Intel Prevents Overclocking of non-K Haswell Processors, and Strips Virtualization and TSX Features From K Parts
Subject: Processors | June 13, 2013 - 09:59 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: tsx, overclocking, Intel, i7-4770k, haswell
First revealed at IDF Beijing, Intel's latest generation 4th Generation Core "Haswell" processors enjoy a refined architecture, improved processor graphics, an integrated voltage regulator (FIVR), and for the enthusiast crowd, new methods for overclocking.
In truth, the methods for overclocking Haswell are very similar to those used to overclock Intel's Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge processors. However, Intel has further unlocked the new Haswell CPUs. Enthusiasts can set an overclocked Turbo clockspeed, use additional base clock (BCLK) values (100 MHz, 125 MHz, and 167 MHz), and overclock the unlocked processor graphics core clockspeed and memory clockspeed (memory in 200 MHz or 266 MHz steps). The additional BCLK values allow for easy overclocks without putting the other subsystems (such as the PCI-E bus, GPU, and memory) out of spec, which is important for the PCI-E bus which needs to be close to 100 MHz for a stable system.
The following PC Perspective articles have further information on overclocking unlocked "K" edition Haswell processors:
- Integrated Voltage Regulator and Overclocking Haswell - Ryan pushes a Core i7-4770K to 4.6GHz
- Intel Talks Haswell Overclocking at IDF Beijing - Intel outlines overclocking features of Haswell at IDF
Although Intel's overclocking reveal at IDF was fairly detailed, the company did not get into specifics on how overclocking would work on non-K chips.
On that note, the crew over at the Tech Report uncovered some rather disheartening facts such that the non-K edition Haswell processors will, essentially, be locked at stock speeds and not overclockable (they are slightly more locked down than previous generations).
While the K edition Haswell processors, such as the Core i7-4770K, will enjoy unlocked multipliers, unlocked GPU and memory clockspeeds, and additional BCLK options, the standard non-K chips (ie Core i7-4770, Core i5-4670, et al) will have locked multipliers, no Turbo Boost clockspeed overclocking, and will not be allowed to use the additional 125 MHz and 167 MHz BLCK options, which effectively makes overclocking these standard chips impossible. It may still be possible to push the BLCK up a few MHz, but without the extra
stepping and gearing ratio options, the other component clockspeeds based off that same base clock are going to go out of spec and will become unstable fairly quickly as you try to push that BLCK up.
There is one saving grace for enthusiasts considering a non-K part, however. The standard non-K CPUs will have Intel's latest TSX extensions and enterprise virtualization technologies enabled.
Although quite the head scratcher, Intel has decided to disable TSX, vPro, and VT-d on the unlocked K edition chips. The TSX extensions are not widely used yet, but will provide a noticeable performance boost to future programs that do take advantage of them by allowing developers to essentially mark off sections of code that can be run independently, and thus increase the multi-threaded-ness of the application by running as much code in parallel across multiple cores as possible. Further, the vPro and VT-d features are used by virtual machine applications (with VT-d being more relevant to the consumer side of things).
In short, Intel has continued to lock down and artificially limit its chips, as many enthusiasts suspected would happen. Standard non-K Haswell processors are more locked down than ever, and even the premium unlocked K CPUs suffer with the (odd) removal of TSX and virtualization support. As Mr. Gasior points out, enthusiasts are going to be faced with an odd choice where they can either spend extra money on a premium K part that will overclock but is limited in other ways, or go with the lower cost part that has all of the ISA extensions and virtualization support turned on... but is not overclockable.
In my opinion, locking down the standard chips is one thing-- Intel needs to incentivize enthusiasts to go with the more expensive (~$25 premium) unlocked K processors some how -- but if those same enthusiasts are spending extra money for a premium chip, they should get all the features the accompanying non-K SKU has as well as overclocking.
What do you think about the artificial limitations placed on the various Haswell SKUs?
Subject: Graphics Cards | June 10, 2013 - 07:28 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gtx 770, msi N770 Lightning, overclocking
[H]ard|OCP liked the new GTX 770 Lightning from MSI but thought they would like it better overclocked, perhaps even more than a GTX 680 or HD7970. The triplets below are, from top to bottom, the GTX 680, the GTX 770 and the HD7970, all from the overclocked Lightning family. By using MSI's Afterburner utility [H] pushed the card to 1241MHz on the core and 7.8GHz effective for the RAM, higher than the factory overclock. That speed boost put its performance on par with the overclocked GTX680 but it seems that the impressive speeds that the 7970 Lightning is capable of leaves it comfortably in the lead.
"We take the new MSI N770 Lightning and overclock it to its maximum potential. We will compare it with a highly overclocked MSI GeForce GTX 680 Lightning and GIGABYTE Radeon HD 7970. Each GPU is getting its best chance to show us how well it can perform, as all of these GPUs are highly overclocked."
Here are some more Graphics Card articles from around the web:
- GALAXY GeForce GTX 650 Ti Boost @ [H]ard|OCP
- NVIDIA GTX 770 2GB @ eTeknix
- NVidia GTX 770 Video Card Review @ Ninjalane
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 770 @ Bjorn3D
- EVGA GTX 770 SC 2GB with ACX Cooler Video Card Review @ HiTech Legion
- Gigabyte GTX 650Ti BOOST 2GB OC Video Card @ HiTech Legion
- MSI N770 Lightning Overclocking @ [H]ard|OCP
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770 Reviewed in 2-Way SLI and NVIDIA Surround @ Legit Reviews
- Inno3D iChill GeForce GTX 780 review: almost a Titan @ Hardware.info
- ASUS GTX 670 Direct CU Mini @ Kitguru
- Inno3D iChill GeForce GTX 660 @ Hardware.info
- EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Superclocked ACX Cooling Video Card Review @ Legit Reviews
- Gigabyte GTX 780 WindForce OC 3GB Video Card Review @ Madshrimps
- Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 OC WindForce 3x 2GB @ eTeknix
- iXBT Labs Review: i3DSpeed, May 2013
- Gigabyte HD 7790 2GB @ Bjorn3D
Subject: Motherboards | June 5, 2013 - 02:17 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: Z87-GD65 GAMING, uefi, overclocking, msi, haswell, computex 2013, computex
MSI announced new Z87 motherboards today, ready to accept Intel's new 4 Generation Core "Haswell" processors. The new Z87 boards are broken up into the company's "GAMING" series and a new "Overclock" series. Both boards use Military Class IV components that are MIL-STD-810G rated.
The MSI Z87-GD65-GAMING is the company's latest motherboard aimed at PC gamers. It incorporates a Killer NIC and the company's Audio Boost technology. It also supports MSI technology such as V-Check points (to get voltage readings with multi meter), Super RAID, Multi-BIOS II, and Go2BIOS.
On its face, the Z87-GD65-GAMING features an Intel LGA 1150 CPU socket, four DDR3 DIMM slots, eight SATA 6Gbps ports, three PCI-E 3.0 x16 slots, and four PCI-E 3.0 x1 slots. Rear IO includes a PS/2 port, two USB 2.0 ports, four USB 3.0 ports, coaxial and optical S/PDIF audio outputs, one DVI port, one VGA port, one HDMI output, one Kill NIC-backed Gigabit LAN port, and six analog audio jacks.
The MSI Z87-GD65-GAMING motherboard is currently selling for around $189 at various online retailers. It has earned a Computex 2013 Best Choice Gold award as well as a positive review from PC Perspective's resident motherboard guru Morry Teitelman. You can find our full review of the gaming motherboard here.
MSI also announced three new motherboards under its Overclock series. These boards are intended for PC enthusiasts who like to tinker with hardware and push their chips (CPU and GPU) as far as possible. The new boards include the Z87 MPOWER, Z87 MPOWER MAX, and Z87 XPOWER.
The Overclock series motherboards also use Military Class components. They also feature MSI's latest Click BIOS 4 UEFI and Control Center software that allows monitory, tuning, and remote controlling of your PC. The MSI Overclock boards also have a tool that allows for automatic overclocking called OC Genie 4 that reportedly operates in two stages. The Z87 MPOWER has a 32-phase digital power system, supports DDR3-3000 memory, and supports 4-way SLI or Crossfire. The MPOWER MAX and XPOWER motherboards are OC (Overclock) Certified and supports MSI's Extreme Tuning Utility for overclocking within Windows.
Rear port layout is similar to the Z87-GD65-Gaming motherboard, except that the new MPOWER boards add a removable Intel Wi-Fi + Bluetooth card that adds 802.11g/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, and Intel WiDi (Wireless Display) technology. The highest-end Z87 MPOWER, the XPOWER board, also has additional USB 3.0 ports on the back panel.
You can find more information on the Z87 MPOWER motherboards on this MSI product page.
Also read: MSI Launches 17" GS70 Gaming Notebook @ PC Perspective.
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Motherboards, Processors | June 4, 2013 - 10:40 AM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: z87, video, overclocking, live, i7-4770k, haswell, ASUS ROG, asus
While we run around with our hair on fire trying to get ready for the Intel Haswell and Z87 product launch this weekend, I wanted to let everyone know about a live stream event we will be holding on Tuesday, June 4th. JJ from ASUS, a crowd favorite for sure, will be joining us LIVE in studio to talk all about the new lineup of ASUS Z87 motherboards. We'll also discuss performance and overclocking capabilities of the new processor and platform.
ASUS Z87 and Haswell Live Stream
10am PT / 1pm ET - June 4th
Be sure you stop by and join in the show! Questions will be answered, prizes will be given out and fun will be had! Who knows, maybe we can break some stuff live as well?? On hand to give away to those of you joining the live stream, we'll have these prizes:
- 2 x ASUS Z87 Motherboards
- 1 x ASUS Graphics card
Methods for winning will be decided closer to the event, but if you are watching live, you'll be included. And we'll ship anywhere in the world!
ASUS and I also want the event to be interactive, so we want your questions. We'll of course being paying attention to the chat room on our live page but you'll have better luck if you submit your questions about the ASUS Z87 products and Haswell processors before hand, in the comments section below. You don't have to register to ask and we'll have the ability to read them beforehand!
I'll update this post with more information after the reviews and stories start to hit, so keep an eye here for more details!!
Subject: Processors | June 3, 2013 - 06:53 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: haswell, z87, overclocking
If you haven't read your fill about Haswell's architecture you should cast your eyes onto Ryan's full review for an indepth look at the new design of Intel's Core processors. If you have already done your homework and are now more interested in how well this new processor can overclock then heading to [H]ard|OCP will satisfy your curiosity. When testing for the best overclock [H] utilized two different Z87 boards from ASUS to ensure we could see what the processor could do, not just what the motherboard was capable of but in the end the results were similar. They also included a quick guide at the end for those wanting to apply an overclock without spending a lot of time in the BIOS. Check it out here.
"Intel's clock keeps ticking and today lands on a "tock" in the development cycle. The new desktop Haswell processor represents a new microarchitecture built on the tried and true 22nm process technology that we have come to know and love with Intel's current Ivy Bridge microarchitecture. But what does Haswell mean for the computer enthusiast?"
Here are some more Processor articles from around the web:
- Haswell overclocked: the Core i7-4770K at 4.7GHz @ The Tech Report
- Intel's Core i7-4770K and 4950HQ 'Haswell' processors @ The Tech Report
- Intel Iris Pro 5200 Graphics Review: Core i7-4950HQ Tested @ AnandTech
- Intel Haswell 4th Generation CPU: i5-4670K and i7-4770K Review @ Madshrimps
- Intel Core i7-4770K Haswell @ techPowerUp
- Intel Core i7-4770K Haswell 3.5GHz Quad-Core CPU Review @ Legit Reviews
- Intel "Haswell" Core i7 4770K Review @ HCW
- The First Experience Of Intel Haswell On Linux @ Phoronix
- Intel Core i7 4770K Review @ OCC
- Intel Core-i7 4770K Haswell Processor Review @ Benchmark Reviews
- Intel Haswell i7-4770K & i5-4670K Review @ Hardware Canucks
- Haswell has USB 3.0 issues with 14 out of 22 tested USB drives @ Hardware.info
- Intel Core i7-4770K HD Graphics 4600 GPU Performance @ techPowerUp
- Intel i7-4770 Haswell @ LanOC Reviews
- Haswell Release Day Coverage @ Overclockers.com
- Intel Core i7 4770K / Core i5 4670K / Core i5 4430 review: Haswell test @ Hardware.info
- Haswell Debuts: Intel Core i7-4770K @ TechSpot
- Inside the Intel Haswell Microarchitecture @ Hardware Secrets
- Intel HD 2000/2500/3000/4000 Linux OpenGL Comparison @ Phoronix
- 45 processor group test: from Intel Celeron to Core i7, from AMD A4 to FX @ Hardware.info
- AMD A4-5000 - Kabini the mainstream APU @ Legion Hardware
- The Kabini Deal: Can AMD Improve the Quality of Mainstream PCs with Its Latest APU? @ AnandTech
- AMD A4-5000 Review: The affordable ultraportable APU @ Techspot
- AMD's A4-5000 'Kabini' APU @ The Tech Report
Subject: Memory | June 3, 2013 - 05:50 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: xmp, overclocking, memory, haswell, G.Skill Trident X, G.Skill, ddr3 3000, ddr3
G.Skill is a company known for its DDR3 memory products and overclocking contests. It recently unveiled a new 32GB DDR3 RAM kit under its TridentX series that is clocked at an impressive 3,000 MHz!
The new G.Skill DDR3 3000MHz 32GB (4 x 8GB) memory kit is aimed at enthusiasts running Intel Haswell processors on Z87 motherboards. It features CAS12 latencies and can be run at 1.65V. It also supports Intel's XMP (Extreme Memory Profiles) standard, which will allow the motherboard to automatically configure the RAM for the full 3000 MHz clockspeed, though it requires a slight CPU overclock as well.
In G.Skill's own benchmark tests, the company managed to run its new 32GB TridentX memory at 3,000 MHz with CAS latencies of 12-14-14-35-CR2 at 1.65V. The Memtest Pro benchmark run was done on a system with an Intel Core i7-4770K and an ASUS Maximus VI Extreme Z87 motherboard. The Intel chip was running with a bus speed of 102.32 MHz and a multiplier of 39 for a total 3.99 GHz core clockspeed with all cores under load. Considering the i7-4770K is only rated for a maximum of DDR3-1600 memory, seeing it running DDR3 at 3GHz is impressive!
The new 32GB (4x8GB) TridentX kit is joined by 8GB (2x4GB) and 16GB (4x8GB) kits that are all rated for DDR3-3000 speeds. The kits continue to be covered by G.Skill's lifetime warranty. The company has not announced pricing or availability, but expect to pay a hefty premium for this super-fast RAM. Think upwards of $1,750 considering the existing 32GB DDR3-2933 C12 G.Skill kit is going for $1,700 on Newegg.
Subject: General Tech | May 30, 2013 - 02:22 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: corsair, overclocking, competition, haswell
There is more than one reason to keep an eye on Corsair's Overclocking Main Event at Computex this year, not only will you be hearing about the results from the best overclockers around, these results will be from Haswell chips. In just a few short days we will see their success at overclocking Intel's newest processor, not yet released for purchase by mere mortals. While there will be growing pains in learning the ins and outs of the new CPU and chipset, you will get an idea how fast these new processors will go when extreme overclockers get their hands on them.
FREMONT, California — May 30, 2013 — Corsair, a worldwide designer of high-performance components to the PC hardware market, is teaming up with Intel to host the Computex OC Main Event on June 3rd in Taipei, Taiwan. The event will bring the world’s best overclockers together to compete in setting the first speed records with 4th generation Intel Core processors and Corsair’s soon-to-be-announced new line of highly overclockable memory.
Overclocking is a way of boosting the computer performance by increasing the clock frequency settings of components such as the CPU, memory, and motherboards. Popular with PC enthusiasts, overclocking has grown from being a hobby to a professional technical sport with competitions held in countries around the world.
At this year’s Computex OC Main Event, elite overclockers from around the world will be vying for $20,000 USD in cash prizes. Competitors at the event will include some of the finest overclockers in the world including 8-Pack, Andre, Coldest, Coolice, Der8auer, Dinos22, Elmor, Hazzan, HiCookie, Lin222, lucky_n00b, Mad222, Nick Shih, Pt1t, Slamms, Smoke, Splave, tor_za, ZoLKoRn, and Zzolio. The live event broadcast by Overclocking-TV will be available at corsair.com/OCMainEvent on June 3rd from 13:00 – 18:00 GMT +8.
In addition to the overclocking competition, the event will feature presentations by Intel and Corsair, including a PC building master class and a demonstration of the Intel Extreme Tuning Utility. Attendees will also be among the first to see Corsair’s new line of products that are designed for use with the 4th Generation Intel Core processor. “We are excited to be hosting the premier overclocking event of Computex 2013 with our friends at Intel,” said Thi La, Senior VP and GM of Memory and Enthusiast Component Products at Corsair. “Together we’ll be unleashing the world’s top overclockers for the first time on the latest Intel processors and our new line of Corsair memory. With the sheer level of overclocking talent and the capabilities of the new hardware, I anticipate seeing groundbreaking levels of performance.”
“Our upcoming 4th Gen Intel Core processors will deliver amazing new levels of performance to the enthusiast community,” said Zane Ball, Intel Vice President, Global Ecosystem Development. “We are excited to sponsor the world’s top overclockers at this year’s Computex OC Main Event.”
Subject: Processors | May 3, 2013 - 06:45 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: z87, overclocking, Intel, haswell, core i7 4770k, 7ghz
OCaholic has spotted an interesting entry in the CPU-Z database. According to the site, an overclocker by the handle of “rtiueuiurei” has allegedly managed to push an engineering sample of Intel’s upcoming Haswell Core i7-4770K processor past 7GHz.
If the CPU-Z entry is accurate, the overclocker used a BCLK speed of 91.01 and a multiplier of 77 to achieve a CPU clockspeed of 7012.65MHz. The chip was overclocked on a Z87 motherboard along with a single 2GB G.Skill DDR3 RAM module. Even more surprising than the 7GHz clockspeed is the voltage that the overclocker used to get there: an astounding 2.56V according to CPU-Z.
From the information Intel provided at IDF Beijing, the new 22nm Haswell processors feature an integrated voltage regulator (IVR), and the CPU portion of the chip’s voltage is controlled by the Vccin value. Intel recommends a range of 1.8V to 2.3V for this value, with a maximum of 3V and a default of 1.8V. Therefore, the CPU-Z-reported number may actually be correct. On the other hand, it may also just be a bug in the software due to the unreleased-nature of the Haswell chip.
Voltage questions aside, the frequency alone makes for an impressive overclock, and it seems that the upcoming chips will have decent overclocking potential!
Subject: General Tech | April 18, 2013 - 01:46 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: vsync, vertex 3.20, podcast, pcper, overclocking, ocz, haswell, gtx 780, GLOBALFOUNDRIES, gigabyte brix, frame rating
PC Perspective Podcast #247 - 04/18/2013
Join us this week as we discuss Frame Rating and Vsync, the future of GLOBALFOUNDRIES, the OCZ Vertex 3.20 and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
- iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the Store
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- MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file
Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, and Allyn Malventano
Program length: 1:07:41
0:01:08 Win the Roccat ISKU Keyboard
Week in Review:
News items of interest:
Jeremy: support Full Control not just because they're nordic
Allyn: (portable headsets that don't suck)
1-888-38-PCPER or firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Processors | April 17, 2013 - 09:48 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: overclocking, intel ivr, intel hd graphics, Intel, haswell, cpu
During the Intel Developer Forum in Beijing, China the X86 chip giant revealed details about how overclocking will work on its upcoming Haswell processors. Enthusiasts will be pleased to know that the new chips do not appear to be any more restrictive than the existing Ivy Bridge processors as far as overclocking. Intel has even opened up the overclocking capabilities slightly by allowing additional BCLK tiers without putting aspects such as the PCI-E bus out of spec.
The new Haswell chips have an integrated voltage regulator, which allows programmable voltage to both the CPU, Memory, and GPU portions of the chip. As far as overclocking the CPU itself, Intel has opened up the Turbo Boost and is allowing enthusiasts to set an overclocked Turbo Boost clockspeed. Additionally, Intel is specifying available BCLK values of 100, 125, and 167MHz without putting other systems out of spec (they use different ratios to counterbalance the increased BCLK, which is important for keeping the PCI-E bus within ~100Mhz). The chips will also feature unlocked core ratios all the way up to 80 in 100MHz increments. That would allow enthusiasts with a cherry-picked chip and outrageous cooling to clock the chip up to 8GHz without overclocking the BCLK value (though no chip is likely to reach that clockspeed, especially for everyday usage!).
Remember that the CPU clockspeed is determined by the BCLK value times a pre-set multiplier. Unlocked processors will allow enthusiasts to adjust the multiplier up or down as they please, while non-K edition chips will likely only permit lower multipliers with higher-than-default multipliers locked out. Further, Intel will allow the adventurous to overclock the BLCK value above the pre-defined 100, 125, and 167MHz options, but the chip maker expects most chips will max out at anywhere between five-to-seven percent higher than normal. PC Perspective’s Morry Teitelman speculates that slightly higher BCLK overclocks may be possible if you have a good chip and adequate cooling, however.
Similar to current-generation Ivy Bridge (and Sandy Bridge before that) processors, Intel will pack Haswell processors with its own HD Graphics pGPU. The new HD Graphics will be unlocked and the graphics ratio will be able to scale up to a maximum of 60 in 50MHz steps for a potential maximum of 3GHz. The new processor graphics cards will also benefit from Intel’s IVR (programmable voltage) circuitry. The HD Graphics and CPU are fed voltage from the integrated voltage regulator (IVR), and is controlled by adjusting the Vccin value. The default is 1.8V, but it supports a recommended range of 1.8V to 2.3V with a maximum of 3V.
Finally, Intel is opening up the memory controller to further overclocking. Intel will allow enthusiasts to overclock the memory in either 200MHz or 266MHz increments, which allows for a maximum of either 2,000MHz or 2,666MHz respectively. The default voltage will depend on the particular RAM DIMMs you use, but can be controlled via the Vddq IVR setting.
It remains to be seen how Intel will lock down the various processor SKUs, especially the non-K edition chips, but at least now we have an idea of how a fully-unlocked Haswell processor will overclock. On a positive note, it is similar to what we have become used to with Ivy Bridge, so similar overclocking strategies for getting the most out of processors should still apply with a bit of tweaking. I’m interested to see how the integration of the voltage regulation hardware will affect overclocking though. Hopefully it will live up to the promises of increased efficiency!
Are you gearing up for a Haswell overhaul of your system, and do you plan to overclock?