Asus claims its new Z87-Deluxe Quad motherboard is the world's first slice of silicon certified by Intel with Thunderbolt 2 technology. Not only does it feature certification for the latest Thunderbolt spec, but it has two Thunderbolt 2 ports, which together allow for up to 12 simultaneously connected devices. Each port is capable of up to a 20Gbit/s transfer rate, and both are backwards compatible with first generation Thunderbolt devices.
"Z87-Deluxe Quad has been subjected to a tremendous amount of compatibility, BIOS, as well as video/audio and other tests to verify its quality and design," said Joe Hsieh, Asus Corporate Vice President and General Manager of the Motherboard and Desktop System Business Unit. "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."
Intel's first generation Thunderbolt standard has two upstream and two downstream transfer channels with a maximum transfer rate of 10Gbit/s. Thunderbolt 2 combines the four channels into a pair of 20Gbit/s bi-directional channels, and in doing so, it offers 4X the bandwidth of SuperSpeed USB 3.0.
Along with DisplayPort 1.2 support, Thunderbolt 2 is able to deliver high-speed video to 4K/2K displays while at the same time offer communication with other high-bandwidth devices, Asus says.
Outside of Thunderbolt 2, the Z87-Deluxe Quad has a single HDMI port, four DIMM slots, three PCI Express slots, 10 SATA 6Gbps ports, eight USB 3.0 ports with USB 3.0 boost, eight USB 2.0 ports, and a UEFI BIOS.