ASRock Z97E-ITX-ac Review

By Mithun Mohandas | Updated Oct 27 2014
ASRock Z97E-ITX-ac Review
  • PROS
  • M.2 slots on the backside
  • 32GB RAM support
  • CONS
  • Odd positioning of components
  • After market CPU coolers may cover ports

Verdict

The Z97E from ASRock is a good motherboard but is not recommended if you are into overclocking your CPU. The small size limits the cards and components which can be installed but the M.2 slot at the back does redeem some functionality in this Mini-ITX board.

BUY ASRock Z97E-ITX-ac
Price 11995

ASRock Z97E-ITX-ac detailed review

It’s fun to see what manufac-turers manage to do with the limited real estate available on the Mini-ITX form factor. While this board isn’t exceptional by any means, it does have plenty of bells and whistles akin to a micro-ATX board. Afterall, there are plenty of PCIe lanes that simply go unused because of the lack of space to squeeze more components in. So ASRock has made use of the rear-side of the motherboard and placed a M.2 slot which supports both the 30mm and the 42mm add-on cards. However, you either need to have a cabinet with a big cut-out near the CPU cooler or slightly taller stand-offs to ensure that this slot when populated doesn’t scrape against the cabinet plate.


The placement of most of the components including the CPU ATX power connector, USB 2.0 headers, fan headers, SATA connectors etc., are quite odd. If you were to install a custom CPU cooler then some of these aforementioned components will be difficult to connect making these features non-usable. But realistically speaking, this board isn’t one which is going to be purchased by an overclocker who’d need such a cooler so you’ll easily be able to get the maximum out of this board.

Though we do believe that a better job could have been done to arrange the components. And better cable management matters in SFF computers which make use of such motherboards. This board has plenty of features packed into a small area but lacks better component placement compared to others.

Specifications
 
Chipset: Intel Z97
Memory support: 4x3200(OC)MHz upto 32GB
LAN: Intel Gigabit Ethernet
Audio:  ALC1150 7.1
SATA: 6x SATA III
Expansion: 1x PCIe X16
Dimensions (LxWxD): 170 mm x 170 mm
Warranty: 38 months

ASRock Z97E-ITX-ac Key Specs, Price and Launch Date

Price: ₹11995
Release Date: 27 Oct 2014
Market Status: Launched

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Mithun Mohandas

While not dishing out lethal doses of sarcasm, this curious creature can often be found tinkering with tech, playing 'vidya' games or exploring the darkest corners of the Internets. #PCMasterRace https://www.linkedin.com/in/mithunmohandas/

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ASRock Z97E-ITX-ac

Price : ₹11995

ASRock Z97E-ITX-ac

Price : ₹11995

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