Evaluation of F1-OC
The first month of the first season of the F1-OC competition has passed, so it's time for an evaluation. Before we start it's important to know that this is a test season, so it's normal that not everything is going perfect from the start. Knowing this, I'd appreciate if readers also see this page as a list of issues that need to be solved for the next season, not as a complete killing off of the F1-OC competition.
The main issue is that both overclockers and manufacturers are left in the unknown by the organization for quite some time. I'm not talking about the details, but it says enough that on the 1st of August (when the competition starts) no one knows how to submit, how the scoring works or even how to find the hardware to bench with. Looking at the date of the official wallpaper, which has to be used in the screenshot for the score to be accepted, it's clear that the competitors had no chance of starting the overclocking sessions at the beginning of the month. The 12th of august everyone received the wallpaper; 19 days left to submit scores.
Secondly we have the exposure, which is the key element when trying to get manufacturers on board of an overclocking competition. It's pretty obvious that the F1-OC competition is a marketing platform for Asus, Gigabyte, MSI and many more hardware brands, so they want to have a public as big as possible. Now, the main marketing platform is the online overclocking magazine The Overclocker
, which comes out once every month. Next to that, there is the XtremeSystems forum, which is one of the bigger overclocking forums in the world and home of many, many overclocking enthusiasts. Problematic is, however, that it stops there: The Overclocker doesn't post updates every week and the F1-OC forum threads are hidden deep within the XS forum boards; a sub-forum of a sub-forum of another sub-forum is most definitely NOT the best exposure. The organization also has put up a micro-site for people who want to follow the competition under the name of F1oc.org
, but sadly enough there's no information available whatsoever: no scores, no rankings, no nothing.
Thirdly: HWBot. Being a staff member of the HWBot.org project I know exactly how much effort Frederik, the main coder, has put in creating the HCE, Hwbot Competition Engine, to serve as official F1-OC platform. The organization contacted Hwbot multiple times, but sadly enough there was a lack of communication, so now that the platform is ready to be used, it's hardly ever used. Everyone can submit his scores and points are awarded, but the organization still asks the competitors to send in scores through mail. A missed opportunity for F1-OC as the competition engine is powerful enough to host the competition as we speak. Actually, for those who want to follow the competition it's the best media platform!
As for the competition itself, that's starting to work out alright as everyone is doing an effort to put up scores even without hardware sponsoring. However, looking at Hwbot, only 9 of the 14 teams have been able to submit a score before the deadline of 31st of august, which should be better next month! But, as scores had to be submitted through email, no one knows if the ranking at Hwbot is accurate. No word from the organization on this either ... so we'll have to wait for the official ranking(*). In addition, there are already a couple of teams that decided to quit the competition, or at least the first season of the competition: Greece confirmed already, Asus doesn't really seem all to willing to put up hardware and latest rumors also see Gigabyte and Team USA to remove themselves from the competition.
(*): Minutes before launching the article we got a heads-up from the organization that two teams did in fact submit a score, but only though mail. No one knows how good the scores are.
To end with, the rules have been quite unclear since the beginning. Of course, this is only a test season, but every single participant wants to do his best effort anyway. The best example of these unclear rules should be the score submitted by Team EVGA, which was performed using two products not available through retail channels, but only on pre-order on the Evga website (not 3rd-party shop). As the rules clearly state that competitors must be using hardware that is available through retail channels by the end of the month, giving a pre-order link 14 hours before the competition ends is a violation of these rules. Although it's actually a very clear case, the organization decided to accept the score anyway, which is a discussable decision to say the least? I'm not applying to ban the score, but would like to see the organization to acknowledge that a mistake has been made.Next month's benchmark
In despite of all these issues, I do wish everyone the best for next month as the 32M challenge using the P55 platform isn't going to be easy. New processors, motherboards, memory kits and much more has to be explored in this month. We promise to keep you updated on this competition.
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