WIN: Asus Xtreme Global Summit Competition Week 4

Posted on 19th Aug 2009 at 16:18 by Alex Watson with 18 comments

Alex Watson
So far we’ve announced 15 of the 20 winners in our Asus Xtreme Global Summit competition, over the course of three previous blogs looking at the various design innovations Asus is introducing in its upcoming P55 boards. It’s now time for the fourth and final giveaway of tickets! Read on to find out how you can get your hands on one.

This week we're all about overclocking. We’ve previewed the upcoming P55-based Republic of Gamers motherboard, the Maximus III Formula before, and it’s certainly one board we’re very keen on getting our hands on.

Asus sent us some more details today about how the board will apparently evolve the RoG Connect feature. This is present on some current RoG boards, and allows you to connect the gorgeous (if pricey) Asus OC Station. This is a piece of dedicated overclocking hardware that slots into the front of your case and allows you to directly control how the system overclocks.

We liked what we saw, but it seems the next generation of Asus boards are going to go quite a bit further. Here’s what Asus had to say:

“During Formula 1 racing, you often see a car engineer staring the notebook and fine tuning the parameters of racing car to make it more capable of being a champion. That’s why the ROG team gave birth to ROG connect, a feature allowing you to control the whole system via a laptop.”

WIN: Asus Xtreme Global Summit Competition Week 4
A screenshot from the Asus doc, showing the RoG connect software

The document we saw goes on:

“With the existence of RoG Connect, your laptop can be linked to the main system simply through a USB line. When the ‘RoG Connect’ button next to the USB connector is pressed, the USB connector turns into a special pathway directly to iROG [note: a dedicated IC on the board] for all the tuning and tweaking options. Its intuitive user interface makes easier overclocking possible. You can save up to five different custom profiles with various voltage settings and these can then be easily accessed during the various stages of overclocking the system without the need to enter the BIOS. RoG Connect not only allows you to view real-time POST code and hardware status readouts on your notebook, it lets you make on-the-fly parameter adjustments—such as voltages and frequencies—at a purely hardware level. The ROG Connect interface is fully customizable to suit your specific tuning needs.”

WIN: Asus Xtreme Global Summit Competition Week 4
According to Asus, having a dedicated chip on the board makes it easier to apply overclocking settings

I’ve got no problem with PC kit inspired by fast cars, but I was curious as to why you need the laptop – but according to Asus it's so you can control and tweak the PC while it's running a benchmark such as Vantage.

WIN WIN WIN The final five tickets to the Asus Xtreme Global Summit in London on the 28th of August are up for grabs. And the question is... what single tweak, invention, feature, BIOS option or idea would make overclocking better for you?


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bodkin 19th August 2009, 16:25 Quote
Built in test and burn functions for all components. i.e. A cpu ram and gpu stress test so you can test your overclock without installing (and risk corrupting) an os install
capnPedro 19th August 2009, 16:33 Quote
Temperature probes which get the REAL, CORRECT temperature, and a BIOS/OS collaboration so software can actually read this value easily and reliably. And related to this, nice hardware based (customisable through the BIOS/Windows) fan and pump control based on temp/profiles etc.

Everything else has pretty much been done before, so just ripoff everything from DFI's Genie BIOS (can tweak everything!) and CMOS Reloaded (save CMOS settings to different slots with descriptions, any can be loaded with a hotkey on boot etc etc.)!
rowin4kicks 19th August 2009, 16:39 Quote
One thing :

Better UI!
MajorTom 19th August 2009, 16:52 Quote
For me, Voltage is always the scary part of overclocking. Misjudgements here can lead to an expensive mistake that adds salty, corrosive tears to your coolant.

I'd love to see a BIOS that could calculate and set the minimum safe, stable voltage for each component at their current settings. This would also be handy for undervolting. It would be one less thing to be concerned with until final minimal tweaks where you could set it manually.

Other than a big red button that reads "Do all my overclocking for me please, clever motherboard, and don't break my stuff! I'll be back in a couple of hours." I can't think of a BIOS feature I want more at the mo.
deltaworld 19th August 2009, 17:19 Quote
I like the laptop idea where you can tweak the motherboard from your laptop using USB without going through software or through the BIOS. This gives you the flexibility of doing on the fly overclocking.

Lets take this step further and have a Wi-Fi or BlueTooth connection directly to an iphone app that can then give you all the dials and parameters to adjust the overclocking, from Voltage Adjustments FSB adjustments/fan adjustments and the nice thing is.. you will always have your phone/iphone with you and no wires. Ideal if you want to show off your kit on a lan gaming convention and from a practical point of view the software can have pre-saved configured setups where one click would adjust everything from voltages to fan speeds so you could essentially use your iphone like a remote to switch to a low power consuming silent profile for media and internet viewing to another click for oc'd beast for gaming
pistol_pete 19th August 2009, 17:49 Quote
Lots of voltage incriminates are nice. The 0.025 steps on my P5K premium helps.

Also, recommendations of what voltage is too much - I have an option to put 2.2V through my NB, but is that really a good idea? Why is it an option if it isn't? Give me a warning message if it's likely to be too hot or too high a voltage for the chip. Or simply, have in red text 'high' voltages.

On-screen hints as to what each option does would be handy - what exactly am I tweaking here? Often the manual doesn't offer enough explaination.
Mister_Tad 19th August 2009, 20:12 Quote
I always thought having onboard dump would be useful when trying to figure out what's holding back an overclock.

IE, a small amount of flash on the motherboard that holds maybe 15 minutes of rolling logs of low level data. When your system reboots unexpectedly, pop in a USB stick and drag the logs across, or even access it from the OS. From this one may be able to determine where the failure is and figure out if the problem is voltage/cooling, which component gave out etc.

Not sure if its feasable mind you, but with the amount of times I've been scratching my head trying to figure out how to get that last 100MHz out, and the amount of "what's holding back my overclock" threads here, it seems like it would be something useful.

Might be useful from a support angle too - make it easier to determine whether a motherboard needs an RMA or its faulty memory/cpu etc
1ad7 19th August 2009, 21:19 Quote
A custom, ASUS only bios that is organized to cater to overclockers who want to tweak from it. Including explanations of what the possible effects of an adjustment might do. Things like GTL voltages etc can confuse and intimidate due to no explanation.
alpaca 19th August 2009, 21:21 Quote
heatsinks(or entire motherboards) painted in temperature sensitive paint, that changes to another color when specific places are getting (too) hot. this way you can easily see if your nb voltage is too high:d

maybe keeping the iROG chip totally independent (powered from the usb port from the laptop) from the rest of the board and have it monitor all the parameters, so you could use your laptop as a monitoring tool, even when the whole board crashes or acts strange.
PLM728 19th August 2009, 21:30 Quote
I believe an application that when ran saves windows to memory (ram) just like "sleep mode" so that you can delve back into the Bios at any given point to stabilize an overclock by maybe performing a slight reduction to an fsb of bclk or a voltage tweak. When in the Bios after these quick tweaks a quick save option (similar to the "save and exit" option) that then boots straight back into windows with all your applications running as they originally were as this "sleep mode" replication has kept everything running (saved to memory) during the Bios alteration period.

This would save probably only a minute or 2 off of every tweak that you would have made if you had to do it the old fashioned way as you wouldn't have to wait for windows to shut down, the Bios to restart, the system to start up again and all of the time involved with opening up all monitoring and stress testing applications would also have been shaved off. This minute or 2 saved every time you tweak the system would save no end of time as I often find myself rebooting as many as 10 times before I have a system as stable as I would like it. If I could save myself half an hour through not having to wait as long this would be a fantastic bonus!

My second software related tool would essentially be a clone of ati-tool. When I used to use this back in the day of the x1800xt it was great! All you did was set it going and it upped the core and memory speed in little increments testing each step with a short burn in stage. It would then stop and back off a few mhz when the little fuzzy cube started to artefact. This would be a fantastic idea for asus to try and develop. Imagine a similar tool that allowed you to set a maximum safe working voltage for each component that you were happy to let run. Once these voltages are set the tool goes to work increasing the bclk for instance and then running a short burn test for stability. The tool could then similtaniously run tests on the memory to set timings for maximum efficiency as well as the cpu clock. Once a maximum stable clock is achieved the tool would then go to work testing and retesting this clock on the stress test whilst lowering the voltages to a level where the system remains stable and the heat output is lowered. I can honestly see this working if the voltages were also hardware set and not just run on the software.

My final point to add would be a nice little indication in the Bios stating the percentage increase (or decrease) that you have applied to each of the parameters that you have altered. For instance if a cpu is rated at 1.0v and you increase the voltage to 1.15v then an indication to show the that there is a 15% increase would prove to be handy as its one more indication as to how much further you can possibly push the parameter in question.

Argonaut123 19th August 2009, 22:12 Quote
For me the best thing would be if the BIOS could safely overclock everything itself at the touch of a button, as overclocking shouldn't be more complicated than that.
malaroo978 20th August 2009, 08:42 Quote
If I could have anything for overclocking.. I think it would be an.. "oh S**T!" button. Its the panic button for overclocking, when you computer starts to smell like burnt tyres or smoke comes billowing out. lol.

But seriously, I reckon a system that can automatically set up your memory timings to the best available based on what memory it is and what settings you are running you setup at. I dont have much of a clue about memory timings etc. so it would be helpful.

Also, as a few people have mentioned, I think adding assistance to voltage adjustments, as I never know when my processor will say "enough is enough" and just die!

Maybe a "clever" BIOS assistance tool that doesnt have to reboot to apply the voltage, it will slowly increase the voltage (doesnt have to be in 0.025v steps or anything) and find what the potential MHz value you have set runs best at. So it could even increase the voltage in as small a steps as 0.000005V or something very small!

What Im trying to say is something that doesnt have an all or nothing approach, something slightly more linear that allows the smallest of tweaks, and less of a big jump so less risk to hardware with a built in logic sensor that will know when your CPU is about to bite the dust.

Just my ideas anyway!
Gavster2002 20th August 2009, 10:58 Quote
As a overclocking newbie, I would love the BIOS to be able to set the overclock to optimum values.

The BIOS knows what make / model the processor is, if it can do the same for the memory?, then the only information it would really reqire would be what cooling the proc has. so either have a a dropdown field of coolers to select from and possibly a drop down field for case make and model?

The BIOS could then lookup on internal DB and set all paramenters for you.

Now I know there are a few other factors involded but if the specs you entered gave you a small / med / large overclock sureley one or more of these you be stable?

I personally have no idea what to tweak on my setup to get the most out of it??? :(

Striker exteme MB
Quad QX6700 extreme water cooled
OCX reaper 1066 RAM

crash32953295@msn. 20th August 2009, 11:00 Quote
For me I would have to say the biggest feature I would like to see is some form of online community where people can share and create configs for people to overclock with.

Say for example the site would let each user select what components and cooling they are using then they can upload there current config either through a file or event just through a replication of what someone when entering the details see's so for example with there new software you could have a picture of that with movable sliders for them to show what they have configured there overclock to be,

Then you can add comments sections and maybe have a way of ticking a box saying you need help and someone in the community can then suggest what they think it could take, also it means you can search another person with that setup and see what they have then done.

This would then allow for people who are unsure of what they are doing and what there setup might be able to handle some sort of starting line to get a basic overclock in, It would also mean proffesional overclockers can show off there configs in more detail without dodgy screenshots which they have to upload ect.

This would also build more of a community around a product as well and get people motovated to better other people, Having a ranking system of months best overclock competitions but Woah slow down there as I dont think a company would put this much effort into it, Which is why we havent seen it done yet.
yakyb 20th August 2009, 13:50 Quote
i have already won but thought i would chime in with.

a better help system within the bios

most helps only list the availible options but a description of what the value you are altering actually is would be great.
yakyb 20th August 2009, 13:52 Quote
Originally Posted by Gavster2002
As a overclocking newbie...

such a system would be way too complicated to produce i.e. most bios have been written before the third party stuff is released.

besides most Motherboards have Oc profiles built in
paisa666 20th August 2009, 15:07 Quote
As manufacturers always have said, overclockecking our rig is at our own risk, loosing our guarantee.

So overclocking being such a high risk task, i would really like to see more tips and help about waht we are doing.

For example, if i add extra voltage to my cpu, then im go to the multiplier setup, i would like the BIOS to warn me the possible effects of this action taking into account the average temperature of the cpu. This could also work for other parts like memory and the NB.

Now if i take the risk and also change the multiplier the Mobo could tell me its not working right with some bips (like the old days :D) manufacturers could arange the way the bips sounds so i can tell wehre's the problem (memory, cpu, NB), i say bips since i think this is the fastest way for the PC to tell me something its just not right and i can react quickly (PRESS SHUT DOWN BUTTON :D )
byter 22nd August 2009, 12:20 Quote
I'm pretty much on the same lines as many here I think in that I don't want to be quite so blind when attempting anything. The solution I hope for is a real-time link to the mobo mfr sending repeated snapshots to them and receiving feedback (such as "doing fine", "EVACUATE! she's gonna blow!", or "you're pushing too far, but if you change comp/setting x for y the combo should work better) more or less instantly. This way the whole thing can be more dynamic than simple guidelines of "you've got x paired with y, so you should be able to make z clocking". After all, we all know that no two components are ever exactly the same in terms of performance handling.

Side benefit of this link, would be that the mfr would be building a database of what users want & are trying to do, and how, and be able to feed this back into product dev for the benefit of same - and less interested - users.
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