No gradeGigabyte G1.Sniper Z87 Review
In our introduction we postulated that Z87 motherboards are so good that nearly any one will make for a good purchase to the point that more expensive motherboards mainly adjust the amount of metaphorical cherries you get on the cake. On the flip side that the once ROG equalling G1.Killer which used to sit at the very high end of the market on price and performance terms was now so affordable that is the brand identity becoming cheapened, if you'll pardon the expression, due to the extremely good value nature of recent offerings.
It's safe to say that after our time with the G1.Sniper Z87 the G1.Killer brand hasn't been lessened at all, and if anything the G1.Sniper is so good that it makes you wonder what £200+ motherboards offer that you'll be missing out on here.
Performance is unbelievably good. Yes, at stock the Sniper isn't the most jaw-dropping motherboard we've ever tested. Indeed in the odd test here and there we'd be inclined to call the performance average. However the Gigabyte BIOS provides two different automatic overclocking options although they both do the exact same thing, and if you're willing to dip your toes in the water of manual overclocking (this is what we would reccomend), which is so easy that there is no reason why you shouldn't, then some of the highest Z87 performance we've tested is available to you.
Obviously that low £116 price tag means that there are a couple of areas that have had to be compromised to reach such an affordable price point. There are no extra chips to give you more SATA ports or USB ports than the ones included as standard on the Intel Z87 chipset. The design of the Sniper is functional rather than breath-taking, but everything works perfectly and if you're in the mood for an nVidia or maybe even military style system then the green accents of the G1.Sniper could be just the ticket.
For a barely believable price you're getting equally barely believable performance. You have to overclock the Gigabyte G1.Sniper Z87 to make the most of it, but if you're willing to put a little effort in then there is a monster motherboard just waiting to be discovered and if you buy a Kseries CPU you should be getting dirty in the BIOS anyways! For the excellent 3D performance, and a price-tag affordable to even the most tightly financed user the Gigabyte G1.Sniper Z87 not only wins our OC3D Gamers Choice, but our Value For Money award too.