Intel DP55KG P55 Lynnfield Motherboard Review
The DP55KG uses Intel's own Desktop Board BIOS and the latest version available (as of Oct. 21) is BIOS version 3822 (KGIBX10J.86A), which is the version we used for our review.
To enter the BIOS upon boot-up, users will need to click the F2 key. Don't ask me why Intel doesn't use the Delete key like everyone else either. The Main menu allows users to see an overview of their processor including the host clock frequencies and processor turbo speed. Users can also enable or disable Intel's hyper-threading from this menu.
The System Identification submenu gives detailed information about the board manufacturer, product name, version, and serial number. It also gives valuable information about the processor's stepping type and microcode revision number.
The Configuration Menu basically allows users to configure all of the devices that are supported and managed by the P55 chipset. This includes SATA devices, video, fans, and PCI/PCI-E slots.
Under the On-Board devices submenu, users can enable the consumer IR module, LAN, audio, firewire, and USB. They can also make the circuity skull's LED eyes blink during hard drive activity or just stay backlit during operation.
The Configuration Menu allows users to configure the Chipset-SATA Mode from AHCI, IDE, and RAID. It also shows which SATA ports are active as well as the devices associated with those ports.
The Hardware Monitoring submenu lists all the thermal properties associated with the CPU as well as the voltages being utilized by the motherboard itself. Users can also monitor fan speeds from this panel.
A unique option in this BIOS that I haven't seen from other vendors is the ability to monitor the PCI and PCI-E slots. As you can see above, we are able to see the actual bandwidth information of our graphics card that is installed in the one PCI-E slot on this motherboard.
The Performance menu handles all of the overclocking features and options available with the DP55KG. The options seem pretty scarce at first, but Intel just organized them differently under Processor Overrides, Memory Overrides, and Bus Overrides. Each of these submenus give users more options for altering voltages and memory timings.
CPU voltages and Turbo Boost can be modified through the Processor Overrides submenu.
CPU voltages can be modified in .125v increments in the Processor Overrides submenu. Changing the CPU voltage helps the processor take on higher overclocks, which increases system performance, but decreases the longevity of the processor itself.
System memory can also be highly modified in the Memory Configuration submenu. This includes changes memory timings and voltages. As a side note, many reviewers have said not to increase the voltage past 1.65v on these P55 boards because they don't seem to handle more than 1.65v without considerable stability issues.
The Bus Overrides submenu gives detailed options for changing the PCH (P55 chipset), PCI-E, and PCI bus frequencies.
The Power menu is where users can disable Speedstep to ensure their processor is running at maximum capacity at all times. This won't help your energy bill, but it will allow the CPU to run at maximum performance levels from the time the system boots until it shuts down.