by Anton Shilov
05/03/2013 | 05:42 PM
It is not a secret that it is going to get easier to overclock future K-versions of Intel Core i5 and Core i7 "Haswell" microprocessors because of variable DMICLK/BCLK [base clock] coarse ratios. Therefore, it is not surprising that professional overclockers have already started to test the new chips in a bid to set-up clock-speed records. While no actual records have been set yet, Core i “Haswell” chips have already hit 7GHz core frequency.
Journalists from Ocaholic web-site have discovered a record in the CPU-Z database that an unnamed overclocker had managed to boost the speed of an Intel Core i7-4770K microprocessor from 3.50GHz to whopping 7012.8MHz (91.07MHz BCLK*77). The overclocker used Asus Maximus VI Extreme Edition mainboard based on Intel Z87 core-logic. While the utility claims that the core voltage of the chip was upped to unprecedented 2.56V, it should rather be considered as a software bug, than a miracle since Core i-series 3000-family “Ivy Bridge” chips fail at 2.0V.
Results submitted to CPU-Z database cannot be cheated, but they also cannot be tracked down to find out a particular person. It is unknown what kind of cooling system did the anonymous overclocker use to overclock the Haswell chip by two times over its default frequency. One thing is clear, though: Intel Haswell seems to be very capable of reaching high clock-speeds, even early in its lifecycle.
Intel Core "Haswell" desktop platform is going to offer unconventional flexibility when it comes to boosting performance. Core i "Haswell" chips will feature more "knobs" for relevant frequency and voltage domains of the chip [compared to today’s products] as well as higher core ratios for those, who want to set-up clock-speed records using extreme cooling methods like liquid nitrogen. The main improvement of Haswell platform over current Ivy Bridge and Sandy Bridge will be support for variable DMICLK/BCLK [base clock] coarse ratios supported currently only by the high-end desktop (HEDT) LGA2011 platform.
Nowadays there is virtually one safe way of overclocking Intel Core i-series K-family LGA1155 microprocessors with unlocked multiplier: by adjusting the latter, which generally means poor frequency granularity. When processor system bus is overclocked, other busses within a PC also change clock-speed (since BCLK ratio is locked) which usually causes errors. Meanwhile, Intel Core Extreme LGA2011 platforms support various BCLK, e.g., 125MHz and 166MHz, in addition to default 100MHz, which allows to play with both multiplier and bus speed without overclocking of other components (like input/output controllers, PCI Express bus and so on).
With Core i7 "Haswell" K-series LG1150 central processing units, Intel will bring variable BCLK coarse ratios to the mainstream platforms, which will provide more flexibility to overclockers. Intel platform will still not allow independent clocking of processor bus and other components, but one can be rest assured that for enthusiasts Haswell may provide more than existing chips.
Intel did not comment on the news-story.