ASRock Z77E-ITX Motherboard

Introduction

The ASRock Z77E-ITX is a Mini-ITX motherboard targeted to the “Ivy Bridge” processors (third-generation Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 processors). Let’s see what the ASRock Z77E-ITX has to offer.

The Intel Z77 is an upgraded version of the Z68 chipset with the same basic features (Intel Smart Response Technology and Virtu video switching technology), plus native support to four USB 3.0 ports. It also includes the addition of two new technologies: Smart Connect (allowing the computer to receive emails and refresh webpages while it is in sleep mode) and Rapid Start (faster boot times).

In addition, the ASRock Z77E-ITX supports the Virtu Universal MVP, which allows you to combine the performance of the integrated graphics processor available in the CPU with the performance of any video card installed. This is similar to what occurs with the Hybrid SLI and ATI Hybrid Graphics technologies, with the notable difference of not being limited to GPUs from a specific manufacturer.

ASRock has launched 11 different motherboard models based on the Intel Z77 chipset. In the table below, we compare their main specifications. Prices were researched at Newegg.com on the day we published this article. The Z77 Professional, the Z77 Professional-M, and the Z77 Performance are part of the “Fatal1ty” series, coming with a special USB port with a higher polling rate for gaming mice.

Specification Z77 Professional Z77 Performance

Z77 Extreme9

Z77 Extreme6 Z77 Extreme4 Z77 Pro4 Z77 Pro3
Form Factor ATX ATX

ATX

ATX ATX ATX ATX
Memory Sockets 4 4

4

4 4 4 4
PCI Express x16 3 (x16/x0/x4 or x8/x8/x4) 2 (x16/x4)

6 (x16/x16/x0/x16/x0/x4 or x16/x8/x8/x8/x8/x4)

3 (x16/x0/x4 or x8/x8/x4) 2 (x16/x0 or x8/x8) 2 (x16/x4) 2 (x16/x4)
PCI Express x1 1 1

1

1 2 1 1
Mini PCI Express 0 0

1

1 0 0 0
Standard PCI 2 2

0

2 2 3 2
CrossFireX Yes Yes

Yes

Yes Yes Yes Yes
SLI Yes No

Yes

Yes Yes No No
SATA-300 4 4

4

4 4 4 4
SATA-600 6 2

6

4 4 4 2
eSATA-300 0 1

0

0 0 0 0
eSATA-600 1 0

1 (shared)

1 1 0 0
USB 2.0 10 10

8

8 8 10 10
USB 3.0 8 6

12

6 6 4 4
FireWire 2 0

2

2 0 0 0
Bluetooth No No

4.0

No No No No
Gigabit Ethernet 2 1

2

1 1 1 1
Wi-Fi No No

802.11a/b/g/n

No No No No
VGA No Yes

No

Yes Yes Yes Yes
DVI No Yes

No

Yes Yes Yes No
HDMI Yes Yes

Yes

Yes Yes Yes Yes
DisplayPort Yes No

No

Yes No No No
Audio ALC898 ALC892

ALC898

ALC898 ALC898 ALC892 ALC892
Voltage Regulator 16+8 8+4

8+4

8+4 8+4 4+2 4+1
Price USD 230 USD 160

NA

USD 160 USD 130 USD 120 USD 110
Specification Z77 Professional-M Z77 Extreme4-M Z77 Pro4-M Z77E-ITX
Form Factor microATX microATX microATX Mini-ITX
Memory Sockets 4 4 4 2
PCI Express x16 3 (x16/x0/x4 or x8/x8/x4) 3 (x16/x0/x4 or x8/x8/x4) 3 (x16/x1/x4) 1 (x16)
PCI Express x1 1 1 1 0
Mini PCI Express 0 0 0 1
Standard PCI 0 0 0 0
CrossFireX Yes Yes Yes No
SLI Yes Yes No No
SATA-300 4 4 4 2
SATA-600 4 4 4 2
eSATA-300 0 0 0 1
eSATA-600 1 1 1 (shared) 0
USB 2.0 8 10 10 6
USB 3.0 6 4 4 6
FireWire 0 0 0 0
Bluetooth No No No No
Gigabit Ethernet 1 1 1 1
Wi-Fi No No No 802.11n
VGA Yes Yes Yes No
DVI Yes Yes Yes Yes
HDMI Yes Yes Yes Yes
DisplayPort Yes No No Yes
Audio ALC898 ALC898 ALC892 ALC898
Voltage Regulator 8+3 4+2 4+2 6+2
Price USD 170 USD 130 USD 110 USD 150

In Figure 1, you see the ASRock Z77E-ITX motherboard.

ASRock Z77E-ITX motherboardFigure 1: ASRock Z77E-ITX motherboard

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Author: Gabriel Torres

Gabriel Torres is a Brazilian best-selling ICT expert, with 24 books published. He started his online career in 1996, when he launched Clube do Hardware, which is one of the oldest and largest websites about technology in Brazil. He created Hardware Secrets in 1999 to expand his knowledge outside his home country.

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