System Power Consumption

Unsurprisingly, the motherboard with the least features consumes the least amount of power with the EVGA Z97 FTW system pulling just 60 watts at idle. The MSI Z97 MPower Max AC consumed just 5 watts more and 6 watts more for the Gigabyte Z97X-UD5H-BK.

The Asus Z97-Deluxe and Asus Z97-Pro WiFi/AC setups both drew 71 watts, nearly 20% more than the EVGA Z97 FTW. The Asrock Z97 Extreme6 was slightly more power hungry than the Asus boards at 72 watts, while the Asrock Z97 Extreme9 due to its PLX PCIe bridge chip.

Placing the Core i7-4770K processor under full load saw similar performance trends to the idle results. That said, the Asrock Z97 Extreme9 doesn't look nearly as power hungry now when compared to the other Z97 motherboards, as it use just 5 watts more than the Asus Z97-Pro WiFi/AC.

When it comes to 3D performance, the Asrock Z97 Extreme9 consumed just 3 watts more than the Asus Z97-Pro WiFi/AC, while the most efficient board remains the featureless EVGA Z97 FTW.