ASUS Z97 and X99 motherboards support NVMe
The Taiwanese motherboard maker ASUS has officially announced that all Intel Z97-based and Intel X99-based motherboards made by the company fully support all NVM Express (NVMe) storage devices. All users have to do to get this support is update the installed BIOS and then use an optional ASUS Hyper Kit expansion card.
Fortunately for users it is very easy to update the BIOS on these motherboards – all you have to do is apply the ASUS-exclusive USB BIOS Flashback. The utility downloads the right BIOS update from the web site of ASUS to a USB flash drive and then all you have to do is connect the power supply unit to a wall outlet, if it has not been connected already, plug the USB flash drive, push the USB BIOS Flashback or reset button and then wait a little – you do not even need to have a processor or memory installed!
The BIOS update will make all ASUS Z97 and X99 motherboards compatible with all NVMe storage devices, including those with PCI-E and M.2 interfaces. The optional ASUS Hyper Kit expansion card will also make these boards compatible with the newest 2.5-inch NVMe SFF-8639 solid-state drives, which means end users will be able to get up to 32 Gbit/sec of data transfer speed, which is impressive, to say the least.
In case you do not know, NVMe is a new architecture for storage devices that adds more functionality to the popular Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) standard. NVMe eliminates the bottlenecks that hinder the performance of various solid-state drives and also improves power efficiency. The end result is higher speed and lower power consumption for an unmatched before experience. By using NVMe SSDs data transfer speeds can be improved up to 5 times when compared to the latest SATA 3.0 standard.