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MSI Z77 MPower Big Bang Motherboard Review

Subject: Motherboards
Manufacturer: MSI

Bundled Applications

Included Applications

  • MSI Suite
  • Super Charger
  • Click BIOS II
  • Control Center
  • Audio Genie
  • Video Genie
  • Teaming Genie
  • Live Update 5
  • Easy Viewer
  • THX TruStudio PRO
  • Network Genie
  • Chrome Browser
  • Titanium Internet Security trial-ware

The MSI Suite is a bundling mechanism for all the included MSI utilities, providing a centralized repository from which you can access and run the applets. The applications can also be run by themselves. The Super Charger applet allows the user to fast-charge USB devices from the board's USB ports. Click BIOS II and the Control Center applets are used for Windows-based board monitoring and overclocking. The Audio, Network and Teaming Genie applets are for controlling aspects of their targeted components (the audio and the networking subsystems respectively). The Video Genie can visually enhance pictures and the Easy Viewer can be used to view media files. Live Update 5 give the user a Windows-based interface for BIOS backup and update.

Click BIOS II

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The Click BIOS II applet provides the user with an exact replica of the Z77 MPOWER's BIOS screens from within windows with all settings available from the following screens: Settings, OC, ECO, and SECURITY. The Settings screen is further sub-divided into the Advanced tab, the M-Flash tab, and the Boot tab. Note that you can access the Control Center applet from an icon in the upper right corner of the Click BIOS II title bar.

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Motherboard settings (SETTINGS) page

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Overclock settings (OC) page

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Energy saving settings (ECO) page

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Password settings (SECURITY) page

Control Center

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The Control Center applet provides similar utility to the user as the Click BIOS II applet in a more user friendly interface. The applet is divided into several tabs as follows: Overclocking, OC Genie, Green Power, LED, Record, and Mobile Control. The OC Genie tab gives the user Windows-based control over the OC Genie overclocking BIOS by simply clicking the OC Genie button on the page. The Record tab gives the user options for monitoring and recording history on various BIOS monitored voltages, fan speeds, and temperatures. The Mobile Control tab houses functionality for enabling board settings control via a remote smart phone applet, for both Android and iOS type devices. Note that you can access the Click BIOS II applet from an icon in the upper right corner of the Control Center title bar.

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Advanced Mode overclocking pages

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OC Genie tab

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Green Power tab

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LED tab

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Record tab

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Mobile Control tab

January 2, 2013 | 09:28 PM - Posted by Angry

Very very nice!

:EDIT:
Nevermind, Im a dufus. Shouldnt read hard reviews on the john with the Kindle.

Anyway, is 8x4x4x Sli really worth it? Say 3 GTX 670s?

January 12, 2013 | 03:40 AM - Posted by rrr (not verified)

8x vs 16x shows differences of around ~5%. x4 shows about ~30% of difference, so certainly NOT worth it.

January 17, 2013 | 07:35 AM - Posted by WillRock (not verified)

That's BS:

http://tpucdn.com/reviews/Intel/Ivy_Bridge_PCI-Express_Scaling/images/pe...,

PCI-E 3.0 x4 equals to PCI-E 2.0 x8, which is easily sufficient for a triple GPU setup.

Why do you consistantly keep on going around making up bullcrap Rafal? Stuart? Is your name even Rafal or Stuart? Oh nvm, you're a total moron...

January 3, 2013 | 01:25 AM - Posted by Sean Sinha (not verified)

The CMOS battery location isn't as big of an issue thanks to the rear-panel CMOS-clear button. I am a big fan of the current MSI Z77 stuff and this board is probably the best mix of high end features and overclockability you're going to find in the sub-$200 range.

January 3, 2013 | 09:32 AM - Posted by cyberwire

Overclocking Results page is using the same CPU-Z screenshot for both frequencies. The 4.2Ghz one is missing.

Otherwise great review!

January 3, 2013 | 04:09 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Thank you for poiting that out cyberwire.  The images on that page have been corrected...

January 5, 2013 | 10:54 PM - Posted by Peter Wong (not verified)

Has anyone get the phase LEDs to change in Windows 8? during system boot up they blink but in windows 8 they all stay on.

Thanks,

January 8, 2013 | 01:59 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

Have not played with the board in Windows 8, but teh BIOS does have Windows 8 specific settings.  You may want to try messing with those setting to see if you have any better luck...

January 22, 2013 | 07:26 AM - Posted by markdek (not verified)

AMD does not have FXAA, so how can this be in the Batman test settings w/ an AMD 5870?

I really want to know, because I cannot duplicate your Batman test w/ this setup.

January 23, 2013 | 08:25 PM - Posted by Morry Teitelman

With the 5870, I have the option in the graphics options screen (not in game, only accessible from startup) to force FXAA type rendering, as shown below

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