Sadly I ran into an issue with our standard audio tests when doing them on all of our Z97 motherboards this time around. The issue was with the cable we use to test the audio performance, all of our testing cables were having crosstalk between the channels. Because of that I couldn’t include the performance numbers in this review. I did still want to touch on some of the audio features that MSI included in the Gaming 5. First off I loved that they continued to include their Audio Boost, this time with Audio Boost 2. MSI made sure to build in headphone amplifiers into both the front panel audio connection as well as the rear audio connection. This combined with the Nichicon capacitors made for good sound both in game and when listening to music in my testing. The option to give stable USB power to provide USB sound cards higher quality didn’t seem to make any difference in my testing but it can’t hurt as well. I wouldn’t call the onboard audio on the Gaming 5 perfect, but for a mid-range gaming motherboard you are getting more than what you would find on your typical mainstream board. Not to mention how many mainstream boards have their onboard audio isolated from the rest of the PCB.