|BIOS Frequency and Voltage settings (for overclocking)|
|ASRock Z68 Extreme7||Asus P8Z68 Deluxe||Gigabyte GA-Z68XP-UD5||MSI Z68A-GD80|
|CPU Base Clock||95-110 MHz (0.1 MHz)||80-300 MHz (0.1 MHz)||80-200 MHz (0.1 MHz)||38-282 MHz (1 MHz)|
|CPU Multiplier||Up to 60x||Up to 59x||16x to 59x||Up to 60x|
|DRAM Data Rates||1066-2133 (266.6 MHz)||800-2400 (266.6 MHz)||800-2133 (266.6 MHz)||800-2133 (266.6 MHz)|
|CPU Vcore||0.60-1.70 V (5 mV)||0.80-1.99 V (5 mV)||0.75-1.70 V (5 mV)||0.80-1.80 V (5 mV)|
|VTT Voltage||0.86-1.42 V (13 mV)||0.80-1.70 V (6.25 mV)||0.80-1.70 V (20 mV)||0.95-1.55 V (10 mV)|
|PCH Voltage||0.78-1.65 V (9 mV)||0.80-1.70 V (10 mV)||Not Adjustable||0.78-1.72 V (5 mV)|
|DRAM Voltage||1.20-1.80 V (15 mV)||1.20-2.20 V (6.25 mV)||0.90-2.60 V (20 mV)||1.11-2.46 V (7.25 mV)|
|CAS Latency||5-15 Cycles||3-15 Cycles||5-15 Cycles||5-15 Cycles|
|tRCD||4-15 Cycles||4-15 Cycles||1-15 Cycles||4-15 Cycles|
|tRP||4-15 Cycles||4-15 Cycles||1-15 Cycles||4-15 Cycles|
|tRAS||10-40 Cycles||4-40 Cycles||1-40 Cycles||10-40 Cycles|
All of these enthusiast-class motherboards boast wide enough voltage and frequency ranges to please aggressive overclockers, though they might not be up to extreme overclocking techniques. Asus does aim to satisfy the liquid nitrogen crowd with a 1.99 V maximum at the CPU core. Gigabyte eliminates the one adjustment that has little to no benefit, but introduces a lot of risk.
Our own efforts are a little more modest than other overclocking attempts you've likely seen, as we've implemented in-house standards to only recommend settings we feel encourage a longer processor life span on air cooling. After all, 5 GHz doesn't do much good if your machine only lasts two months.
Going past 4.7 GHz at a mere 1.35 V is a huge accomplishment, and for that Asus deserves big credit.
Though we've seen this CPU hit a 108 MHz BCLK in the past, we’re perfectly happy that this crop of products yields 107 MHz. After all, the Core i7-2600K has unlocked mutipliers for higher performance gains, so we continue to recommend K-series chips.
Adding the highest DRAM clock to its CPU clock and performance win, the P8Z68 Deluxe takes the lead in every test we've thrown at it except efficiency. There are a few other considerations we must make before we can consider it an award winner, though.
- Four Z68 Express-Based Motherboards For Enthusiasts
- ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3
- Z68 Extreme7 Firmware
- Asus P8Z68 Deluxe
- P8Z68 Deluxe Firmware
- Gigabyte GA-Z68XP-UD5
- Z68XP-UD5 Firmware
- MSI Z68A-GD80 (B3)
- Z68A-GD80 Firmware
- Test Settings And Benchmarks
- Benchmark Results: Crysis And F1 2010
- Benchmark Results: Just Cause 2 And Metro 2033
- Benchmark Results: Audio And Video Encoding
- Benchmark Results: Productivity
- Power, Heat, And Efficiency
- A Word On Warranties
- Whose Enthusiast-Class Z68 Board Is Best?