GIGABYTE bundled the latest version of their UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) implementation with the Z270X-Gaming 8 motherboard. The UEFI offers full keyboard and mouse support while using the BIOS pages. By default, the user sees the Easy mode interface when entering the UEFI. The Classic mode screens accessible via the Classic button at the upper right corner of the screen or by hitting the F2 function key. Classic mode screens can be set for the default user interface via the UEFI BIOS tab as well.
GIGABYTE's UEFI is both responsive and easy to use with almost no lag or questionable click-space evident anywhere. The UEFI is designed in an intuitive manner so that both novice and advance users can quickly find what they are looking for. The Easy Mode screen lays out everything in a highly readable format, while the Classic mode tabbed layout displays as you would expect from a traditional BIOS. GIGABYTE also gives you the ability to taken screen captures from within the BIOS by pressing the F12 key with those screen-caps saved in a 1024×768 bitmap format to an attached USB device.
UEFI Notable Features
GIGABYTE continues to revise the new version of their UEFI with the Z270X motherboard series. The UEFI splits its features across two modes – Easy mode and Classic mode. Easy mode displays various system information and statistics in a tile interface while the Classic mode interface is more reminiscent of the traditional tabbed layout. GIGABYTE enhanced their UEFI with a graphical fan tuning interface, a full featured LED configuration interface (RGB Fusion), a graphical BIOS flash interface, and several functional enhancements specific to the Kaby Lake processor line.
Easy Mode interface
The Easy Mode interface organizes system data and settings into tiles across the page in an easy-to-read manner for those users who do not want to be bothered with the labyrinth of the Classic mode tabbed interface. Most commonly used settings, including boot sequence, EZ OC, and smart fan, are readily accessible from within the Easy Mode page.
Classic mode interface
The Classic mode interface offers advanced users access to the more traditional tabbed interface with its logically grouped system settings and configuration features. GIGABYTE enhanced this interface with popout side and bottom menus. The right side popout menu displays real-time system statistics, including CPU, memory, and voltage settings. The bottom pop out menu displays a quick menu interface for accessing Easy Mode, the UEFI language settings, Q-Flash, and Smart Fan functions.
Q-Flash settings page
The Q-Flash settings page gives the user a GUI for updating the board's BIOS as well as saving the current BIOS to an attached USB device. The Q-Flash configuration page is accessed by clicking on the Smart Fan button in the pop out menu within the Classic mode interface, the Smart Fan button in the upper right corner of the Easy Mode interface, or pressing the F8 function key.
Smart Fan configuration page
The Smart Fan configuration page allows for graphical configuration of fan operation based on predefined threshold levels. The page offers an easy to user visualization with settings available for setting tiered fan speeds based on tied temperature thresholds, as well as temperature-based warning and fan fail warning configuration. The Smart Fan configuration page is accessed by clicking on the Smart Fan button in the pop out menu within the Classic mode interface or the Smart Fan button in the upper right corner of the Easy Mode interface.
Classic mode, Save & Exit tab, Save Profiles popup
GIGABYTE allows for storing up to eight UEFI profiles through the Save Profiles and Load Profiles functions within the Save & Exit tab in the Classic mode interface. The saved profiles contain all user configured settings from the UEFI, and can be saved to or restored from any attached storage device. The Smart Fan configuration page allows for graphical configuration of fan operation based on predefined threshold levels. The page offers an easy to user visualization with settings available for setting tiered fan speeds based on tied temperature thresholds, as well as temperature-based warning and fan fail warning configuration. The Smart Fan configuration page is accessed by clicking on the Smart Fan button in the pop out menu within the Classic mode interface or the Smart Fan button in the upper right corner of the Easy Mode interface. The Save Profiles popup can be accessed by pressing the F3 function key. The Load Profiles popup can be invoked by pressing the F4 function key.
Classic mode, M.I.T. tab, Advanced Frequency Settings page
The Advanced Frequency Settings page accessed from the link on the M.I.T. tab houses the settings controlling the CPU and memory ratio settings. GIGABYTE enhanced this page with Kaby Lake-friendly settings within the CPU Upgrade option, including the 5.0GHz overclock option offered by default through this setting.
Classic mode, M.I.T. tab, Advanced Frequency Settings page, Advanced CPU Core Settings page
Classic mode, M.I.T. tab, Advanced Frequency Settings page, Advanced CPU Core Settings page continued
The Advanced CPU Core Settings page, accessed via the the link on Advanced Frequency Settings page, contains Expert-level CPU settings, including the Flex Ratio and Turbo ratio control settings. Introduced for the Kaby Lake processors is the AVX Offset setting, giving the user the ability to reduce the CPU core ratio when running programs using the AVX instruction set. This is to reduce processor heat since AVX processing is some of the most processor intensive operations.
Classic mode, M.I.T. tab, Advanced Voltage Settings page
Classic mode, M.I.T. tab, Advanced Voltage Settings, CPU Core Voltage Control page
The CPU Core Voltage Control page, accessed via the the link on Advanced Voltage Control Settings page, houses CPU-specific voltage settings for all CPU-integrated subsystems. Kaby Lake-specific settings include the BCLK Adaptive Voltage option, which integrates BIOS-enhanced voltage regulation based on the currently active base clock value.
Classic mode, Peripherals tab
The Peripherals tab centralizes control settings for all motherboard integrated components (read as non-CPU). New additions to this page, introduced by GIGABYTE with the Z270 chipset UEFI, include the RGB Fusion settings for fine-grain control over the integrated RGB LEDs and RGBW 12V header, the SW Guard Extensions (SGX) setting, and the USB DAC-UP 2 settings. The SW Guard Extensions, previously released by Intel on a limited basis, introduces the ability to create a protected pocket for critical applications using the SGX instruction set to give those applications greater protection from outside attack. The USB DAC-UP settings can be used to boost the power provided by the onboard USB 3.0 ports and USB 3.0 headers.
Classic mode, Peripherals tab, RGB Fusion page
The RGB Fusion settings page, access from the link on the Peripherals tab, give the user a graphical interface from which to configure operating mode and color of the board's integrated RGB LEDs as well as RGB/RGBW LED strips connected to the RGBW 12V header. The UEFI integrated interface allows for setting the LED activity to one of four modes as well as in a multitude of colors. Supported modes included Pulse Mode, Color Cycle, Static Mode, and Flash Mode.