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ASRock H61M/U3S3

Michael Larabel

Published on 15 July 2011
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 6 - 17 Comments

At Phoronix we have reviewed several different motherboards under Linux since the Sandy Bridge launch with either the P67 or H67 chipsets, but in this review we are looking at one that uses the Intel H61 chipset. The particular motherboard under test is the ASRock H61M/U3S3, which was launched a few months back, but we've been waiting for the Intel Sandy Bridge open-source support under Linux to mature a bit more.

Compared to the Intel H67 chipset, the H61 is slightly trimmed down. For the most part, these two Cougar Point chipsets are quite similar, but the H61 has only six PCI Express ports versus eight with the H67, support for two DDR3 memory slots (4 on the H67), support for only ten USB ports (14 on the H67), four Serial ATA ports (6 on the H67), and lacks support for Intel Rapid Storage Technology. Besides that they are near identical in supporting the second-generation Core "Sandy Bridge" processors, the HD 3000 graphics capabilities found on the SNB CPUs, Serial ATA 3.0, and PCI Express 2.0 support. There is also the new Z68 as of May that provides the feature-set of the P67 motherboards while tacking on the integrated graphics support and Intel Smart Response Technology. A review on an ASRock Z68 motherboard will also be published in the coming days.

Features:

CPU
- Supports 2nd Generation Intel Core i7 / i5 / i3 in LGA1155 Package
- Supports Intel Turbo Boost 2.0 Technology
- Supports Intel K-Series CPU
- Supports Hyper-Threading Technology

Chipset
- Intel H61

Memory
- Dual Channel DDR3 memory technology
- 2 x DDR3 DIMM slots
- Supports DDR3 1333/1066 non-ECC, un-buffered memory
- Max. capacity of system memory: 16GB

BIOS
- 32Mb 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
- IGPU, DRAM, PCH, CPU PLL, VTT, VCCSA Voltage Multi-adjustment

Graphics
- 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)
- Pixel Shader 4.1, DirectX 10.1
- Max. shared memory 1759MB
- Multi VGA Output options: D-Sub, DVI-D and HDMI
- Supports HDMI 1.4a Technology with max. resolution up to 1920x1200 @ 60Hz
- Supports DVI with max. resolution up to 1920x1200 @ 60Hz
- Supports D-Sub with max. resolution up to 2048x1536 @ 75Hz
- Supports Auto Lip Sync, Deep Color (12bpc), xvYCC and HBR (High Bit Rate Audio) with HDMI (Compliant HDMI monitor is required)
- Supports HDCP function with DVI and HDMI ports
- Supports Full HD 1080p Blu-ray (BD) / HD-DVD playback with DVI and HDMI ports

Audio
- 5.1 CH HD Audio (Realtek ALC662 Audio Codec)

LAN
- PCIE x1 Gigabit LAN 10/100/1000 Mb/s
- Atheros AR8151
- Supports Wake-On-LAN
- Supports PXE

Slots
- 1 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 slot (blue @ x16 mode)
- 1 x PCI Express 2.0 x1 slot
- 2 x PCI slots

SATA3
- 2 x SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connectors by ASMedia ASM1061, support NCQ, AHCI and "Hot Plug" functions

USB 3.0
- 2 x USB 3.0 ports by ASMedia ASM1042, support USB 1.0/2.0/3.0 up to 5Gb/s

ASRock Features
- ASRock Extreme Tuning Utility (AXTU)
- Instant Boot
- ASRock Instant Flash
- ASRock AIWI
- ASRock APP Charger
- SmartView
- ASRock XFast USB
- Hybrid Booster:
- ASRock U-COP
- Boot Failure Guard (B.F.G.)
- Combo Cooler Option (C.C.O.)
- Good Night LED

Form Factor
- Micro ATX Form Factor: 9.6-in x 8.6-in, 24.4 cm x 21.8 cm
- All Solid Capacitor design (100% Japan-made high-quality Conductive Polymer Capacitors)

Contents:

The ASRock H61M/U3S3 motherboard shipped with a Windows driver CD, quick installation guide, XFast USB guide, I/O panel, Serial ATA cable, and a "specially designed" Serial ATA 3.0 cable. The collection of accessories accompanying the motherboard is light, but that is not a surprise from ASRock and they pass the lower cost onto the consumer.

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