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ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 (Intel Z68) Motherboard Review (Page 2)

Shawn Baker | Sep 4, 2011 at 10:16 pm CDT - 2 mins, 3 secs reading time for this page
Rating: 93%Manufacturer: ASRock

The Motherboard

Pulling the board out of the package, we get our first full look at the motherboard and we can see that really black color scheme that is going on with it. What differs to so many other companies who go for the dark color scheme, though, is that ASRock have opted for just a bit of Grey / Silver instead of a really bold color and I think on a whole it makes for a really swish looking board.

ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 (Intel Z68) Motherboard Review 10 | TweakTown.com

The other bits that really stand out and you'll probably see them a bit better when we move in closer to the board, are the gold caps. ASRock say they offer a longer life, but apart from that they just look great against all the black.

ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 (Intel Z68) Motherboard Review 11 | TweakTown.com

Moving in closer, we can see our expansion slot setup along with a single Molex connector on the far left used for people who are going down the multiple card path. As for the expansion slots, we've got a PCIe x1 and legacy PCI slot along with five PCIe x16 slots.

Of course, not all these slots run at x16, but thanks to ASRock opting to use the NF200 chip, we get x16 / x16 when using slot 1 and 3 or x16 / x8 / x8 in 3-Way when using slots 1, 3 and 5. PCIe 4 runs at x5 and you can see that by the wiring of the slot and PCIe 2 is a PCIe 3.0 slot which is of course where the Gen3 name comes from.

Unfortunately there's no real way to make use of PCIe 3.0 at the moment, but when we see Ivy Bridge hit us and the next generation of AMD video cards arrive, you're going to be ready to go.

ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 (Intel Z68) Motherboard Review 12 | TweakTown.com

Moving across the bottom of the board, we've got a HD Audio header, HDMI / S/PDIF header, FireWire, 3x USB 2.0 headers, our LED Debug reader, Clear CMOS button and our front panel header. Just above our front panel header you can also see we've got a power and reset button.

ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 (Intel Z68) Motherboard Review 13 | TweakTown.com

Turning the corner, we've got a total of ten SATA ports. We've got four SATA II ports which are black and run natively off the Z68 chipset. Next to that, our first two grey slots are SATA III and also run off the Z68 chipset natively. The final four slots are also SATA III, but as the "A1 / A2 / A3 / A4" naming scheme shows, these run off the ASMedia ASM1061 controller.

Last updated: Nov 15, 2019 at 01:16 pm CST

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Shawn Baker

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Shawn Baker

Shawn takes care of all of our video card reviews. From 2009, Shawn is also taking care of our memory reviews, and from May 2011, Shawn also takes care of our CPU, chipset and motherboard reviews. As of December 2011, Shawn is based out of Taipei, Taiwan.

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