The experts at two additional expert review sites liked this desktop computer. This MSI computer received a "Performance" award from HEXUS.net and Overclock3d.net gave it a "Silver Award" and thought it was great.
The experts at three more expert review sites all said that this personal computer was good. Benchmark.pl gave this computer a "Good Product" award, it received a "Great Buy" award from Hard-h2o.com and 01net.com gave it a "4 Star" award.
Expert Reviews Are Good
On average, based on fifteen expert reviews from sites including hwt.dk, apcmag.com, overclock3d.net and ocaholic.ch.english the average expert rating of this computer is 83 out of 100. This means that experts think this PC is one of the very best computers of this age and spec.
User Reviews Are Good
Owners have rated this computer on average 89 out of 100.
MSI Has Good Reviews for Its PCs
We calculated the average reviews for all MSI PCs and also specifically for MSI medium processor core computers and found that in both cases MSI had good reviews.
One MSI Nightblade Z97 owner concluded that the MSI Nightblade Z97 was easy to carry around. One MSI Nightblade Z97 reviewer who purchased it concluded that it was compact. Ocaholic.ch.english mentioned last year “Due to its compact dimensions and the high-end components inside” .
One person wrote in their reviews that this PC was a good design. Liveatpc.com wrote in their review “MSI has kept the design simple with no odd or flashy protrusions on the unit”.
+18 More reasons for
Good for Gaming
Four people said in their reviews that the MSI Nightblade Z97 was good for gaming. Expert review site Apcmag.com scored this PC 70 out of 100 and wrote in their MSI Nightblade Z97 review two years ago “This is a gaming box”. Also two years ago expert review site Uk.hardware.info said “A true gaming PC was not yet on the product list, untill the MSI Nightblade was introduced”. Chip.com.my mentioned in their review of this PC “It was the GAMING Nightblade barebones system that was designed to provide gamers with an easy solution when it comes to building a portab”.
A number of customers who reviewed it considered that it was well made. Lanoc.org mentioned in their review of this PC two years ago “What really sets the Nightblade apart from any other barebones on the market is the fact that this is built specially to be a LAN rig” . Lanoc.org also said “MSI made it easy to carry with a built in handle and with its large PSU”.
64-Bit Processor Operating Mode
This computer supports a 64-bit processor operating mode, which is typical of many computers that were launched more than a year ago.
Very Fast On-Board Graphics Adapter Dynamic Frequency
When compared to other desktop computers that have been around for a comparable time to the Nightblade Z97, the MSI Nightblade Z97's on-board graphics adapter dynamic frequency of 1,250 megahertz is one of the fastest. The slowest on-board graphics adapter dynamic frequency of medium processor core computers that have been around for around the same time as the Nightblade Z97 is 700MHz and the fastest is 1,300MHz.
Six USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1) Type-A Ports
Most medium processor core computers that are a similar age to the Nightblade Z97 have between one and eight USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1) Type-A ports, including the Nightblade Z97 which has six USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1) Type-A ports.
Very Fast Processor Clock Speed
With a processor clock speed of 4 gigahertz, the Nightblade Z97 has one of the fastest processor clock speeds amongst medium processor core computers of this age. Personal computers of this age and spec have processor clock speeds of between 1.3GHz and 4GHz.
Fairly Big Hard Drive Capacity
The hard drive capacity of desktop computers of this age and type range from 1GB to 3TB. The MSI Nightblade Z97 has a quite big hard drive capacity (1,000 gigabyte) compared to most of the other desktop computers of a similar age and spec to the Nightblade Z97.
Fairly Big Total Storage Capacity
The Nightblade Z97 has a fairly big total storage capacity (1,128 gigabyte) compared to most of the other computers of this age and spec. Medium processor core computers that have been available for around the same time as the Nightblade Z97 have total storage capacity of between 4GB and 3.6TB, and the average total storage capacity is 770GB.
3 PCI Express Slots Version
This personal computer supports a 3 PCI Express slots version, which is the most commonly supported PCI Express slots version on comparable spec desktop computers that are a similar age to it.
Two HDMI Port
The Nightblade Z97 is a two HDMI port desktop computer. Most of the other computers that are a similar age to the Nightblade Z97 only have one HDMI port.
L3 Processor Cache Level
This desktop computer has a L3 processor cache level, which is typical of many medium processor core computers that are a comparable age to it.
Very Fast Maximum Turbo Frequency
The Nightblade Z97 has one of the fastest maximum turbo frequencies (4.4 gigahertz) amongst medium processor core computers of this age. The maximum turbo frequencies of computers that are a similar age to the Nightblade Z97 range from 1.8GHz to 4.4GHz.
Two Storage Drives Installed
The MSI Nightblade Z97 is a two storage drive installed personal computer. Most of the other desktop computers of this type and age have between 1 and 999 storage drives installed.
Six USB 3.0 Ports
Most computers of this spec and age have between one and eight USB 3.0 ports, including the Nightblade Z97 which has six USB 3.0 ports.
Eight Processor Threads
The MSI Nightblade Z97 has more processor threads than most of the medium processor core computers that have been available for around the same time as the Nightblade Z97. Most of the medium processor core computers that were released one year ago only have between four and seven processor threads, however this personal computer has eight processor threads.
Quite Big Processor Cache
With a processor cache of 8 megabytes, the Nightblade Z97 has one of the bigger processor caches amongst similar spec computers of this age. The average processor cache of similar spec personal computers that are a comparable age to the Nightblade Z97 is 6.6MB.
7.1 Audio Output Channel
The Nightblade Z97 has a 7.1 audio output channel which is better than the 5.1 audio output channel found on most comparable spec computers that have been on the market for more than a year.
A 7.1 audio output channel is actually the best audio output amongst all similar spec computers that have been around for more than a year.
A 5.1 audio output channel is the worst audio output across comparable types of personal computer.
7 Reasons Against
A Bit Expensive
One customer considered that the MSI Nightblade Z97 was not good value for money. Expert review site Chip.com.my wrote “Yes, we understand that the MSI GAMING Nightblade may be a little on the pricey side for barebones system.” in their review of the MSI Nightblade Z97.
Only HDD Storage Medium
The storage speed of this PC is HDD+SSD, which is the most commonly found storage medium on medium processor core computers that came out around the same time as it. A Hard Disk Drive (HDD) is the traditional storage method for computers. A HDD stores the information on magnetic disks. HDD drives are cheap, but they are slower than Flash and SSD bases storage systems.
Only 11 On-Board Graphics Adapter DirectX Version
This PC supports a 11.2 on-board graphics adapter DirectX version, which is typical of many PCs of this age and spec.
Only One PS/2 Port
Most PCs of a similar age and type to the Nightblade Z97 have one PS/2 port, including the MSI Nightblade Z97 which has one PS/2 port.
+4 More reasons against
Very Small Maximum On-Board Graphics Adapter Memory
The Nightblade Z97 has one of the smaller maximum on-board graphics adapter memories (only 1.024 gigabytes) amongst comparable spec personal computers of this age. The average maximum on-board graphics adapter memory of medium processor core computers that have been on the market for around the same time as the Nightblade Z97 is 2.8GB, and the maximum on-board graphics adapter memories range from 1GB to 64GB.
Quite Small Solid-State Drive Capacity
Computers of a comparable type and age to the Nightblade Z97 have solid-state drive capacities of between 8GB and 1TB. At only 128 gigabytes, the Nightblade Z97 has a quite small solid-state drive capacity compared to most of the other medium processor core computers that have been available for a comparable time to the Nightblade Z97.
Only One DisplayPort
The Nightblade Z97 is a one DisplayPort computer.
2 Other reasons to consider the MSI Nightblade Z97
Released Over a Year Ago
It was over a year ago when MSI released the Nightblade Z97.
Average Internal Memory
With an internal memory of 8 gigabytes, the MSI Nightblade Z97 has a pretty average internal memory compared to most of the other personal computers of a comparable type and age to the Nightblade Z97.
Intel Core i7, Intel Core i7-4xxx
Processor Clock Speed
PCI Express Slots Version
System Bus Data Transfer Rate
Processor Cache Level
LGA1150, Socket H3 (LGA 1150)
Maximum Turbo Frequency
Memory Channel Supported Processor
Max Memory Bandwidth Supported Processor
Memory Clock Speed Supported by Processor
Memory Type Supported Processor
Max Internal Memory Supported Processor
Conflict Free Processor
PCI Express Lane (maximum)
Processor Operating Mode
PCI Express Configuration
1x1, 1x16, 2x8, 1x8, 1x8+2x4, 2x4
Thermal Design Power (TDP)
Processor Cache Type
Smart Cache, L3
Maximum Internal Memory
Internal Memory Type
Total Storage Capacity
HDD, HDD+SSD, SSD
Hard Drive Capacity
Solid-State Drive Capacity
Solid State Drive Installed
Storage Drive Installed
Integrated Card Reader
On-Board Graphics Adapter Model
Intel HD Graphics, Intel HD Graphics 4600
Discrete Graphics Adapter Memory
Discrete Graphics Adapter Model
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760
Discrete Graphics Adapter Memory
On-Board Graphics Adapter ID
On-Board Graphics Adapter DirectX Version
On-Board Graphics Adapter Dynamic Frequency
On-Board Graphics Adapter Base Frequency
Displayssupported by On-Board Grap
Maximum On-Board Graphics Adapter Memory
Windows 8, Windows 8.1
Operating System Architecture
Ethernet LAN Data Rate
10, 10, 100, 10, 100, 1000
Ethernet LAN Connection
Ports & Interfaces
S/PDIF Out Port
Headphone Out Port
Microphone in Port
Ethernet LAN (RJ-45) Port
USB 3.0 Port
USB 2.0 Port
USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1) Type-A Port
Water Cooling System
Audio Output Channel
Processor Special Features
Intel Anti-Theft Technology
Intell Identity Protection Technology
Intel My WiFi Technology
Intel Quick Sync Videotechnology
Intel Hyper-Threading Technology
Intel Turbo Boost Technology
Intel VPro Technology
Intel Wireless Display (WiDi) Technology
Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology
Intel Secure Key
Intel AES New Instructions
Intel FDI Technology
Intel Clear Video HD Technology
Thermal Monitoring Technology
Execute Disable Bit
Intel InTru 3D Technology
Intel VT-X With Extended Page Tables (EPT)
Intel Virtualization Technology (VT-X)
AVX, AVX 2.0, SSE, SSE4.1, SSE, SSE4.2
Intel Enhanced Halt State
Intel Virtualization Technology for Directed I/O
Thermal Solution Specification
Processor Package Size
CPU Configuration (max)
Intel Identity Protection Technology Version
Graphics & IMC Lithography
Intel Smart Cache
Intel Secure Key Technology Version
Processor ARK ID
Weight & Dimensions
Software Driver Included
Intel Virtualization Technology
Intel Visual Technology
Intel Clear Video HD, Intel Insider, Intel InTru 3D, Intel Quick Sync Video
Nightblade is the name of the lastest ITX gaming solution from MSI. Due to its compact dimensions and the high-end components inside, the Nightblade is a mini system perfect for everybody who need... Read more…
This is a gaming box, and hence comes in black and red, because there's no other gaming colours ever, even if once upon a time you might have heard there were. This gamingness is gamified further... Read more…
I have read of lots of people having issues with space, but I found there to be too much space. There was enough extra room to even re-route most of the cables out of sight. Even with all of... Read more…
This is my first barebone system and overall I'm very happy with it. It was literally plug and play and I had zero issues overclocking my RAM / CPU with the OC button. My build runs cool and it... Read more…
All and all the Nightblade is worth every penny at $400. There is a MIB for 50 bucks going on also. GRAB it now. The bugger is very compact and is smaller than most mini itx's I have seen in the... Read more…