. . . or Do They?

However, further tests with the 3.6 Engineering Sample shed more light on the question.

Asus P5AD2 (Intel 925X) - Highest Stable Overclock - 3.6 ES
CPU Multiplier Voltage Highest FSB CPU Speed % Overclock
3.6 ES 14 Default 992 (248) 3472 24%
3.6 ES 15 Default 992 (248) 3720 24%
3.6 ES 16 Default 992 (248) 3968 24%
3.6 ES 17 1.425V 952 (238) 4046 19%
3.6 ES 18 1.425V 896 (224) 4032 12%

While the 3.6 ES was also able to reach around 4GHz when overclocked, this represents only a 12% overclock for this chip. It is not unusual for top-of-the-line processors to achieve a more modest overclock percentage than lower clocked CPUs that probably are off the same line. The advantage here is that the ES chip allows the setting of lower multipliers to determine the maximum overclock potential of this motherboard.

We should be able to achieve the same approximate 4GHz at lower multipliers - but with higher FSB. At a 14 multiplier, 288x14 would give us about the same CPU speed as 18x224. However, we find that the highest FSB that we can achieve is the same 248 maximum we found on the 3.2GHz. In fact, whatever the multiplier, 248 was the highest FSB setting that we could achieve.

While we can't be certain whether 248 is the limit of the Asus P5AD2 motherboard or an artificial limit of the chipset, we suspect that we are dealing with chipset limitations. It appears that Asus has effectively bypassed the Intel Overclock Lock, but the design of the lock cannot be completely bypassed. Even a clever design like the Asus still seems to be overclocking limited to around 25% above rated speed.

Asus Breaks the Lock . . . Our Take
Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • Margalus - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    I can't believe how many clueless amd fanboy's there are here
  • Falco. - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link


    u TRUST toms to put out info that holds some truth to it ?? everyone i talk to wouldm't trust toms with a 2 car parade, they'd prob mess that up some how :-)
  • dvinnen - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    #4: I'm not suggesting the they drop Intel all together, I'm just saying drap their chipsets. SIS, VIA, ATi, ALi, and nVidea (rumor) all make alternatives to Intel's chipsets. If a teir one maker like Asus or Foxconn drops intel's chipsets, all the teir 2 and teir 3 mobo makers will probaly follow suit (espically if foxconn does it considering they make most of the lower teirs motherboards for them). I know it would be finacll sucide to drop intel all together, but rember, Intel needs the mobo makers (chipset wise) a hell of a lot more than they need intel. As long as intel keeps licening other people to build intel chipsets they don't need to intel at all.

    #8: Athlon64 does not come anywere close to giving off 89 watts of heat. That's the max that it will give off ever. When intel gives off thermal guides, it is generally the average, not the max. See this artical by toms:


    While they might be lowballying the numbers a bit (hard to tell because they don't tell you how they test it) it's showing prescott giving off ~90 watts of heat. Intell says they will give off 93 watts, so it is about right.

    Now AMD says 89 will be the most the Athlon64 will ever give off at 130nm, as you see in the chart the newer CG steping gives off just over 50 watts in real world testing. Should be odvious that they have no real heat issues. Hell, they just release a line of 35w processors for blade servers and labtops.
  • ZobarStyl - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    Intel is shoving crap after crap down our throats this year, and we have no choice but to stomach it until the computer-buying populace as a whole gets a little smarter and does their homework. Your average computer user has no idea that there is a company besides Intel who makes processors, and they aren't interested in "upstart" companies like AMD =/. But although the enthusiast market is a tiny sliver of Intel's sales, we do talk quite a lot =). And when people keep hearing from all around that Intel is screwing them over then we might see that gradual market shift happen. Combine that with the fact that Opteron is making it clear to businesses that AMD is a worthwhile investment, and you push the trend even faster. Intel isn't going to see immediately big losses but they are slowly but surely eroding away at their market share by telling the consumer what is best for them.

    More expensive RAM for no perf gain? No thanks.
    More expensive graphics card interface for no gains? No thanks.
    Processors that don't overclock? No thanks.
    An entirely new form factor that requires me to get a whole new case and power supply so that you can safely market your flamethrower? No thanks.

    Yeah but before you think that Intel is going to come crashing down, remember that there are many many people out there who think their Celerons are faster than A64's.
  • thatsright - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    Yet another of the endless reasons this useless new Intel technology, sucks, Sucks SUCKS!!!

    (and this is coming from the proud owner of a 875 chipset P4 rig)
  • araczynski - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    My feeling is this article is making too big of assumption without further studies about the overclockability of these. Somehow I don't see a 50% overclock on ALL cpu's coming out of the pipe for the rest of your life as something intel cares about leaving in there, and i much less think they're going to waste any resources to make sure it can or can't happen. they're focusing on maximizing yields and stability, not whether you can or can't get a 50% OC with a line.

    i guess what i'm trying to say is i doubt they're doing this to spite anybody, specifically the enthusiast crowd who they would knowingly push to the amd side, not that the enthusiast crowd makes or breaks their quaterly profit results.....

    stop dreaming everything is/will be a C300 or P4/2.4.
  • mostlyprudent - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    I suspect that this means Intel has something up their sleaves. I would not be suprised if a few months from now we see Intel with an FSB bump up of over 25%. This will mean a new chipset which will probably have no other new features. "Make'm buy a new board every quarter" should be the Intel theme.
  • Filibuster - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    >#2 - An all-out clock lock? It'll be funny to see how many people actually buy Intel after that. Actually, it'll be funny to see how many people still buy Intel after THIS.

    Not as funny as you think. All but a tiny sliver of Intel sales don't care about overclocking. Business is their bread and butter, not enthusiasts. Even most home users don't even know what it is. I'm not saying that it doesn't matter to us, but it really won't hurt Intel.
    They aren't like Alienware/FalconNW, who depend on gamers/etc.
  • Anemone - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    And regarding the Intel issue, part of the problem that still exists with AMD, now given that they have a rather superb chip on their hands, is that their advances in mfg technology, and issuing of new chips is always getting delayed. They are just so far behind in that area. It's looking like the FX-55 which was supposed to be 90nm will be 130 instead. And that a 90nm FX chip at all won't happen for a year longer than they (last Fall) promised, which you can expect to also delay the dual core chips. They have no plan yet for cache sharing on dual core chips, and the 939 socket has 89w dissipation that dual core has to fit into if its to go in that socket, which might well mean it can't go there.

    Lots of issues - still the FX of today is a stellar chip. People still going AMD because the issues are far more palatable than the Big Brother attitude of Intel regarding how we use their products.

    Mfg's of motherboards for Intel chipsets are just giving what the market needs, and have to cater to it. When AMD is at 50% market share or higher, which at Intel's current rate of innovation shouldn't take long, then things will change and it will get very ugly for Intel. Intel will have earned every bit of that ugliness imo...
  • Anemone - Wednesday, June 23, 2004 - link

    I care VERY much! And this kind of information transparency to the end user (enthusiast version) is extremely precious. A ton of folks are just getting pushed over to the AMD side of the fence - as if Intel needed to lose yet more customers, heh...

    But breaking the lock, they still don't tell you where they stopped, which I hope the bigger folks will be honest in saying. They've all hit a limit, just need to let us know what it is.

    Thank you Anand - and /bird Intel for not giving a hoot

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now