Additional AI Suite 3 Tools
Asus Ai Suite 3 offers bonus features for the A88X-Pro’s USB ports in the form of Ai Charger+, USB 3.0 Boost, and USB Charger+.
Ai Charger Plus adds BC 1.1-compliant devices to its list of quick-charge capabilities, while USB 3.0 Boost adds USB 2.0 Turbo mode and UASP support for USB 3.0.
From the hardware side, USB Charger+ is nothing more than a high-current port that moderately speeds the charging of non-quick-charge devices. The associated application sets the port to remain in high-current mode even when the rest of the system is in a low-power state.
Asus EZ Update searches for new drivers and firmware files, while the associated USB BIOS Flashback utility will also search for new firmware and load it to a flash drive for reprogramming at reboot.
Asus even integrates its Network iControl software into Ai Suite 3, allowing customers to access prioritization software from the same interface as the board’s other controls.
Even beyond price, ATX seems pointless with a Kaveri APU. Myself, I'm waiting for the A8-7600 to build a very small (< 3 liters) ITX HTPC running the APU in 45W mode. Although I'm very excited about doing that build, I can't see any use case that makes sense for a Kaveri APU in an ATX form factor. Perhaps the A88x chipset has some feature benefit for building something using the 750 or 760k CPU in a budget build. But the only build I would even think about using a Kaveri APU in would be a mini-ITX PC/HTPC or laptop.
Beyond that, I would love to see Lian-Li come out with a tiny case like the PC-Q02, PC-Q09 or PC-Q12, but with the design for a single 120mm CLC and a 300W SFX PSU to allow a decent overclock on a 7850k APU with the smallest form factor possible (i.e. < 8 liters). That type of build might get me jazzed up for the 7850k.