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Overclocking Results

Budget Computing: Nine H55 And H57 Motherboards Compared
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BIOS Frequency and Voltage settings (for overclocking)
 ASRock
H55M-Pro
Asus
P7H55D-M EVO
Biostar
TH55XE
CPU Base Clock100-300 MHz (1 MHz)80-500 MHz (1 MHz)133-800 MHz (1 MHz)
CPU MultiplierYesYesYes
iGPU Clock133-1333 MHz (33)133-1500 MHz (33)133-2000 MHz (33)
DRAM Data RatesBCLK x6 - x10* (x2)BCLK x6 - x10* (x2)BCLK x6 - x10* (x2)
PCIe Clock50-150 MHzNot Adjustable100-150 MHz (1 MHz)
CPU Vcore0.84-1.60V (6.25mV)0.85-1.70V (6.25mV)-0.08 to +0.20V (20mV)
GPU Core0.85-1.46V (12.5mV)0.5-1.75V (12.5mV)+0.60V (20mV)
Uncore Voltage1.11-1.55V (62.5mV)1.10-1.90V (20mV)1.15-2.08V (15mV)
PCH Core1.05, 1.15, 1.25V1.05V, 2.00V (10mV)1.01-1.25V (50mV)
DRAM Voltage1.30-2.05V (50mV)1.20-2.20V (20mV)1.30-2.55V (15mV)
CAS Latency6-11 Cycles3-11 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRCD3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRP3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRAS9-31 Cycles3-31 Cycles9-63 Cycles
BIOS Frequency and Voltage settings (for overclocking)
 ECS H55H-IEVGA
P55 FTW
Foxconn
H55MX-S
CPU Base Clock133-600 MHz (1MHz)133-300 MHz (1 MHz)Not Adjustable
CPU MultiplierYes**YesYes
iGPU ClockNot AdjustableNot AdjustableNot Adjustable
DRAM Data RatesBCLK x6 - x10* (x2)BCLK x6 - x10* (x2)BCLK x6 - x10* (x2)
PCIe Clock100-200 MHz (1 MHz)80-200 MHz (1 MHz)Not Adjustable
CPU Vcore+0.63V (10mV)-0.4 to +0.63V (10mV)Not Adjustable
GPU CoreNot Adjustable+1.00V (25mV)Not Adjustable
Uncore Voltage+0.63V (10mV)1.05-2.00V (25mV)Not Adjustable
PCH CoreNot Adjustable1.05-1.50V (25mV)Not Adjustable
DRAM Voltage+0.63V (10mV)1.20-2.13V (10mV)+50 to 350mV (50mV)
CAS Latency3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRCD3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRP3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRAS9-63 Cycles9-63 Cycles9-63 Cycles
BIOS Frequency and Voltage settings (for overclocking)
 Gigabyte
H55M-USB3
Intel
DH57JG
MSI
H55M-ED55
CPU Base Clock100-600 MHz (1 MHz)133-240 MHz (1 MHz)100-600 MHz (1 MHz)
CPU MultiplierYesNoYes
iGPU Clock400-2000 MHz (1)Not Adjustable133-1333 MHz (33)
DRAM Data RatesBCLK x6 - x10* (x2)BCLK x6 - x10* (x2)BCLK x6 - x10* (x2)
PCIe Clock90-150 MHz (1 MHz)100-110 MHz (1 MHz)90-190 MHz (1 MHz)
CPU Vcore0.50-1.90V (6.25mV)Not Adjustable+0.303V (6.1mV)
GPU Core0.20-1.68V (12.5mV)Not Adjustable 
Uncore Voltage1.05-1.49V (20mV)1.10-1.25V (50mV)0.47-2.038V (5.3mV)
PCH Core0.95-1.50V (20mV)Not Adjustable0.451-1.953V (5mV)
DRAM Voltage1.30-2.60V (20mV)1.20-1.70V (50mV)0.93-2.43V (15mV)
CAS Latency5-15 Cycles5-16 Cycles4-15 Cycles
tRCD1-15 Cycles5-16 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRP1-15 Cycles5-16 Cycles3-15 Cycles
tRAS1-31 Cycles15-75 Cycles9-63 Cycles


Of today’s motherboards, only the Foxconn H55MX-S completely lacked BIOS overclocking controls, while only Intel’s DH57JG completely lacked CPU multiplier control. That drops Foxconn from several charts, while limiting Intel’s base clock and memory frequency tests.

Our first Core i3-530 processor failed during a routine reboot at a mere 1.35V setting. Unable to determine whether the failure was the result of a voltage spike or an overly aggressive setting, we took the more cautious approach of retesting all boards at a 1.30V CPU core limit.

Biostar has put great effort into establishing a reputation as the best-value overclocking brand, and its results here are quite impressive. At a mere 1.30V limit, our low-cost dual-core reached nearly 4.4 GHz.

With no CPU core voltage adjustment, Intel’s mini-ITX motherboard topped out just short of 3.6 GHz.

Gigabyte’s base clock lead nearly shocked us, while EVGA’s deficit would be most easily explained by poor BIOS support for our Core i3-530 processor. With an unchangeable multiplier, Intel’s DH57JG uses the same base clock in this test as it had during our previous max CPU clock attempt.

Gigabyte’s support for higher base clocks extends to its higher DRAM bus clock, while EVGA’s base clock problem also translates to a DRAM overclocking issue, again most easily explained by a BIOS that’s not properly configured for our processor model.

Tiny motherboards with fewer components use less power.

Low power and average performance give the smallest motherboards an efficiency lead and the largest model an efficiency deficit.

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