MSI BIG BANG Z77 MPOWER Socket 1155 Mainboard Review

Motherboards/Intel S1155 by leeghoofd @ 2013-01-21

Designed for overclocking, usage of high grade military components and extreme durability are a few of the slogans the marketing people like to use to label a new product. The catchier the better, all of course to draw the attention of any potential buyer. Sometimes it's only the inclusion of an overclocking tool on the included driver CD that makes up for some of the bold PR claims. However for the enthusiast crowd almost each motherboard manufacturer has got a board or even an entire lineup specifically built with the highest quality components, OC friendly BIOSes and idem ditto board layouts. Sadly most of them boards retail at a steep price, as most OC designed boards are at the top of the lineup. Prices of over 350 dollars are quite common for an ATX format OC board. The Big Bang series are available already since the release of Intel's P55 chipset, MSI's range that are targeting gamers and enthusiasts. The Intel Z77 chipset based version is baptized as the BIG BANG Z77 MPOWER. Time to find out how this board reacts to the treatment at the Shrimps lab.

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This is not a full RAM review as we usually do, but more of a quick look at how the kit performs at stock and higher overclocked speeds. Being a Hynix based kit, we didn't expect any miracles for reaching tight timings at high speeds. Nevertheless the AVEXIR 2400C10 kit did quite well.

In the charts you find a comparison with a regular 1600 and 2133MHz kit, the AVEXIR kit at stock speeds and two higher RAM dividers results:

  • 2666MHz at C11-13-13-30 1T at 1.68Vdimm
  • 2800MHz at C11-14-14-30 2T at 1.73Vdimm

Both OC'ed speeds are fully HCI memtest stable and worked hassle free during the testing.

With the I7-3770K at 4500MHz we obtained the below results:



2400MHz is a nice step up coming from regular in builds used 1600MHz, Ivy Bridge really loves RAM bandwith, especially if you are using the onboard graphics core. As you will notice in the following results, 2400MHz is a decent sweetspot between speed and affordability. The 2400C10 MPOWER kit retails at around 85 euros, only drawback is the availability.





Depending on the application, either the setup will benefit or not from the extra RAM speed and thus generated bandwith. If you are an avid gamer, anything above 2133MHz is a waste of cash.





The AVEXIR kit performs in typical Hynix style, loosening timings allow for a lot of headroom. The fun part of overclocking these kinds of RAM is that you can reach speeds of far more expensive kits as a fraction of the cost. However take note that speeds at 2400MHz and beyond, are only beneficial to small fraction of the end-users. All in all a great looking kit with masses of headroom for daily usage. For those that want to do some tweaking, but remain at the rated 2400MHz, we were able to run these rams at C10-12-11-30 1T 1.65Vdimm without any hickups.


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