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Asustek Computer on Tuesday announced Z87-Deluxe/Quad, the first motherboard in the world with Thunderbolt 2 technology certified by Intel Corp. The new desktop PC solution comes to market ahead of Apple, the company that has so far been the first adopter of Thunderbolt technology.

Based on the new Intel Z87 chipset and ready for the latest Intel Core i-series “Haswell” processors, the Aasus Z87-Deluxe/Quad ATX motherboard has two Thunderbolt 2 ports for connecting up to 12 devices at once. Each port has up to 20Gb/s transfer rate and is backwardly compatible with Thunderbolt.

“Z87-Deluxe/Quad has been subjected to tremendous compatibility, BIOS validation, video/audio and other tests to verify its quality and design. Being the world’s first certified motherboard for Thunderbolt 2 technology also means setting the standard for all of the upcoming products, which is something that ASUS has always done,” said Joe Hsieh, Asus corporate vice president and general manager of the motherboard and desktop system business unit.

The original Thunderbolt standard has four separate transfer channels — two upstream and two downstream — with a maximum transfer rate of 10Gbit/s per channel. Thunderbolt 2 combines these four channels into two 20Gb/s bi-directional channels, which are 4 times faster than USB 3.0. Together with DisplayPort 1.2 support, this enables Thunderbolt 2 to simultaneously deliver extremely high-resolution video to the latest 4K/2K (4096*2160) displays and communicate with other bandwidth-hungry devices, such as hard drives. With the onboard HDMI port, Asus Z87-Deluxe/Quad can drive three 4K UHD displays at once.

Thunderbolt 2 also supports daisy-chained connections with up to six devices on each port. With two Thunderbolt 2 ports, Asus Z87-Deluxe/Quad can connect to up to 12 devices at once, reducing the need for separate hubs and helping maintain a clutter-free workspace.

Asus Z87-Deluxe/Quad includes a number of exclusive technologies. Dual Intelligent Processors 4 with 4-way optimization is an easy-to-use tuning tool that dynamically adjusts performance and cooling for reduced noise and increased efficiency with a single click. The UEFI BIOS presents a friendly graphical interface, making it easier than ever to set up shortcuts and favorites for quick access to the options that are used most often.

Z87-Deluxe/Quad also includes NFC Express, an accessory that can automate common PC tasks simply by tapping the supplied NFC tag or NFC-compatible smart devices to the box. NFC Express can be used for secure Windows user account login without the need to type in a password, and to launch multiple applications to create a particular working set-up. Using the free Wi-Fi GO! & NFC Remote companion app for NFC-compatible smart devices, users can also wirelessly synchronize photos and videos with their PC and remotely control the system with no complicated set-up in a tap.

Pricing of Asus Z87-Deluxe/Quad is unknown.

Tags: ASUS, Thunderbolt, Intel, DisplayPort, 4K, Haswell, Lynx Point

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