Over the last few years small builds have been becoming more and more popular. Both for LAN rigs like we have been using for a long time, but even for main PCs. This is partially due to more parts being available but mostly some people are tired of dealing with huge heavy cases, especially when you can do nearly anything you want in the Mini-ITX form factor. Late this fall I started thinking about a new LAN rig, maybe even another iteration of our LunchBox series, before I did that though I really needed to check out the new Z170 boards. That leads me to today where I’m going to check out MSI’s gaming focused Mini-ITX board, the Z170I Gaming Pro AC. I’ve used a few of MSI’s ITX boards in builds before and I’m excited to see what this one has to offer.

Product Name: MSI Z170I Gaming Pro AC

Review Sample Provided by: MSI

Written by: Wes

Pictures by: Wes

Amazon Link: HERE


CPU Supports 6th Gen Intel® Core™ i3/i5/i7 processors, and Intel® Pentium® and Celeron® processors for Socket LGA1151
Chipset Intel® Z170 Chipset
Main Memory

2 x DDR4 memory slots, support up to 32GB

Supports DDR4 3200(OC)/ 3000(OC)/ 2800(OC)/ 2600(OC)/ 2400/ 2133 MHz

Dual channel memory architecture

Supports non-ECC, un-buffered memory

Supports Intel® Extreme Memory Profile (XMP)

Slots 1 x PCIe 3.0 x16 slots
Onboard Graphics

1 x HDMI™ port, support a maximum resolution of 4096x2160@24Hz, 2560x1600@60Hz>

1 x DisplayPort, support a maximum resolution of 4096x2304@24Hz, 2560x1600@60Hz, 3840x2160@60Hz, 1920x1200@60Hz>


Intel® Z170 Chipset

4 x SATA 6Gb/s ports

1 x M.2 slot (on the botton of the motherboard)*

Supports PCIe 3.0 x 4 and SATA 6Gb/s standards, 4.2cm/ 6cm length M.2 SSD cards

1 x SATAe port (PCIe 3.0 x 2)**

Supports RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10

Supports Intel® Smart Response Technology for Intel Core™ processors


Intel® Z170 Chipset

6 x USB 3.1 Gen1 (SuperSpeed USB 10Gbps) ports (4 ports on the back panel, 2 ports available through the internal USB connector)

5 x USB 2.0 (High-speed USB) ports (3 ports on the back panel, 2 ports available through the internal USB connectors)


Realtek® ALC1150 Codec

- 7.1-Channel High Definition Audio

- Supports S/PDIF output

LAN 1 x Intel® I219-V Gigabit LAN controller
WLAN / Bluetooth

Wi-Fi Bluetooth® expansion module with Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260 chip

Supports Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual band (2.4GHz, 5GHz) up to 867Mbps speed. Supports Dual Mode Bluetooth® 2.1, 2.1+EDR, 3.0, 4.0 BLE, 4.2

Internal I/O Connectors

- 1 x 24-pin ATX main power connector

- 1 x 8-pin ATX 12V power connector

- 4 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors

- 1 x SATAe connector

- 1 x USB 2.0 connector (supports additional 2 USB 2.0 ports)

- 1 x USB 3.1 Gen1 connector (supports additional 2 USB 3.1 Gen1 ports)

- 1 x 4-pin CPU fan connectors

- 1 x 4-pin system fan connectors

- 1 x Front panel audio connector

- 2 x Front panel connectors

- 1 x TPM module connector

- 1 x Chassis Intrusion connector

- 1 x Clear CMOS jumper

Back Panel I/O Ports

- 1 x PS/2 keyboard/ mouse port

- 3 x USB 2.0 ports

- 1 x DisplayPort

- 1 x HDMI™ port

- 1 x LAN (RJ45) port

- 4 x USB 3.1 Gen1 ports

- 1 x Clear CMOS button

- 2 x antenna connectors

- 1 x Optical S/PDIF OUT connector

- 5 x OFC audio jacks


6.7 in. x 6.7 in. (17 cm x 17 cm)

Mini-ITX Form Factor

Mounting 4 mounting holes


Log in to comment

garfi3ld's Avatar
garfi3ld replied the topic: #37566 16 Jan 2016 02:20
Today I check out the Z170I Gaming Pro AC from MSI, their gaming focused Mini-ITX board
VaporX's Avatar
VaporX replied the topic: #37567 16 Jan 2016 02:38
I have reached the point I do not like the "gaming" motherboards. You can often get the same performance, minus a little overclocking potential for as much as 30% less, especially in ITX format.

We have 1767 guests and one member online