If you’re looking for an ATX-sized, Intel-based motherboard, rest assured that there are plenty of choices to go around. But what type of ATX motherboard suits your needs? On one end of the spectrum, there’s the basic ATX that simply serve the purpose of just channeling the wattage through to the other components and ensuring that they don’t burn out. Then, there are the high-performance motherboards on the other end of the spectrum, motherboards that are made to perform, to endure a beating and some serious overclocking. The ASUS Z87-Pro that you see here falls into that category.
Upon unboxing, it’s clear that the Z87-Pro wasn’t just going to ‘wow’ us with its performance alone. The motherboard is garishly adorned with all the black and gold trimmings on all the component fittings. Even the heatsinks aren’t spared from ASUS’s gold trimmings, to the point that the heatsinks actually have a bright sheen to them.
Underneath it all, though, a lot of the same technology that we saw on the previous generation of ASUS motherboards has made a comeback. The Dual Intelligent Processors IV feature is one of them and as a refresher; the feature allows the users to make changes or optimizations on their components and motherboard on the fly.
For those of you who live and breathe the (wireless) cloud, you’ll be glad to know that the Wi-Fi GO! Slot has also returned on the Z87-Pro, which means that this motherboard is also capable of transmitting media content wirelessly through DLNA-certified media hubs, TVs and even through your iOS or Android devices. All that is needed to be done is to connect the accompanying receiver to the back of the motherboard, install the necessary drivers and you’re in.
Another feature that makes a return is the USB 3.0 Boost. Traditionally, USB 3.0 is already exceptionally fast in its capacity of transferring files from one source to another portable source, such as a portable hard drive or USB flash drive with the same USB 3.0 technology. With USB 3.0 Boost, ASUS has touted that the function allows the Z87-Pro to transfer multiple files, while still retaining the same speed that the USB 3.0 port provides.
In terms of performance, we ran our usual benchmarks for motherboards and that means PCMark 8 and PCMark 7. On PCMark 8, the motherboard gave us a score of 5,393, with overall web browsing performance not taking longer than 0.3 of a second and video chat latency hover along the 55ms line. On PC Mark 7, the Z87-Pro achieved an overall score of 4,615, but produced a computational score of 7,476.
The ASUS Z87-Pro sits on top of the pedestal of high-end, performance-grade motherboards that doesn’t skimp on wireless features. It’s probably the only motherboard that allows you to activate your PC remotely, so if you’re the kind of person who enjoys the idea of activating your PC through your mobile device, then this motherboard is for you.
The Z87-Pro’s computations are fast and precise.