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Supermicro C7H170-M Review

Supermicro C7H170-M Review

Supermicro C7H170-M Review – Packaging and Bundle

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As far as BIOS goes, we get a GUI with support for mouse and keyboard. There is a tool to flash updates, the option for a couple of profiles. All the usual options are present too from monitoring to drive and boot configurations. Key to this board though is the Extra Performance screen which allows us to change our BCLK and upgrade memory performance beyond the H170 spec.

Supermicro C7H170-M Review – Performance

Test systems:
i7-6700K, Z170, 2x8GB DDR4-2666 (Corsair)
i7-6700K/i3-6100, H170, 2x8GB DDR4-2666 @ 2133 (Corsair)
i7-4790K, Z97, 2x8GB DDR3-2666 (Corsair)

All with:
Windows 10
GTX 980 Ti OC
Corsair H100 Series Cooler
Corsair AX1500i PSU
Samsung 850 Pro SSD (SATA Testing)
And Samsung T1 SSD (USB Testing)

On a Dimastech EasyXL Test Bench


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Supermicro C7H170-M Review – Conclusion

Starting with the build quality and design of the C7H170-M we have a board which offers a solid experience. That should come as no surprise given Supermicro’s experience in the server market. High quality components, decent layout, all the features we would expect from a H170 product and some nice additions such as onboard power/reset, plenty of fan headers and the like.

In comparison with other gaming boards, Supermicro have a little bit to go as far as matching them though. For example the inclusion of enhanced audio components, debug LED and more user friendly BIOS would be the next steps. The BIOS is solid, no doubt about it, but it isnt as intuitive as other manufacturers and requires a certain level of experience to get the full potential from the board and components. A few quick profiles would be a great start for example… oh and some decent Windows monitoring/tweaking software would be ideal too. We can use third party options but the Supermicro tool is, at best, frustrating to use.

For performance, the board offers good results across all tasks. Whether it be CPU, PCIe, SATA, USB… all in line with similar Z170 based products. Of course boards based around Z170 can have some enhanced features such as more lanes available for multi-GPU use, official support for higher spec memory and so on.

Of course, the extra value (and performance) on this product comes from Supermicro’s unlocking of CPU overclocks on low cost Intel CPUs. Initially we needed to buy a K series CPU to overclock and do that on Z170 based boards. Now with the C7H170-M we can buy something like the i3-6100 (previously locked at 3.7GHz) and run it at 4.4GHz by simply changing the BCLK in BIOS and upping the voltage a touch…and as an added bonus take advantage of some higher Mhz memory at the same time.

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About Author

Stuart Davidson

Stuart Davidson is Senior Editor at HardwareHeaven having joined the site in 2002.

1 Comment

  1. Wish they had this out last summer. Finally 64GB capacity in a micro board.