ASUS Z87-Deluxe/Dual LGA 1150 Motherboard Review

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Of ASUS' mainstream motherboard lineup, the Z87 Deluxe/Dual falls in as their 2nd highest-end motherboard, behind only the Deluxe/Quad which has slightly expanded I/O features.  It strikes a fine balance of features and high-end hardware resulting in a package that should suit almost anyone's needs and satisfy even the most intensive users out in the wild.  ASUS has continued to impress with their various software and useful add-on features, of which the Deluxe/Dual has plenty, so let's get the ball rolling.

Key Features


  • Dual Intelligent Processors 4 with 4-Way Optimization
  • 4-Way Optimization - One Click and Done! Top-up Performance, Efficiency, Digital Power, and System Cooling
  • NFC EXPRESS- One-tap Gets Your PC Going!
  • Dual Thunderbolt onboard - Blistering-fast Data Transfers and Daisy Chain Expansion
  • Wi-Fi GO! - Connect Your Life – The Perfect Fusion of Desktop, Smartphones and Pads
  • AI Suite 3 -One-stop access to innovative ASUS features
  • DrectKey - Dedicated direct BIOS access button
  • ASUS 5X Protection -All-round protection provides the best quality, reliability, and durability
  • Multi GPU / Multi-Monitor/4K - Ready for 4K Ultra HD on three screens

**More detailed specifications available at the ASUS Z87-DELUXE/DUAL product page

 

Meet The Family - ASUS Z87 Series


ASUS" Z87 Deluxe/Dual falls on the high-end side of their mainstream motherboard lineup.  It breaks slightly from their typical family by providing more sub-options at the varous target levels.  The Deluxe has typically been the high-end board, but for Z87 ASUS has included a more "barebones" Deluxe model with all the hardcore features, but lacking some of the add-ons that not everyone may want or need.  The Deluxe/Dual then adds connectivity options with Dual Thunderbolt and a few other expanded connectivity options.  The end result is a bit of a more "tuned" offering which carries the same full-fledged core featureset through all Z87 boards, but allows you to choose which feature levels you really want.  The table below is meant to highlight the differences by comparing the basic Z87-C model, the high-end Z87-Deluxe/Dual, and the Z87 WS.

 

NOTE: For the love of everything that's good, this unwieldy table I created below wasn't really meant to be gone through line-by-line.  But, if you so want, you can read through it all.  My attempt here was to show the primary differences between the different boards, so I don't show common features in the table.  My hope is you'll be able to give it a quick scroll to see how the featuresets are different, but not anything more, for your own sake.  The full specs can be found on ASUS' site linked above.

Z87-C

Z87-DELUXE/DUAL

Z87-WS

CPU
Intel® Socket 1150 for 4th Generation Core™ i7/Core™ i5/Core™ i3/Pentium®/Celeron® Processors
Supports Intel® 22 nm CPU
Intel® Socket 1150 for 4th Generation Core™ i7/Core™ i5/Core™ i3/Pentium®/Celeron®/Xeon® E3-1200/12x5 v3 series Processors
Memory
4 x DIMM, Max. 32GB, DDR3 3000(O.C.)/2933(O.C.)/2800(O.C.)/2666(O.C.)/2600(O.C.)/2500(O.C.)/2400(O.C.)/2200(O.C.)/2133(O.C.)/2000(O.C.)/1866(O.C.)/1800(O.C.)/1600/1333 MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory 4 x DIMM, Max. 32GB, DDR3 2800(O.C.)/2666(O.C.)/2600(O.C.)/2500(O.C.)/2400(O.C.)/2200(O.C.)/2133(O.C.)/1866(O.C.)/1800/1600/1333 MHz Non-ECC, Un-buffered Memory 
Graphic
- Supports DVI-D with max. resolution 1920 x 1200 @ 60 Hz
- Supports RGB with max. resolution 1920 x 1200 @ 60 Hz
- Supports Thunderbolt with max. resolution 4096 x2160 @24 Hz / 3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz - Supports DisplayPort with max. resolution 4096 x 2160 @ 24 Hz / 3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz
Multi-GPU Support
Supports AMD Quad-GPU CrossFireX™ Technology *1 Supports NVIDIA® Quad-GPU SLI™ Technology *2
Supports AMD Quad-GPU CrossFireX™ Technology
Supports AMD 3-Way CrossFireX™ Technology
Supports NVIDIA® 4-Way SLI™ Technology
Supports AMD 4-Way CrossFireX Technology  
Expansion Slots
1 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16
1 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (x4 mode) *2
2 x PCIe 2.0 x1
3 x PCI
3 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (x16 or dual x8 or x8/x4/x4)
4 x PCIe 2.0 x1
4 x PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16 (dual x16 or x16/x8/x8 or quad x8)
2 x PCIe 2.0 x1  
Storage
Intel® Z87 chipset :
6 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), yellow
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10
Intel® Z87 chipset :
6 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), yellow
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10
ASMedia® ASM1061 controller : *4
4 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), dark brown
Intel® Z87 chipset :
6 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), yellow
Support Raid 0, 1, 5, 10
Marvell® PCIe 9230 controller :
4 x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), black
Support Raid 0, 1, 10
ASMedia® ASM1061 controller :
2 x eSATA 6Gb/s port(s), red  
LAN
Realtek® 8111GR, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s) Intel® I217V, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s)
Realtek® 8111GR, 1 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s)
Dual Gigabit LAN controllers- 802.3az Energy Efficient Ethernet (EEE) appliance
Intel® LAN- Dual interconnect between the Integrated LAN controller and Physical Layer (PHY)
Intel® I210, 2 x Gigabit LAN Controller(s)  
Audio
Realtek® ALC892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC Realtek® ALC1150 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
- High quality 112 dB SNR stereo playback output (Line-out at rear) and 104 dB SNR recording input (Line-in)
Audio Feature :
- Absolute Pitch 192kHz/ 24-bit True BD Lossless Sound
- Blu-ray audio layer Content Protection 
- DTS Ultra PC II
- DTS Connect
- Optical S/PDIF out port(s) at back panel
- BD Audio Layer Content Protection
USB Ports
Intel® Z87 chipset :
6 x USB 3.0/2.0 port(s) (4 at back panel, blue, 2 at mid-board)
Intel® Z87 chipset :
8 x USB 2.0/1.1 port(s) (2 at back panel, black, 6 at mid-board)
Intel® Z87 chipset :
4 x USB 3.0/2.0 port(s) (2 at back panel, blue, 2 at mid-board)
Intel® Z87 chipset :
8 x USB 2.0/1.1 port(s) (4 at back panel, black, 4 at mid-board)
ASMedia® USB 3.0 controller :
4 x USB 3.0/2.0 port(s) (4 at back panel, blue)
Intel® Z87 chipset :
3 x USB 3.0/2.0 port(s) (1 at back panel, blue, 2 at mid-board)
Intel® Z87 chipset :
9 x USB 2.0/1.1 port(s) (4 at back panel, , 5 at mid-board)
ASMedia® USB 3.0 controller :
3 x USB 3.0/2.0 port(s) (3 at back panel, blue)  
Special Features
ASUS Dual Intelligent Processors 2 with DIGI+ VRM :

ASUS 5X Protection :
- ASUS DIGI+ VRM - 4 Phase digital power design
- ASUS Enhanced DRAM Overcurrent Protection - Short circuit damage prevention
- ASUS ESD Guards - Enhanced ESD protection
- ASUS High-Quality 5K-Hour Solid Capacitors - 2.5x long lifespan with excellent durability
- ASUS Stainless Steel Back I/O - 3x more durable corrosion-resistant coating
ASUS EPU :
- EPU
ASUS Digital Power Design :
- Industry leading Digital 4 Phase CPU Power Design
ASUS Quiet Thermal Solution :
- Stylish Fanless Design Heat-sink solution
ASUS Q-Design :
- ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
- ASUS Q-Slot
- ASUS Q-DIMM

ASUS Dual Intelligent Processors 4 with 4-Way Optimization :
- The tuning key perfectly consolidates ASUS-exclusive DIGI+ Power Control, TPU, EPU, and Fan Xpert 2 optimize the digital power setting, system performance, power saving and whole system cooling configuration
ASUS 5X Protection :
- ASUS DIGI+ VRM - 16 Phase digital power design
- ASUS Enhanced DRAM Overcurrent Protection - Short circuit damage prevention
- ASUS ESD Guards - Enhanced ESD protection
- ASUS High-Quality 5K-Hour Solid Capacitors - 2.5x long lifespan with excellent durability
- ASUS Stainless Steel Back I/O - 3x more durable corrosion-resistant coating
ASUS EPU :
- EPU
- EPU switch
ASUS Digital Power Design :
- Industry leading Digital 16 Phase CPU Power Design
- Industry leading Digital 2 Phase DRAM Power Design
ASUS Wi-Fi GO!
- Wi-Fi GO! Function: Cloud GO!, Media Streaming Hub, Smart Sensor Control, Remote Desktop, Remote Keyboard & Mouse, File Transfer, Capture & Send
- Wi-Fi Engine for network sharing and connection: Client Mode, AP Mode
- Wi-Fi GO! & NFC Remote for portable Smartphone/Tablet, supporting iOS & Android systems
ASUS Exclusive Features :
- USB BIOS Flashback
- MemOK!
- Onboard Button : Power/Reset
ASUS Quiet Thermal Solution :
- Stylish Fanless Design Heat-pipe solution
- ASUS Fan Xpert 2
ASUS Q-Design :
- ASUS Q-Shield
- ASUS Q-Code
- ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA, Boot Device LED)
- ASUS Q-Slot
- ASUS Q-DIMM
- ASUS Q-Connector

ASUS Dual Intelligent Processors 4 with 4-Way Optimization :
- The tuning key perfectly consolidates ASUS-exclusive DIGI+ Power Control, TPU, EPU, and Fan Xpert 2 optimize the digital power setting, system performance, power saving and whole system cooling configuration
ASUS EPU :
- EPU
- EPU switch
ASUS Digital Power Design :
- Industry leading Digital 8 Phase CPU Power Design
- Industry leading Digital 2 Phase DRAM Power Design
ASUS Exclusive Features :
- TurboV EVO
- GPU Boost
- USB BIOS Flashback
- MemOK!
- Onboard Button : Power/Reset
- ASUS SSD Caching II
ASUS Q-Design :
- ASUS Q-Shield
- ASUS Q-Code
- ASUS Q-LED (CPU, DRAM, VGA)
- ASUS Q-Slot
- ASUS Q-DIMM
- ASUS Q-Connector
Back I/O Ports
1 x DVI-D
1 x D-Sub
1 x HDMI
1 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
4 x USB 3.0 (blue)
2 x USB 2.0
6 x Audio jack(s)
2 x Thunderbolt port(s)
1 x HDMI
2 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
6 x USB 3.0 (blue)
4 x USB 2.0
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
6 x Audio jack(s)
1 x USB BIOS Flashback Button(s)
1 x ASUS Wi-Fi GO! module (Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth v4.0/3.0+HS)
1 x PS/2 keyboard/mouse combo port(s)
1 x DisplayPort
1 x HDMI
2 x eSATA 6Gb/s
2 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
4 x USB 3.0
4 x USB 2.0 (one port can be switched to USB BIOS Flashback)
1 x Optical S/PDIF out
6 x Audio jack(s)
1 x USB BIOS Flashback Button(s)
1 x Mini DisplayPort(s)  
Internal I/O Ports
3 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 6 USB 2.0 port(s)
6 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
3 x Chassis Fan connector(s) (3 x 4 -pin)
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
1 x DRCT header(s)
1 x Clear CMOS jumper(s)

2 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 4 USB 2.0 port(s)
10 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
4 x Chassis Fan connector(s) (4 x 4 -pin)
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
1 x System panel(s) (Q-Connector)
1 x DRCT header(s)
1 x TPU switch(es)
1 x EPU switch(es)
1 x Power-on button(s)
1 x Reset button(s)
1 x Clear CMOS button(s)
2 x USB 2.0 connector(s) support(s) additional 4 USB 2.0 port(s)
1 x USB 2.0/1.1 vertical port(s)
1 x COM port(s) connector(s)
10 x SATA 6Gb/s connector(s)
1 x mSATA connector
4 x Chassis Fan connector(s) (4x4-pin)
2 x 8-pin EATX 12 V Power connector
1 x 6-pin EATX 12 V_1 Power connector(s)
1 x Chassis Intrusion connector(s)
1 x TPU switch(es)
1 x EPU switch(es)
1 x Dr.Power switch(es)  
Accessories

I/O Shield
2 x SATA 6Gb/s cable(s)
ASUS Q-Shield
6 x SATA 6Gb/s cable(s)
1 x NFC EXPRESS box with 2 extra USB 3.0 ports + NFC EXPRESS tag + ASUS NFC EXPRESS utility*6
1 x ASUS 2T2R dual band Wi-Fi moving antennas (Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac compliant)
1 x SLI bridge(s)
1 x Q-connector(s) (2 in 1)
User's manual
Accessory Guide
ASUS Q-Shield
1 x COM port cable(s)
10 x SATA 6Gb/s cable(s)
1 x 3-Way SLI bridge(s)
1 x 4-Way SLI bridge(s)
1 x SLI bridge(s)
1 x 2-port USB2.0 + 1394 bracket(s)  
Thunderbolt
VGA output support
Data transfer rate up to 10 Gbps
Daisy-chain up to 12 Thunderbolt devices
   
Wireless Data Network
Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac*5
Supports dual band frequency 2.4/5 GHz
   
Bluetooth
Bluetooth V4.0
Bluetooth V3.0+HS
   
IEEE 1394
   1 x IEEE 1394a port(s)
(1 at mid-board)  
Workstation Feature
   Quick Gate: 1 x vertical USB 2.0 on board
ASUS Dr. Power  

 

Included Accessories


asus-z87-deluxe-dual-boxasus-z87-deluxe-dual-included-accessories

Overall the box unpacks to a pretty nice loadout, but the one thing that was notably missing for a tri-SLI/Xfire motherboard was a tri-SLI bridge.  That is an "interesting" omission and something that any of you tri-GPU buyers should be aware of.  Otherwise, it comes with the Q-connector headers which makes connecting your case leads exponentially easier, an NFC Express box, dual-band Wi-Fi antenna, 2-way SLI bridge, the typical manual/driver disk, and six 6 GB/s SATA cables.

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