ASRock Z77 Extreme11 Motherboard LGA1155 Preview


After the success of the ASRock X79 Extreme11 motherboard, ASRock created it’s little brother. The still very feature packed ASRock Z77 Extreme11 brings some of the same great features to a more cost effective platform. It is very similarly spec’d to it’s bigger brother. It too includes the LSI SAS2308 controller with 8x SATA3 6.0gbps ports on the motherboard along with the usual Z77 SATA ports. At first glance the ASRock Z77 Extreme11 is absolutely packed with features. Are these features any good for a home server or workstation or is this an enthusiast gamer motherboard? To help answer this, let’s have a closer look at the major components:

  • LGA1155 = a beavy of CPU’s to choose from for the ASRock Z77 Extreme11
  • Memory = Usual LA1155 limit of 32GB, also assume NO ECC support on the ASRock Z77 Extreme11
  • PCIe slots = 4x PCIe 16x slots, 3x PCIe 1x Gen 2.0  slots and a mPCIe slot. Expansion slots galore on th ASRock Z77 Extreme11. This is due to the PLX 8608 and 8747 PCIe bridging chips. This allows for x16/x8/x4 or x8/x8/x8/x4 (PCIe Gen2). Overall, an amazing amount of expansion for a LGA1155/ Z77 PCH motherboard.
  • LAN = dual 1Gbe controllers, 82579V and 82583V. These are not mainstream server LAN controllers. The 82579 should be supported by most OS’s at least. Wireless LAN supported via the mPCIe slot, an added bonus for a good all round performer.
  • Storage = 10x SATA3, is there a Z77 motherboard with more SATA3 ports out there? 8 of them come from the LSI SAS 2308 HBA controller. I’m thinking this controller has the last 8x PCIe Gen 3.0 lanes from the PLX bridge.
  • USB3.0 = 12x USB 3.0 ports on the ASRock Z77 Extreme11. This is another big feature. Not too important for a server but Workstation/ gaming rig heaven.
  • I/O ports = There are tons of ports on the ASRock Z77 Extreme11. These allow many devices to be plugged in. Check the specs below for details.
  • Form factor = The ASRock Z77 Extreme11 is an EATX motherboard. This is quite large for a LGA1155 based motherboard. It won’t fit all cases. With 10x SATA3 ports, many expansion slots, an onboard RAID controller and etc, you’re going to need room lots of room.
ASRock Z77 Extreme11 Overview
ASRock Z77 Extreme11 Overview

ASRock Z77 Extreme11 Specifications

 General ASRock Z77 Extreme11 Specs
CPU – Supports 3rd and 2nd Generation Intel Core i7 / i5 / i3 in LGA1155 Package
– Digi Power Design
– 8 + 4 Power Phase Design
– Dual-Stack MOSFET (DSM)
– Supports Intel Turbo Boost 2.0 Technology
– Supports Intel K-Series unlocked CPU
– Supports Hyper-Threading Technology
Chipset – Intel Z77
– Supports Intel Rapid Start Technology and Smart Connect Technology

*Intel Rapid Start Technology and Smart Connect Technology are only supported under Windows 7 OS or later versions.
Memory – Dual Channel DDR3 memory technology
– 4 x DDR3 DIMM slots
– Supports DDR3 3000+(OC)/2400(OC)/2133(OC)/1866(OC)/1600/1333/1066 non-ECC, un-buffered memory
– Max. capacity of system memory: 32GB*
– Supports Intel Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) 1.3 / 1.2

*Due to the operating system limitation, the actual memory size may be less than 4GB for the reservation for system usage under Windows® 32-bit OS. For Windows® 64-bit OS with 64-bit CPU, there is no such limitation.
BIOS – 64Mb AMI UEFI Legal BIOS with GUI support
– Supports “Plug and Play”
– ACPI 1.1 Compliance Wake Up Events
– Supports jumperfree
– SMBIOS 2.3.1 Support
– CPU Core, IGPU, DRAM, 1.8V PLL, VTT, VCCSA Voltage Multi-adjustment
 ASRock Z77 Extreme11 Audio, Video and Networking Specs
Graphics – Supports Intel HD Graphics Built-in Visuals : Intel Quick Sync Video 2.0, Intel InTru 3D, Intel Clear Video HD Technology, Intel Insider, Intel HD Graphics 2500/4000 with Intel Ivy Bridge CPU
– Supports Intel HD Graphics Built-in Visuals : Intel Quick Sync Video, Intel InTru 3D, Intel Clear Video HD Technology, Intel HD Graphics 2000/3000, Intel Advanced Vector Extensions (AVX) with Intel Sandy Bridge CPU
– Pixel Shader 5.0, DirectX 11 with Intel Ivy Bridge CPU. Pixel Shader 4.1, DirectX 10.1 with Intel Sandy Bridge CPU
– Max. shared memory 1760MB with Intel Ivy Bridge CPU. Max. shared memory 1759MB with Intel Sandy Bridge CPU
– Supports HDMI 1.4a Technology with max. resolution up to 1920×1200 @ 60Hz
– Supports Auto Lip Sync, Deep Color (12bpc), xvYCC and HBR (High Bit Rate Audio) with HDMI
– Supports HDCP with HDMI
– Supports Full HD 1080p Blu-ray (BD) / HD-DVD playback with HDMI

*Intel HD Graphics Built-in Visuals and the VGA outputs can be supported only with processors which are GPU integrated.**Due to chipset limitation, the Blu-ray playback of Intel HD Graphics is only supported under Windows Vista and Windows 7.***Intel InTru 3D is only supported under Windows 7 and Windows 7 x64.
Audio – 7.1 CH HD Audio with Content Protection (Realtek ALC898 Audio Codec)
– Premium Blu-ray audio support
– Supports THX TruStudio
LAN – 2 x PCIE x1 Gigabit LAN 10/100/1000 Mb/s
– Intel 82579V
– Intel 82583V
– Supports Wake-On-LAN
– Supports Dual LAN with Teaming function
– Supports PXE
Wireless LAN – Supports IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
– Supports Dual-Band (2.4/5 GHz)
– Supports High speed wireless connection up to 300Mbps
– 2 antennas to support 2 (Transmit) x 2 (Receive) MIMO technology
– Supports Bluetooth 4.0 Class II
 ASRock Z77 Extreme11 Expansion / Connectivity Specs
Slots – 3 x PCI Express 3.0 x16 slots (PCIE1/PCIE5: single at x16 (PCIE1) / x8 (PCIE5) or dual at x8/x8 mode; PCIE3: x8 mode)
– 1 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 slot (PCIE7: x4 mode)
– 3 x PCI Express 2.0 x1 slot
– 1 x mini-PCI Express slot: For WiFi + BT module
– PLX PEX 8747 and PLX PEX 8608 embedded
– Supports AMD Quad CrossFireX, 4-Way CrossFireX, 3-Way CrossFireX and CrossFireX
– Supports NVIDIA Quad SLI, 3-Way SLI and SLI

*PCIe Gen3 is supported on 3rd Generation of Intel Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs.
Storage – 2 x SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connectors by Intel Z77, support RAID (RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 10, RAID 5, Intel Rapid Storage and Intel Smart Response Technology), NCQ, AHCI and Hot Plug (SATA3_1 connector is shared with eSATA3 port)
– 8 x SAS2/SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connectors by LSI SAS2308 PCIe 3.0 x8 controller, support RAID (RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 1E and RAID 10), MegaRAID Utility, NCQ and Hot Plug
USB 3.0 – 4 x Rear USB 3.0 ports by Intel Z77, support USB 1.1/2.0/3.0 up to 5Gb/s
– 4 x Rear USB 3.0 ports by Etron EJ188, support USB 1.1/2.0/3.0 up to 5Gb/s
– 2 x Front USB 3.0 headers by Etron EJ188 (support 4 USB 3.0 ports), support USB 1.1/2.0/3.0 up to 5Gb/s
Connector – 4 x SATA2 3.0 Gb/s connectors, support RAID (RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10, Intel Rapid Storage and Intel Smart Response Technology), NCQ, AHCI and Hot Plug
– 2 x SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connectors
– 8 x SAS2/SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connectors
– 1 x IR header
– 1 x CIR header
– 1 x COM port header
– 1 x HDMI_SPDIF header
– 1 x IEEE 1394 header
– 1 x Power LED header
– 2 x CPU Fan connectors (1 x 4-pin, 1 x 3-pin)
– 3 x Chassis Fan connectors (1 x 4-pin, 2 x 3-pin)
– 1 x Power Fan connector (3-pin)
– 1 x SB Fan connector (3-pin)
– 24 pin ATX power connector
– 8 pin 12V power connector
– SLI/XFire power connector
– Front panel audio connector
– 3 x USB 2.0 headers (support 6 USB 2.0 ports)
– 1 x Vertical Type A USB
– 2 x USB 3.0 headers (support 4 USB 3.0 ports)
– 1 x Dr. Debug with LED
– 1 x Power Switch with LED
– 1 x Reset Switch with LED
Rear Panel I/O I/O Panel
– 1 x PS/2 Mouse/Keyboard Port
– 1 x HDMI Port
– 1 x Optical SPDIF Out Port
– 2 x Ready-to-Use USB 2.0 Ports
– 1 x eSATA3 Connector
– 8 x Ready-to-Use USB 3.0 Ports
– 2 x RJ-45 LAN Ports with LED (ACT/LINK LED and SPEED LED)
– 1 x IEEE 1394 Port
– 1 x Clear CMOS Switch with LED
– HD Audio Jacks: Rear Speaker / Central / Bass / Line in / Front Speaker / Microphone
Accessories – 1 x ASRock SLI_Bridge_3S Card
– 1 x ASRock 3-Way SLI Bridge Card
– Quick Installation Guide, Support CD, I/O Shield
– 8 x SATA Data Cables
– 2 x SATA 1 to 1 Power Cables
– 1 x ASRock Wi-SB Box
– 12 x Screws
Hardware Monitor – CPU/Chassis/SB Temperature Sensing
– CPU/Chassis/Power/SB Fan Tachometer
– CPU/Chassis Quiet Fan (Allow Chassis Fan Speed Auto-Adjust by CPU Temperature)
– CPU/Chassis Fan Multi-Speed Control
– Voltage Monitoring: +12V, +5V, +3.3V, CPU Vcore
Form Factor – EATX Form Factor: 12.0-in x 10.5-in, 30.5 cm x 26.7 cm
– 2oz copper PCB
– Premium Gold Capacitor design (100% Japan-made high-quality Conductive Polymer Capacitors)

Here are my thoughts on the ASRock Z77 Extreme11: As a server motherboard, this is probably not the best option unless you are just serving files. With that said, a Windows 8 Hyper-V VM with LSI SAS 2308 storage might make a good workstation/ server hybrid. This is as good as it gets in getting the most from a LGA1155 CPU. Ideally the ASRock Z77 Extreme11 is suited to a high-end Z77 workstation on a budget. With all SATA3 ports used with SSD’s for file storage and to work from the ASRock Z77 Extreme11 has great storage capabilities. As long as the CPU load is not too great this motherboard can move files round just as fast the the ASRock X79 Extreme11 version with a LGA2011 CPU. As a gaming rig, this will do nicely. You might want to add an PCIe sound solution to replace the OK onboard Realtek ALC898 codec. Triple SLi with Geforce GPU’s or Quad CrossFire GPU’s on the ASRock Z77 Extreme11 gives a lot of flexibility. Again very powerful graphics options. At 3-4 GPUs it may start to make sense looking at the LGA 2011 platform though.

Over all, if the LGA2011 X79 Extreme11 with CPU is too steeply priced then the ASRock Z77 Extreme11 is next best thing. A huge range of options exist for the ASRock Z77 Extreme11 to suit any need. Although no IPMI which is important for most servers, one can still use the ASRock Z77 Extreme11 in a hybrid server/ workstation manner. As a workstation and/or gaming machine with a virtualized storage server, this may be ideal. Well done ASRock as this board pushes the boundaries of what can be squeezed onto a Z77 board.


  1. The lack of ECC essentially makes this board useless for anything serious, 1 flipped bit can either change the color of 1 pixel on your screen or completely destroy your raid array.

    This is just unacceptable in 2012, AMD desktop chips have been supporting ECC for years, so we don’t know what Intel’s problem is.

    We’ve been using cheap AMD desktop X4s on cheap ASUS desktop boards and enjoyed ECC for years.


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