MSI Z97 XPOWER AC Review

👤by David Mitchelson Comments 📅07-06-14
Packaging & First Look


Packaging arrives with the black and yellow theme


Since the XPOWER series belongs to MSI’s overclocking category, our motherboard arrives in a large black and yellow box. This theme is recognised as MSI’s chosen scheme for this calibre of motherboard and helps to significantly diversify from other brands.

Around the back of this box there are further details concerning the critical feature-set of XPOWER AC.


Sneak preview of the motherboard


The top section of the packaging opens out to reveal a sneak preview of the actual motherboard within the packaging. This lid also contains information surrounding the fundamental features of this motherboard for those wanting to discover more.


Plenty of included items


Opening the box up, there are a plethora of included items bundled with XPOWER AC. These include the following:

• Documentation: User Guide, OC Guide, Software Guide, Quick Start
• Software CD
• SLI Bridges: 2-way, 3-way, 4-way
• 6x SATA 3 (6G) cables
• Wireless Antennas and module
• Test bench fan bracket
• Delid Die Guard
• E-SATA/Molex adapter
• Rear IO shield
• Drive labels
• Case badge
• Door hanger


As you can see, this package is rather extensive and covers every possible usage.


Black and yellow styling is very appealing to the eye


XPOWER AC is easily distinguished from other motherboards due to the black and yellow theme which is now synonymous with MSI’s overclocking products. The styling is rather engaging, it catches the eye and we applaud MSI for their efforts – it’s obvious that much thought has gone into the production of this motherboard. The PCB has been adorned with a matt black finish and all of the ports and slots are also black.

XPOWER AC steps away from the standard ATX form factor and this isn’t any wonder since this motherboard is jam-packed with numerous features which are beyond the norm. Our motherboard conforms to E-ATX so you will have to ensure you have a computer chassis (or test bench) which can accommodate this extra width.

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