ASUS ROG Rampage IV GENE Motherboard Review

Testing - Setup and Overclocking



CPU Intel Core i7-3930k
Motherboard ASUS ROG Rampage IV GENE
GPU ASUS GTX 560Ti 448
RAM  Patriot Viper Xtreme 16 GB 1866 MHz
CPU Cooler
Antec Khuler 920
Thermal Paste
 Noctua NT-H1
Primary HDD (OS) OCZ Vertex 4 256GB
2nd HDD (test)
Kingston HyperX 3K 240GB SSD
PSU  Cooler Master GX 750W
Chassis Cooler Master HAF xB
OS  Windows 7 Professional 64-bit



As we have already discussed, there are numerous avenues for overclocking on the Rampage IV Gene. TurboV EVO is certainly the most convenient since it applies your changes immediately without requiring a reboot for most operations. The preset CPU Level Up to 4.25 GHz was a breeze and completely uneventful.  TurboVEvo set the vCore to 1.3V, and under load gave us system temps in the mid-50 degree Celcius range, which is pretty good for the large 6-core i7-3930K.  We then began to taper down the voltage until it became unstable, and we were only able to bring it down to about 1.248V before instability, so the preset "Level Up" is actually pretty well-optimized to account for variability without getting carried away.  We were able to cash in about an extra Degree Celcius as well, which certainly doesn't hurt.


The BIOS has several preset overclock settings, and firing up the "Normal OC" gives us 4.375 GHz @1.400V  and the memory to 2000 MHz which bumped our temps up to about 75°C under load.  Again, we were able to knock off about 50 mV, but being we are into the steep part of the frequency-temperature curves, we picked up an extra 4-5°C which brought our temps down to a more-pleasant 70 degrees.  The "Gamer" profile is nearly the same, setting the CPU to 4.4 GHz but the memory to 2133 MHz.  The "Extreme" setting pumps the CPU to 4.987 GHz, and throws a hearty 1.568V at it, which quickly gives us 85°C on the Kuhler 920, so we didn't stress test that setting for long.  Optimizing the voltage allowed us to bring it way down to 1.45V, which allowed us to keep the temps at about 77°C, which we are more than comfortable with, and an outstanding overclock for a 120mm AIO watercooler.


Memory overclocking is fairly straight forward, and unfortunately we were a bit limited by the kits we had on-hand, as 3 DIMMs were begging for more but one DIMM refused to make it above 2000 MHz at CAS 11, which is a respectable memory OC for a 1600 MHz quad-channel kit.


In summary, the TurboV EVO overclocking utility worked like a charm, and was fairly aggressive in maintaining lower voltages compared to most overclocking utilities which buff them well beyond where they need to be. The built-in stability testing prevents the program from defaulting on a generic voltage that it hopes will work with all chips. Such voltages usually have to be much higher than necessary to ensure that even the worst chips will remain stable. The byproducts are wasted power and excess heat. As far as beginner-friendly implementations go, TurboV EVO sets a pretty high bar, and it is great to see that even a high automatic OC can give us a balance of performance and stability that we'd be comfortable with 24/7.  Even for manual overclocks, we've loved TurboVEvo for giving us a baseline to work from, especially with the flexibility X79 provides for how to balance BCLK and the Core Multiplier.

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