MSI P67A-GD65 (B3) Motherboard Review
MSI employs its Click bios icon based mouse driven interface for EFI navigation. It is easy to use, though not quite as polished as the Asus solution. The main EFI screen has only 5 icons for each of the 5 main functions. Each icon then takes you to a subset of icons or control parameters.
The Utilities icon gives you access to a very hand memory tester, an equally handy HD backup program, ability to update the EFI online and design your own boot screen. The last three utilities require the motherboard’s disk to be in the optical drive.
The settings icon takes you to another series of icons via which you can setup your board, update the bios and check the system status.
Perhaps the most unique aspect of the EFI is provision of games! Yup you heard it right the EFI has games functionality. Don’t expect these to be your Call of Duty level games. They are basic games reminiscent of 80s arcade games. Good time killers, but nothing more than that.
Perhaps the most important icon is the over-clocking icon. This takes you to the various parameters that will help in your over-clocking endeavors.
As you can see that the board allows complete control over core CPU voltage, memory voltage and some control over PCH voltage.
You can also set the OC genie button function in the EFI. If this is activated then it is only possible (recommended) to change the various over-clocking parameters via software (MSI Control Center II, discussed below).
As always it is recommended to use the latest EFI available for this board. The latest version available (1.C as of this writing) helps improve memory compatibility and allowed the use of G.Skill sniper 1.25V modules on this board.
Bundled Software & Over-clocking
The board comes with MSI’s Control Center II application, which is one of the best software based over-clocking tools I have ever used.
Apart from its use as monitoring tool (for voltages, frequencies and power phases in use), the tool also allows software based over-clocking either via an automatic algorithm (OC Genie) or manual adjustment. To use the former one must press the OC Genie button on the board.
The board booted successfully at 4.2 GHz by using OC Genie, by manual tweaking we were able to get to a speed of 4.5 GHz using nothing but the standard heat-sink!
Note: Download the latest version of Control center from MSI’s website for enhanced stability.