ECS H67H2-M and H67H2-I Mini-ITX Motherboards Review
Looking first at build quality and design, ECS have delivered two boards which impress. Each uses solid capacitors and proven components such as Realtek GB LAN controllers and the H67H2-M goes a little further by adding a good quality heatsink and heatpipe design. We would have liked to see NEC USB 3.0 controllers rather than Etrontech as NEC have proven they can delivery frequent driver updates and compatibility but the performance of the controller ECS have used is not in question.
Speaking of performance, the two ECS H67 boards delivery on that front too. The use of SATA 6GB/s and USB 3.0 means our devices have the ability to run at their full potential and ECS also allow us to take advantage of full speed PCIe x16 cards, even on the H67H2-I board which means we can install any recent discrete graphics card and maximise gaming performance.
At the time of writing we are still waiting for prices from ECS however past experience tells us that they will be very competitive on that front. An update will be provided as soon as we have pricing.
The ECS H67H2-M and H67H2-I offer consumers an attractively priced entry into the new H67/2nd Generation Core platform. Up to date technologies such as SATA 3 and USB 3 are fully supported and performance is in line with Intel’s own motherboards. The H67H2-I is particularly impressive as it gives us full desktop performance in a mini ITX form factor.
Last month Intel launched their Z97 chipset, essentially an evolution of Z87, which in many cases brought new features such as SATA Express and M.2 compatibility to the mainstream desktop market. There was of course no new CPU at that time with the existing socket 1150 processors working without issue in the new boards. Since then though Intel launched (along with some lower spec models) the Core i7-4790K, a model which sits at the top of their mainstream platform. Today we see how it compares to various other models when installed on Gigabytes Z97X Gaming 5 and paired with PowerColors new dual core 290X Devil 13.
Gigabyte Z97X-Gaming G1 WiFi-BK vs. MSI Z97 Gaming 5 vs Asus Maximus VII Hero
It is probably fair to say that Intel don't stealth launch their products... sure they have NDAs but by the time those expire we know pretty much everything about a new product. Part of this is of their own...