Author: Frank Stroupe
- Features & Specs
- A Closer Look
- The BIOS
- Testing - Benchmarks
- Testing - Futuremark
- Testing - Real World
- Testing - Gaming
As all other Gigabyte boards, the Gigabyte EX58-UD4P uses the Award BIOS. The overall setup is pretty much like every other Gigabyte board I’ve seen in the past year, though there are some significant differences in the MIT section, all due to the differences in the i7′s settings.
The Main screen is like all other Gigabyte boards, here are the submenus for all settings.
Tweaking will be done in the MIT menu. It is pretty long, and has some submenus itself. At first glance it seems pretty complicated, and is, until you find out what i7 specific settings are the most important and which are purely fine tweak settings. Some of the relevant settings are repeated in the submenus too, which makes things appear a little more complicated than they are.
In the Advanced CPU Features menu, we have the settings relevant to EIST, which is basically the same as the Core 2 with one really significant difference, Intel’s Turbo Boost. Turbo Boost allows unused cores to enter a sleep state, then uses the power freed up to overclock the busy cores, up to 133mHz. Isn’t that cool..overclocking on the fly! If you look at CPUZ while this is happening, you will see that at the stock clock, the Base Clock Frequency (read multiplier) has changed from 20 to 21. Stock BCLK (read FSB) is 133, hence a 133mHz overclock.
In the Uncore and QPI features menu, we see a totally new term, “Uncore”. Uncore is the clock speed of the L3 cache and memory controller. This should be set at twice the memory speed. The QPI speed can be itself raised for performance boost, but overclocking is better performed by raising the Base Clock Frequency (BCLK). By the way, CPU operating speed is determined by BCLK x CPU Clock Ratio. Hmmm..sounds a little like FSB x multiplier. Though with the i7, much has changed, but much remains the same.
The Advanced Clock Control submenu contains a repeat of the BCLK setting, and a few tweaks. The PCI-E frequency setting is here.
The Advanced DRAM Features submenu mostly is a repeat of the memory settings in the MIT menu, with a couple of other tweaks.
The remainder of the BIOS is pretty much the same as any other Gigabyte motherboard. The Standard CMOS Features menu has date/time, and drives found by the BIOS.
The Advanced BIOS Features menu has all of the boot relevant settings. The Integrated Peripherals Menu enables or disables most onboard functions.
The Power Management menu has the power relevant settings found on most motherboards. The PC Health menu covers voltages, temperatures, and fan speeds.
The Security Chip Configuration menu is where Ultra TPM is enabled. Protect your PC by requiring a flash drive to be plugged in to operate.