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HP Adds Intel Core i7-6700K To Z240 Workstation, Overclocking Not Supported, But That’s OK

HP announced that its Z240 Workstation can now be equipped with an Intel Core i7-6700K processor. Previously, the workstation offered Xeon E3-1200 v5 and locked Core i3, i5 and i7 CPUs, and the addition of the higher-clocked processor is a welcome boost for throughput-sensitive application users.

However, the Z240 does not support overclocking (nor does any other HP Z workstation), even with the unlocked i7-6700K, a fact many enthusiasts will undoubtedly frown upon. We noticed similar observations in the comments section of our AVADirect Avant P870DM-G article, with many in our community expressing a general distaste for companies that don’t support overclocking when offering unlocked components. (Many also suggested ways to get around these supposed shortcomings.)

We understand where these readers are coming from (especially in the case of the Avant), but not every device is intended for the enthusiast market, and not every customer requires overclocking. HP’s Z240 Workstation is designed for throughput-sensitive applications in the CAD and design industry. Programs such as AutoDesk Revit, Sketchit and others see significant performance gains with higher CPU clock rates, so the extra 600 MHz of base clock frequency and 200 MHz Turbo clock of the Core i7-6700K (compared to the i7-6700) goes a long way for users of these applications.

Furthermore, HP defended its position with the following statement:

“Overclocking is not supported on the Z240:• Intel does not support overclocked processors (voids the customer’s warranty).• Overclocked processors have a tendency to miscalculate critical application data. In other words, the customer is putting the integrity of their design at risk if they overclock their system.• Our goal (as HPI) is to provide the highest possible performance without compromising the customer’s system reliability. Given that, we will never support overclocking on our platforms.”

We can’t attest to HP’s theory that overclocking causes miscalculations with critical application data (that all depends on how stable the overclock is), but the company seems to have taken a strict stance on the subject, putting stability first and not stepping over standard operating guidelines. Although it may seem pointless to enthusiasts to offer unlocked processors in non-overclockable platforms, the Intel Core i7-6700K does serve a purpose for CAD developers and designers, even without taking advantage of the unlocked CPU multipliers.

The HP Z240 Workstation is available now from the company’s website, starting at $879.

  • bit_user
    Intel is missing out on a juicy markup by not having a Xeon version of this chip.
    Reply
  • Ambular
    I've wondered about this before...why is it that if someone spends a small fortune on an overclocking motherboard and heavy-duty cooler, and it lets them squeeze an extra 600 MHz out of their processor, that's considered reasonable; but if someone wants to buy a k-model processor over its locked equivalent just for the extra 600 MHz out of the box, and doesn't plan to overclock it, that's a waste of money?
    Reply
  • TJ Hooker
    @Ambular I agree that over clocking is kinda over rated. However, saying a 6700k is 600 MHz faster than a 6700 is a little misleading. A 6700 turbos to 3.7 GHz on 4 cores and 4 GHz for single core, vs 4 GH and 4.2 GHz for the 6700k. Now, based on what I've read, Intel CPUs can typically be relied to maintain full turbo under load as long as cooling is sufficient, so that means the 6700k is only 200-300 MHz (or 5-8%) faster than the 6700. You may actually be worse off with the 6700k in terms of performance per dollar.
    Reply
  • Ambular
    18339886 said:
    @Ambular I agree that over clocking is kinda over rated. However, saying a 6700k is 600 MHz faster than a 6700 is a little misleading. A 6700 turbos to 3.7 GHz on 4 cores and 4 GHz for single core, vs 4 GH and 4.2 GHz for the 6700k. Now, based on what I've read, Intel CPUs can typically be relied to maintain full turbo under load as long as cooling is sufficient, so that means the 6700k is only 200-300 MHz (or 5-8%) faster than the 6700. You may actually be worse off with the 6700k in terms of performance per dollar.

    Okay, that makes sense. Thank you for the explanation! (I didn't mean to imply that overclocking was overrated, though...more was wondering what the problem was with the 6700k vs. 6700 scenario that caused it to be viewed so differently.)
    Reply
  • ahnilated
    I guess HP wants people to waste money. Buying a "k" chip and not being able to overclock it is a waste of money but then again, buying an HP computer is a waste of money imho.
    Reply
  • egmccann
    18341606 said:
    I guess HP wants people to waste money. Buying a "k" chip and not being able to overclock it is a waste of money but then again, buying an HP computer is a waste of money imho.

    Unless, of course, you're a business and want their support. Which, as a workstation, is the sort of audience this is aimed at. It's all configuration options.

    Not every system is out there to play games on.
    Reply
  • Samer1970
    18338550 said:
    Intel is missing out on a juicy markup by not having a Xeon version of this chip.

    Actually they should release Max Ghz CPU like AMD did when they released out of the box 5Ghz CPU under warranty. AMD showed us it is possible under warranty and exposed the industry. we want a 4.6- 5Ghz Xeon !

    besides i7 are not good for workstations , they lack RDIMM/ECC support.
    Reply
  • Samer1970
    18341712 said:
    18341606 said:
    I guess HP wants people to waste money. Buying a "k" chip and not being able to overclock it is a waste of money but then again, buying an HP computer is a waste of money imho.

    Unless, of course, you're a business and want their support. Which, as a workstation, is the sort of audience this is aimed at. It's all configuration options.

    Not every system is out there to play games on.


    What is the point of i7 then ? they lack RDIMM support , and workstations need ECC . putting i7 in a workstation is stupid.
    Reply
  • serendipiti
    "We can’t attest to HP’s theory that overclocking causes miscalculations with critical application data (that all depends on how stable the overclock is)" ->THATS'S the point.
    You define stable overclock by the absence of miscalculations with critical data (not application data). If you plan to overclock on your self, you will have to test and assure that there are no miscalculations on your enterprise invoices (we are talking about serious testing)... enterprises need reliability, spending $$$ for that purpose makes overclocking out of scope.
    I can understand enthusiasts using Xeon CPUs, but enthusiasts won't be buying the whole server from HP...
    Avoiding OC is what makes more sense, I don't understand the criticism on that.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    18342486 said:
    What is the point of i7 then ? they lack RDIM support , and workstations need ECC . putting i7 in a workstation is stupid.

    I doubt E3 Xeons support Registered memory, either. But I agree with your point about ECC - most workstation buyers probably want it. The reason they did this is obviously because that chip is clocked higher than Intel's fastest E3 v5 Xeon, yet it's socket-compatible.
    Reply