Manual Overclocking And EasyTune6
We carried forward the 4.68 GHz overclock shown in the BIOS screenshots of Gigabyte’s Z68XP-UD5, including the 1.35 V core and Level 6 Load-Line setting that was required to reach an actual 1.35 V under load. Note that this particular motherboard does not facilitate proper voltage readings in CPU-Z.
Solid memory overclocking capability let us use XMP-2200 values in spite of the CPU’s increased 101.6 MHz BCLK, resulting in a DDR3-2168 data rate at CAS 9.
EasyTune6 jumps over several settings compared to Gigabyte's BIOS, so we couldn’t select 101.6 MHz, and 101.8 MHz caused the system to crash.
Similarly, the 45x CPU multiplier wasn’t selectable, and the system wasn’t stable with EasyTune6 set to 46x. The combination of missing settings and inferior stability caused EasyTune6 to fall around 200 MHz short of our BIOS-based overclock, again compelling us to dial in our favorite settings that way.
CPU Vcore also jumped from 1.345 V to 1.355 V. We selected 1.345 V because we were comparing a 1.350 V BIOS-based overclock, which could explain our CPU’s inability to reach 46x using Gigabyte's software.
1) It either is super conservative and therefore useless for any enthusiast.
2) It is insanely over-aggressive because it doesn't bother testing stability for more than a few minutes (if at all). So you end up with it thinking a 50% overclock is "stable" when it totally isn't.
Turned out that with all other settings as chosen by the utility the peak core could be set to its lowest value in the BIOS and still be perfectly stable. So is it just ramping up the voltage to be on the safe side?
I have downclocked my system to base settings on both the CPU and GPU because the wear on the system with OC'ing. None of the games I play, nor any of the other apps need a OC to perform well, so why place additional stress on the components when it is merely for bragging rights?
When I played with manual OC'ing I found, like this article, that there was only a marginal gain from auto settings. Plus ther is the additional risk of screwing the pooch entirely and bricking the CPU or mobo by overvolting.
Unless you are a real pro and are not risk adverse, I'd recommend that you stick with auto OC'ing, and for this, ASRock has proven to be the best.
I feel that Toms should have done some stability testing on their manual and automatic OCed Processors. They might have and just not posted their results. I am in the camp where I feel that if you can't take the hour or two to figure it all out you probably shouldn't be Overclocking. If we had a larger sample of Proccessors we have no idea how many would turn out badly.
It looks like a good tool to start off your own OC because it's probably gonna be in the ballpark, but on it's own it leaves much to be desired.