Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review :: BIOS and Overclocking

07-15-2005 · Category: Motherboards

By Tulatin

Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review

Perhaps the most interesting thing to the bios in use by Albatron on this motherboard is the fact that it is not one we are accustomed to seeing. Indeed, while it is based on the uber-common phoenix bios architecture, the bios itself is a Phoenix "Workstation Bios". The only real differences between this and the traditional Phoenix bios is the color scheme and the small scrolling marquee at the top of the screen. That's right - the ease of use and navigation remains, allowing for all necessary options to be found quickly and easily. It's good to see manufacturers carrying sensible layout from the physical aspect of their products to the software, which governs it - we just wish some manufacturers would learn how to make the inverse of this work.


Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review
Albatron K8SLI Motherboard Review

Overclocking an Athlon 64 motherboard is an interesting matter - the main thing that we're after is how high it can push our existing hardware, as well as just how high the FSB can go. To this end, we first try out our garden variety simple overclock on our test chip - a measly 280x9, with ram following in a 5:4 ratio. From here, we back off memory ratios and CPU multipliers to give the motherboard some headroom, and provided that the options are available, boost chipset voltages as necessary. For our purposes in this test, we will be utilizing .2V jumps, up to the motherboard's surprising high of 1.8V for the chipset.

This high comes on the heels of disappointing CPU and DDR voltages, offering just 1.65 and 3 Volts respectively, neither of which is particularly stable. In order to maintain sanity during overclocking testing, we will utilize the same method of stability testing as we do when we overclock memory - a combination of Clockgen poking the FSB up in little hops, backed by SuperPi to test for stability. When instability is encountered, voltage will be increased - if there is no option to boost voltage or no gain can be purchased, then we back off 5 or so MHz and give the system a thorough lashing with a full scale run of S&M. Let's get onto the fun and see how far we can push her shall we? Beginning at our starting point of 280MHz, we took little hops, finally arriving at 305MHz at just 1.5V. Now, judging by the fact that we gained a mere 15MHz by a .2V jump here (and strangely enough, the A8N-SLI Deluxe gained a staggering 95MHz by this same jump), we can safely ascertain that the dinky stock cooler is the problem, and surely if it were replaced, and the heat of the CPU moved away from the area via a more exotic means such as water cooling or phase change, the FSB would be able to rise up even higher.