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BIOS and Overclocking

DFI intends its LANPARTY series for gamers who very often are interested in overclocking, too, so the reviewed mainboard must have good overclocking options. By the way, it is the legendary Oskar Wu, a former ABIT employee, who develops mainboard designs for DFI now.

All frequency and voltage related options reside in the Genie BIOS Settings page of the BIOS Setup program (that comes from Award). The settings include:

  • FSB frequency adjustment. Formally, the range stretches from 100 to 400MHz, although the upper limit is obviously a marketing trick. The available and upcoming models of Socket478 processors cannot and will not work with FSB clocked that high.
  • Theoretically available option for changing the CPU clock frequency multiplier. This option is listed among the other settings, but you can’t actually use it. Processors from Intel you see in stores today have a dead-locked multiplier.
    Note also that the BIOS Setup shows you the resulting CPU frequency when you change the FSB frequency and/or the CPU clock multiplier.
  • You can change the divisor for the memory frequency. The memory frequency is chosen with regard to the “default” FSB clock-rate, according to the following table:

    Processor bus frequency

    Available FSB:MEM divisors

    Name in the BIOS*

    400MHz

    3:4

    DDR266

    533MHz

    1:1
    4:5

    DDR266
    DDR333

    800MHz

    3:2
    5:4
    1:1

    DDR266
    DDR333
    DDR400


    Although the BIOS Setup explicitly tells you the value of the memory frequency, it is in fact determined by the frequency divisor. It means that if you set the FSB to a non-standard clock-rate (i.e. something other than 100, 133 or 200MHz), the real memory frequency will differ from what the BIOS Setup shows you.
  • The frequencies of the AGP and PCI buses may be fixed at 66/33MHz, 80/40MHz or 73/36MHz.
  • You can manually set up the processor Vcore. So, the Vcore can vary from the nominal CPU voltage to 1.975V with 0.025V increment. That’s quite enough for overclocking, considering that Socket478 processors manufactured with the 0.13micron technology are quite indifferent to an increase in the Vcore.
  • The Vmem can be changed from 2.6V to 2.9V with 0.1V increment.
  • The Vagp can be set to 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 or 1.8V.

Although the overclocking options available in the DFI LANPARTY PRO875B don’t aspire for an entry in the Guinness record book, you have everything necessary to give your CPU a speed boost. You can tweak all the basic parameters. The ranges of the voltages are wider in the DFI LANPARTY PRO875B than in ordinary mainboards and even allow extreme overclocking experiments.

 
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