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GIGABYTE Z97X Gaming G1 Black Edition - Circuit and Overclocking Guide

By: Steven Bassiri | Guides | Posted: Sep 10, 2014 1:15 am

Overclocking Results

 

In this section, I will go through overclocking this board. Overclocking (OC) is a strong indicator of overall tuning. I don't only OC the CPU, but also the memory, and even the base clock with the latter having more to do with board design and BIOS tuning.

 

 

CPU and BCLK Overclocking

 

Max CPU Overclock is found by setting the VCore to 1.4v, input voltage to 2.0v, cache voltage to 1.2v, CPU multiplier to 45x, memory and cache multipliers to 8x, and disabling any features that would result in CPU frequency fluctuation (disabling C states and EIST in the GIGABYTE UEFI). I then proceed into Windows and use software to increase the multiplier; in this case, I opted to use GIGABYTE Tweak Launcher (GTL), which is a slim program only meant for changing overclocking parameters in Windows.

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

5.1GHz is the maximum of our CPU on many boards; the Gaming G1 did as expected. Maximum AIDA64 Stable Overclock (BIOS settings are located further down):

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

I was easily able to pull off 4.8GHz on the CPU with 4.2GHz cache and a 2600MHz XMP overclock on my memory by manually tuning the UEFI. Later on I will cover GIGABYTE's auto OC features and their overclocks.

 

Max BCLK is found at the 1.67x (if it's operational), with fixed PCH Core voltage of 1.25v and fixed PCHIO at the lowest the board will allow, I believe 1.05v here. All other ratios are tuned back to 8x to ensure they don't bottleneck the BCLK overclock.

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

189.86MHz was the maximum BCLK OC I could pull off with optimal settings, exactly the same as the Z97X-UD5H, which I tested a little while ago. This is unexpected as I figured that the PEX8747 would hinder maximum BCLK, but they didn't seem to have an effect.

 

 

Memory overclocking with Hynix (double-sided 8GB modules)

 

Maximum clock on this memory was done by using the 1.00x divider for BCLK, and then using timings of 12-15-15-35 2T, with 1.700v for DRAM voltage, and +0.20v for VCCIOA, VCCIOD, and System agent. The CPU and cache ratios were reduced to 8x to make sure they didn't affect the overclock. An efficiency test is also run, since every manufacturer sets their sub-timings differently, this test can also be used for comparison, same timings are set (no XMP of course), and a divider of 28x was used.

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guidegigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

Max Hynix (double sided) OC: 3028 MHz

Hynix efficiency time: 44.913s

 

 

Memory overclocking with Samsung (double-sided 4GB modules)

 

Maximum clock on this memory was done by using the 1.00x divider for BCLK, and then using timings of 9-12-12-25 1T, with 1.900v for DRAM voltage (Samsung likes voltage, and this is strictly for motherboard testing purposes), and +0.15v for VCCIOA, VCCIOD, and System agent. The CPU and cache ratios were reduced to 8x to make sure they didn't affect the overclock. An efficiency test is also run, since every manufacturer sets their sub-timings differently, this test can also be used for comparison, same timings are set (no XMP of course), and a divider of 26.66x was used.

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guidegigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

Max Samsung OC: 2719 MHz

Samsung efficiency time: 44.866s

 

 

BIOS Settings for 4.8GHz Overclock with XMP

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

I just enabled XMP (I didn't need to visit the memory page), and set the CPU multiplier to 48x.

 

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I disabled Turbo mode, but you can leave it on Auto, and then I disabled all the c-states and EIST. I also set the uncore ratio to 42x here as well. The memory tab doesn't need to be visited if all you set is XMP, there are many more options to tune if you desire.

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guidegigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

The advanced power menu is where you see all the options for the IR3563B digital PWM; I set VRIN LLC to "Extreme" and PWM Phase control to "eXm Perf" on all GIGABYTE boards I overclock, however, on the Gaming G1, it is also a good idea to set the VRIN Current Protection to "Extreme" to make sure the CPU and sustain a high current overclock such as that at 4.8GHz. I set the voltages as in the second picture above; there isn't a need to set the DRAM voltage as XMP takes care of that.

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guidegigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

The first shot shows where you save the UEFI profiles, the second highlights the USB DAC power control feature.

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

Fan control is available for CPU fan, CPU_OPT, and System fans 1-5.

 

 

OC Recovery Experience

 

gigabyte_z97x_gaming_g1_black_edition_circuit_and_overclocking_guide

 

I would say that the overclocking recovery on this board is pretty good in general and with BCLK as well. However, if you clear the CMOS, you do risk losing your saved profiles.

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