Motherboard Guide

Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P review

Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P

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Overclocking & Test Setup

Overclocking

With the extra copper claimed to have an effect on the cooling of the board, hopes were high that this could translate into better overclocking. Although we can't say for sure that it was the case, we did get some very decent numbers in our overclocking attempt, hitting a stable 480MHz. The board could even boot into 490MHz, though that failed to pass our stability tests. Compared to the majority of the boards that we have tested so far that failed to reach 480MHz using our processor, this Gigabyte board was already doing very well.

The other good thing about this board is Gigabyte's polished BIOS. Of course, this is not unique to the UD3P and can be found in other comparable Gigabyte boards but we felt that we had to mention it for the ease of use and features. While other brands may have more tweaking options, the ones we found were more than adequate for a mainstream board. Here are the OC related settings:-

  • FSB Settings: 100MHz to 1200MHz
  • PCIe Settings: 90MHz to 150MHz
  • CPU Voltage Settings: 0.5000 - 2.3000 (in 0.0625V - 0.02V steps)
  • Memory Voltage Settings: 1.450 - 3.040V (in 0.02V steps)
  • MCH Core Settings: 0.850 - 2.00V (in 0.02 steps)
  • MCH Frequency Latch: Auto, 200, 266, 333, 400
  • ICH Core Settings: 1.10 - 1.40V (in 0.10V steps)
  • ICH I/O Settings: 1.05 - 2.310V (in 0.02V steps)
  • Multiplier Selection: Yes, 6 - 16 (CPU dependent)

Test Setup

We have only reviewed one other DDR2 board previously, the DFI LANParty DK P45-T2RS PLUS so it shall be our main comparison. Additionally, we have shown our results for the DDR3 versions of the P45 in our graphs. While we could only get our DDR2-1066 memory to run properly at DDR2-800 on the DFI board (for the lack of proper memory ratios), we did manage to get the Gigabyte to run at DDR2-1066 - but was running at a looser 5-5-5-15 memory timing instead. The following hardware configurations were used:-

  • Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6850 processor (3.00GHz)
  • 2 x 1GB Kingston HyperX DDR3-1333 @ 7-7-20 CAS 7.0 (for DDR3 motherboards)
  • 2 x 1GB Kingston HyperX DDR2-1066@800 and @ 4-4-4-12 (for the DFI LANParty DK P45-T2RS PLUS)
  • 2 x 1GB Aeneon DDR2-1066 @ 5-5-5-15 (for the Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P)
  • Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 200GB SATA hard disk drive (one single NTFS partition)
  • MSI GeForce 8600 GTS 256MB - with ForceWare 162.18 drivers
  • Intel INF 9.0.0.1007 and AHCI 8.0.0.1039 driver set
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional with Service Pack 2 (and DirectX 9.0c)

The following benchmarks will be used to determine the performance of the Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P when compared to our previously tested Intel P45 boards:-

  • BAPco SYSmark 2004 (with Patch 2)
  • Futuremark PCMark05 (ver 120)
  • SPECviewperf 9.0
  • AquaMark3