Gigabyte Z97X-UD3H Black Edition Review – Back in Black!


At Technology X, we test our motherboard’s slightly different depending upon the product’s marketed purpose, whether it be an entry-level budget motherboard or a high-end enthusiast level motherboard.  Our goal is to test in a system that has been optimized with our SSD Optimization Guide, however, CPU C State alteration may or may not have occurred depending on the motherboard and BIOS configurations. Additionally, we also try to include links to the benchmarks used in our report so that you as the reader can replicate our tests to confirm that your system performs the way it should.


PC CHASSIS: Cooler Master HAF XM
CPU: Intel Core i5 4690K
MEMORY Kingston HYPERX Savage 2133MHZ 32GB
CPU COOLER:                 Phanteks PH-TC14PE
GPU: XFX R9 290 DD
STORAGE: Samsung 830 256GB
POWER SUPPLY: Corsair TX 750 Watt V2

All of the components we use for testing are standard off-the-shelf PC components from major manufacturers, which can be purchased at a variety local retailers and online. We’ll also provide links to our components for those of you that find an interest in our equipment.

We’d like to thank Gigabyte and Kingston for providing vital components in this test bench, without which this report would not be possible. Check out our review of the Intel Core i5 4690K used in this report and keep a look out for our upcoming review of the XFX R9 290 Double Dissipation


When we test various PC hardware, we like to use benchmarks that are readily available for you to download and test for yourself. In our analysis today we will be using FutureMark’s PCMark 8 and Cinebench 15 to test overall system and CPU performance as well as other utilities such as AIDA64 for monitoring and testing overclocks.


In our overclocking tests we were able to hit a maximum of 4.6GHz with a Core Voltage of 1.260V, unfortunately we couldn’t get to 4.7GHz as we could not get it to run stable even at 1.285V. This is still quite good as compared to the upper end of what Haswell CPUs can do. We reached a comfortable 81C on the CPU, considering it is volted rather high for Haswell.Aida 64 OC


For our CPU Benchmarks, We tested our motherboard at stock and overclocked to 4.6GHz


PCMark 8 Gigabyte Z97 Black Edition1

As we see here we see a small change as this is about an 8% Increase, this is a synthetic benchmark, so keep that in mind.


Cinebench Gigabyte Z97 Black Edition

Here we see something, while still synthetic it is a bit more system intensive. We roughly see a 30% boost in performance when overclocked. This is a huge performance boost and will help get workloads done quicker.


For testing storage, we did two separate benchmarks, one with AS-SSD and another real-world file transfer between two SSDs using DiskBench to measure the results.


In this test, we copied a game directory that was over 44GB with 299 files, between two SSDs. The results are displayed in megabytes per second.

Gigabyte Z97X BK Storage Test

Our storage test shows the transfer speed is solid as Gigabyte has been known for solid SATA performance in the past.


The toughest benchmark available for solid state drives is AS SSD as it relies solely on incompressible data samples when testing performance.  For the most part, AS SSD tests can be considered the ‘worst case scenario’ in obtaining data transfer speeds and many enthusiasts like AS SSD for their needs. Transfer speeds are displayed on the left with IOPS results on the right.

Performance is as expected. While not stellar by any means, and the writes are a bit slower than we’d expect these drives perform as they should and most users won’t be able to tell the difference.

Well well, it looks like we're in for a treat! We have had the pleasure of reviewing the Gigabyte Z97X-UD3H Black Edition, and let us tell you it is an attractive board. Not only is it sleek looking, but Gigabyte's Black Edition has more thAn just a coat of paint. To be sold as a Black Edition board Gigabyte tests each board for 168 hours (7 days). And while the 168 hour test goes on, each motherboard needs to pass a very rigorous, full system validation testing for a full week. Gigabyte has built a custom testing facility at their Taiwan factory. Gigabyte…

Review Overview


Rock Solid Motherboard!

The Gigabyte Z97X-UD3H Black Edition is built like a tank and runs like a thoroughbred! If you are looking for a motherboard that won't let you down, no need to look any further!

User Rating: 4.06 ( 4 votes)


  1. I would argue against your claims that Gigabytes do “rock solid motherboards”.I’ve had 2 die on me in the last month plus the 3rd one doesn’t work properly.
    Bought a Z-97- HD3. Couldn’t get post and only got black screen with GTX 780 card. Older 580 card was OK though. GTX 780 works fine on spare PC by the way.
    Gigabytes customer support is an absolute joke. No help at all , they just refuse to answer questions and shunt you about.
    Buy anything from Gigabyte at your own risk. I’d give ’em 2 stars for the quality of their products and half a star for their customer service.

    • Sorry to hear about your misfortunes with Gigabyte products.

      When we refer to something as “rock solid” or “reliable” we of course can really only speak for the experiences we’ve had ourselves, and perhaps at best the general consensus of those who’ve purchased their products in the past.

      Unfortunately we can’t judge the product based on anecdotal evidence from any one customer, as that would be unfair to the company, and our viewers. That being said, we will of course raise your concerns with customer service with Gigabyte in the future.

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