ECS L337 GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme Reviewccokeman - August 27, 2013
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ECS L337 GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme Introduction:
After looking at what the motherboard offerings are like from a few other manufacturers, it's time to see what ECS is bringing to the table in the high end gaming/enthusiast sector. Over the past few years ECS has really pushed forward in this sector to make inroads with products that genuinely were great products. With the launch of the Z87 Chipset and Fourth Generation Core series processors from Intel, ECS has released its L337 series of boards in the Killsteel and GANK series.
The board I am looking at today is part of the GANK series, The ECS L337 GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme comes equipped with features such as 2-Way SLI, 3-Way CrossfireX, Lucid Logix Virtu MVP graphics options, Dual Gigabit LAN, 15µ Gold Contacts, triple density PCB, ECS Durathon technology, and its Qooltech V Ultimate active cooling solution. And that's to start.
Priced at roughly $220' the ECS L337 GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme is in the middle price range of Z87 based motherboards' so with the feature set and capabilities alluded to it presents some value for that coin. The question has to be asked is if it is ready for the big time or will it be relegated to obscurity as another board with a gimmicky name with a solid feature set? Or... will it truly supplant some of the favorites in the market? Let's find out.
ECS L337 GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme Closer Look:
ECS L337 GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme comes in a box that could only be described as busy. By that the carbon fiber look of the gold lettering in the GANK logo and the overall carbon fiber look of the box is incredibly colorful when looked at under the lights. You get a brilliant holographic effect as the light bounces off the box with an array of colors. If nothing else, ECS has set its package apart from the rest of the boards on the shelf at your local big box mega computer hardware center. The front panel shows this board is part of the L337 Gaming series motherboards that is split into the GANK and Killsteal lines. The basic feature set shows that it is designed for use with socket 1150 Intel processors, supports Windows 8, AMD CrossfireX, NVIDIA SLI, and Virtu MVP. The back panel lists the key specifications for the board across several different panels that talk about the Qooltech V cooling solution, 15µ Gold Contacts, eight channel audio, Dual Gigabit LAN, Wireless LAN, Bluetooth, dual displays, and DDR3 3000+ memory support. The front panel flips open to dig quite a bit deeper into what makes the GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme the board for your system as it looks at the Durathon component structure, EZ Button control center, and more. On the right side you get a first look at the board that is pretty pleasing to the eye.
Inside the brilliant exterior is a sold black interior case that holds the board and accessory bundle in a pair of boxes. The board in one and the bundle neatly packed into the other. Sweet and simple and almost standard for motherboard packaging these days.
The accessory bundle ECS equips the GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme with is more than enough to use all of the functionality on the board. The driver and utility disk, manual, and quick start guide round out the documentation. The hardware in the bundle includes seven SATA 6Gbps data cables with locking ends, an I/O shield, SLI Bridge connection, wireless LAN antenna, and dust plugs for the I/O connectivity options you will not be using.
On paper the GANK Machine looks to be a winner in all aspects due to the wide ranging feature set and build construction. Let's delve deeper into what makes the GANK Machine Z87H3-A2X Extreme tick.