The mainboard makers try to prepare most products for the chipset launch. Long before the official release date, they design en entire mainboard series with diverse functionality, which should satisfy the needs of as many different user categories as possible. However, the RND work doesn’t stop once the chipset has been officially launched, but merely transitions to the next phase. This is when we see not only updated revisions of the already released mainboard models, but also completely new products, which add even more value to the already existing families of products. This is exactly what happened this summer, when at the Computex 2012 in Taiwan we could see a lot of different products with Thunderbolt support, including mainboards, of course.
We already started our discussion of the new technology and its potential in our Intel DZ77RE-75K review, because it was the first mainboard model with Thunderbolt support, which we managed to get our hands on. We performed a more in-depth investigation of the Thunderbolt performance and potential in our Buffalo MiniStation Thunderbolt HD-PA1.0TU3 review. We performed all of our tests using a platform built on Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP5 TH mainboard. Today we are going to talk about the features and performance of this particular mainboard model as well as its younger sister – GA-Z77X-UP4 TH.