We would like to thank the following companies for supplying and supporting us with our test system hardware and equipment: Intel, ASUS, MSI, Western Digital, MemoRight and Corsair.
We've got a number of boards in our graphs here today starting with the Supermicro C7Z87-OCE, which we will be running at stock and overclocked speeds - the latter information we'll cover in just a moment. Along with that, though, we've also got the ASRock Z87E-ITX, ASRock Z87 OC FORMULA and GIGABYTE Z87X-OC to round off the Z87 list.
Along with those boards, we've also got the Z77 based MSI Z77A-GD65 Gaming and X79 based GIGABYTE X79S-UP5-Wi-Fi to finish things off.
While Supermicro have focused on the overclocking side of things in both a naming and feature point of views, I have to be completely honest when I say I didn't expect big things from the board when it comes to overclocking. The BIOS was one reason, while the other was the fact that this area feels very new to Supermicro. As always, though, we headed in to see just what we could do.
Initially we had some problems with the settings being applied properly in Windows. When the CPU was placed under load, it wouldn't move to the speed we had set. If we used only one core, though, it would jump up to the set speed with no problem. Talking to Supermicro, the issue was the IA Core Current Max (1/8 Amp) not being high enough. Once we got this adjusted, we didn't have any problems.
When it came to the overclocking, the numbers started off looking great. We managed to get 4.8GHz up and running with no issue. Media Espresso and Hyper Pi ran with no problem. As we moved through our testing, though, we ran into problems under both 3DMark 11 and PCMark 7. Because of that we had to head back into the BIOS to do a bit more tweaking and more than likely lower the clock speed.
After a while we ended up with a final overclock of 4589.91 MHz or 4.59GHz, as shown in our graphs here today. Considering we had 4.8GHz stable under some of our more intensive benchmarks, we wouldn't be surprised if we could achieve that speed on this board. The problem is the BIOS, though. It's really just not user-friendly at all when it comes to overclocking and not having a UEFI design, something we've become extremely accustom to seeing, we have to say that it's lacking in many ways. We'll cover our overall feelings on the BIOS, though, when we wrap the board up on the final page.