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TweakTown's Ultimate Intel Skylake Overclocking Guide

By: Steven Bassiri | Guides | Posted: Dec 21, 2015 3:11 pm

The Board




GIGABYTE's Z170X-SOC Force also has a legacy, and its orange and black color theme is unique. Surprisingly red accessories match the orange of the board, especially when inside a case. The Z170X-SOC Force was used for CPU and voltage scaling tests. GIGABYTE has a video OC guide here.





The GIGABYTE Z170X-SOC Force has the most buttons located on a motherboard for overclocking. The amount of overclocking features is quite intense, and most of them are targeted towards making overclocking quicker and easier. All of the overclocking features are neatly located in the area near the memory except their SOC Link feature, which allows a tethered device to remotely overclock the system.


The Z170X-SOC Force is also one of a handful of Z170 motherboards with a PLX bridge for 3-way and 4-way SLI, so it's great for 3D benchmarking with three or four GPUs. GIGABYTE's OC Ignition feature allows for power to be applied without actually turning on the CPU or PCH so that users can run power to fans and PSU connected devices (like water pumps). More information can be found here.



LLC Performance




GIGABYTE's LLC is very good, the difference between idle and load is almost zero at certain LLC and voltage levels.



BIOS Special OC Profiles




GIGABYTE does provide some profiles for air and water overclocking depending on the CPU installed.




GIGABYTE does not have specific memory OC profiles, but their Memory Enhancement Settings do make a difference, especially the new "Relax OC" setting that greatly improves DDR4 margins by maxing out timings. Interestingly enough GIGABYTE has provided IMC timings and other usually hidden features.



BIOS Power Savings




GIGABYTE's Turbo, EIST, and C-State options are available on a single page, you can disable the power states in GIGABYTE's BIOS and still maintain an overclock in Windows, and of course you can set your power plan to "High Performance" in Windows control panel under power options.



BIOS PWM Options




GIGABYTE's offers PWM setting as well; over voltage protection, over current protection, switching frequency, and phase control are present. I did not have to change any of these, in fact, I think auto rules do change some of them on-the-fly. If you do run into shutdown during heavy loads, then you should try increasing over current protection and perhaps set PWM phase control to extreme performance.



OC Software




GIGABYTE's EasyTune provides the novice with auto overclocking and preset profiles. GIGABYTE's TweakLauncher is provided on this platform for on-the-fly lightweight in-Windows overclocking.

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