When Intel announced its second generation Core processors we had 2 different chipsets to choose from the P67 chipset and the H67 chipset. P67 was made for gamers and overclockers having advanced overclocking features and being able to support Intel’s “K” series processors. H67 was the cheaper option taking advantage of the built-in graphics of Sandy Bridge processors. Both chipsets were successful, but there were many people that wanted features in both chipsets. There is where the Z68 chipset comes in. It fills that void allowing users to overclock their system, while using the built-in graphics. Z68 offers plenty of other features as well, but we will get to that in just a little bit. Our first jump in to the Z68 chipset will be with the ASRock Z68 Extreme4 motherboard. This board features ASRock’s advanced V8 power phase design, 3 PCI-E x16 slots, SATA 6GB/s and USB 3.0 support, Intel’s Smart Response Technology, and LucidLogix Virtu GPU virtualization software. Let’s get right in and see what Z68 and the ASRock Z68 Extreme4 motherboard is all about!
Unlike most motherboard boxes that are littered with information and logos the ASRock Z68 Extreme4 box is pretty plain. The front has a simple logo on it with a few emblems towards the bottom. On the back there is an overview of the board and some information about some of the features.
Opening the box up everything is nicely packed inside. Unpacking it all you have the Z68 Extreme4 motherboard, user’s guide, driver cd, audio cable, USB 3.0 panel, 4x SATA cables, floppy cable, 2x SATA to Molex power cables, rear USB 3.0 bracket, I/O shield and SLI bridge.