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TweakTown's Ultimate Intel Skylake Overclocking Guide

By: Steven Bassiri | Guides | Posted: Dec 21, 2015 3:11 pm

The Board

 

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MSI's Z170A XPOWER is unique with its white/silver PCB color. Most everything matches white, so if you want a unique overclocking board, the MSI offers something different. The MSI Z170A XPOWER was used for stability testing in this review. MSI has their own extreme overclocking guide here.

 

 

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MSI's Z170A XPOWER has an external overclocking board, which is quite convenient, offering the simplicity of buttons on a secondary PCB. There is also a knob that controls auto overclocking. More information can be found here. There is one really nice thing I like about OC recovery on the Z170A XPOWER GAMING TITANIUM EDITION, the motherboard offers you multiple options after a failed overclock (if the board auto recovers) to speed things up when it comes to re-setting BIOS settings.

 

 

LLC Performance

 

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MSI's LLC implementation is interesting; they offer 100% and then 40%, but they are effective.

 

 

BIOS Memory OC Profiles

 

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MSI offers a list of memory preset profiles, and also provides a "MemoryTryIt!" option to select the type of DDR used.

 

 

BIOS Power Savings

 

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MSI provides a CPU Ratio Mode option that will setup Turbo and EIST so you can have a Fixed Frequency (without power savings) overclock or a Dynamic one (with power savings). C-States are located on another page.

 

 

BIOS PWM Options

 

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MSI offers PWM control in their UEFI as well. Over/under voltage protection, over current protection, switching frequency, power duty control, and over temperature protection can help you maximize overclocks under extreme conditions. MSI's guide does a good job of maximizing these, but you can select LN2 mode under OC setup that will maximize these for you.

 

 

OC Software

 

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MSI's Command Center offers novice users with GUI friendly overclocking. However, for the enthusiasts, MSI has provided Command Center Lite for quick in-Windows tuning.

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