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ASRock Z77 Extreme6

Six Sub-£160 Z77 Motherboards, Benchmarked And Reviewed
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ASRock’s £155 Z77 Extreme6 targets value seekers in the mid-range enthusiast market with three-way graphics capability, an extra USB 3.0 controller, an extra SATA 6Gb/s controller, a two-digit diagnostics display, and an I/O panel CLR_CMOS button to assist in recovery from failed overclock attempts.

Those extra controllers bring the total number of USB 3.0 ports to eight, and the total number of SATA 6Gb/s ports to four. One of the added SATA ports is still shared with the eSATA connector, however.

ASRock even adds mini-PCIe beneath the primary x16 slot to enable the addition of notebook-style adapters, such as internal Wi-Fi cards, which lay flat over its PCI-based VIA IEEE-1394 controller.

There’s no good way to host a third PCIe 3.0 graphics card on an LGA 1155 platforms, since only sixteen of these lanes are native to Ivy Bridge CPUs. The Z77 Extreme6 divides those lanes into x8/x8 mode whenever a card is detected in the second slot, relying on the Z77 PCH's slower PCIe 2.0 controller to drive the third slot at x4. That makes this primarily a two-way graphics design, so ASRock triple-spaces the two high-bandwidth slots to support extra airflow and/or extra-thick cards.

Complaining about a layout this clean could be difficult, with its well-placed USB 3.0 front-panel header, replaceable firmware ROM, forward-facing SATA ports and a downward-facing latch on its eight-pin CPU power connector. Yet, further inspection reveals small nags like a front-panel audio header located in the extreme lower-rear corner and the fact that this is a single-ROM motherboard in a primarily dual-ROM market. Amusing asides include floppy and serial port headers next to that audio connection.

The Z77 Extreme6 installation kit includes four SATA cables, a two-way SLI bridge, and ASRock’s USB 3.0-to-3.5” bay adapter with integrated 2.5” drive tray. The ports can be moved to the back of a case by instead attaching them to an included slot plate.

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  • 1 Hide
    miguels , 1 May 2012 06:29
    I'm a bit new to this, but how can we start the pc if the motherboard doesn't have the power button?
  • 1 Hide
    digdog , 1 May 2012 09:38
    on the bottom of the motherboard there's a set of headers (small pins) that connect to the various buttons on your pc case, one of which is the power-on button.
  • -2 Hide
    mi1ez , 1 May 2012 10:57
    DigDogon the bottom of the motherboard there's a set of headers (small pins) that connect to the various buttons on your pc case, one of which is the power-on button.

    just short the 2 power button pins with a screwdriver.
  • 1 Hide
    miguels , 1 May 2012 19:53
    Quote:
    DigDog :
    on the bottom of the motherboard there's a set of headers (small pins) that connect to the various buttons on your pc case, one of which is the power-on button.


    just short the 2 power button pins with a screwdriver.


    Yeah, I know, but it says in the article that the Asus P8Z77-V Pro doesn't have a power button
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , 2 May 2012 02:24
    usb3/sata3/wifi/bluetooth still very limited ...these r not cheap boards.......why????
  • 0 Hide
    TheCereaKillerPT , 6 May 2012 07:27
    miguelsYeah, I know, but it says in the article that the Asus P8Z77-V Pro doesn't have a power button


    Yes , but there a set of headers were u can connect the cables that connet to the front / top of your case so that u can just click and that it . The ones that have a power button it's if u want to change parts like gpu and u don't want to put it in a case. Hope it helped :)