Keeping Up With The Dells
It has been exactly one year since we sent off a series of emails asking motherboard manufacturers to get serious about standardizing front-panel USB 3.0. Our logic was that if nobody could agree on an industry standard, proprietary standards developed by various large-scale system builders would damage the custom-built and small reseller market.
While we received several responses about how it might be difficult to get any new connector standardized quickly by the USB-IF, we would have just as easily settled for any properly-functioning system, regardless of official sanctioning.
ASRock was the first to step up to the plate with a connector that, according to our sources at the firm, was an Intel design still pending approval. Regardless of who developed the connector, ASRock was the first to implement it, and deserves at least that much credit.
The big question we asked was “how well does it work?” To find out, we grabbed three motherboards to represent Socket AM3, LGA 1156, and LGA 1366. Then we threw them on our test bench.