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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

Test System Setup


In this section, I will test GIGABYTE's features; EasyTune "Auto Tuner", BIOS CPU OC Profiles, power consumption, and audio performance.






Everything went well with installation, however, it turns out that while the NH-D15 (one of the largest CPU coolers on the market) will fit properly on the G1 Gaming, it comes crazy close to the first PCI-E 16x slot. In this case, I had to move my video card into the second PCI-E 16x slot.



GIGABYTE's EasyTune "Auto Tuner" and BIOS OC Profiles




GIGABYTE has two ways to auto overclock your CPU, one of those ways is the Auto Tuner, which will increase the CPU frequency and voltage and test for stability over and over until it stops where it's unstable, then it will reduce back to where it was stable.


The other way is their Smart Quick Boost/Performance Upgrade in the UEFI; this method has preset profiles for overclocking. The issue with motherboard auto overclocking is the fact that programs like auto tuning do their thing quickly and that profiles have to work for all overclocks. In general, auto overclocking provides much more voltage to the CPU than you would need if you manually did the overclock.




With one press of that large button, the system goes into a cycle of testing settings and reboots, and finally comes out with a result. A CPU frequency of 4.6GHz is the result; a VCore of 1.36v is applied as well. This is 200MHz lower than the auto overclock the Z97X-UD5H provided and 100MHz lower than the Z97 Pro provided, however, the VCore here is much more acceptable than the auto overclock the UD5H provided using the same VCore.




The performance upgrade profiles in the UEFI yield more reasonable overclocks. I tested the top two settings; 80% and 100%. The 80% resulted in a 4.6GHz overclock on the CPU and 1.36v VCore, it also overclocked the memory to 1866MHz. The 100% overclock resulted in a 4.7GHz overclock on the CPU and 1.42v VCore, it overclocked the memory to 2133MHz. The voltages are higher than what I would set for these overclocks, but GIGABYTE says they are this way to ensure the overclocks are stable.



Power Testing


I tested the power at the wall socket and at the 8-Pin CPU power connector on the motherboard, which supplies the CPU power. Measurements were taken at 0% load for Idle and 100% load (at max spikes) using IntelBurnTest.




Windows power settings:

Power Saver: Lite PWR

Balanced: Stock, 80% Upgrade, 100% Upgrade

High Performance: 4.8GHz Manual OC, Auto Tuning




This is the testing done in RMAA5.5 with the audio, the results speak for themselves. I test with RMAA a bit differently than others; I make sure to disable all audio enhancements in packaged software and in the control panel, then I match bit rate and frequency, and finally run the test.

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