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MSI Z77MA-G45

The MSI Z77MA-G45 is compatible with Intel processors with the LGA 1155/Socket H2 socket.

It has 32 GB DDR3 maximum RAM and conforms to the Micro-ATX form factor standard.

7.8

MSI Z77MA-G45

help iconCPU SocketLGA 1155/Socket H2help iconUSB 3.0 Rear2
help iconCPU Compatible MakeIntelhelp iconGraphics Card InterfacePCIe v3.0
help iconCPU ChipsetIntel Z77 Chipsethelp iconSLI Support2 graphics cards
help iconRelease Date09 Feb 2012help iconCrossfire Support2 graphics cards
help iconForm FactorMicro-ATXhelp iconOnboard GPUno
help iconMax RAM32 GB DDR3help iconPCI Slots
  • 2 x PCIe x1 v2.0
  • 2 x PCIe x16 v3.0
help iconRAM Slots4 x DDR3help iconSATA 1.00
help iconMemory Channels2help iconSATA 2.04
help iconCompatible RAM Speeds
  • DDR3 1066 MHz
  • DDR3 1333 MHz
  • DDR3 1600 MHz
  • DDR3 1866 MHz
  • DDR3 2133 MHz
  • DDR3 2400 MHz
help iconSATA 3.00
help iconUSB 2.0 Internal Slots2help iconRAID Supportyes
help iconUSB 2.0 Rear6help iconInternal I/O
  • 1 x 24 pin power connector
  • 1 x 4 pin power connector
  • 1 x 4 pin fan connector
  • 2 x fan header
  • 1 x S/PDIF connector
  • TPM Chip
help iconUSB 3.0 Internal1help iconBack Panel I/O
  • D-Sub Connector
  • DVI connector"
  • 7.1 Surround Sound
  • Audio Input Output
  • PS/2 mouse connector

MSI Z77MA-G45 compatibility review

The MSI Z77MA-G45 uses the Intel LGA 1155/Socket H2 CPU socket. Any compatible Intel CPU will have the same socket entry. It uses the DDR3 memory type, with maximum speeds of up to 2400 MHz, and 4 DDR3 slots allowing for a maximum total of 32 GB RAM.

Released on 09 Feb 2012, the MSI Z77MA-G45 is now over 9 years old, which means it is extremely out of date and is based on very aged technologies. This motherboard will be dwarfed in performance by its modern counterparts, and will likely have very little support from MSI.

The Micro-ATX MSI Z77MA-G45 should fit into all ATX cases, but its smaller size allows you to downsize your system build as a whole. Its size comes at the cost of features, so there are likely to be far fewer connections and expansion options available than in a larger motherboard.

The MSI Z77MA-G45 has 2 SATA 3.0 hard drive slots. These allow for theoretical data transfer speeds of up to 6GB/s, as opposed to the 3GB/s of SATA 2.0. Generally speaking, only high performance hard drives, specifically solid-state drives, will be able to take advantage of the bandwidth potential of SATA 3.0 ports, though it is backwards compatible, so you do not have to take advantage. This motherboard also has 4 SATA 2.0 slots, so numerous SATA hard drives can be connected if desired.

The MSI Z77MA-G45 does not support onboard graphics. Any system build that uses this motherboard therefore requires a separate graphics card, or a processor that has a GPU on the same die, such as AMD APU processors. There are 2 PCIe x16 slots on this motherboard. This means it is perfectly capable of accommodating the latest graphics cards, although it is important to try and use a graphics card with the same graphics card interface of PCIe v3.0, as anything below will not reach the motherboard's potential, and anything above will have its performance slashed to the bandwidth maximum of the MSI Z77MA-G45's PCIe v3.0. The MSI Z77MA-G45 supports up to 2 Nvidia SLI connected graphics cards or up to 2 AMD Crossfire connected graphics cards for improved overall graphical performance at the cost of multiplied graphics-based power consumption as well as the price of the cards themselves.

The MSI Z77MA-G45 has 8 USB 2.0 slots and 3 USB 3.0 slots. USB 3.0 slots are theoretically capable of data transfer speeds of up to 5 Gbit/s, which is over 10 times faster than the USB 2.0 top speed of 480 Mbit/s. Although USB 2.0 slots alone currently serve as well as ever, an upgrade would better future-proof your system as more USB 3.0 compatible peripherals emerge. USB 3.0 is also backwards compatible with USB 2.0, which means you do not even have to use the newer slot functionality if you do not wish to.

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