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Asrock FM2A88X Pro3+ review

Michael Passingham
10 Mar 2015
Expert Reviews Recommended Logo
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
55

The Asrock FM2A88X Pro3+ is a competitively priced ATX FM2+ motherboard with plenty of room for future expansion

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Specifications

Processor socket: FM2+, Dimensions: 303x204mm, Chipset: A88X, Memory slots: 4, PCI-E x16 slots: 2, PCI-E x1 slots: 3, PCI slots: 2, USB ports: 4x USB2, 2x USB3, Video outputs: DVI, VGA

The Asrock FM2A88X Pro3+ is low-cost, but well-specified FM2+ ATX motherboard. It's compatible with AMD FM2 and FM2+ sockets and there's room for up to 32GB of RAM in the board's four memory slots. Even if you don't want more than 8GB now, there's plenty of headroom for future expansion on the cheap by buying another two 4GB sticks.

There are plenty of PCI-E slots, too including two PCI-E x16 slots and three PCI-E x1 connectors. One of the PCI-E x16 slots runs at x16 speeds while the other is at x4. The motherboard is compatible with AMD CrossFire but if you're going to be embarking on a proper gaming PC you'll probably want a more expensive motherboard with a faster second PCI-E x16 slot.

There are eight SATA3 connectors on the right edge of the motherboard, which is more than enough for even the most complex storage configurations. All eight connectors support RAID modes 0, 1, 5 and 10.

On the rear of the FM2A88X you'll find six USB ports, two of which are USB3 compatible. The ports are slightly squashed together: the two USB ports and the USB3 connectors are very close to each other and the two other USB ports are right next to the DVI port. You'll have to carefully arrange your peripherals to ensure they all fit properly. Mid-board there are headers for two USB ports and two USB3 ports.

If you don't have a discrete graphics card the motherboard has two video outputs in the form of DVI and VGA connectors. There's no HDMI port, which seems like a strange omission given how common this standard is on monitors and TVs. Still, they can both output images in Full HD at 60Hz and the DVI port can also cope with 2,560x1,440 pixel images at 60Hz. There are three 3.5mm audio jacks on the rear but no optical audio.

We found performance to be largely in line with other FM2+ motherboards, with our AMD A10 7850K scoring 54 overall in our benchmarks. Overclocking is easy, too: the UEFI BIOS is relatively easy to navigate and the automatic overclocking function of the BIOS lets you pick a clock speed for your processor without you having to fiddle with external bus speeds, multipliers and voltage, although you can fiddle with all of these if you want to. It doesn't hold your hand and there's no Asus EZ Tune or MSI OC Genie-style tools to help you out, so you are largely on your own when you're overclocking.

Performance from the eight-core graphics processor on the 7850K was also inline with our expectations; 44.2fps at 720p and High graphics settings is a decent result. The Asrock FM2A88X is a good all-round motherboard with plenty of room for future expansion. Thanks to its full-size ATX form factor, it's also very easy to work with, as long as you have a case big enough to fit it into. It's very keenly priced, too, so if you're building a mid-range work or gaming PC, it's a great choice. 

Hardware
Processor socketFM2+
Form factorATX
Dimensions303x204mm
Processor supportAMD FM2+/FM2 (A-Series and Athlon)
Processor external bus100MHz
ChipsetA88X
Supported memory typeDDR3
Maximum memory speed2400MHz
Memory slots4
Maximum memory32GB
Motherboard power connectors1x 24-pin ATX, 1x 8-pin 12V
PCI-E x16 slots2
PCI-E x4 slots0
PCI-E x1 slots3
PCI slots2
Motherboard fan headers6
SATA II ports0
SATA III ports8
RAID support0, 1, 5, 10
Wired network ports1x 10/100/1000Mbit/s
Motherboard sound (ports)Realtek HD Audio (6x analogue, optical S/PDIF)
USB ports4x USB2, 2x USB3
USB headers4x USB2, 2x USB3
Video outputsDVI, VGA
Other ports2x PS/2
Cables included2x SATA
Motherboard clock adjustmentCPU/RAM
Motherboard voltage adjustmentCPU/RAM/chipset
Buying information
Price including VAT£55
WarrantyOne year RTB
Supplierwww.ballicom.co.uk
Detailswww.asrock.com
Part code90-MXGWJ0-A0UAYZ

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