Legit Motherboard Reviews
Gigabyte GA-EP45T-Extreme Motherboard Review
|Date:||Fri, Sep 05, 2008 - 12:00 AM|
|Written By:||Chris Morrell -|
Gigabyte's EasyTune has been a long running application that has been aimed at the enthusiast wishing to further tweak their setups. In the past EasyTune has been less than useful, though, with terrible graphical interfaces and very few if any options available to the consumer. This has changed however, with EasyTune 6, which makes nearly every BIOS option available to the customer.
The first screen available to you features information about the processor in use along with the motherboard and BIOS version. Nothing nifty here, just the same stuff you can get with CPU-Z.
The Memory screen shows you the SPD settings for your RAM. Nothing to see here folks, move along.
The first screen under Tuner gives you your first taste of the power that comes from EasyTune 6. You are able to adjust the FSB, multiplier, memory divider, PCIe, and PCI settings. Unfortunately, you have to reboot for the memory divider and multiplier settings but everything else works like a charm.
The voltage adjustments under the Tuner section are positively insane. These are the same options available to you in the BIOS and this just stresses how devoted Gigabyte engineers have been towards pleasing the enthusiast. All of these settings are fully adjustable; I have already booted at 1.45vcore and pushed it to 1.95vcore without a single hiccup. This is the power of EasyTune 6, something that makes benching with this board immensely easy.
I'm only testing this with the Gigabyte 8800GT I had in the test rig, but the graphic core, memory, and shaders were fully adjustable. Unfortunately, when I did adjust the frequencies it removed the 2D/3D profiles and manually set the GPU clocks. I'd only use this if you don't have another option available to you.
Smart offers a way to overclock without having any knowledge of adjusting BIOS or Tuner settings. The CPU Intelligent Accelerator lets you set a certain percentage overclock and the board will provide that overclock if it is stable. Once again, something to use only if you are desperate -- you are much better off tweaking it yourself.
The Hardware Monitor gives you simple CPU voltage, memory voltage, and 5v rail readings along with sound alert settings. These alert settings will trigger a sound to play if a temperature or fan speed breaks a threshold.
Next Page - Test Setup
Page 1 - Introduction and Specs
Page 2 - Board Layout and Features
Page 3 - Bundle and BIOS
Page 4 - EasyTune 6
Page 5 - Test Setup
Page 6 - Results
Page 7 - Overclocking Results
Page 8 - Final Thoughts and Conclusion