Gigabyte G1.Sniper2 Z68 Motherboard Review

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BIOS and Overclocking

Gigabyte is fairly unique in the motherboard market in that the company still uses an old BIOS interface at a time when most manufacturers have flashy, colorful, and powerfully appointed UEFIs. To each his own--you could argue that there are pros and cons to each approach--but the fact is that there isn’t much to talk about regarding this motherboard’s BIOS. With some minor exceptions, it’s pretty much the same thing you’ve seen on any Gigabyte board in the recent years.

That is not to say that there aren’t a multitude of ways to tweak the G1.Sniper2’s settings. Indeed, there are several. You can of course adjust settings manually from the BIOS, but you can also use the Smart QuickBoost utility, the EasyTune6 utility, the OC button on the back I/O panel, the OC button on the optional front panel, or the TouchBIOS utility. If you really want to test its limits, you can also overclock your system over the Internet with the Cloud OC utility.

Using the old standby method of manually adjusting settings via the MB Intelligent Tweaker (M.I.T.), we reliably hit 4.5GHz on standard air cooling. TouchBIOS is essentially just a GUI of the BIOS running within the Windows environment, so it offers the same tools as the actual BIOS.

Using the Smart QuickBoost utility, you can click a button to overclock the system on one of three settings: Faster, Turbo, and Twin Turbo. You have to be a little careful with Smart QuickBoost, as it will give a quick boost to whatever settings you already have. Thus, if you already have the system overclocked, QuickBoost might offer an easy one-button overclock to, say, 5.2GHz if you already overclocked the system to 4.5GHz. With stock settings, even the Twin Turbo setting is 4.2GHz the Core i7 2600K we used for testing.

Oddly, the EasyTune6 utility looks and feels almost identical to Smart QuickBoost, but the three options are “1”, “2”, and “3”, and the highest automatic overclock it offers is 4.1GHz on our Core i7 2600K CPU.

The system also automatically overclocked itself to 4.2GHz when we used the back panel or front panel OC buttons.

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