a few posts on TechPowerUp have highlighted problems with GTX 1080 and 1070 cards from Asus and MSI. specifically, each vendors were stuck transport playing cards to reviewers that were configured for overclocking mode out of the box, at the same time as retail playing cards are delivery at base clocks with the aid of default.
In this case, the clock velocity variations are very small, at roughly 1.5%, because of this they’re most effective likely to provide ~1% of difference, if that.
Asus replied to laptop perspective’s inquiry on this difficulty through noting that reviewers and buyers alike can regulate GPU clock speeds through its GPU Tweak II software, and that “the clicking samples for the ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1080 OC and ASUS ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1070 OC playing cards are set to “OC Mode” with the aid of default. To shop media effort and time, OC mode is enabled through default as we're nicely conscious our photographs cards could be reviewed usually on most performance.”
The reality is, companies have been pulling hints like this for properly over a decade. within the antique days, they’d overclock CPU buses barely, pushing a 133MHz base clock up to 136MHz. On a 2.13GHz CPU with a 16x base clock, that’s enough for a kind of 2% clock velocity growth. different scenarios were extra egregious — we’ve seen motherboards that might mechanically enable optimized CPU overclocking settings when XMP reminiscence profiles were enabled. in this precise case, that intended all CPU cores had been set to run on the maximum rapid frequency generally reserved for a single-threaded state of affairs. Optimizations like this will impact measured overall performance by means of big amounts, much extra than the two% we mentioned earlier.
Asus claims that these changes are made to “help” reviewers, but that’s a secondary motive at first-class. yes, we examine playing cards based on most performance, consisting of overclocking overall performance — but what that is clearly about is securing pinnacle placement on a comparison graph between more than one carriers.
recall, in the end, the plight of companies like Asus, MSI, Zotac, Gigabyte, EVGA, and the alternative various GPU or motherboard vendors. They realize that pricing is as a minimum as crucial as logo in terms of convincing customers to buy a GPU. The trouble is, many customers do purchase on price. The handiest way to justify asking an additional $10 to $20 is to offer something the alternative man doesn’t have. Cooling, overclockability, and quiet operation are all ways to influence purchaser selections, but the ones functions simplest work if they could set up meaningful variations. Overclocking continually varies by means of card and a GPU own family might not be mainly loud or warm by way of default.
A card that turns in always higher overall performance is a card that’ll have a tendency to either be on the pinnacle of the stack or could be highlighted in a unique shade. It’ll be the element that catches the attention, one manner or the alternative.
there is a scintilla of truth to Asus’ statement. because reviewers frequently assessment many playing cards right now, making sure which you’ve configured each piece of o.e.m software program required to allow a given function can be puzzling. for the reason that a evaluate is a presentation of a product underneath objective testing situations, Asus can make the argument that they want to make sure the product is examined in the right situations. It’s no longer completely incorrect. The trouble is, the ones “proper conditions” may be simply as applicable to the quit-user, who won't hassle installing or configuring OEM software, either — mainly if they have the lengthy-status opinion that OEM software program is more or much less garbage.
Is a 1.5% overclock a fundamental betrayal of customers? No. We robotically be given a lot large variations in merchandise we purchase. but the problem with pushing the envelope like this, beyond the fact that it looks quite horrific, is that it is able to result in instability or other issues. inside the motherboard case we cited above, the device might crash at complete CPU load due to the fact the CPU we had been the use of wasn’t a specifically desirable overclocker and couldn’t run all 4 cores at the single-thread turbo Mode clock with out a voltage nudge. stated nudge wasn’t programmed into the UEFI, which supposed the chip appeared unstable until we hunted down the actual cause of the trouble.
In some cases, even tiny increases purpose troubles. even as our Fury X GPU runs rock-stable at stock velocity, nudging it upwards even by means of 3% prompted instability remaining year. the lowest line is that producers ought to keep inventory speeds inventory and offer overclocking modes via absolutely communicated exchange settings — no longer preloaded BIOSes pulled for reviewers.