Sapphire Pure Platinum Z77K Reviewccokeman -
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Sapphire has long been known as AMD's largest partner. Having the production capacity to build both reference boards and its own custom PCBs have given Sapphire a unique edge to keep moving further into the high end motherboard market. After bringing on a new staff of engineers to improve the motherboard part of the portfolio, Sapphire has made great progress with bringing a solid selection of boards to market for both AMD and Intel systems. Progress has been steady and has shown improvement over the past year with 990FX, X79, Z68 and now a Z77-based board for use with Intel's Third Generation Core series Ivy Bridge processors. What we have today is the Sapphire Pure Platinum Z77K motherboard. It offers up support for up to 32GB of DDR3 memory, UEFI BIOS, CrossfireX support with up to four graphics cards, Intel's latest technologies including Rapid Start, Smart Response and Switchable graphics and the inclusion of a Killer e2200 NIC; all for a competitive $149 price point. Lets see what this latest offering from Sapphire brings to the table in terms of overclocking and value.
As a prerelease board the packing was not finalized, but the Pure Platinum Z77K comes in a black box much like the rest of the Pure Platinum boards I have looked at from Sapphire. Inside the accessory bundle is in the top compartment of the box with the Pure Platinum Z77K taking up residence in the bottom section of the package.
As it sits the bundle with this Pure Platinum edition board is fairly slim with SATA drive cables, the I/O panel cover, USB 3.0 drive bay adapter, rear mounting brackets to facilitate adding the ports to the rear panel, documentation and driver disk. This bundle may be an early bundle but at the worst it still offers the ability to use the functionality of the Pure Platinum Z77K to effect.
While slim by comparisons to what is offered in the video cards, the bundle will allow the end user to use the feature set of the board without any other added features.