Articles: Mainboards

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We’d like to note that we didn’t raise any voltages to achieve the maximum result (to be frank, higher voltages didn’t help us to get any higher).

You may be wondering why mainboards from other manufacturers like ASUS or ABIT don’t require you to increase the PCI Express frequency when overclocking? Because these mainboards select the optimal PCI Express frequency automatically, without any actions on the user’s part. Moreover, the user isn’t even informed that the PCI Express frequency is growing up along with the FSB one. Some manufacturers even mislead the user saying the PCI Express clock rate remains at 100MHz during overclocking. So, returning to the Foxconn 915A01-8EKRS2, it can be excellently overclocked, although it does require some more effort on your side than mainboards from ASUS or ABIT do.

Now, let’s check out the other mainboard from Foxconn, the 915A01-8EKRS2 model, which is based on the more expensive i925X Express chipset.

This mainboard behaves alike to the 915A01-8EKRS2. That is, FSB overclocking should be accompanied with a growth of the PCI Express frequency, too. The more expensive i925X Express has a higher “margin of safety”, so we had better results here. Steadily increasing the FSB clock rate (and increasing the PCI Express frequency accordingly) we arrived at 275MHz at last:

That’s a really impressive achievement for an i925X Express based mainboard – few of the competing products are capable of repeating this feat.

To reach this FSB clock rate we had to increase the frequency of the PCI Express bus to 127MHz, but our Tul (PowerColor) X800 XT graphics card was stable both in 2D and 3D applications at that. Once again, we didn’t tweak any voltages during our overclocking tests.

By the way, the very process of overclocking a Foxconn mainboard goes very smoothly: if the mainboard cannot start up for a few seconds, it automatically restarts with its default settings.

A few words on monitoring will end this section of the review. Both mainboards allow keeping track of the temperatures of the CPU and the system, of the rotational speeds of two coolers and of five voltages. The monitoring-related page of the BIOS Setup has one more point of difference between the 925A01-8EKRS2 and the 915A01-8EKRS2 models: the latter, i915P-based mainboard has a technology that allows controlling the fan speed depending on the CPU temperature and you can enable or disable it in the BIOS Setup (there are no other settings). The 925A01-8EKRS2 doesn't have this technology at all.

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