawk is not quite as feature rich as the other motherboards—it lacks onboard Wi-Fi, for one thing—but it looks every bit as aggressive with a gray and black PC.
Just one of the board's three PCIe x16 slots are reinforced to support heavy graphics cards. Like the Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC, it has three PCIe x1 slots and two M.2 slots for fast NVMe SSDs, though neither of them has a Shield (basically a metal cover).
Finally, MSI introduced its Z370 SLI Plus, Z370-A Pro, an Z370 PC Pro boards as part of its Pro Series. MSI did not talk about pricing, but these are the most affordable options in the Z370 lineup and are aimed at "content creators and designers." What that means is they lack some of the higher end features that are of interest to overclockers and enthusiasts. That is not say they are feature thing—the Z370 SLI Plus is outfitted with three PCie x16 slots, two of which are reinforced, and two M.2 slots for fast storage devices.
MSI did not say when exactly these boards will be available, though we suspect you will be able to find them on or around October 5.