MSI Z68A-GD65 B3 Motherboard Review



The base line for all tests is a Core i7-950 processor running at its default speed (100%)

Far Cry 2

Far Cry 2 1680x1050
Benchmark Inbuilt 'Ranch Small' CPU
Rendering Path DX9 - Medium

Crysis -Warhead

Crysis Warhead 1680x1050
Benchmark Customized
Rendering Path DX9; Physics Set to Entusiast


The situation does not change when testing games.


Some might argue against using 7-zip’s compression and decompression benchmark as a ‘real world’ test. But if you try and think about it for a minute, the benchmark does show how fast the program will either compress or decompress, while negating the impact of disk transfers.

It is amazing how one can use charts to accentuate minor differences so that they appear as if the difference is like between day and night!

IO Tests: Storage

USB Tests

USB performance was compared between boards. Crystal Mark V3 was used in conjunction with a USB 3.0 compliant Kingston Data Traveler (Ultimate 16 GB)

SATA Performance

HD Tune was used to assess SATA performance.

Again differences, if any, are minor. All platforms perform the same. Z68 and P67 are identical in performance.


The Z68 offering performs exactly like the P67 (GD65)  offering from MSI. It seems all MSI has done is changed the P67 PCH for the Z68 added the requisite display ports and electrical lines.

The Z68-GD65 is a well rounded board. Its performance characteristics mirror that of the P67-GD65 to the dot. If you need the additional integrated graphics and SSD caching the Z68 price premium justifies its purchase. For the rest of us looking for good over-clocking and gaming performance the P67-GD65 would do just fine.

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