Complete BIOS Tuning Guide - "CPU Configuration"

CPU Configuration

CPU Internal Thermal Control - [Auto, Disabled] Always leave this on Auto as disabling internal thermal control can have unknown affects on system operation. According to sources at Intel, thermal control is required to be active if the CPU is expected to correctly function within specifications.

Limit CPUID MaxVal - [Enabled, Disabled] Some legacy operating systems (i.e. Windows NT SP2 and older) are unable to properly deal with the CPUID x86 opcode when called using operands greater than 3. The problem is that the boot code for these older system was written to query the CPU for the highest supported value and then to call a routine using this value. Unfortunately, the programmers did not have the foresight to account for future processors with higher values and the OS crashes with a BSOD due to the unhandled exception in a routine running with kernel mode privileges.

The result is a general incompatibility between these newer CPUs (with a maximum supported CPUID value of 4) and these older operating systems. Set this to Enabled if you experience just such a problem, otherwise leave this Disabled. Beware that improperly enabling this setting with Windows 2000, XP, or any flavor of Vista can cause serious performance problems.

Enhanced C1 (C1E) - [Enabled, Disabled] C1E functions to reduce the CPU multiplier to 6.0x when idling or running in load-load conditions. This can sometimes provide a small degree of power savings, especially if the system is highly overclocked to begin with. Most users find the constant switching between the idle and load frequencies annoying, besides which a small performance penalty is experienced during each transition. We usually disable this setting and recommend you do the same if you are building your system for gaming purposes.

Execute Disable Bit - [Enabled, Disabled] The Execute Disable (NX) Bit is typically used as a form of hardware protection against the execution of malicious code. This bit is part of the page table descriptor used to mark the memory page table as executable or not. This way programs that purposefully cause buffer overflows that end up spilling into the memory address space of other processes cannot execute injected data unless the page is specifically marked as containing executable code. Enabling this feature will force Physical Address Extension (PAE) Mode when running a 32-bit Windows OS regardless of the amount of system memory installed. This is because the NX bit resides at bit 63 of the page table entry and page table entries are only 32 bits in length with PAE disabled. 64-bit operating systems always run in PAE Mode. Enabling this feature has never negatively affected our ability to overclock.

Virtualization Technology - [Enabled, Disabled] This setting controls whether or not the BIOS masks requests sent to the CPU in determining whether or not Virtualization Technology (VT) is supported. Disabling this setting ensures the system cannot run any code pertaining to system virtualization. We usually leave this Disabled unless we have a good reason to enable it.

Enhanced Intel SpeedStep(tm) Tech. - [Enabled, Disabled] Although some BIOS releases may allows this features to be alternately Disabled or Enabled, it has no affect unless the installed CPU is capable of conducting power state transitions and no desktop chipset contains this feature set (yet). This option should be grayed out unless you have some special CPU have not encountered.

CPU Core 2/3/4 - [Enabled, Disabled] This setting merely controls a mask used by the BIOS in determining which cores are advertised as available for use by the host systems. Disabling cores can sometimes allow a quad-core CPU to function more like a dual-core CPU when it comes to FSB clocking. Numbering the cores from 1 is a mistake in our opinion; this option should really read "CPU Core 1/2/3".

Complete BIOS Tuning Guide - "Over Voltage" (Cont'd) Complete BIOS Tuning Guide - "Spread Spectrum Control"
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  • Rodriguez - Friday, June 20, 2008 - link

    Can anyone here indicate how to reach FSB 500 (2000) with Striker II Extreme & QX9770 C1, most I can get is 1900FSB.

    I've seen Kris reach this speed in this article & was eager to get to this speed as soon as I received my new CPU, but it has been more difficult than I thought, I was sure that if with my previous Q6600 G0 y could easily get 1900/1950FSB, now with QX9770 would be peanuts. The main reason I bought this CPU was to run 2000FSB linked & synced with Ballistix 2000 SLI.

    Please give all detailed BIOS setup options for this CPU if possible

    Nobody in Asus forum using this setup has been able to reach 2000FSB, but I have seen a few reviews (like Anandtech's) & posts showing it's possible

    By the way, memory has been tested unlinked at 2000Mhz 9-8-8-24, 1.9v P1/P2 Enabled & works great


    QX9770 rev. C1 3.2Ghz (watercooled)
    Asus Striker II Extreme BIOS 801, ver 1.02G (watercooled)
    PC Power & Cooling Turbo Cool 1200W
    4 x 1GB Crucial Ballistix PC16000 SLI EPP2 , 2000Mhz 1800 8-7-7-24- 1T - 1.9v
    SLI Leadtek PX8800 Ultra Leviathan (factory watercooled)
    SLI Leadtek PX8800 Ultra
    Asus Physx card (removed)
    Dlink DWA556 PCIx Xtreme N Wireless card
    2x WD Raptor 150GB Raid 0 300GB
    1x Seagate 400GB Sata
    X-Fi Platinum Fatal1ty Champion
    24' Benq FP241VW Gamer
    Innovatek XXD Rev 2 + G-Flow water cooling
    CoolerMaster Cosmos 1000 case
    Saitek X52 Flight system
    TrackIR 4 + Trackclip Pro
    Windows Vista Home Premium 32bit
  • parkerdw - Tuesday, June 3, 2008 - link

    I used the same motherboard and cpu, but I liquid cooled it using the gigantic Kandalf Liquid Cooled case. My memory is different as well since I use 4 GB of Patriot Viper memory (2 x 2GB). Other than the memory settings in the BIOS, I set everything to match this guide. My system runs at 4.0Ghz and the cpu runs at no more than 88 degrees fahrenheit even while playing something like Crysis with everything set to Very High. Crysis runs between 35 and 60 fps on Very High on my system using a single 9800 GX2 at 1280 x 720. It's a HTPC connected to my older 56 inch DLP set via DVI, so I can't go any higher than that, but I fully expect to run great at 1080p when I get my new large screen set later this year. I don't have my bios settings in front of me, but setting everything to Auto for the memory works PERECTLY at 4.0 ghz. Pretty cool. I think it's running at 8,8,18 or so and 1.9v.

    Also, Asus just released a patch to the bios that fixes the data corruption issue mentioned in this artcle. Released on 5/29/08 I think.
  • hardist - Monday, April 21, 2008 - link

    The water block seems to have leaking issues , I am wondering why it was not covered in this review since it is a major feature of this board ......
  • Heatlesssun - Sunday, April 20, 2008 - link

    This is a sweet motherbaord! Now I've not overclocked the FSB, just bumped up the multiplier of my QX9650 from the default of 9.5 to 10, and I'm not running RAID. We shall see but I feel good. To get this up and running with Vista x64 in a day so smoothly was pretty good I thought.
  • electricx - Tuesday, April 15, 2008 - link

    So this board is going for the aforementioned amount on newegg... The EVGA and the XFX 790i boards are going for $350... The ROG name carries that much of a premium? I mean, come on?! I'm sure ASUS will fix this data corruption issue and you typically do pay more for the privilege(?) of being a beta tester for high end hardware but $1000 over competing products seems a bit much... The EVGA board is looking to be a clear winner here to me. Time will tell I suppose.
  • FightingEagle - Friday, April 18, 2008 - link

    After the second EVGA 790i and full of bugs I just sent it back. I was interested in the ASUS X48 and the 790i, but the 790i over $400 is hard to grasp. EVGA has good looking heat sink but not very good at cooling. I may wait for all the bugs to leave but as now im sitting on $320 dollars worth of DDR3 and a E8400.
  • electricx - Tuesday, April 15, 2008 - link

    Edit: That should have been $100 not $1000
  • UK1Man - Sunday, April 13, 2008 - link

    Help please!!
    I'm currently in the process of building a computer but can only afford to buy a couple of parts a month, I have already purchased some DDR2 (1066) memory for an FXF 780 motherboard (not yet purchased) but am now considering the Asus striker II extreme.
    Will my DDR 2 memory work with this?
  • seamusmc - Monday, April 14, 2008 - link

    This board/chipset, 790i, only supports DDR3.
  • ianken - Saturday, April 12, 2008 - link

    Can it go into S3 suspend and come back out and have the NICs still work? The Striker 2 Formula cannot.

    Can the SATA controller handle hot swap? The Stiker 2 Formula and the previous 680i boards could not. The 680i bios even had an esata setting that did NOTHING.

    The latest crop of Asus boards, particularly the NV chipset rigs, have been pretty buggy and basic functionality has been borked.

    But hey, who cares of the basics don't work right? it's got a water block for X-TREME OVERCLOXORS! YO! VTEC!

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