High-End P67 Express: Five $200-250 Motherboards

Overclocking Results

Taking our UEFI screen shots at the top CPU overclock setting meant saving them for last. That’s also when we read the settings for the chart below. By now you’ve probably noticed that MSI’s P67A-GD80 has no UEFI screen shots. Likewise, it didn’t survive to the point where we would have transcribed its adjustment ranges.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
BIOS Frequency and Voltage settings (for overclocking)
Row 0 - Cell 0 ASRock Fatal1ty P67 ProfessionalASRock P67 Extreme6Asus P8P67 DeluxeAsus P8P67 EVOMSI P67A-GD80
CPU Base Clock95-110 MHz (0.1 MHz)95-110 MHz (0.1 MHz)80-300 MHz (0.1MHz)80-300 MHz (0.1MHz)Row 1 - Cell 5
CPU MultiplierUp to 60xUp to 60xUp to 59xUp to 59xRow 2 - Cell 5
DRAM Data Rates1066-2133 (266.6 MHz)1066-2133 (266.6 MHz)800-2400 (266.6 MHz)800-2400 (266.6 MHz)Row 3 - Cell 5
CPU Vcore0.60-1.52V (5mV)0.60-1.70V (5mV)0.80-1.99V (5mV)0.80-1.99V (5mV)Row 4 - Cell 5
VTT Voltage0.66-1.87 (13mV)0.66-1.87 (13mV)0.80-1.70V (6.25mV)0.80-1.70V (6.25mV)Row 5 - Cell 5
PCH Voltage0.78-1.65V (9mV)0.78-1.65V (9mV)0.80-1.70V (10mV)0.80-1.70V (10mV)Row 6 - Cell 5
DRAM Voltage1.20-1.80V (15mV)1.20-1.80V (15mV)1.20-2.20V (6.25mV)1.20-2.20V (6.25mV)Row 7 - Cell 5
CAS Latency5-15 Cycles5-15 Cycles3-15 Cycles3-15 CyclesRow 8 - Cell 5
tRCD4-15 Cycles4-15 Cycles4-15 Cycles4-15 CyclesRow 9 - Cell 5
tRP4-15 Cycles4-15 Cycles4-15 Cycles4-15 CyclesRow 10 - Cell 5
tRAS10-40 Cycles10-40 Cycles4-40 Cycles4-40 CyclesRow 11 - Cell 5

The P8P67 Deluxe leads in CPU overclocking, though the Fatal1ty P67 Professional is not far behind. MSI wasn't able to participate in this test, unfortunately, as its board met an early demise.

MSI did participate in the base clock test, where all motherboards successfully pushed their P67 platform controller hubs to 107 MHz. So, where did the MSI motherboard fail?

The P67A-GD80 refused to cold boot following its memory stability test at DDR3-2008, instead power cycling in one to two-second intervals. Further analysis indicated that this was due to a bad UEFI setting that stuck. Neither the button on the I/O panel nor the jumper on the motherboard’s surface cleared the problem, even after battery removal.

Another method to get BIOS to revert to safe settings is to force a hardware configuration error, yet swapping out components did not work either. When stuck, the P67A-GD80 wouldn't even register a memory or graphics error with those parts removed. Hopes that MSI’s backup ROM on this Dual BIOS-equipped motherboard might have initialized itself turned to hopelessness. One of our engineering friends said that the reboot was occurring before system logic could register the error, because the error was occurring at the wrong part of the initialization process. In all likelihood, this really was an old-fashioned "stuck BIOS” issue.

MSI’s P67A-GD80 has two ROM ICs, but no selector switch to force a boot from the second ROM. It also lacks a removable ROM socket, so hot-flashing it by using another motherboard was not an option. This might just be one configuration where a removable single BIOS ROM would have been more valuable than two soldered-on BIOS ICs.

Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.
  • rolli59
    Nice article would have been nice to have a Gigabyte board in there as well.
  • joytech22
    So glad I grabbed my P8P67 Deluxe!

    It had all the features I was looking for at a low enough price to make it very appealing.
  • Crashman
    rolli59Nice article would have been nice to have a Gigabyte board in there as well.Please tell Gigabyte to produce something for this market!

    Tom's Hardware included the UD4 in its $150-200 motherboard roundup, and the UD5 costs more than $250.
  • Manos
    How te hell is it possible that a website like this keeps ignoring my question as in WHY its been for so many months if not year or whatever, that they dont fix this *** and I cant click to submit my comment from IE? How can THIS be the only website with issues with IE? I find it rather sad. Its why i quit commenting instead of being forced to open a different browser for this site which I used to love and respect. Till they started ignoring this issue Ive been pointing out ( and not just me ).

    Thank you for the charts tho id love to see one with Maximus IV included x.x ( I edited cause I asked something stupid as in why I dont see it in the chart. Sorry.. Been working all night and no time to read the article. Bits only.And no I obviously hadnt read the title x.x My bad. Happy Easter!
  • jerreddredd
    It would have been nice to see if there is a performance gain in these "high end" boards over a value P67 board.

    For an even better article also throw in one of each value rated H67 and H61 boards. ($240 vs $130 vs $70 boards)
  • alidan
    jerreddreddIt would have been nice to see if there is a performance gain in these "high end" boards over a value P67 board. For an even better article also throw in one of each value rated H67 and H61 boards. ($240 vs $130 vs $70 boards)this, i would love to see how the high end stacks up with the low end. the low may not have as much as the high end, but performance is really all that matters considering we can just get expansion cards for things we dont have.
  • sudeshc
    Nice analysis glad to know ASUS is good to go.
  • Hupiscratch
    Great article. Now it´s time for the high-end overclocking oriented boards, like the ASUS Maximus IV Extreme.
  • memadmax
    I'm gonna go all out on this chipset when it matures a bit. A cool 5 grand i'm thinking for my next gen build.
  • Please tell Gigabyte to produce something for this market!

    GA-P67A-UD7 doesn't count?