Motherboard peripheral performance
Congratulations on making it this far. You're almost to the conclusion, but before we finish up, there are a few more motherboard-specific attributes we need to test. We've distilled most of the results into a series of condensed tables, but you'll have to endure one more page of graphs first.
USB 3.0 performance
The P8Z77-V ships with Asus' USB Boost software, which enables USAP for the board's ASMedia controller and offers a "turbo" mode for controllers that lack support for the USB Attached SCSI standard. USB Boost only presented us with a turbo option for the Intel USB 3.0 controller, though. Intel's drivers may not yet expose the controller's USAP compatibility, which won't get native OS support until Windows 8, Asus says.
Turbo-charging the Asus board's Intel USB controller makes it even faster in the sequential tests. However, it can't catch the P8Z77-V's ASMedia controller running in USAP mode, which delivers by far the best random I/O performance at high queue depths. If no additional software is involved, the Intel controller offers about the same performance on all three Z77 boards.
Asus USB Boost software pays dividends in our real-world file transfer tests, as well. Thanks to USAP, the ASMedia controller scores higher than anything else in our mixed read test. Enabling USAP does drop the speed at which the ASMedia controller writes those mixed files, though. The controller's performance is improved enough in the other tests that I'd enable USAP mode for the ASMedia controller and turbo for the Intel one.
Next to those results, the VIA USB controller on the Z77X-UD3H looks a little slow. The Intel implementation is faster, and the VIA chip stumbles dramatically when reading our mixed file set. Even without its Boost magic, the ASMedia controller appears to be more robust than the VIA solution.
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