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  • maximumGPU - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    i recently build a pc around an Ivy processor, and that's the motherboard i went for.
    Very happy with it, and the software bundle you get with Asus mobos is really useful.

    One annoyance thought is that the cpu temperature reported in Fan Xpert did not seem to match the temperature readings i get from Real Temp or other software, especially under load. And since fan control is tied to that reading it makes it rather pointless.

    Did you encounter that Ian?

    Great review too.
  • Lonyo - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I've noticed that as well, to the point where the numbers in the Asus software don't seem to update properly OR match the numbers in Realtemp, making the Asus software pretty useless for checking temperatures, and something I'm not entirely comfortable with in terms of controlling fan speeds, since it would be based on temperature readings I'm not comfortable with. Reply
  • webs0r - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Run AIDA64 alongside fanXpert. You will find that ASUS uses the sensor named "CPU" rather than the individual core temps.
    While it reports lower than the core temps, it moves in line with the CPU temperature, and is a good proxy for fan control.

    I would not worry about this at all.

    So you should put the CPU under various loads and monitor in AIDA where temps get to, and construct your fan profile as you desire to balance the cooling power with noise.

    I'm not sure what realtemp reports, it may not report the overall CPU sensor if it is only reporting each core temp.

    The ASUS software is not useless/pointless at all.
  • maximumGPU - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    under Prime, both Aida and Asus mobo report 33 deg, while real temp shows 50-52 across all cores, which certainly makes more sense than the other reading.

    That makes fan controlling based on the number reported by the deluxe pointless.
  • mdev - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I'm currently preparing to start building my new Ivy Bridge setup, with the ASUS P8Z77-V Pro motherboard.
    I'm interested to know if this would be the case with the Pro too. Is ASUS aware of this issue?
  • webs0r - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    You are all wrong, it is not pointless!

    Are you using the latest beta version of AIDA? It will show you both the 4 core sensors AND the CPU sensor.

    So on mine (4.4ghz), right now my
    CPU = 22
    Cores = avg 28

    Running IBT
    CPU = 54
    Core = avg 70

    So what does this tell us??

    1) In terms of *absolute temperature readings* they are probably all inaccurate to some degree.

    2) Of course the die temp is going to be higher than the overall CPU sensor die, they are monitoring different places on the CPU.

    3) By looking at the pattern in AIDA, I know that the CPU sensor idles around 25 and scales to 55+ when the cores get HOT (70+). So - I can control the fans with this. It scales in line. It is a proxy for the CPU temp. As good as any. It doesn't matter that it is not equal to the average of the die temps. As long as it goes higher when the CPU gets hotter - you get the same end result? Get it??

    If it went the other way or didn't move while the CPU got hot, then that's a problem.

    So I made a fan ramp that stays at minimum until 25 deg, ramps slowly until 50 deg and ramps a bit faster until 55 deg, then caps out to the loudest I want the fan to be at 55deg. This gives the exact behaviour I want, thus it is not useless.
  • althaz - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Ian, it's great to see somebody take on board suggestions from their readers and apply them so quickly!

    In the Z77 roundup people asked for stripped and default POST times and here they are in the next review just a couple of days later.

    Fantastic review all-around and I eagerly await the incoming Intel board reviews (so I can decide what to buy :)).
  • BlueReason - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    I believe he said such tests would be included in the future, not in this review. Not sure how that could be confused with a bar chart of test results, but the mind works in mysterious ways. Reply
  • arvee - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Can you elaborate at all on the thunderbolt support in this? Will an add on card be as good as an integrated solution like on the MSI Z77A-GD80? Reply
  • tyger11 - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I think I heard somewhere taht the add-in card via the TB header is a single channel, and the future mobos with it onboard will be dual channel. I could be misremembering. Reply
  • lbeyak - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    "The ECS Z77H2-AX and Gigabyte G1. Sniper 3 (both part of future reviews) utilize the PCIe PLX chip for >2 GPUs."

    Any time frame on when the review containing information on the G1. Sniper 3 will arrive?

    Thanks for another good review.
  • nemt - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Can you guys do a more thorough analysis of the plethora of other P88Z77-V boards available apart from the standard, Pro and Deluxe? Reply
  • Moogle Stiltzkin - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Asus Q-Design does this

    Asus SSD quick cache is overlooked....

    i'm curious to know what is the difference between this SSD caching vs asus z77 deluxe ssd caching (allows ahci) vs intel raid quick cache ssd.

    Imho i would think that the asus mobo is the better deal because the premium comes with an msata already integrated and enough space just for caching. has 4 ssd quick cache ports for 4 hard drives (can work for ahci as well).

    and that third pcie 2.0 slot in black, is actually going to be where the thunderbolt add on card will be using. i had to research online to find that out.
  • karagiosis - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    All graphs on the "Computation Benchmarks" say that they are ordered by "Score" but some of them should read "Time". I don't remember if there where any other errata... Reply
  • IanCutress - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    Updated. Many thanks!

  • AFQ - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Dude you take amazing pics. Please share your setup.

    Awesome and well explained review!
  • etamin - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I think I'm missing something. Can someone explain the purpose of this chip to me? Isn't this analogous to NF200 where two GPUs can run in x16 on a board with only 16 native lanes? I thought with PCIe3.0, bandwidths doubled, so is there really a need for such a chip still? Reply
  • IanCutress - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    There are several PLX chips. There is one that acts like the NF200, which increases the PCIe 3.0 lanes to 32 (for x8/x8/x8/x8), and there are others which increase the number of PCIe 2.0 lanes for additional controllers (SATA, NIC). The latter is on this board, the former (the PLX PEX 8747, is on other boards (Sniper 3, Z77H2-AX) and incurs a bigger cost.

  • etamin - Friday, May 18, 2012 - link

    Thanks for clearing that up. That's a pretty substantial list of chips for lane expansion. Reply
  • ggathagan - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I'm mystified by the use of the Realtek NIC for LAN testing instead of the Intel NIC.
    It's generally stated that the Intel NIC is superior.
    Were both tested and the Realtek the better performer?

    If so, there's been a lot of FUD concerning the Realtek.

    The inevitable grammer comment from the 3rd paragraph of page 1:
    With this in mind, there are current two obvious answers...

    Should be:
    With this in mind, there are currently two obvious answers...
  • IanCutress - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    We tested both, as there is two green lines in that graph. Whereas the Realtek seems to win out in pure throughput in our testing, the Intel other has more configurable advantages analogous to Intel NICs.
    Many thanks for the correction :)

  • BrunoLogan - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I'm thinking about building a new machine with the standard version of this board. As we're going to have a new micro architecture next year, I consider pricier boards as throwing money out the door. It will only be useful for Ivy Bridge generation. Next upgrade and you'll have to trash it because Intel will surely change the socket. Reply
  • justaviking - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Based largely on the Z77 motherboard roundup a few days ago (May 7) I ordered the ASUS P8Z77-V Pro to go with a i7-3770k processor. I have one legacy board (a video capture card) that is important to me, so I HAD to have a regular PCI slot. And when the price dropped $25, I said "woo hoo!" and ordered it.

    The performance against the Deluxe has really made me feel good today. I should have both the CPU and motherboard in a few days.
  • brickman - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Same here. Quickly grabbed that V-Pro for $210. Although I'll be using an i7 2700K

    ASUS seems to be really standing out with the motherboard features. Integrated wireless without a slot being taken is a big plus. Also WiFI go will be great for my ASUS transformer tablet.
  • gldg - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I noticed that the memory sticks listed in the test setup are both quad channel. Is that a goofed link or can you put quad channel in the dual channel Z77 chipset?

    Also, could someone tell me what happens when you put 1.65V sticks in this board? I've seen alot of warnings around using 1.65V kits with Ivy...if I put (for example) 2800 1.65V RAM in, can I set it to 1600 and 1.5V in the BIOS?
  • KivBlue - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    I don't see how 1.65V RAM would be an issue, that's the highest Voltage recommended by Ivy Bridge CPU. It also officially supports up to 1600mhz, but Sandy Bridge only supported up to 1333mhz yet there were no issues with people using 1600mhz RAM with Sandy Bridge. If the mobo supports RAM overclock of 2800 I don't see a problem, but it's either going to not work with Ivy Bridge or won't make much of an actual performance boost. Reply
  • Azethoth - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    It is not a goofed link. My ASUS P8Z77-V Deluxe has 4x8=32Gb (G.SKILL Trident X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2400 (PC3 19200) Desktop Memory Model F3-2400C10D-16GTX).

    If you read the launch lineup, Asus actually did something special with memory. Instead of serial access they parallelized it which means their timings are tighter than the old scheme and they are getting stable overclocks to 2800. Also, you are not penalized for populating all 4 slots. Their 2800 G.Skill qualified memory was with 4x4 dimms:

    The Trident X they did that with does not show up on any online store yet which is why I went with 2 sets of the DDR3 2400 kit from newegg.
  • IanCutress - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    Hi gldg,

    There was an error in my test setup. For Ivy I am using F3-19200CL9Q-16GBZMD (4x4 GB kit) and F3-2666C11D-8GTXD (2x4 GB Kit) - first for 16 GB compatibility (that kit is notorious on certain boards) and the second for speed testing.

    There should be no issues putting a quad channel kit in a dual channel board. The number of channels is determined by the CPU probing the memory at boot, not the memory telling the system how many channels to run in. Hence why you can run Quad channel kits in X79 with 1-3 sticks for single to tri-channel respectively. It's all mix and match now :)

    All the best,
  • gldg - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    Thanks Kiv, Aze and Ian. Re. the voltage, I had glanced at the QVL but I wasn't sure if it was a case of Asus telling me I *could* get those speeds and volts under the right circumstances, versus Intel telling me *should* stay below their official recommended max of 1.5V. It's been a few chipsets since I've built a full enthusiast rig and wasn't sure how everything would behave at default.

    The quad channel issue is good to know and opens up bunches of more options. Any reason why there's no 32GB kits listed on the QVL at any speed?

    Thanks for a great review Ian.
  • Azethoth - Wednesday, May 16, 2012 - link

    Now that you mention it they did not qualify any 8GB dimms.

    Well, anecdotaly, the kit I linked is running at its rated 2400 clock speed. There is something weird with the bios not automatically running it at high speed but there is a single bios setting to crank it up with.

    Maybe it is just a pure cost thing. Not testing 8GB kit saves money and 32GB ran me over $400. On the other hand, if your kit makes the grade it is pure free advertising so memory vendors probably provide them for free. G.Skill will probably clean up this cycle since they got the high score.
  • KivBlue - Saturday, May 12, 2012 - link

    Don't get me wrong, I like ASUS but they are pricey for what they offer, and I think Gigabyte is decent but they lack something in software side of things, I really feel like the choices are rather limited. EVGA has a chance to step up their game and put a stamp in the motherboard market just by coming up with a 2 or 3 model line-up for Z77 chipset catered at low to mid level, because FTW at the moment is out of the price range for most people to even consider. Reply
  • IanCutress - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    Hi KivBlue,

    We review what we get in, and we test in our spare time alongside a full time job. I currently have 12 boards in to get through, unfortunately no EVGA. We may get hold of one soon though.

  • jimmyzaas - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    Please review the premium Gigabyte UD5H board as well. I compared it closely with this deluxe board and it seemed to have everything this board has except wifi. It's also a full $70 cheaper. Reply
  • IanCutress - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    Hi JimmyZaas,

    This board just came through my door. I have other boards to test ahead of it, and then Computex, and then I'll will have a chance to take a look.

  • falc0ne - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    both from my user and my IT experience(5 years as hardware technical support) MBs with more features are more prone to fail than others with less features.
    I had a Deluxe version of ASUS with the whole bulk of features, including wi-fi, dedicated antena, 24bit 192Khz audio card, lots of USBSs and SATA etc.
    Problems I had :
    -ASUS temp monitoring utility didn't report an accurate temperature
    -wireless not reliable, support software was very poor
    -After 1 year of usage blue screens with message "IRQ not less or equal". Done my own investigation and found out that enabling devices in BIOS would work. Worked for a while and now the MB even after that fix still has random BSOD + random fail to boot issues.
    At this moment imagine that I am reluctant to buy any of these boards with 100+ features.
    OK, on paper they look great, but do they actually work? Who can tell how reliable this MB will be after 1 year of usage?
    My take is, mine got busted after doing a very mild overclocking. I only increased the frequency from 2.3 to 2.9 Ghz, all done by the book.
    Bottom line,make a thourgh reasearch when you buy one of these
  • Ratman6161 - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    Not that many people will want to be doing that. But for the Z68 boards in the test you use a 2500K. I think it might be interesting to also see a 2500K in the Z77 boards just to see if there is any difference in performance attributable to the different chipsets. I kind of suspect there would be no difference. Reply
  • DarkRogue - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    First off, thanks again Ian for a good review.
    I see you've added a few more tests and are generally improving upon the last mobo review article.

    I also appreciate your taking the time to try and explain the voltage ripple situation in the article, enve if I still don't quite understand it, haha.

    However, one that that still puzzles me is probably one of the best features of the ASUS boards so far - Fan Xpert 2. I'm getting a lot of conflicting information about whether or not they can control the speed of 3-pin (non-PWM) fans, such as the Nexus D12SL-12 ort he newer Scythe Kama Flow 2's (which seems to have replaced the older Scythe S-FLEX series.)

    I've read that the fan headers do support fan control of those fans, and also that some headers don't support it, which is very confusing. It would be extremely helpful if you could delve into the software suite and test out the fan control on a couple non-PWM fans. Furthermore, I can't find any mention if the mboo controls 3-pin fans via voltage variation, or still tries to do some kind of PWM by pulsing the 12v on and off.

    In particular, not all fan headers are created equal on every mobo, so it would be helpful to know where the differences lie.

    Basically, besides the hardware, every manufacturer is trying to differentiate themselves with their software suite, and it would be a good idea to try them out and note how stable/buggy they are, if they perform well, if there are any competitive products, etc.

    Otherwise, I'm liking the improvements in the review.
  • maximumGPU - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    i have the board with three 3-pin fans plugged into it. Fan Xpert can control their speed just fine. Reply
  • DarkRogue - Sunday, May 13, 2012 - link

    Which headers do you have them plugged into?

    I have heard that the Chassis headers can control 3-pin and 4-pin fans, but that the CPU and CPU_OPT headers can only control 4-pin fans.

    Do you know if they are controlled via voltage (for example, feeding 8v to the fan) or if it simply pulses 12v on and off?
  • IanCutress - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    Hi DarkRogue,

    ASUS confirm that the chassis fan headers (labelled CHA) should be able to control 3-pin fans.

    Regarding software, AI Suite has been pretty stable for the last 6-8 ASUS boards I've gone through, so I didn't mention anything new here. If software bugs me during testing, by not doing what it should, I do mention it where I can :)

    All the best,
  • maximumGPU - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    yes as Ian just said, my fans are 3 pin and plugged into the chassis headers. Fan Xpert can adjust their speed. i have a pwm 4 pin fan on the CPU header so can't tell you if that header can control 3 pin.

    i do not know how the control is done though.
  • DarkRogue - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    All right, thank you to the both of you.

    I don't have any PWM fans, so I guess I will be the guinea pig for when I get the Z77 Deluxe board. It is good to know the other headers are capable of controlling regular 3-pin fans, though.

    Ian, I know bugs are good to report, but I meant that a review of the software itself, such as the features it provides and how well it works, etc., would be a good supplement to a motherboard review. Again, the software is one other aspect the manufacturers are trying to differentiate themselves (I mean, look at the UEFI styles!) and it would be helpful to see how well their software works, or if similar things can be achieved with other software. Not everyone has used a board from every manufacturer before, nor know what use each piece of software provided is for, or how easy it is to use to achieve its intended function.

    I just feel that with a review, it's helpful to review every aspect, and not just the hardware. Personally, I've never used any motherboard-supplied software because they've always been really buggy or annoying to work with, particularly Gigabyte's programs that kept auto-loading despite what I did until I just outright uninstalled it. It's been over 4 years since I've had an ASUS board, and I'll likely have to try AI Suite now to take advantage of Fan Xpert 2. Without seeing ASUS' video presentation of this feature, I would've skipped it and went with the cheaper Gigabyte board, and have to buy additional fan controllers, because Gigabyte's fan headers are apparently inconsistent.

    Anyway, it's just a suggestion that, in my opinion at least, would give motherboard reviews a more 'complete' overview.
  • gtm - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    I find Thunderbolt interesting for the ability to put one big and loud pc in one room, and get all I/O in another room, saving noise, space and cable mess.

    But is it possible to wake an hibernating PC using for example an USB-Keyboard connected to a thunderbolt display?
  • gtm - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    Sorry, posted for the wrong article Reply
  • Suuave - Monday, May 14, 2012 - link

    I'm building a server with a similar board in this series. I've looked on the Asus site and several review sites. But I cant seem to find the answer

    My question is what video card would the built-in video chip be equivalent to? I have an old GT 9600, but should I use it or would it just be a waste of time, energy and effort to install it?
  • Breaker - Wednesday, May 16, 2012 - link

    Greetings Ian!

    In the OC section of your Asus Z77 Deluxe review you said:
    adjusted the Turbo Ratio 1-Core Limit

    Can you be more specific pls?
  • Shane527x - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 - link

    Hi guys, I just ordered my board few days ago but i still disnt order the memory.. I want 16, i was thinking to make a 16g kit 8x2 vengeance corsairbut I didnt see anywhere. So id like to know if i can actually do that or what is the best? Thank you Reply
  • HardwareDufus - Wednesday, May 23, 2012 - link

    I thought the UEFI initiative was to replace the BIOS, no?

    So all of these Z77 boards still have a BIOS? We will still have the excessive Boot times?
  • Triniman - Monday, August 13, 2012 - link

    Will the Front Panel USB 3.0 box work with the P8Z77-V Deluxe motherboard? The reason I ask is that the listing of supported chipsets does not show the Z77 chipset and yet the P8Z77-V Premium motherboard ships with the Front Panel USB 3.0 box and it uses the Z77 chipset.

  • macmuchmore - Tuesday, September 04, 2012 - link

    I just purchased a P8Z77-v Deluxe for $224.99 this last weekend. I cannot wait to get it installed this week.

    So did I get a good deal? ;-)

  • Tcat - Saturday, September 15, 2012 - link

    I'm building a system to last me a while and went with this MB, based on the excellent review.

    Where I blew it was buying a Kuler 920 radiator for this. I have to install the software first? How about getting Win 8 in first? Of course the CPU will go up in smoke before that happens.

    Can anyone suggest a good fan that will fit this board and not be too loud?



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