The Fatal1ty was as easy to overclock as just about every other Sandy Bridge motherboard. In many ways it was even easier. All I did to get the overclock we had was to select 4.8GHz from the optimized OC settings in the BIOS. From there I was off and running. Unfortunately I was not able to push up to 4.9GHz or adjust the BCLK with much success. I ended up having to be happy with 4.8GHz (which is still nothing to thumb your nose at).
You can see the CPUz validation here.
ASRock's overclocking/system utility is called F-Stream Tuning. It is a fairly decent utility as far as they go. One thing I really do like is that you can choose to auto run it at start up, but it is not setup that way by default. The first page you come to when you do launch the program is the Hardware Monitor page. Not really much to talk about here. It is well laid out and contains most of the information you would want at a glance.
Next up is the fan control page. I always find these types of utilities interesting. On the one hand I know that people want to be able to set fans to run only when needed to reduce the amount of noise they have to put up with. On the other, I keep thinking that this is an enthusiast and overclockers board; wouldn't you want the fans cooling at their max capacity? No matter your tastes, you have direct control over the CPU fan headers (both of them as a set, but not independent) and also three case or chassis fans.
The overclocking tools in the F-Stream utility are on the light side. You get most of the basics, but the voltages are limited as are the options for the CPU. There is no advanced mode, so if you want to do things differently you will have to head back into the BIOS.
One item that I found to be an issue was the Fatal1ty mouse port. No matter what mouse I plugged in, I still got this error.
The power management page is...interesting. It has a large green button that you click to turn it on. I am not sure I would have done it quite that way, but it works.
As all overclocking results are dependent on the hardware you use, your results may vary. Results of our overclocking tests are included in the performance section with the stock scores.
Important Editor Note: Our maximum overclocking result is the best result we managed in our limited time of testing the motherboard. Due to time constraints we weren't able to tweak the motherboard to the absolute maximum and find the highest possible FSB, as this could take days to find properly. We do however spend at least a few hours overclocking every motherboard to try and find the highest possible overclock in that time frame. You may or may not be able to overclock higher if you spend more time tweaking or as new BIOS updates are released. "Burn-in" time might also come into play if you believe in that.
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