ASUS SABERTOOTH Z87 ATX Intel Motherboard Review
By David Ramsey
Full Disclosure: ASUStek provided the product sample used in this article.
ASUS’ newest TUF motherboards are built on Intel’s new Z87 chipset, for the new Haswell-based LGA 1150 CPUs. The TUF line emphasizes reliability and durability rather than a cornucopia of consumer features or the ability to reach heroic overclocking levels. Can an enthusiast love the SABERTOOTH Z87? Benchmark Reviews checks this board out to see what makes it special enough to include in your next rig.
The “TUF” moniker in ASUS’ TUF motherboard series stands for “The Ultimate Force”, a perhaps strained marketing term. First introduced a few years back in Socket 1156 form, the original TUF boasted mil-spec components, ceramic-coated heat sinks, and an industry-leading warranty. ASUS seemed to be testing the waters, then– there was no TUF board for the then-dominant Socket 1366. But since then, the TUF line has spread so that there are now TUF versions for LGA1155, LGA2011, and LGA1150.
It’s a little hard to figure out who the target demographic is, though. It’s not a mainstream board, and at the same time it’s not ostensibly marketed to gamers like the Republic of Gamers series is.
Although the original LGA1156 and LGA2011 TUF boards didn’t have it, starting with the LGA1155 version, ASUS has started including its “TUF Thermal Armor” with these boards. The plastic cladding certainly gives the board a unique look, but there’s much more to the TUF “accessorization” than that, as we’ll see going forwards.