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It’s great that ASUS readied an armada of motherboards based on the Intel Z87 chipset for 4th generation Core processors, boasting a classy gold colour scheme. These boards cover all your needs, from compact home theatre entertainment to hardcore gaming and competitive overclocking. Even better they brought friends: lots of innovative features that enhance experiences. If you’re planning a new PC for Z87, do not miss out.

Time for a tap
Near field communication, or NFC, is a cool technology that makes it easy for devices to talk to each other wirelessly with instant detection, and ASUS has NFC Express bundled with the Z87-Deluxe/Dual motherboard. It’s also sold separately and compatible with all ASUS Z87 offerings, consisting of an external accessory box and an NFC tag.

Touch the tag or any NFC-compatible Android device to the accessory box, and they become paired with NFC Express. Easily transfer videos and photos between your desktop and paired devices, use a smartphone to remotely control your PC, and assign quick-launch shortcuts to the NFC tag and compatible devices, so favorite apps open faster. You can even setup password-free login to Windows 8: tap NFC Express, the operating system loads up, and you’re in.

Mythical durability
The ASUS TUF Series continues to live up to its moniker in the Z87 era. The ATX Sabertooth Z87 and mATX Gryphon Z87 deliver military-grade TUF components and advanced thermal technology for superior reliability and cooling. They give
you upgraded features like Thermal Armor with two flow valves to meet the needs of air and liquid cooling configurations, plus the Thermal Radar 2 smart temperature detection interface.

You also have TUF Fortifier, a sturdy metal backplate that reinforces motherboards against harmful bending, so you can install even the mightiest (and heaviest) graphics cards and CPU coolers without risking damage to circuitry. The result: longer-lasting motherboards.

Sabertooth Z87 comes with Thermal Armor and TU F Fortifier by default. They can be added to the compact and more affordable Gryphon Z87 as part of the TUF Armor kit, which upgrades Gryphon and also includes Dust Defender enclosures that protect expansion slots and connectors against debris build-up. 

Grab advanced overclocking
ROG charges ahead with more innovation. Behold OC Panel, bundled with the Maximus VI Extreme, the latest world-record setter from the Republic of Gamers. OC Panel is a flexible pro-grade system tuning console that you can use as an
internal or external device.

Fitting any 5.25-inch bay, OC Panel slides into PC cases to work in Normal Mode, where it offers info covering parameters like CPU speed presets, temperatures, ratios, base clocks, and CPU fan performance. One-click CPU Level Up with two
speed presets gives you instant system boosts, so power comes easy.

Outside the case, OC Panel transitions into Extreme Mode for the really dedicated. It’s here you go into deep hardware-level overclocking functions like super-low temperature monitoring with Subzero Sense, VGA Hotwire overvolting, community-demanded Slow Mode and Pause Switch, plus four extra fan headers. All system tuning is done via convenient front panel buttons. For anyone keen on exploring Z87 potential, OC Panel is a must.

All forms factored in
ATX and mATX boards aren’t the only ones getting the full Z87 treatment from ASUS. The mini-ITX segment is just as important, and ASUS gives us the Z87I-Deluxe, a small form factor board packed to the hilt with awesome capabilities that place it on par with the performance of ATX boards. It supports high-end 4K video and works great as a home theatre centre or portable shuttle gaming PC.

Smart board layout makes the most of available space for effortless component fitting. Ample clearance means no more struggling with full-size coolers, and a special slot tab makes graphics card install and removal a breeze. For expandability, six
SATA 6Gb/s ports come in handy, as do four fan headers, so Z87IDeluxe is ready for water-cooling. That’s much more than traditional mini-ITX boards offer, but add an 802.11ac Wi-Fi module and hefty 12-phase power delivery, and it becomes apparent ASUS made the Z87I-Deluxe as versatile as its bigger siblings.

Remember, this is just a sampling of what’s available. Head over to ASUS for even more Z87 goodness.

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