FOXCONN BlackOps X48 Motherboard

BIOS Options

BIOS Options
 
The Foxconn BlackOps' Quantum BIOS is based on the Phoenix Award layout, and provides a plethora of tweaking options that will keep the hardcore bencher happy. On our trip through the Quantum BIOS today, I will be predominantly concentrating upon the important overclocking features, as there are many functions that can generally be left safely at defaults or are self-explanatory to those who benchmark. The BIOS version that will be used in today's review is G28 beta.
 
Foxconn BlackOps splash screen
 
The main BIOS page provides all the usual options of your typical BIOS, but it's the Quantum BIOS tab that we're most interested in. Hitting the Quantum BIOS tab takes us immediately into the overclocking options. Contained within are: the CPU features; memory timing configuration; voltage selection and Overclock Phase Select options.
 
Quantum BIOS main page Overclocking options
 
The Overclock Phase Select allows for the user to keep the motherboard default settings without overclocking, manually adjust overclocking settings, or utilise the 'Automatic' overclocking functions. Because we here at OC3D like to fiddle and tweak, we'll be using the manual overclocking settings.
 
Overclocking options CPU options
 
Entering into the CPU features screen, we can see the usual options that need to be disabled when overclocking, like C1 and EIST. However, the last two options - Core Multi-Processing and Cold Bug Boot Fix certainly warrant a mention. The Core Multi-Processing function allows the user to disable processor cores, which comes in handy when you're chasing a higher FSB  - particularly when benching with quad-cores.
 
It's widely known that X38/X48 based motherboards have issues when it comes to booting at temperatures below -50 degrees Celcius. As a result, Foxconn has implemented the Cold Bug Boot Fix which essentially shifts the PWM sensing of the processor max-min temperature threshold down to 50C, allowing the board to boot below -120C. But if you're thinking of enabling it without your processor being cooled to at least -50 Degrees Celcius - don't!
 
Memory timing configuration memory timing configuration config
DRAM ref voltage
 
The Memory Timing menu allows for your memory modules to be detected according to their SPD profiles, or you can take the manual route. We'll be taking that, thanks, although detection by SPD worked perfectly on our Kingston HyperX DDR3-1800 modules. The Quantum BIOS Memory Timing section has a couple of gems included to squeeze the maximum performance from your DDR3 modules.
 
The R2RD (Same), R2RD (Different), W2RD (Same), W2RD (Different) settings directly affect memory access latency and read bandwidth. And while the default settings are fine as they are, adjustment of these settings can lead to better FSB scaling.
 
The FSB Gain 1, 2, 3, 4 settings directly affect memory copy bandwidth and higher, more aggressive numbers in all scales generally means better performance.
 
CPU Voltage CPU vDroop compensation
Remainder of CPU voltage settings
 
Like the ASUS Rampage Extreme, the Foxconn BlackOps' Quantum BIOS also allows for vDroop compensation, and the feature is actioned by simply enabling the CPU vDroop compensation option. The voltage tweaking options are far too numerous to mention, but pretty much everything is able to be tweaked, probed and prodded. Those of you who are looking at the CPU voltage settings and saying "1.6V WTF!!!", please remember that the CPU voltage settings has a multiplier itself and can attain 2.4V.
 
The Foxconn BlackOps Quantum BIOS also features a neat PC Health Status page that allow you to set the shutdown temperature, and monitor/adjust fan settings.
 
CPU multiplier PC health status
 
I have taken the liberty of providing some of the more common voltage options and included their configurations below:
 
Voltage options 
 
Let's head over the page to see how we're going to test the Foxconn BlackOps motherboard
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Most Recent Comments

17-10-2008, 04:58:04

PV5150
OC3D were given the opportunity to have a look at the Foxconn BlackOps motherboard and put it through its paces.

http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/artic...160448235s.jpg

Check out the review here

17-10-2008, 06:19:40

Rastalovich
It seems as slick as I thought it might have been. U`d really need to want one, and perhaps be a non-asus-fanboi, to go out and purchase it. The price is very high imo, and they do throw in a very very good package to help ease the wallet-pain.

Bios looks nice. Like the sound of the dual bios thing - now if u happened to completely screw the one bios via an update or something, can u flush it by booting to the other one ? Or flash it from the other one ? - now that`d be something special.

I`m curious about the fan mount on the nb. It blows down into the box... and the air goes where ? Down the pipe ? Out screw holes ?

I dunno tho, if ur hell-bent on the package as a whole and don`t want to pay 146 for a mobo that no1 in the western world has reviewed yet (even tho it`s been out for weeks and every1 is avoiding them like the plague - even out in Australia now ), then sink the extra 110.

Excellent review PV, tis a great package either way.

17-10-2008, 06:41:52

PV5150
Hi Rast, and thanks for the feedback.

The package as you say is immense, and certainly makes the product as a whole stand out from the rest. I mean who else includes trim-pots ready for voltage modification and and a dry ice attachment for a NB cooling block lol. They (Foxconn) actively encourage users to clock the nuts off the thing.

Pricing is extremely high for both the UK and AUS, but prices are considerably more sedate in the US. So if you really wanted one as part of the ultimate bench rig then you can certainly save some money that way (customs/import duties may apply to UK though).

The fan attachment blows directly onto the cooling channels in the bottom of the block and the warm air escapes the best it can - screw holes or blow-back through the fan itself. The fan doesn't actually cover the whole of the block due to the fan shroud being square and the block being rectangular. Admittedly it's not perfect solution, but it's better than a purely passive approach

Thanks again for the comments and I'm glad you enjoyed the review

17-10-2008, 09:49:36

w3bbo
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Rastalovich'
Bios looks nice. Like the sound of the dual bios thing - now if u happened to completely screw the one bios via an update or something, can u flush it by booting to the other one ? Or flash it from the other one ? - now that`d be something special.
Gigabyte have had the dual bios thing for few years now, with Asus also recently adding this feature to their boards.

Great review as always PV.

17-10-2008, 09:53:10

Rastalovich
Key thing - can u manage the one bios from the other ?

17-10-2008, 10:03:27

w3bbo
One Bios backs up the other so if one Bios becomes corrupt, you can still use the 2nd Bios which will flash the corrupt Bios.

I'm not sure whether you can utilise the 2nd bios with the foxconn board but with gigabyte and asus, the 2nd Bios was there for bios recovery only.

17-10-2008, 12:26:32

Luigi
Nice review pv, some cracking shots in there.

Ive been watching this board over on benchtec, very impressive results!

19-10-2008, 03:48:10

3BABY
Nice review PV, great to see that Q6600 at that fsb... what batch is she? you wouldnt mind posting up the bios setting would you?

20-10-2008, 12:00:17

Jaster
Nice review, overpriced, but very nice bundle. Its nice to see foxconn trying to break into the retail area. I've dealt with there business platform and OEM boards for a considerable ammount of years and I must say for stability and reliability its no wonder there the largest manufacturer of motherboards. I think its a bit fool hardy though to go straight for the top end boards, would of been nice to see some middle of the road boards or even a price competitive LGA1366 board may have got there rep up a bit. Nice to see a maybe a nice future motherboard contender thrown into the mix, extra competition is good for our wallets ... lets hope theres more to come from foxconn

21-10-2008, 08:50:40

inconspicuousj
looks nice, i've always had a thing for foxconns , its good to see them competing with the heavyweights in the OCing world, even if the price is a tad frightening
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