MSI Z77A GD65 Motherboard Review
Up Close cont
The area around the CPU socket is well laid out and easy to work with. Even with our monster twin-tower cooler installed it's easy to put the 8pin CPU power in, which is more than can be said for a lot of motherboards we test.
The PCI Express slots are equally well spaced, allowing for good airflow around even a twin GPU setup, although as is always the case the second PCI x1 slot isn't usable when a GPU is installed.
As well as the normal array of USB headers, we have a dual-BIOS switch. Often motherboards with two BIOS' rely on the system knowing one has been corrupted to switch to the other, whereas here a mere flick of the dip switch and you're up and running again.
At the top of the motherboard we have some monitoring points, as well as the power and reset switched. Just behind the RAM slots at the leading edge are some LEDs which, rather than just demonstrating the boards boot state, seem to flicker constantly during use. Not a large issue but one to be aware of if your case has a window and is at eye level. We also find the OC Genie button, more on which later.
Outputs are covered with a wealth of SATA headers. Round the back we have a dual-purpose PS2 connector, alongside the more usual USB and display outputs.