Best Z370 Motherboard For I7 8700K & I5 8600K

PC Hardware

Best z370 Motherboard for 8700K and 8600K

The latest generation of Intel CPUs, Coffee Lake, is now upon us and we need to look at upgrading from our previous generation motherboard to the new Z370 Motherboard and chipset. Understandably if you’re currently on a Kaby Lake processor then the forced upgrade to Z370 for Coffee Lake is going to be a hard pill to swallow, but those added cores make it well worth the upgrade. That being said the new flagship I7 8700K is the best processor for gaming. If you want to get the best from your experience then the new Intel i7 8700K is a must have upgrade in 2018.

We have spent time cherry picking the best Z370 motherboards for review over the last few weeks. We have conducted thorough research which has included hands-on experience, reaching out to users and collecting as much user feedback as possible. After all of this, we have come to the realization that the ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E is the best motherboard for the i7 8700K and 95% of you reading this page, the other 5% either are looking for a budget or premium solutions – discussed below! Not only does it combine style with features, but it also has a wicked overclocking ability and is very affordable for early i7 8700K and coffee lake adopters in general. 

Update: If you are looking for a motherboard which supports the new 9th generation of Intel CPUs, i7 9700K and i9 9900K then be sure to checkout out my best Z390 motherboard guide before considering a Z370. The Z370 does support the new generation but there are some new features for similar prices when upgrading to a Z390 motherboard. 

Best Z370 Motherboard For I7 8700K, i7 9700 and i9 9900K

Best Overall Z370 Motherboard - Editors Choice
This is the best fit for 95% of those looking to upgrade Coffee Lake.
Best For Overclocking
Looking to achieve a stable 5GHz? Then the Aorus Gaming 7 is by far your best option with some reporting a stable 5.2GHz overclock.
Gigabyte Z370 Aorus Gaming 7
Gigabyte Z370 Aorus Gaming 7
Best Premium Z370 Motherboard
Super expensive but does have some awesome features that back up the price, almost.
Best High End
ASUS ROG Maximus X Hero
ASUS ROG Maximus X Hero
Best Mid Range
ASRock Z370 Extreme4
ASRock Z370 Extreme4
Budget Z370 Motherboard
Honestly, if your upgrading to the i5 8600K then this is a great choice. Arguably the best motherboard for 8600K and 9600K
MSI Z370-A Pro

I recently upgraded our office computers to 7700K (We were using the 2500K so an update was needed) to get the best performance and are now looking at another upgrade as soon as the 8700K is on the market. Not ideal but when you consider the extra cores, threads and the apparent easy 5Ghz overclock the upgrade is value for money in my opinion! There is, of course, an interesting debate of Ryzen or Coffee Lake now that both have similar core and thread counts. In short, if you’re on a budget and want to get value for money then a Ryzen 2600 or i5 8600K is your best bet for gaming. Whereas if your looking to have longevity and high performance right now the i7 8700K is the best option as of right now.

I have listed the best Z370 motherboards for i7 8700K, i5 8600K and 8400 processors below. The list is in order of best to “least” best taking into consideration performance, price, user reviews and connectivity options. It would be wise to consider all options even if it’s at the bottom of the list as it may fit your requirements perfectly. If you are still deciding between Intel and Ryzen then do have a look at our list of best AM4 Ryzen Motherboards.

Best Z370 Motherboard for Overclocking 8700K to 5Ghz

Gigabyte z370 Aorus Gaming 7If overclocking your brand new 8700K (or 8600k) to 5Ghz is your goal then you will absolutely need to make sure the motherboard you are picking provides a solid overclocking feature set and performance. Before you start though that you could have the best hardware on the planet and still not hit 5Ghz if you got a “bad chip”. It is less common to hear of an 8700K not reaching 5GHz on a good reliable board than it is to hear it, so the odds are in your favour.  Many reviewers and consumers seem to think that 5GHz is what most 8700K can overclock to, assuming you have the appropriate cooling and settings. If 5Ghz is a goal for your Z370 motherboard then be sure to budget for one of the best CPU liquid or air coolers to ensure you get the most out of your computer. Ensuring your gaming PC has a high-quality CPU cooler will make the difference between 4.9Ghz and 5.2Ghz.

The Gigabyte z370 Aorus Gaming 7 is arguably the best overclocking motherboard for coffee lake CPUs. Across all reviews and real users, it is consistently mentioned favourably for delivering 5GHz. In some cases as much as 5.3Ghz!

ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E [My Top Pick] – Best Motherboard for i7 8700K & i7 9700K

ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E Socket: Intel LGA 1151 e.g. i7 8700k, i5 8600k, i5 9600k, i7 9700k and i9 9900k etc.
Form Factor: ATX
Release Year: 2017
CPU Support: Coffee Lake
Expansion Slots: 7 PCIe, 6 SATA, 2 M.2
RAM: Slots 4 x DDR4, Up to 4000MHz (Overclocked)
Maximum: RAM 64GB

The ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E is our top pick for a few reasons. The main reason being its price for features. This motherboard has WiFi support for 2.4/5GHz, 2 M.2, 6 SATA slots and 7 PCIe slots! Making it as close to premium as it gets without having to spend premium amounts of cash. As with everything from ASUS build quality is top notch and support is always great. I would recommend making sure you keep bios updated to ensure the best compatibility with RAM and Overclocking potential.

If you have been following my website for a while then you will know that I recently upgraded from the ancient, but reliable, dinosaur i5 2500K to the i7 7700k, now that is a great upgrade but I do feel the lack of cores when doing some multitasking with my day job, not to mention the stuttering in some games. So, I have now upgraded to the 8700K and the ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E is the motherboard I went for as it gives me exactly what I need for both gaming and work. With numerous SATA ports, PCIe slots and the 2 m.2 that are almost a requirement these days, it has given me great flexibility for making my gaming computer my workstation too. If I am being honest there is a really good reason I am liking this specific one, when it was first released there were teething issues with some users reporting problems. ASUS though quickly released BIOS updates that fixed all of the issues, to date there have been 10 BIOS updates by ASUS each of them fixing issues, pushing better compatibility and stability as well as giving people like you and I the faith in this board. ASUS has clearly been active with consumers making sure we all get set up properly with our new Coffee lake gaming computers. I tip my virtual hat to you ASUS.

Having already spent the best part of 10 hours researching, reading reviews and even speaking to some fairly well known Tech vloggers the ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E seems to always be near the top of the list. The only real reasons I have seen people not consider it was down to aesthetics or they wanted a specific look provided by the countless other boards.

In my opinion, this is the best Z370 motherboard for i7 8700K gamers, more so if like me you use the computer for work. I actually use this one for work and gaming!

MSI Z370 GODLIKE GAMING [Premium Choice For Z370]

MSI Z370 GODLIKE GAMING Socket: Intel LGA 1151 e.g. i7 8700k, i5 8600k, i5 9600k, i7 9700k and i9 9900k etc.
Form Factor: EATX (Extended ATX)
Release Year: 2017
CPU Support: Coffee Lake
Expansion Slots: 6 PCIe, 6 SATA, 3 M.2
RAM: Slots 4 x DDR4, Up to 4133MHz (Overclocked)
Maximum: RAM 64GB

The MSI Z370 GODLIKE GAMING motherboard is expensive, it is the most expensive and therefore premium Z370 motherboard on the market. The question is, is it really worth it? The short answer is maybe. Overall it has the specs, the build quality and a handful of awesome special features you really won’t find anywhere else. So, if you have the budget for this premium build and really do need and/or will use the added features (Killer xTend and High-Performance VRM) then this board is absolutely a great choice. That being said the ASUS ROG Maximus X Hero and ASUS ROG STRIX Z370-E are two very good options with just as many features and support, at a much cheaper price.

So what the hell is Killer xTend? The easy answer is a WiFi extender which also turns your computer into a wired connection hub for your other devices. The real magic behind this feature is that it doesn’t only provide your home or office with better internet coverage but it can also give you the ability to prioritise your gaming bandwidth above anything else! We have all experienced those frustrations of lining someone up in your crosshairs when all of a sudden “Network Lag” kills you! The Killer xTend built into this motherboard can be a lifesaver, almost literally.

The only real issue with the with this is the price. If this Z370 motherboard was more comparable with its competitor mobos then I would be recommending this to everyone but the premium price does mean its likely out of the budget for most gamers looking to upgrade to the i7 8700K. With that in mind, the MSI Z370 GODLIKE GAMING does suit the gamer and creative content creator who is in need of a native U.2 Port, 3NICs + WiFi and an extra M.2 port compared to the other competitor Z370 motherboards.

ASRock Z370 Extreme4

Asrock Z370 Extreme4 Socket: Intel LGA 1151 e.g. i7 8700k, i5 8600k, i5 9600k, i7 9700k and i9 9900k etc.
Form Factor: ATX
Release Year: 2018
CPU Support: Coffee Lake
Expansion Slots: 6 PCIe, 8 SATA, 2 M.2
RAM: Slots 4 x DDR4, Up to 4333MHz (Overclocked)
Maximum: RAM 64GB

Over the years I have owned a handful of ASRock motherboards, many of them Extreme4. I owned the Z77 Extreme4 for the i5 2500k many years ago which was just flawless. If I am 100% honest with you, my choice was between this and the ASUS ROG STRIX and it lost out based on aesthetics and some higher voltages that were needed for a 5Ghz overclock on the 8700K.

Asrock has gone with a fairly safe two-color design for the board, which in my opinion looks OK. It’s not the nicest or fanciest looking option but it was never meant to be. In all fairness, the cost is generally 15% to 30% cheaper than similar options.

Something you will be impressed with is the features ASRock have packed into this. You have 8 SATA, 2 m.2s and DDR4 RAM supported up to 4333MHz! These features alone should push the Extreme4 into your shortlist. But wait, there is even more. Connectivity isn’t lacking with 3 USB headers, one for USB3.1 and two for USB3 for your front panel USB requirements. Something that really surprised me was the lack of USB2 on the back IO, but… That is NOT a bad thing as ASRock have only gone and pushed that to USB3.1 – Seriously impressed.

This Z370 iteration of the Extreme4 doesn’t just feel like the previous version but with a new chipset, it comes packed with improvements in features along the way. Of course, there are some drawbacks but for the normal gamer, they will go unnoticed. Things like slightly higher voltages on overclocking and when compared against some other Z370 motherboards the ASRock is a little slower but not something you would actually notice in a game – so don’t worry!

What’s New With The Z370 Chipset?

Of course, the new chipset supports all Coffee Lake CPUs from Intel, including the 8700K which uses the same LDA-1151 socket as the z270 chipset. This means the new CPU will physically fit and install into an older motherboard but will not actually work. Well, without some tinkering and modding. Our advice is to not even install your new coffee lake CPU on a board that doesn’t support, reason being I don’t want someone getting in touch with me complaining that they broke a CPU!

The only real change is the chipset supports USB3.1 whereas previously it was only up to USB3.0. This doesn’t exactly sound like a groundbreaking achievement but it is actually double the speed from 5Gbps to 10Gbps. And, it also supports the new USB Type-c connection. This might mean at some point in the future your external drives might not need a power brick or power adapter separate from the USB cable. Emphasis on the might. One other addition is the upgrade to PCIe RAID 0, 1 and 5 which again isn’t a massive change but for some will be most welcome, but for most PC gaming builds will be overlooked due to the use of NVMs drives.


Last modified: October 31, 2018