MSI Z87 MPower MAX motherboard review

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Right, storage connectivity. SATA ports -- MSI is equipping the board with eight SATA ports. Six of them come from the Intel PCH and two of them are provided by ASMedia 1061 controller (which is a pretty good one). All ports are SATA 3 - 6 GBps so you can manage some seriously nasty stuff with SSDs alright.


In-between the PCIe slots and close to the PCH you'll however spot a cute small connector, this in fact is a mSATA port. Mind you that if you use it you will lose the SATA5 port as the motherboard can only handle eight storage units as maximum.


Here you can see the three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots (x16/NC/NC or x8/x8/NC or x8/x4/x4); four PCI-Express x1 slots. The lower left shows a series of buttons which we'll address on the next page.


But lets zoom in to the lower right first.  To your right you can see a switch, that's a dual-BIOS switch, should your firmware flash fail or pretty much you destroyed your primary BIOS, here you can switch towards the second one. Obviously you could also setup on BIOS for performance stuff, and the other for energy friendly stuff.  Multi-BIOS II is a safety feature that ensures a working BIOS even if it fails once. An Indicator light will always show which revision of the BIOS you are running. 

The FASTB1 button is as simple as it is genius, you know that when you have to hit the F2 or Delete key forever to enter the BIOS ? Well, just press this button and boom, after a reset or power-on you'll go into the BIOS.


A two-digit Debug LED is present as well. It shows the exact system status while booting (for easy troubleshooting) and displays the CPU temperature when running in the OS. Once powered on the MSI logo lights up as there is a LED behind it. 


Oh and once powered on, shine bright like a diamond! You can find seven LEDs underneath the motherboard. So once you have it installed in your PC, there's this HALO of light emanating from the motherboard. Nice we like that.

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