ASRock Z690 Extreme WIFI 6E & Z690 Extreme (DDR4)

Occupying the upper end of what ASRock is considering its mid-range is a pair of 'Extreme' branded models. ASRock has segmented its Z690 stack well between DDR5 and DDR4 support, which makes it even easier to decipher which is which. The ASRock Z690 Extreme WIFI 6E and Z690 Extreme both share the exact same PCB, same design, same core feature set, but with one subtle difference. The Z690 Extreme WIFI 6E comes with a Wi-Fi 6E CNVi, while the regular model does not. Looking at the design, both Z690 Extreme models include an all-black PCB, with black metallic heatsinks, with integrated RGB LED lighting built into the rear panel cover, the chipset heatsink, and on the right-hand side of the board.

Dominating the lower section of the motherboard are the board's PCIe and storage slots. The ASRock Z690 Extreme WIFI 6E and Z690 Extreme include one full-length PCIe 5.0 x16, one full-length PCIe 4.0 x4, one full-length PCIe 3.0 x4, and one smaller PCIe 3.0 x1 slot. Storage options consist of three PCIe M.2 slots, two with support for PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 drives, and one with support for both PCIe 3.0 x4 and SATA drives. ASRock is using the Z690 chipsets full allocation of SATA with eight SATA ports, all with support for RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 arrays. Touching on memory, both models include support for DDR4-5000, with a combined capacity of 128 GB across four memory slots.

The only difference between the rear panel of both models is that the Z690 Extreme WIFI 6E includes a Wi-Fi 6E CNVi, while the regular Extreme does not.

Everything else is the same including one USB 3.2 G2 Type-C, one USB 3.2 G2 Type-A, and four USB 3.2 G1 Type-A ports. For users looking for USB 3.2 G2x2 Type-C, ASRock includes a front panel header for this. Other connectivity includes two Ethernet ports, one powered by a Realtek RTL8125BG 2.5 GbE controller, and the other by an Intel I219-V Gigabit controller. ASRock includes an HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 1.4 video output pairing, while five 3.5 mm audio jacks and S/PDIF optical are powered by a Realtek ALC1220 HD audio codec. Finishing off the rear panel is a BIOS Flashback button and a PS/2 combo port.

The Intel Z690 Chipset, What's New? ASRock Z690 Steel Legend WiFI 6E & Z690 Steel Legend (DDR4)
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  • DigitalFreak - Wednesday, November 24, 2021 - link

    The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-A Gaming WIFI D4 has a header and BIOS support for a TB4 add-in card. That's probably the best you're going to get on a Z690 DDR4 board.
  • tamilgun - Monday, January 10, 2022 - link

    i love intel system ..very good speedy system
  • DigitalFreak - Wednesday, November 24, 2021 - link

    ASUS ROG Strix Z690-A Gaming WIFI D4 (DDR4) - " On the memory front, there are four memory slots, with support for DDR5-6400 and a combined capacity of 128 GB."

    That's what happens when you copy / paste. :-)
  • meacupla - Wednesday, November 24, 2021 - link

    I wonder if mobo makers will bother with DDR4/5 combo mobos this time around.
  • Oxford Guy - Thursday, November 25, 2021 - link

    I recall reading here that it's not possible to have an Alder Lake board with support for both RAM types. That is re-affirmed here with this less clear wording:

    'Intel's Alder Lake and Z690 combined actually offer support for both DDR5 and DDR4 memory. This means that those motherboard vendors either have to build their motherboards for one or the other, so it's Z690 with DDR5 or Z690 with DDR4, and no in-between.'
  • TheinsanegamerN - Sunday, November 28, 2021 - link

    That's no different from skylake with ddr3/4, or phenom with ddr3/2. You can have both slots on one motherboard, but can only use one at a time. So will they make a board with two slots for both?
  • Oxford Guy - Thursday, December 2, 2021 - link

    The article here said hybrid boards aren’t going to happen. Intel either doesn’t want them or there is some other reason. That is what I remember reading. It doesn’t appear to be the same situation vis-a-vis one or more previous platforms where hybrid boards were made.
  • stayfrosty - Wednesday, November 24, 2021 - link

    The ASRock Z690M Phantom Gaming 4 does not do x8/x8 unfortunately :( If both x16 slots are used they can only do x16/x4

    And so my search continues for a x8/x8 capable z690 ddr4 board that's actually available to buy in Europe :/
  • Spoelie - Wednesday, November 24, 2021 - link

    It's curious that I can't find anywhere in the MSI documentation any confirmation that the MSI Pro Z690-A WIFI DDR4 actually includes WIFI 6E support rather than 6 -- just looking at the spec sheet would let one suspect it is only supporting 6 (only mentioning 2.4 & 5ghz bands, not 6)
  • timecop1818 - Wednesday, November 24, 2021 - link

    Why would anyone give a fuck about Wi-Fi on a desktop board. I'm more angry that Asus decided to remove Intel lan on ddr4 boards in favor of realtek shit. I'm talking about prime/etc series not the gaudy gaymer shit.

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