ECS KN1 Extreme Mainboard on NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra: Where Extreme and Value Meet :
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ECS KN1 Extreme Mainboard on NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra: Where Extreme and Value Meet

Date: 2005-3-1

[Abstract]
   Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS), the major mainboard maker, used to lack popularity among power users as most of its products were targeted at the low price category. ECS solutions us...

[Content] PCDigitalMobileGame


We performed our usual overclocking experiments with the ECS KN1 Extreme. We took an Athlon 64 3800+ processor (2.4GHz frequency) and reduced its multiplier to 8x. For our overclocking not to be limited by the capabilities of the memory modules, we had dropped the memory frequency down to what the memory was guaranteed to support. Thus we can see at which frequencies of the clock generator the ECS KN1 Extreme mainboard remains stable.

Almost the first thing we learned was that the ECS KN1 Extreme wouldn抰 start up if more than 222MHz is selected in the BIOS Setup as the frequency of the clock generator. We tried to change the HyperTransport multiplier, to tweak the memory controller parameters, to adjust the voltages, but nothing helped us overcome this barrier.

We were not very surprised, though. We have already seen a mainboard behave like that in our Chaintech VNF4 Ultra VE Review. Chaintech抯 engineers solved this problem in the next BIOS update, and we hope ECS will do the same. So we continued to explore the overclockability of the ECS KN1 Extreme in the operating system.

Once again we used the ClockGen utility that allows changing the frequency of the clock generator on any nForce4 Ultra-based mainboard. This program helped us reveal the true overclocking potential of the ECS KN1 Extreme which proved to be much higher than when we had been doing our overclocking from the BIOS Setup.

At x5 HyperTransport multiplier we reached 260MHz clock-generator frequency with the help of ClockGen. This is a kind of record since we haven抰 climbed above 250MHz with this HyperTransport multiplier on any other nForce4-based mainboard.

Then, we achieved 295MHz clock-generator frequency with the HyperTransport multiplier set to x4 and 316MHz with the HT multiplier set to x3.

The following table lists our successes when overclocking the ECS KN1 Extreme from the OS:

ECS KN1 Extreme

HyperTransport frequency multiplier

5x

4x

3x

Top clock generator frequency

260 MHz

295 MHz

316 MHz

HyperTransport frequency

1300 MHz

1180 MHz

948 MHz

It is really a pity that it抯 impossible to get the same results from the BIOS Setup, but we hope this problem will be solved in the future BIOS updates.

The ECS KN1 Extreme抯 hardware monitoring tools allow keeping track of two temperatures, four fan rotation speeds, and eight voltages. Cool抧扱uiet technology is fully supported. The mainboard, however, has no means to control the speed of the fans depending on the temperature.

ECS KN1 Extreme Mainboard on NVIDIA nForce4 Ultra: Where Extreme and Value Meet




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