- Highlighted Features:
- Supports 12th Gen Intel® Core™ Processors (LGA1700)
- 9 Phase Dr.MOS Power Design
- Supports DDR4 5000MHz (OC)
- 1 PCIe 5.0 x16, 1 PCIe 4.0 x16, 3 PCIe 3.0 x1 1 M.2 Key-E for WiFi
- Graphics Output Options: HDMI, DisplayPort
- Realtek ALC897 7.1 CH HD Audio Codec, Nahimic Audio
- 4 SATA3
- 2 Hyper M.2 (PCIe Gen4 x4), 1 Hyper M.2 (PCIe Gen4 x4 & SATA3)
- 1 Front USB 3.2 Gen2x2 Type-C, 2 USB 3.2 Gen2 (Rear Type A+C), 6 USB 3.2 Gen1 (2 Rear, 4 Front)
- Dragon 2.5G LAN
Comprehensive ASRock H670 Steel Legend Review. Along with the mid-range 12th generation Intel Core processor models, a motherboard equipped with the mainstream & entry level “Intel H670/B660” chipset for LGA1700 has appeared. ASRock has produced familiar series such as “H670 PG Riptide” which is in the low price range of USD 175 and “B660M Pro RS” which is the cheapest class for an LGA1700 motherboard, priced at around USD 145. The goal is to combine it with Core i5, which has cost performance which is brilliant, and the Core i7, which has an interesting balance.
Along with this, ASRock’s standard “Steel Legend” series motherboards, the H670 chipset adoption model “H670 Steel Legend” already released by ASRock on January 28, 2022. The estimated selling price is around USD 235. This time I tried the H670 Steel Legend before it was released, so I will introduce its features and performance.
ASRock Motherboard “H670 Steel Legend” with good cost performance – ideal for 12th generation Core i5 / i7 combination
Before touching the H670 Steel Legend, let’s first review the differences between the Intel Z690, H670 and B660 chipsets. The main differences between the top Intel Z690, H670, and B660 are support for CPU overclocking, the number of DMI 4.0 lanes connecting the CPU and chipset, and the number of PCIe 4.0/3.0 lanes for chipset control.
|DMI 4.0 Line||8||8||4|
|PCIe 4.0 Chipset Line||12||12||6|
|PCIe 3.0 Chipset Line||16||12||8|
|Maximum number of USB ports||14||14||12|
|USB 3.2 Gen2 × 2||4||2||2|
|USB 3.2 Gen2||10||4||4|
|USB 3.2 Gen1||10||8||6|
There’s not much difference between the Intel Z690 and H670, but the H670 doesn’t support CPU overclocking when coupled with the “K” model number, and the PCIe 3.0 lane count for chipset control has changed from 16 to 12 lanes. The number of USB ports such as USB 3.2 Gen2 x 2 and USB 3.2 Gen2 is decreasing.
As you can see from the specifications’ table for the “Z690 Steel Legend” and H670 Steel Legend, there is no big difference in the specifications of the expansion slot and the installable M.2 NVMe SSD. However, the “H670 Steel Legend”, which costs almost USD 90 less than the “Z690 Steel Legend” (actual price: around USD 295), is quite attractive.
|Specifications||Z690 Steel Legend||H670 Steel Legend|
|Chipset||Chipset Intel Z670||Chipset Intel H670|
|Suitable memory clock||Maximum 5000MHz (DDR4-5000)||Maximum 5000MHz (DDR4-5000)|
|Expansion slots||PCI Express x16 Form x 3 (single: Gen 5.0 x16, Dual: Gen 5.0 x16 / Gen 4.0 x4, Triple: Gen 5.0 x16 / Gen 4.0 x4 / Gen 3.0 x4), PCI Express 3.0 x1 × 2||PCI Express x16 Form x 2 (single: Gen 5.0 x16, Dual: Gen 5.0 x16 / Gen 4.0 x4), PCI Express 3.0 x1 × 3|
|Storage||SATA 3.0 x 8, Hyper M.2 (M2_1) PCIe 4.0 x4, Ultra M.2 (M2_2) PCIe 3.0 x4 / SATA 3.0, Hyper M.2 (M2_3) PCIe 4.0 x4||SATA 3.0 x4, Hyper M.2 (M2_1) PCIe 4.0 x4, Hyper M.2 (M2_2) PCIe 4.0 x4, Hyper M.2 (M2_3) PCIe 4.0 x4 / SATA 3.0|
|LAN||2.5 Gigabit LAN (Dragon RTL8125BG)||2.5 Gigabit LAN (Dragon RTL8125BG)|
|Sound||7.1ch audio (Realtek ALC897)||7.1ch audio (Realtek ALC897)|
|Back interfaces||PS / 2, HDMI x 1, DisplayPort x 1, USB 3.2 Gen2 x 2 Type-A x 1 / Type-C x 1, USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-A x 4, audio terminal x 6, SPDIF terminal x 1||PS / 2, HDMI x 1, DisplayPort x 1, USB 3.2 Gen2 x 2 Type-A x 1 / Type-C x 1, USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-A x 2, USB 2.0 x 4, audio terminal x 3|
|M/B USB Pin header||USB 2.0 x 2, USB 3.2 Gen1 x 2, USB 3.2 Gen2 x 2 Front Type-C||USB 2.0 x 1, USB 3.2 Gen1 x 2, USB 3.2 Gen2 x 2 Front Type-C|
Both use black durable 50A Dr.MOS and Nichicon 12K capacitors for the power supply circuit, but the H670 Steel Legend has been reduced to 9 phases from the 13 phases of the Z690 Steel Legend. The CPU auxiliary power connector has also been changed from 8 pin x 2 to 8 pin + 4 pins, but it can be said to be sufficient for use with 12th generation Core i5/i7.
In addition, RGB LED lighting is installed only in the chipset cooler, and is also characterized by the fact that it is equipped with one M.2 cooler.