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Old 10-06-12   #1
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[REVIEW]P8Z77 V Deluxe Review


Introduction


The foremost thing that comes into mind when building a rig is the motherboard as that is the most important component of a smoothly running computer system. So,basically Motherboard manufacture always fight out to bring the best in the market. Today we will review one top of the line motherboard from one of the dominating players in the components market : ASUS.

The motherboard we will be reviewing is P8Z77 V Deluxe. The topmost model on the Z77 mainstream lineup.

A few words on the Z77 Chipset :
The Z77 chipset is supposed to be the replacement of the Z68 chipset from Intel along with the 3rd generation ivy bridge processors.As such they are supposed to be the better than the erstwhile Z68 platform;now whether they are better is a question of debate. Only difference what i can see feature wise is inclusion of USB 3.0 and iRst 11.0 and the surprise removal was of pci slots in the Z77 platform. Here's a block diagram of Z77 for the technically inquisitive.

Asus Z77 lineup
Asus currently has 9 motherboard in its Z77 lineup .The top of the line being P8Z77 V Deluxe which we are reviewing today.


Up Close : P8Z77 V Deluxe
Before we dive into the review .. lets take a look at the board it self and its features.


The best things I like in the layout are:

  • The space between the PCI-E slots.
  • The component LED for cpu,ram,gpu and boot devices.
  • The LED poster which helps in debugging or troubleshooting)
  • on-board Thunderbolt header.
  • the overall color theme.


A few more shots of the board and accessories:


We can safely say Asus has gone into overdrive when they designed this board; and they should be .. as this is the flagship board.


The back-panel includes:

  • 4 USB 2.0 ports
  • 6 USB 3.0 ports
  • HDMI/DisplayPort ports
  • 2X esata ports
  • 2 x LAN (RJ45) port(s)
  • 1 x Optical S/PDIF out
  • 6 x Audio jack(s)
  • 1 x Bluetooth V4.0 connector(s) for ASUS Wi-Fi GO! card
  • 1 x USB BIOS Flashback Button(s)
  • 1X slot for the WIFI Go card


Feature list


Special Features

The Z77 V deluxe is packed to the brim with features.Some of them are really worth mentioning.
FAN EXPERT 2


Currently only four in Asus' entire lineup supports the latest version of their utility, FAN Xpert 2
  • P8Z77 WS,
  • P8Z77-V Pro,
  • P8Z77-V Deluxe
  • P8Z77-V

This utility is a fan speed controller app and comes with the AI suite set of apps.the app controls the sensors of all Chassis fan headers and as such any fan connected to those headers can be controlled. Let the pics do the talking as it would be easier to understand those features with pics.


The opening screen is pretty much self explanatory.you see the Auto tuning button which runs the fans at various speeds and suggest a profile for the user. Under that it has the EZ buttons for the lazy bones:Silent,Standard,Turbo and Full Speed. The names are pretty much explanatory


Here's a lowdown on the Auto tuning process:



First the app
runs all the compatible fans at different profiles;then the app lets u rename and test which fan is connected to which header by using the search options(when you click search every other fan will stop except the fan you are searching for.) After auto tuning is done u can select individual fans and set up a custom profile for each fan or control it with a slider.

WiFi-Go
Another noteworthy feature of this board is the WiFi-Go feature.The board has 802.11n WiFi built in so running a small wifi hotspot without a router along with other wifi goodies is possible.Now as for the WiFi GO! feature asus is providing quite a few things in that app such as bi-directional DLNA streaming, Internet sharing across multiple devices, swapping data between devices, and even remote control capabilities with a connected mobile device supporting euther Android 2.3 and higher or iOS 3.2 or higher.


Now lets have a look at what WiFi GO is offering us:

  1. First we see is the DLNA MEDIA HUB which enables the user stream from and to an DLNA compatible device to your computer and back.
  2. Next up is the Remote desktop feature which enables the user to control the desktop from their mobile devices and remotely(my take:its feature for lazy guys)
  3. Then we have the remote keyboard and mouse controller;pretty useful and handy app for all,specially for the people who will use this motherboard in an HTPC.
  4. The Smart motion control app lets you control the computer using your mobile devices customized motions.
  5. And at last we see two basis features: File transfer and Capture and send which allowed the user to take a screenshot ad send it to a mobile device connected via wifi.


Network iControl
The motherboard's on board LAN interface features Network iControl, which lets you manage packet priority, traffic shaping, and bandwidth from one centralized app.Its all you need for total network control.Its a pretty handy tool for power users and normal users alike and works actually.

USB Charger +

Revamped version of the usb charger+ app which enabled fast charging.now works on all standard USB 2.0 devices instead of Apple devices only.(sorry apple guys.,u lost another feature after insatgram.) tsk tsk!
In the picture below the port within the green box supports usb charger+ :

There it is folks .. all the main features to look out for .. now to the performance results.


Overclocking and Benchmarks
Alright people. Its time for benchmarks. Here's some info about the system I used :


CPU Motherboard Ram GPU PSU Cooling
Intel Core i5 2500K P8Z77 V Deluxe Gskill 1600Mhz 9-9-9-24 Radeon HD 7850 AX 1200W NH D14
Intel Core i5 2500K P8Z68 Deluxe Gskill 1600Mhz 9-9-9-24 Radeon HD 7850 AX 1200W NH D14
First the Overclocking
Asus has really tuned up the Turbo V Evo application in this board.So overclocking even for the lazy guys was a like a walk in the park. The auto tuning option has two modes Fast and Extreme. Fast gives a moderate overclock of the whole sytem while extrme really pushes the envelop,being the nut i am fast is not fast enough for me. So i cranked it up to extreme. Here's what i got:

Taking matter into my hands I was able to push some more and I got 5ghz 3D stable on air:

Above that my chip was limiting me.
Well , here comes the tough part; the Results.

Benchmark Results
NOTE:
All the test were run as many times as to determine a consistent result when at stock,the overclocked test were however run 3 times on each conditions and the average was taken into considerations. Now the next three benchmarks are completely CPU dependent. So we will certainly see if there is any CPU performance increase with the new platform. Let the graphs do the talking.
Aida 64 CPU:

The AIDA 64 CPU test have baffled me a bit the diff bettween the two platforms was somewhat peculiar;in some test the Z77 lagging by as much as 15% versus the Z68 bit running at stock.
Aida 64 FPU:

The FPU test was online,not much of a difference at stock and it scaled as expected with overclock.

Next up the big boys of 2D benching Super and Wprime:
Super and Wprime:

Not much to say here although Z77 scored a bit higher(worse) in Super Pi 32M and Wprime 1024M.
3DMark Vantage and X264

... and what do u know, they are just fighting among themselves.

Well, there goes the performance part. Not a bencher's dream but it could have been worse. Blame the chip-set;not the motherboard)

Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Asus took the arena by storm when the sandy bridges and associated chipsets first launched and they quickly rose into the no 1 spot mostly because of their quality and performance.They gave fierce competition to competitors like Gigabyte and MSI for the most liked Motherboards and they held on to the no1 spot in terms of sales.Not saying that Gigabyte and MSI makes real bad boards . Now this board is the direct successor of the erstwhile Z68 top of the line board P8Z68 Deluxe and I must say it is a worthy successor.
Jokes aside if someone is looking to upgrade into a high end Sandy bridge or Ivy bridge setup then this board should be on your list. Asus just pulled one more ace from their sleeves and proved why they are no1 still now.
I give this board a 5 star rating.


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Last edited by Sumonpathak; 11-06-12 at 01:19 PM.
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