Wednesday, August 20, 2014

AsRock Z77 Extreme 11 Motherboard

This is a bit of a continuation of my "Seagate Constellation" post from 22 June 2013, in which I mentioned my predisposition to squander money on a new mainboard.

Well, I finally did, a couple of months back.  And to make things worse, I also bought  new CPU, an Intel Ivy Bridge i7 3770K.

Initially, that AsRock Extreme 11 mainboard would have set me back around 450 Euro, but by the time I had gathered the money, I found one on eBay for 286 Euro.  Since my keen eye stumbled across the Intel i7 3770K processor earlier, for the nice price of 220 Euro, I decided to get both.

Okay, so that's just over 500 Euro, but it's only 50 Euro over what I would have paid for the mainboard alone, so, hey, sue me...

Mainboard works like a charm, too.  Except that it's a bit slower when booting-up.  Has to do with the tests the SAS chip performs when looking for attached SAS hard drives.

Also, after some two months of use, the small 40mm cooler which sits atop the SAS chip, started making annoying noises.  Those noses quickly turned into some serious howling, akin to what is expected of a werewolf with a severe tooth-ache.

So, I decided to buy a new cooler.  Found one on eBay, ordered and paid for it and got it 36hrs later... to find out it doesn't fit...

Buggers at AsRock made it so that regular 40mm fans don't go on the board by making their own type of fan which has only three mounting screws, closer to the center of the fan, instead of the regular four at the corners of the fan's armature...

Ah well...  Since the noise was meanwhile of a variety that makes your average PC user end up in the loony bin after longer periods of exposure, I decided to simply disconnect the fannus lupus.

Kept a worried eye on the temperatures, to only come to the conclusion that the fan does exactly... nothing.  With or without this fan, the temps on the chip stay the same.  Beats me why they added a fan, then.

In any case, I'm going to send an email to AsRock with a complaint about the board's fan in order for them to send me a new one, since the board is still under warranty for another 18 months.

Or I might try and find a way to dismount the cooling block from the mainboard (which again is mounted in such a way you can't reach one of the screws) and add a cooling block with fan of my own.

There's also the possibility to add a watercooling block for both the SAS chipset and the capacitators to the left of the CPU socket, but the set costs 115 pounds.  Since I'll also have to buy a watercooling set -radiator, water pump, radiator fans, etc.- the lot would cost way too much.

Okay, so taking the risk of operating the board without the cooler is also nuts maybe, but since I never saw any changes in temps, I'll see what happens...


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