Final Thoughts and Conclusion
- The ASUS Z170-DELUXE is available for around US$319.
- Top-notch build quality and features
- USB 3.1 Gen2, PCIe x4 M.2, NVMe, and SATA Express
- Excellent power consumption paired with a highly performance-tuned BIOS
- BIOS built with both simplicity and tweaking to the limit in mind
- Easy-to-use automatic clocking options and fan control
- Customizable lighting; both in color and intensity
- Dual-phase DIMM VRM for high-density DIMMs in all slots and at maximum speeds
- Excellent software package
- Excellent audio performance—best ever tested for simple on-board designs
- Windows7 Install requires making your own install disc with proper drivers.
- Socket has added pins, but they do not seem to offer any benefits.
- Price boosted by inclusion of add-in accessories (PCIe x4 M.2 card, NVMe card), but more accessories are needed to make use of all the included features.
ASUS is one of the biggest brands out there, if not THE biggest. To be a bit dramatic, with great power comes great responsibility. So when I get an ASUS product, I expect perfection, and I am highly critical of any problems I encounter. ASUS needs to maintain their reputation, and the ASUS Z170-DELUXE does exactly that. There are a couple things that aren't to my personal taste, but I cannot ignore the obvious. This board is built for a specific user, and for that user, it's quite nearly perfect for sure.
Many weeks have passed since I had my hands on my first Intel Z170-based product, and that time has allowed ASUS to tune their BIOS well, bringing in wide memory clocking capabilities and a high level of system performance that is deserving of their high-end mainstream product. It clocks well, is rock-stable, and has all the high-speed drive options you could want for a high-performance PC.
The ASUS Z170-DELUXE has great fan control and audio, but the socket's weird additional pins are just that—weird. Installing Windows7 is a pain, too. But if you are using the most recent hardware, you should use the most recent OS as well, and Windows 10 works great. Maybe ASUS can find a way to make use of the additional pins, and maybe not. Add an Intel 750-Series drive, a couple ASUS STRIX VGAs, high performance DDR4, and an Intel 6700K, and you've got one blazing fast rig. Just bought one? Let me know what you think in the forums!