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MSI Z97 Gaming 9 AC – MSI’s top tier gaming offering for the Haswell refresh

Our Final Thoughts

MSI really flipped its board lineup quite a bit this time around with totally new designs, many more models and a huge variance in feature sets all to the tune of having a board to fit pretty much every users needs.

The MSI Z97 Gaming 9 AC is a great board with some very impressive audio implementations but you do pay for it.

The Gaming 9 is priced right along the Gigabyte Z97 Gaming which supports 4 Way SLI at a slightly lower cost but doesn’t necessarily have the bells and whistles that the Gaming 9 has in terms of audio solution.

The Dragon Armor is a nice solution without being too much like we have seen before which I find very welcome as I had some issue with those boards being TUF to install due to the massive Armor allowing screws to fall in or get lodged causing a hassle to screw the board down.

The Gaming 9 is a mixed bag with a pretty high price but with some insane audio, its hard to complain about the price and even if you don’t need the audio MSI has something like 4-5 other gaming models that could fit what you need.


The Pro’s: Cons
  • Killer E2205
  • High end Audio Boost Solution
  • V-Check Point 2
  • Strong VRM with Military Class Components
  • Unique Dragon Styling
  • Sound Blaster Cinema Compatibility
  • Gaming Device Ports
  • new clean UEFI with some cool options
  • M.2 for SSD or SATA Express
  •  WiFi Module pin header is fragile so care must be taken

Review Overview

Performance - 9
Value - 7.5
Quality - 9
Features - 9
Innovation - 9


The MSI Z97 Gaming 9 AC is a great board that has an amazing audio solution, but a tough price tag

User Rating: 5 ( 1 votes)

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