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Low power phase and few LLC options; time to upgrade to a new mobo?

Last response: in Overclocking
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March 9, 2014 11:55:32 AM

I first bought my mobo and cpu a while back without intentions of overclocking or doing any intense gaming. I am now interested in doing both.

However, I'm having trouble getting stable overclocks on the 8120 over 4.0 even with a triple radiator water loop (Swiftech H320). My board (M5A97 rev 1) only has a 4+2 power phase and limitations on LLC options as well as others, which I think are the critical factors holding the system back. I have quite a bit of thermal headroom though.

Would it make sense to shell out ~120$ to buy a new mobo with a better power phase and BIOS options, to perhaps get an extra 0.5-0.7 Ghz OC? My current board also doesn't have 2, 16x PCIe slots and I would choose a new board with 2, 16x slots for a potential SLI upgrade later.

My PSU seems to be unknown in terms of OC reliability; the only things I could find were a few people who mentioned being able to overclock alright on Newegg reviews.

Or should I just save up for a new system? Probably going to go with intel next time around. My current system seems to be maxed in terms of BF4, with an average 60fps at the settings I want for a 64 player game.

Thanks for reading.

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a c 391 K Overclocking
a c 1352 V Motherboard
March 9, 2014 4:19:12 PM

This board will get you where you want it to be.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

Motherboard: Asus M5A99FX PRO R2.0 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $119.99
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-03-09 19:17 EDT-0400)
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