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MSI Big Bang Z77 MPower - Sanctioned Overclocking!

By Wong Chung Wee - 5 Nov 2012
Launch SRP: S$339



In our attempts to overclock the board, we approached it from three different test scenarios. For the first test, we tried to achieve the highest CPU base frequency by pushing it beyond the default value of 100MHz. At the same time, we kept the DRAM timings at the default values defined by the Intel XMP specifications that was compatible with our Kingston HyperX memory modules. We also set the DRAM voltages to around 1.65V to ensure system stability at the higher CPU base frequency.

Highest CPU Base Frequency

Model Maximum CPU Base Frequency Achieved
MSI Z77 MPower 108.20MHz
ASRock Z77 Extreme6


ASUS P8Z77-V Deluxe 108.00MHz
Biostar TZ77XE4 104.00MHz
Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H-WB WiFi
MSI Z77A-GD65 107.86MHz

In this section, we managed to get a stable overclock by adjusting the voltage of the CPU PLL to a value of 1.95V so that we could push the board's CPU Base Frequency to a high of 108.20MHz.


Highest CPU Core Ratio

In the second scenario, we kept the host CPU base frequency at 100HMz while we attempted to achieve the highest CPU core ratio.

Model Maximum CPU Core Ratio Achieved
MSI Z77 MPower 44
ASRock Z77 Extreme6


ASUS P8Z77-V Deluxe 45
Biostar TZ77XE4 45
Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H-WB WiFi
MSI Z77A-GD65 45

We managed to reach highest stable CPU core ratio value of 44 with the MSI Z77 MPower. Though we managed to push it to a value of 48, benchmarking the rig proved counterproductive as overall results were lower than the result from its non-overclocked state. That's a clear sign that throttling has taken place to safeguard the chip's operating capability. As such, we had to settle for a CPU Core Ratio of 44 in order to achieve the best possible performance gain before giving up.


Highest Overall Overclock

In the final overclocking scenario, we attempted to achieve maximum overclock on both the CPU base frequency and the CPU core ratio. Keep in mind that the numbers obtained earlier may not be possible to achieve when tweaking more variables consecutively. We kept to an average value of about 1.3V for the CPU core voltage as we understand that the Intel Core i7-3770K chip ran hot and it's best to keep temperatures in check. Losing a processor due to negligent overclocking isn't worthwhile as performance gains aren't too great for an already fast performing chip.

Overclocking Results
Model CPU Core Ratio CPU Base Frequency (MHz) Maximum Overclock Achieved
MSI Z77 MPower 43 101.00 4.3GHz
ASRock Z77 Extreme6
43 100.00


ASUS P8Z77-V Deluxe 44 103.80 4.6GHz
Biostar TZ77XE4 43 103.85 4.5GHz
45 103.50 4.7GHz
Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H-WB WiFi
45 103.00 4.6GHz
MSI Z77A-GD65 41 100.98 4.1GHz

Unfortunately, we failed to reach the 4.6GHz mark for the final CPU frequency; however, compared to its compatriot MSI Z77A-GD65, we did manage to achieve a higher overclocked process speed of 4.3GHz versus the former board's 4.1GHz record. The net overclocking result is average and sort of fell short of expectations set by other boards that aren't supposedly designed as hardcore as the MSI Z77 Mpower board.

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  • Performance 8.5
  • Features 8.5
  • Value 6.5
The Good
Excellent non-OC performance
OC Certified by MSI
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
6 x rear USB 3.0 ports
The Bad
Rather expensive
OC performance didn't impress
No support for Thunderbolt
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