A challenge to the performance status quo

March 17th, 2010 in .Blogs .Tech

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Are you happy only when you’ve reached overclocking nirvana? Is squeezing every ounce of core performance important to you? For years now, processor makers have tuned down their clock speeds and left processors latent to limit heat generated and potential damage to chips. They’ve also underclocked for no better reason than it is difficult to discern an increase in clock speeds. For example a 10% increase leads to a negligible 66 frames per second compared to 62 frames. Also, most applications such as getting online and generic office applications don’t require extra lifting from processors.

But for the performance enthusiasts among us, there is no better reason to push for more than because it is possible. So while AMD makes it difficult for the motherboard manufacturers to unlock dual and triple cores, some overclockers with ingenuity and lots of time on their hands will seek ways to unlock these forbidden fruits. Paying heed to what overclockers and a growing breed of tech-savvy individuals want, ASUS has managed to get around AMD restrictions by letting users turn on their AMD locked cores.

Core Unlocker—Upgrade system performance easily

The M4A89GTD is the first AMD-based board with core unlocking. It is a big feature for ASUS. Core Unlocker easily releases the power of triple- or quad-cores. A performance seeker can get true core performance that in the past required a crowbar to release — figuratively speaking. How does it work? Users first turn on the Hybrid Switch before turning on the power. An onboard LED then lights up to show the activation of Core Unlocker. The board is then ready to push core performance to its edge. Hybrid Switch includes Turbo Key II which automatically tunes the core to an extreme yet stable clockspeed. The entire procedure delivers a truly significant performance boost — similar to acquiring a free CPU upgrade. Overclockers will rejoice in getting more out of their system without additional expenditure. The motherboard also includes the AMD 890GX chipset for native SATA 6 support for hard disk throughput up to 6 Gb/s. AM3 sockets also support Phenom™ II, Athlon™ II and Sempron™ 100 Series Processors.

GPU Boost — Reach picture perfection

Many times, we feel a rig is just not offering truly superb graphics. But because we are put off by complex tweaking or spending on extra graphics card, we live with sub-par visual performance. To make it easy to boost graphics, ASUS includes GPU Boost which intuitively accelerates the integrated graphics engine found on compatible processors. This means you can push visuals to the max while maintaining your budget.

USB 3.0 — Data transfer in a flash

For ultra-fast data transfers of heavy files and rich multimedia content, the M4A89GTD/USB 3.0 motherboard includes two USB 3.0 ports. They delivers up to ten times faster speeds compared to the USB 2.0 standard. So be prepared for some fast downloading and file transfers. Benchmarking tests have shown that with USB 3.0, transferring a 20GB HD movie takes less than 70 seconds.

EPU — Ultra efficiency across the entire system

To round off a superb feature set, there is the Energy Processing Unit (EPU). It is a microprocessor for real-time, auto-optimized power management. Performance tests show EPU saves an entire system up to 35% in energy usage. Additionally, through its foresight and engineering expertise, ASUS has extended EPU’s energy controls to the integrated GPU. This means while overclocking their GPU, individuals are assured that the operation is as efficient as possible.

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