ASUS P8P67 PRO Review (Page 12 of 12)

Page 12 - Overclocking and Conclusion

Before Sandy Bridge, overclocking your CPU involved changing half a dozen settings to try to obtain the highest clock speed. This was because there were so many different ways to obtain your maximum frequency; things were a bit complicated even if you are an experienced computer enthusiast. Since Intel locked down the base clock on their latest products, tuning your processor now only involves changing the multiplier with K-series CPUs -- making this process intrinsically simple. With my Core i5-2500K, I was able to attain 4.5GHz at reasonable voltages on the P8P67 PRO; just like what I have done with every motherboard I have tested with it. The best way to attain this is to set an offset voltage to +0.040V with Load Line Calibration set on High, Phase Control set to Optimized, and Duty Control set to T.Probe. The reason why the offset voltage is set a bit lower than the ASUS P8P67 WS Revolution is because the P8P67 PRO seems to send a higher voltage to the CPU at the same settings (The above screenshot shows the P8P67 PRO with +0.055V offset, but the resulting voltage is much higher than it is with the same offset on my P8P67 WS Revolution). I understand some are completely against enabling Load Line Calibration, while others are completely for it. The deal here is there is still tons of room for the Core i5-2500K to receive voltage spikes when during load transition, so if you want lower idle voltages, my advice to you is just leave this setting enabled and you will be good to go.

It seems there is a wall at 4.5GHz for my particular processor -- but ASUS claims there are ways around this to achieve higher clock by enabling PLL Overvoltage. With that set in conjunction with CPU Voltage bumped to +0.060V (I later found out +0.055V will do the job), Load Line Calibration set to Ultra High, VRM Frequency to 370, Phase and Duty Control to Extreme, and CPU Current Capability to 130%, we were able to get a whole 200MHz out of my i5-2500K before becoming unstable in Prime95 again. It's not a whole lot, but there you go. For normal operation, I just left my CPU at 4.5GHz. If you have a better chip that overclocks better, the P8P67 PRO gives you quite a bit of headroom. Maybe not as much as the P8P67 WS Revolution, but still a good bunch. At no point did my motherboard fail to start compared to the P67A-UD5, which failed to start occasionally until a complete power cycle is executed. I would say it is definitely a better experience when using the ASUS board in question.

-----------------------------------------

As I have said in the beginning of this review, the ASUS P8P67 PRO is a product that aims to grasp a very important part of the motherboard market. The mainstream performance front is something that is fought over by every major motherboard manufacturer, and to gain a stronghold in this segment is challenging to say the least. Motherboards commanding a $180 to $200 price tag must offer as many features as possible, but not too much that it renders upper market products not worth the price premium it commands. At the same time, it cannot be neutered too extensively from upper market boards, otherwise people would happily hand the money over to your nearest competitor. So how well did the ASUS P8P67 PRO do? To decide for yourself, all you need to do is read Page 3 and Page 10 of this review. I have no doubts you are reading Page 10 right now, but if you pulled a TL;DR on Page 3 and jumped straight to this page, I'll be happy to provide what you are looking for, haha. Firstly, let's take a look at what is missing from the P8P67 WS Revolution, the big boy of ASUS' P8P67 line (I understand it is not part of the consumer segment like the Deluxe, but that is fine). The list of major items as follows: No lower RDS(on) MOSFET, no 2oz copper PCB, 12+2 phase digital VRM rather than 16+2, less PCI Express Graphics slots with lower available PCIe lanes in total, less rear panel USB ports (But more internal connectors), and a single Gigabit LAN rather than a dual Gigabit LAN. Minor things include internal fan headers that are 3-pin rather than 4-pin, less internal fan headers, no G.P. Diagnosis Card, no RAID support on Marvell powered SATA ports, plus a few other details. What you do gain is better integrated sound, slick BT! GO features, and a couple of PCI slots for your legacy devices. Compared to the Gigabyte GA-P67A-UD4, what you are missing are ferrite core chokes, lower RDS(on) MOSFETS, 2oz copper PCB, RAID with Marvell SATA ports, On/Off Charge, and 1500mA USB ports. On the other hand, the P8P67 PRO has a smoother GUI UEFI BIOS, better and more advanced CPU voltage regulator system, better implemented power saving features, integrated Bluetooth, Intel Gigabit LAN, and in my opinion, a more logical arrangement of expansion card slots. If I were to weigh out all these with my wallet, and based on what I have experienced with the P67A-UD4's bigger brother -- the P67A-UD5 -- my money would lean towards the ASUS. The P8P67 PRO is clearly more focused on core engineering, with stuff that makes a visible difference in experience and performance on a fundamental level. In the end, while Gigabyte makes undeniably great motherboards, ASUS is simply one step ahead of the game, with the P8P67 PRO as no exception.

ASUS provided this product to APH Networks for the purpose of evaluation.

APH:Renewal Award
Since April 30, 2007, Number Ratings have been dropped for all CPUs, motherboards, RAM, SSD/HDDs, and graphics cards. This is to ensure the most appropriate ratings reflected without the inherent limits of using numbers. Everything else will continue using the Number Rating System.
More information in our Review Focus.

Say hello to awesome mainstream performance with the ASUS P8P67 PRO. If you are looking for something within budget that makes a lot of sense, do keep the P8P67 PRO high on your list!

Do you have any comments or questions about the ASUS P8P67 PRO? Drop by our Forums. Registration is free, and it only takes a minute!


Page Index
1. Introduction, Features, and Specifications
2. Bundle, Chipset, BIOS
3. A Closer Look, Board Layout, Test System
4. Benchmark: AIDA64 CPU
5. Benchmark: AIDA64 FPU
6. Benchmark: AIDA64 Memory
7. Benchmark: PCMark Vantage
8. Benchmark: 3DMark 11
9. Benchmark: PassMark PerformanceTest 7.0
10. Benchmark: SuperPI 1M, Cinebench R11.5
11. Onboard Sound (RMAA 6.2.3) Analyzation
12. Overclocking and Conclusion