X79 Extreme6GB 2 ASRock does more affordable 8 DIMM X79 motherboard

We're not quite sure we're following ASRock's X79 motherboard line-up as the company has introduced the X79 Extreme6/GB, a model inferior to the X79 Extreme7, yet somehow packing more features and a bundle. The bundle is ASRock Game Blaster, the same card that comes with the X79 Extreme9.

We're not quite sure we're following ASRock's X79 motherboard line-up as the company has introduced the X79 Extreme6/GB, a model inferior to the X79 Extreme7, yet somehow packing more features and a bundle. The bundle is ASRock Game Blaster, the same card that comes with the X79 Extreme9.

The X79 Extreme6/GB is a peculiar board and we're not quite sure what ASRock was thinking about when the company designed the board. So ok, it "only" has three x16 PCI Express slots compared to five for the X79 Extreme7, but at least all of the ones on the X79 Extreme6/GB are usable. There are also a single x1 PCI Express slot and two PCI slots, although strictly speaking, only one of the PCI slots can be used if you have a pair of graphics cards with dual slot coolers fitted to them.

X79 Extreme6GB 1 ASRock does more affordable 8 DIMM X79 motherboard

Moving on we're missing a couple of extra SATA 6Gbps ports, but the X79 Extreme6/GB still manages four SATA 3Gbps and five SATA 6Gbps ports, more than enough for most users. The VRM heatsink is smaller, but the phase count is the same and the X79 Extreme6/GB still sports tantalum capacitors. It also has two extra DIMM slots over the X79 Extreme7, but you only get two front USB 3.0 ports rather than four, again a non-issue for most people.

Looking at the rear I/O we have two PS/2 ports, four USB 3.0 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, a FireWire port, an eSATA port, a Gigabit Ethernet port, 7.1-channel audio with optical and coaxial S/PDIF out and a clear CMOS button. The difference here is very minor as the only missing feature is the secondary Gigabit Ethernet port compared to the X79 Extreme7. However, because the X79 Extreme6/GB come bundled with the Game Blaster, you get a second Gigabit Ethernet port through it, if you chose to install it.

X79 Extreme6GB 2 ASRock does more affordable 8 DIMM X79 motherboard

It might sound stupid to suggest that you shouldn't, but due to the slightly moronic slot layout of the X79 Extreme6/GB, if you're using all three x16 PCI Express slots, then it's very likely that you won't be able to use the Game Blaster card, as it requires a x1 PCI Express slot. That said, not that many people are running three way SLI or CrossFireX, so this is most likely not going to affect that many buyers of this board, but it's still a peculiar omission in the design by ASRock. Beyond the additional Gigabit Ethernet controller, the Game Blaster also features a Creative Sound Core3D audio chip which adds duplicate set of 7.1-channel audio with optical and coaxial S/PDIF out, which once more makes us wonder about what ASRock was thinking about when they designed this board.

We don't know when the X79 Extreme6/GB will be available, nor how much it'll cost, but in theory it should end up being similarly priced to the X79 Extreme7 due to the closeness in features and the additional cost of the bundled card.

Source: ASRock