ASRock will soon let you overclock Skylake Xeon CPUs on their motherboards

By Scorpus ยท 8 replies
Jan 4, 2016
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  1. Users will soon be able to overclock Intel's Skylake-based Xeon processors on a selection of ASRock motherboards, sources have revealed to TechSpot. Intel normally prevents Xeons from being overclocked, but ASRock has managed to overcome these restrictions through software tricks in their motherboard's BIOS.

    This feature is currently being tested internally at ASRock, and will be released to the public in due course. In their testing, the company has managed to push a Xeon E3-1220v5 from 3.0 GHz to 4.5 GHz, a significant clock speed increase of 50% that transforms a basic workstation CPU into a decent performer.

    The ability to overclock Skylake Xeon processors has big implications for system builders. The Xeon E3-1220v5, for example, is very similar to a Skylake Core i5 part, with a similar array of four cores and four threads, but with a lower base and turbo clock speed, and no integrated graphics. Due to a lesser feature set, the E3-1220v5 costs only $220, less than the Core i5-6600 ($230) and the unlocked i5-6600K ($280).

    This means that, theoretically, a user wanting to build a gaming PC could purchase the cheapest Xeon CPU (the E3-1220v5) and overclock it with ease on an ASRock motherboard to the level of a high-end Core i5 CPU. If a user opts for a Xeon with hyper-threading, the cheapest of which is the $275 E3-1230v5, they could build a Core i7-6700K-equivalent system and save over $100.

    The two ASRock motherboards that will support Xeon overclocking are the Fatal1ty E3V5 Performance Gaming/OC and the E3V5 WS, both of which use Intel's C232 chipset. These motherboards support consumer-friendly features like DDR4 memory (both ECC and non-ECC), dual PCIe slots, and a healthy collection of USB 3.0 and SATA 6 Gbps ports.

    At this stage we're not sure when ASRock will officially launch the ability to overclock Xeon CPUs on their motherboards, or exactly what process is involved. However we are in the process of acquiring the hardware to test this feature out, so check back on TechSpot soon for an in-depth look at Xeon overclocking.

    With this feature in hand, ASRock will basically allow you to overclock any desktop CPU in Intel's Skylake range. Last month, the company launched a feature that allowed users to overclock non-K Skylake CPUs on their motherboards. Earlier, ASRock allowed users to overclock DDR4 memory on motherboards without Intel's Z-series chipsets.

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  2. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,280

    "Skylake Core i5 part, with a similar array of four cores and four threads"
    Since when is a Core i5 proc 4 cores and 4 threads? That's the i7's party trick as far as I know.
  3. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,958   +2,300

    No the Core i7 has 4 core and 8 threads!
    dividebyzero and madboyv1 like this.
  4. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,280

    Yeah you're right, I had a bit of a brain fart now.
  5. Tibeardius

    Tibeardius TS Booster Posts: 64   +42

    Isn't there something about Xenon CPUs performing less than the Core iX parts at similar clocks due to the error checking(or something like that) in the Xenon?
  6. SuperVeloce

    SuperVeloce TS Booster Posts: 133   +34

    Error checking... like what? ECC ram? Traditionally, if you put xeon (not xenon lol) on a gaming motherboard, you were left with all those features disabled.
  7. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,840   +1,266

    Clock for clock they are for all intents and purposes the same and derived from the same silicon. As a general rule Xeon's are clocked slower because their usage pattern is geared more towards stability and they are usually paired with slower ECC RAM although nothing prevents them from using non-ECC RAM (quick Google search shows this ECC vs non-ECC / Xeon vs i7 comparison)
    With the base clock overclocking, Xeon's now also set themselves alongside the i5 and i7 "K" models. The E3-1240v5 features hyperthreading (4C/8T) as well as vPro - something not available to the 6700K- with a much cheaper price tag
    Tibeardius likes this.
  8. LoginToLogout

    LoginToLogout TS Rookie

    Driving the price of K-series down would be nice hehe! But it probably won't happen.
  9. Tibeardius

    Tibeardius TS Booster Posts: 64   +42

    Sounds right. Thanks for the explanation.

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