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Four Z87 Express Motherboards For Three- And Four-Way SLI

Z87X-UD7 TH Firmware

Gigabyte’s UEFI opens to a high-resolution home page with system status bars on both sides and firmware information at the bottom. Frequently-adjusted settings are found in its customizable home menu.

A press of the F6 switch toggles to low-resolution mode, where we can more easily show actual settings. The frequency tab of the Performance menu, for example, begins with automatic overclock presets in 20% intervals, for which anything over 20% is unrealistic given our Haswell-based CPU's heat problems.

Also adjustable above are base clock and clock strap (for high BCLK frequencies), integrated GPU and CPU ratios, and DRAM ratios.

The “Advanced CPU Core Settings” menu offers Turbo Boost, integrated power savings, and power limit controls.

The “Memory” tab has redundant XMP and manual multiplier controls, where we are forced to reduce our DDR3-3000 from its correct 29.33x ratio to 28x in order to reach the board’s maximum stable frequency. Changing “Memory Timing” mode to “Manual” enables combined timing manipulation, while “Advanced Manual” configuration has per-channel timings.

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Primary, secondary, and tertiary memory timings are adjustable over a wide range to provide the ultimate stability for custom DRAM overclocking.

The “Voltage” tab is nothing more than a launching point for various submenus that could have easily been combined into a single menu.

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Our CPU reached 1.25 V at the motherboard’s 1.235 V settting, and our DRAM reached 1.65 V at its 1.625 V setting.

Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.