When it comes to the testbed and the boards we'll be comparing the ASUS Maximus IV Extreme against, there's no real surprises. Because of that, we'll get straight into the overclocking side of things to see what we could achieve on this high end P67 motherboard from ASUS.
Like the P8Z68-V Pro we looked at, you've got the ability to do some auto overclocking. That can be done via the BIOS which we showed you on the last page, or you can use the AI Suite software in Windows which is an attractive option for people who don't want to venture into the BIOS.
Ignoring the "Fast" option and going for the "Extreme" one, we managed to get our CPU to a very respectable 4,857MHz via a 46x Multiplier and 105.6 BCLK. This is identical to what we achieved on the P8Z68-V Pro which doesn't come as too much of a surprise since we're dealing with the same CPU.
Above you can see both our CPU-Z validation and the pop up screen that shows once you're back in Windows and everything has been completed.
Auto overclocking is a great option for people who don't want to venture into the BIOS, but if you're happy to do so and really want to gain the maximum possible overclock, it's indeed the best option.
After some tinkering, we ended up at 5409MHz via a 53x Multiplier and 102 BCLK. This is our strongest overclock to date on our 2600k and should yield us some great performance.
Something worth noting is that when it comes to doing this overclock, don't forget about adjusting the BCLK along with the multiplier. 5.4GHz wasn't possible at 54 x 100, but was at 53 x 102; so once you find your maximum stable multiplier, make sure you head back in to the BIOS to find out what you can do with the BCLK. That's of course if you want to achieve the maximum possible overclock. Others may find themselves more than happy with changing the multiplier to just 48x or 50x for a 4.8GHz or 5GHz clock.
If you want to have some fun in 3DMark or other benchmarking programs, you'll indeed want to tinker a bit more.
Let's get started!