After 5+ years of attending CES, we were very excited to meet ASRock for the first time. Not usually a participant in the festivities, ASRock made their way to Las Vegas with a ton of great motherboards to share with us.
With the recent release of Kaby Lake, we were able to get up close and personal with the Z270 lineup. ASRock has something to offer at nearly every price/performance level.
First up is the flagship 14-Phase VRM Z270 SuperCarrier with 4-way SLI/CrossFireX compatibility, thanks to a PLX chip, Purity Sound 4, and PCIe Steel Slots which, according to ASRock, prevent any signal interference. The board also boasts three Ultra M.2, one M.2 Key E, two Thunderbolt 3 Type-C, and Aquantia 5Gb LAN on top of dual Intel Gigabit LAN. Outside of the technical features, the SuperCarrier will offer a unique silver PCB, AURA RGB, and an engraved 27 on one of the heatsinks. This behemoth should be available later this month.
Though it has less bells and whistles, the Z270 Taichi is certainly no slouch. Like it’s big brother, it features Purity Sound 4 based on the Realtek ALC1220 with 7.1 channel HD audio and a 120dB SNR DAC. Again, three Ultra M.2 and one M.2 Key E slots. The style is quite unique with a black and white PCB.
For the gamers out there, look no further than the Fatal1ty Z270 Professional Gaming i7 motherboard. Like the SuperCarrier, this offers AQUANTIA 5Gb/s LAN and PCIe Steel Slots. To keep games sounding great is the Creative SoundBlaster Cinema 3.
Rounding out the Z270 lineup will be ten other boards ranging from mainstream to gaming including several mini-ITX parts to satisfy SFF users. Additionally, there will be another ten H270 or B250 motherboards for those who do not need overclocking options (nobody reading this, hopefully).
Moving over to the AMD side of things, ASRock had two X370 motherboards on display for the upcoming Ryzen CPU release. Outside of being visually stunning like the Intel boards, both offer quad SLI / CrossFireX compatibility and comparable features to their Intel Taichi and Professional Gaming counterparts. The Professional Gaming board seen here boasts a whopping 18-phase VRM, this is more than we’ve seen from any manufacturer for AM4 motherboards.
We also had a chance to see the AB350 chipset boards, but these do not allow for overclocking, so are geared towards more mainstream or business users.
DeskMini GTX/RX Series Prototype
Last, but certainly not least, we saw a very powerful PC in a tiny package. The DeskMini micro-STX box supports 7th generation Core i3/i5/i7 CPUs, DDR4 SODIMM, and up to a NVIDIA GTX 1060 or RX480 MXM format GPUs. As you can see from the monitor in the photo below, this particular sample had an i7 7700k CPU and an RX470 GPU. At the moment, this product is still in the early stages of development and may not even be released. Although we hope it does make it to market!
Keep an eye out for Z270 motherboard reviews in the next few weeks!