Performance Summary

Performance is indistinguishable from other P55 motherboards - these products all perform about the same at stock or even overclocked speeds:


Application Performance - MultiTask Test - Total Time

FarCry 2

Biostar provides a great PWM/FET design for stability and overclocking, which also results in very good power consumption results..

Idle Power Consumption - Static

Of course, one of the key questions that invariably comes up in regards to a board’s performance capability is just how well it overclocks.

Core i5/750 8GB Results -



Gary had excellent results with his retail processors on this board in both 4GB and 8GB configurations. His primary problem encountered during overclocking with all three processors was the inability of the board to hold tight sub-timings with 8GB of memory above DDR3-2000. While the board would easily clock 8GB up to DDR3-2200 with 1.66V VDimm and VTT around 1.38V, we usually had to run CAS9 timings and loosen tFAW and B2B slightly to retain memory stability.

The Everest results show read/copy rates being up to 20% lower than a 4GB configuration at like timings, indicating Biostar still has some MSR/MRC tuning to complete in the BIOS. However, actual performance in games and applications never varied by more than 1%, so in some ways it just does not matter that much unless you are comparing synthetic benchmarks.

With all three processors, we never had to increase CPU PLL or the PCH voltages. VDimm was kept at 1.66V, VTT at 1.34V~1.38V, and VCore load voltages differed slightly between processors. Our i5-750 required 1.360V for 4.1GHz, i7-860 needed 1.425V for 4.3GHz, and the i7-870 hit 4.4GHz with 1.4V. Interestingly enough, our i5-750 would top out right around 4.1GHz regardless of voltages or cooling.

Core i7/860 and i7/870 8GB Results-





We had absolutely no problems clocking our i7/860 to 4.3GHz and the i7/870 to 4.4GHz with 8GB of memory.



Just for fun, we pulled out our “cherry” i7-870 ES sample just to see what we could do on air in a suicide run for a screenshot. For the first time in our P55 testing, we were able to POST, enter Win7 x64, and take a few screenshots above 5GHz. The system was even stable enough to run SuperPi 1M, but not much else, in fact, just starting the Crysis or PCMark Vantage benchmarks would lock the system. However, it just goes to show that this board is capable of high overclocks for the vast majority of users on air or water cooling.  Our maximum stable Bclk rate on air was 220.

If you want more details on the Biostar TPower i55, please continue on.

Index Board Features
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  • granulated - Friday, December 04, 2009 - link

    I want to know how why the AMD board murders the rest in two games when it's in it's more usual 'bringing up the rear' position in the rest. Reply
  • ta2 - Monday, November 30, 2009 - link

    Seems like you've been using a pretty crappy i5 chip. For it to top out as 4.1GHz is incredibly bad. I manage 4GHz on a GA-P55-UD4 with ALL voltages at stock except VCore at 1.30V. You have not really pushed the BCLK on this board and for you to need 1.36V for 4.1GHz is pretty terrible. I consider myself a novice overclocker, but either you're using a very bad chip or this board isn't so hot.

    "We could run our memory at DDR3-2152". This board is officially rated up to 2600MHz for memory... so we haven't even tried to get close to the spec speed.
    Reply
  • Rajinder Gill - Tuesday, December 01, 2009 - link

    It's an average 750 CPU. There are plenty out there that top out early.

    With regards to 2600 MHz memory, I don't know of any CPU's that can hold 2600MHz speeds fully application stable. That's a benchmarking claim for users who run processors with sub zero cooling or like to post suicide shots. This article is focused on daily PC use. A BCLK of 215 is perfectly respectable for everyday usage scenarios (especialy with S3 resume working).

    later
    Raja
    Reply
  • lopri - Friday, November 27, 2009 - link

    The board looks really awesome. I mean, the fact one of the main gripes is the lack of clear CMOS button in the rear I/O panel says a lot. I like that Biostar used the Intel ethernet PHY to take advantage of ICH10R's built-in network controller. So many times I see CPU usages going 20~30% when there is heavy network trafficking, and I wondered why my experiences are so different from what I see in the reviews. Granted different packets show different performance characteristics and anti-virus is probably half of that CPU load, but the CPU usage wasn't as severe on my BadAxe 2 (which I use for WHS) so I do believe the Intel NIC/PHY is superior to that of Realtek.

    Another welcome news is the flawless S3 functionality under overclocking, and I applaud it very, very much. Board's layout looks extremely clean and logical as well. For me the downside of this board are the lack of fan headers and the price tag which can be (hopefully) rectified in the future.

    Thank you for a thorough review (for a split second I thought Gary was the author, but please don't take offense ;) ) and I just might have found my next motherboard.
    Reply
  • lopri - Saturday, November 28, 2009 - link

    Well, actually I do have one more gripe. I am not a fan of daisy chained heatsinks, and on this board the heatsink with 'Biostar' written on it kinda sticks out. I'm guessing what's underneath are those 4 PCIe blocks often found bare on other boards. (?) How hot do they get and do you think it's justified to having a heatsink over it based on that? If not, I'd prefer to have more room for CPU HSF installation and video card installation. Reply
  • Rajinder Gill - Saturday, November 28, 2009 - link

    Hi,

    The BIOSTAR logo sink does not really cover anything other than to add mass to the enitire assembly. Stock operating conditions, you could get away with passive use. If overclocking and raising PWM switching frequency(for whatever reason), while runnign a 'hot' GPU in the first slot, you'll probably want to cool the HS assembly depending on what kind of case you have. The lack of fan headers obviously does not help.

    regards
    Raja
    Reply
  • lopri - Tuesday, December 01, 2009 - link

    Thank you for the clarification. That said, since the board is kind of heavy on use of heatsinks, maybe they can use real screws instead of plastic push-pins? Faced with the Almighty AnandTech editors' advice, who knows? Biostar might listen. *wink* *wink* Reply
  • yuhong - Friday, November 27, 2009 - link

    "It’s the first time in a long time we’ve not had to request fixes for peripherals or BIOS issues/tweaks to complete a benchmark, a welcome change indeed!"
    Yep, remember this:
    http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=3471">http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=3471
    Reply

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