Review of ASRock Fatal1ty Z77 Professional-M Ivy Bridge with Intel Core i5-3570K

ASRock Fatal1ty Z77 Professional-M
bluetooth 9 Jul 2012

In gaming competitions, most users will want to equip themselves with their gaming rig. A gaming notebook does give you the portability but it lacks the processor power to run gpu intensive games. The better solution is to equip yourself with a smaller footprint desktop PC. The ASRock Fatal1ty Z77 Professional-M definitely fits the bill as it is a mATX, small in size yet big in performance that matches it’s full fledge size cousins.

This board based on the Intel Z77 chipset supports 4 DIMM slots with Dual Channel DDR3 2800+(OC). In addition, with the Core i5-3x70k processors, you are ready to use it as a machine for playing less GPU intensive games or use it for work. That is thanks to the Intel HD graphics built in to the processor. The board supports output ports DVI-D, D-SUB and HDMI.

For those who require more graphics power, plug in your own graphics card and you can run 2 x PCIe 3.0 x16 Slots, Supports AMD Quad CrossFireX™, 3-Way CrossFireX, CrossFireX™ and NVIDIA® Quad SLI™, SLI™. You can also improve the onboard graphics performance by adding a single graphics card and enable Lucid Virtu MVP.

When it comes to heatsink mounting, this is something I loved, C.C.O (combo Cooler option). It helps you to save some costs, reusnig your older LGA775 heatsinks on this board with the 4 extra mounting holes.

Gamers want  a responsive system, ASRock understands that and has equipped it with PCie Gigabit LAN. Moreover, it has a 7.1 CH HD Audio with Content Protection (Realtek ALC898 Audio Codec), Supports THX TruStudio™ for audio support.

ASRock has also bundled software to speed up your system, they include XFast RAM which is a virtual ram system. With it enabled, it can be used a Readyboost drive to speed up access to cache files etc. XFast LAN on the other hand lowers latency of your system for the utmost packet for best LAN performance. XFast USB speeds up USB transfers with a On/Off switch.

Other than that, there is OMG which is online management in BIOS that allows certain days and time of the day for internet access which will be welcomed by parents to control when their children accesses the internet. There is also a dehumidifier function on board which reduces humid and prolongs the life of the components on board. The BIOS also has a UEFI system browser which shows you the various components in visual, showing what is connected etc.

As it is a Intel Z77 based board, it defniitely supports the Intel functions – Intel® Smart Connect, Intel® Rapid Start and the Lucid Virtu Universal MVP for speeding up graphics performance when an add on graphcis card is inserted onto the board. 

F-Stream is another software that allows you to change the settings of the system all within Windows 7. You can fine tune the voltages, clk speed etc.

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