|by Eldonko | October 21, 2008|
Any overclocker or enthusiast knows that the components and features of a motherboard are only part of the puzzle. The BIOS is what can make or break a board’s performance for both long-term and short-term benching. First we will run through DFI’s complex BIOS and briefly explain some settings and then take a closer look at the overclockability of the board in the overclocking section.
The Lanparty JR P45-T2RS features an Award BIOS with 8Mbit SPI flash as well as the CMOS Reloaded feature. CMOS Reloaded allows users to use BIOS presets by pressing user defined hotkeys upon POST. To enter the BIOS initially, the delete key is used when the POST screen comes up.
By default, The Lanparty JR P45-T2RS displays a branded splash screen consistent with the marketing on the box. The BIOS also has an option to disable the splash screen to allow viewing of POST messages. Disabling of splash screens is recommended when overclocking in order to see what speed the system is booting at from the POST screen.
Starting with the main BIOS page we have many options to look at. First off there is Hard Disk priority, which is where you change to a USB drive for BIOS flashing. There is also boot device priority and some other boot options. The bottom of the screen is where the option to disable the POST screen is located.
Next up we have USB and power management screens. Users can enable usb keyboard, mouse, and storage as well as customize power management functions.
The PC Health Status page is rather advanced compared to some boards we have seen, likely because of a higher-end monitoring chip. CPU, chipset, and PWM temperatures are shown as well as a number of voltages. Voltages monitored include: Vcore, vmem, vNB, VTT, as well as al PSU rails. As mentioned above, the CMOS Reloaded feature in the BIOS allows users to save and quickly reload BIOS settings, great for overclocking.
Now for the page overclockers will spend 99% of their time on: Genie BIOS Settings. This page contains basically everything you need to bring your system to the maximum overclock; from FSB clocks to RAM timings to all voltages, it is all there.
CPU Clock Ratio (multiplier) and CPU clock (FSB) are the settings used to change the FSB and multi of the system.
Boot UP Clock allows for booting at a different clock. This is helpful when you run high FSB, you can boot at a lower clock and then move up to your desired FSB.
CPU Clock Amplitude settings are essentially clock output strengths and tweaking these settings helps with higher FSB.
CPU Clock Skews are the skew clocks for the Northbridge, also useful for achieving higher FSB.
Next up we have DRAM Speed which is essentially strap settings. There are seven settings available which allow for different straps and RAM speeds. We will go through the sub-pages in detail below.
Right at the top of the DRAM timing page we find the Enhance Data transmitting options. These are for fine tuning data transmitting performance based on the system FSB. Fast is used for highest performance and normal for more stability.
Below this is T2 Dispatch. These are DRAM performance parameters; disabling relaxes memory timings for higher frequencies. Midway down the timing page another important setting is found, Performance Level or Read Delay. This is the tRD parameter for your RAM. Related to tRD, the first sub-page of the DRAM timings is Clock Setting fine Delay. Here DLL and RCOMP tables are located. The DRAM DLL table is a base for calculating clock delays and the RCOMP values are impedence ratings of chipset registers. In plain English, DLL and RCOMP control signals between CPU, NB, and RAM and are essential for successful overclocking. Recommended profiles for DRAM and RCOMP are 3/3/1, 5/5/1, and 0/0/2.
Further down the page there is another useful sub-page – Read Delay Phase Adjust. This is also related to tRD and here you can see what Read Delay phase settings will be used.
Now to move on to the Voltage Setting sub-page of the Genie BIOS page. This page is where you find all the adjustable voltages you need for overclocking. At the top is CPU Special VID Add. This is for adjusting vcore and up to +.787.5mv but remember that this is enough to easily kill any CPU, just the way we like it.
Next up we have DRAM and PLL voltages. An unheard of 3.28v is available for memory and 2.15v for PLL. Again, this is for extreme overclocking and if you set anywhere over 2.5ish volts on your memory (for high voltage Micron D9) it will be dead as a doornail faster than you can imagine. It is also not recommended to exceed 1.75v on PLL.
Also on the voltage page are VTT and Northbridge Core voltages. These are both crucial to overclocking at high FSB and VTT must be kept in balance with GTL and many other settings. Again more voltage than anyone could ever use safely is available here.
Now we get into Clockgen and GTL settings. Clockgen voltage is used to achieve stability using high FSB and GTL REF Voltage is CPU VTT reference voltage. CPU GTL 0/2, 1/3, and NB GTL all must be used in perfect ratios to achieve stability at high FSB.
One last setting to go over is FSB Ref voltage. This is a tweak to MCH parameter registers and is sometimes useful for breaking a perceived FSB wall. Recommended settings to test are 23/24/25/2A/2B.
All in all, an enthusiast or hard core overclocker should be thrilled with the options available in the BIOS. On the same note however ,a novice user could be overwhelmed to the point of never entering a BIOS again! There are enough voltage options to easily fry your RAM, motherboard, and CPU easily if care is not taken. We recommend a lot of background reading and overclocking experience in general before increasing voltages and trying for that extreme overclock.
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