ASUS has released new BIOS updates for its 200-series motherboards (the Z270, H270, Q270 and B250 chipsets) that bring full official support and compatibility with Intel’s Optane memory, including recently-released Optane cache SSD.
The first Optane drives use the M.2 form factor, and works as an ultra-fast caching drives for slower, HDD storage, providing speed benefits of an SSD with the capacious of traditional HDD. According to Intel, an Optane-cached 1TB hard disk (at 7,200 rpm) will become twice as responsive when performing daily computing tasks or booting up, and can reduce the time it takes for a game to launch (or level to load) by around the 65% mark. Though a pure SSD will always be faster. The Intel’s Optane solutions offer a mixed option regarding a cost-effective speed boost (a 16GB module goes for around $44.)