really liked what we saw from Gigabyte's Intel Z77 based GA-Z77X-UD4H motherboard -- the board graciously offers up a comprehensive feature set, its layout and implementation are well executed and the build quality is
Overclocking Report and BIOS Walk through
Since Intel LGA1155 CPUs hit the streets overclocking has
taken a bit of a strange turn... If you were savvy enough to buy an unlocked chip
from the get-go, you probably already know the unlocked CPU multiplier will let
you push these chips into the mid-4 GHz range with little effort. Owing to the
integrated graphics on the processors, overclocking via the processor BCLK beyond
about 105MHz hasn't proven to be very practical.
Gigabyte's GA-Z77X-UD4H motherboard offers up a full
range of CPU and IGP overclocking controls in the BIOS and within Windows 7 via
TouchBIOS. Since BCLK overclocking is generally limited to 105MHz, PCSTATS left
memory settings alone and focused on the CPU multiplier.
Starting from the default x33, PCSTATS pushed the CPU
multiplier to x39, x42, x44 and x47 where the system crashed. The Core i5 2500K
chip PCSTATS tests with generally hits the wall at x47, that's where our
overclocking adventure stopped this time too. Since the Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD4H motherboard is
equipped with onboard video outputs PCSTATS had a go at overclocking the Intel
HD 3000 IGP as well. From the stock IGP speed of 1100MHz, PCSTATS was able to
overclock the Intel HD 3000 graphics core to 1600MHz without much
Redundant BIOS chips are good insurance
Gigabyte's UEFI BIOS
Gigabyte UEFI '3D BIOS' user interface is intended to help novice PC users
interact with complicated BIOS settings on friendlier terms, when you mouse over
different bits of the board photograph, like the CPU area, memory or expansion
slots, it bring up the relevant UEFI BIOS option menu. Advanced BIOS options are
available at the bottom, which is where we'll be focusing our attention.
Main Overclocking and Frequency control menu
for adjusting the CPU multiplier and BCLK frequency among other options are
found in the Advanced Frequency Settings menu.
The BIOS has extensive memory control
options, timings can be set down to the individual clocks cycle, per channel.
Memory channel timing
There are a lot of voltage control options in the
GA-Z77X-UD4H BIOS; for memory, chipset, CPU and motherboard VRM. There's also a
slew of really advanced voltage controls available via Gigabyte's '3DPower' menu
from the Windows desktop.
CPU Core Voltage
3D Power Voltage
Overclocking and onboard memory allocation for the integrated Intel HD 3000/4000
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