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ASUS Z97 Pro (Intel Z97) Motherboard - Circuit and Overclocking Guide

By: Steven Bassiri | Guides | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 2:12 pm

Test System Setup


In this section, I will test ASUS's features including TPU overclocking, EPU power saving, 5-Way Optimization (Auto OC Tuning), and audio output.







ASUS's TPU, EPU, and 5-Way Optimization


5-Way Optimization is ASUS's all-in-one system tuning with the click of a single button. You can of course chose options such as syncing all cores on the overclock or let the system chose (syncing all cores resulted at 47x, letting the system chose resulted in half the cores at 47x and the other half at 46x).


Besides auto overclocking, it can also tune your fans, change up power settings in the VRM, and even optimize your LAN and Audio setup. I am mainly interested in the CPU overclock.




5-Way optimization resulted in a 47x OC on all cores (I picked the options to maximize speed and power), the VCore is at 1.376v which is a bit high, but regardless it is an impressive auto OC. This program actually tests CPUs on an individual level so other CPUs might fair differently. You can also see the fan optimizations it has done.




TPU is ASUS's known auto OC tool, with the flick of the TPU switch to position one, it overclocks the CPU and Memory on the default divider of 1.00x. When you move to position two, it uses the 1.25x divider for interesting results. The second position with the divider at 1.25x gave me a lower OC than the first position. On a side note, there is a little 2-pin header in the lower right hand corner of the image, that is meant to connect to a button, and when pressed it will reset the system and take you directly into the UEFI.




Position 1 yielded a CPU OC of 4.6GHz with memory at 2400MHz, and position 2 yielded 4.5GHz and 2000MHz memory clock.




This is the EPU switch turned on. The EPU is used to reduce overall power consumption, it did down clock the CPU. The CPU Turbo fluctuated between 42x and 43x instead of going to 44x, which is standard max turbo ratio for the 4790K. Although you lose some speed, you do save some power, as you will see next.



Power Testing


I tested the power at the wall socket and at the 8-Pin CPU power connector on the motherboard, which supplies the CPU power. Measurements were taken at 0% load for Idle and 100% load (at max spikes) using IntelBurnTest.




The results are interesting, EPU does seem to save some power and 5-Way Optimization pumping volts doesn't necessarily help power saving, however, I could have selected different options in the 5-Way Optimization program to reduce power consumption.




This is the testing done in RMAA5.5 with the audio, the results speak for themselves. I test with RMAA a bit differently than others; I make sure to disable all audio enhancements in packaged software and in the control panel, then I match bit rate and frequency, and finally run the test.

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