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Written by Steven Iglesias-Hearst   
Monday, 18 October 2010
Table of Contents: Page Index
ECS P55H-AK Intel P55-Express Motherboard
ECS P55-Express Features
ECS P55H-AK Specifications
ECS P55H-AK Motherboard
ECS P55H-AK Detailed Features
ECS P55H-AK BIOS
ECS P55H-AK Overclocking
Motherboard Testing Methodology
Everest Benchmarks
PCMark Vantage Benchmarks
CINEBENCH R11.5 Benchmark
Passmark Performance Test Benchmark
Street Fighter IV Benchmark Results
ECS Motherboard Final Thoughts
ECS P55H-AK Conclusion

Motherboard Testing Methodology

Now we move on to what most will consider to be the 'important' part of the review, if you have jumped straight to this page I urge you to also read the other parts of the review. It doesn't always just come down to benchmarks in a motherboard review, especially when comparing to another motherboard with the same chipset as the results will always be similar if not the same. What we are really interested in is how well this board can overclock, not just how much improvement that overclock will make. Testing will be done with the following configurations.

ECS P55H-AK System

  • Motherboard: ECS P55H-AK v1.0 (Intel P55 Chipset) with version V1.0 (08/04/2010) BIOS
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 760 @ 2.8GHz and Overclocked @ 4.1GHz
  • System Memory: 4GB G.Skill RipJaws PC3-12800 DDR3 1600MHz
  • VGA: PNY GeForce 9800GT 512MB
  • Audio: Onboard Realtek RTL889 8 Channel High Definition Audio
  • Disk Drive: 2.5" 160GB Seagate Constellation 7200rpm 32MB cache
  • Optical Drive: Pioneer DVD ± R/RW Combi
  • Enclosure: Thermaltake Armor A90
  • PSU: Corsair HX750W modular

Gigabyte GA-P55-US3L System

  • Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-P55-US3L (Intel P55 Chipset) with version FE BIOS
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 760 @ 2.8GHz and Overclocked @ 4.0GHz
  • System Memory: 4GB G.Skill RipJaws PC3-12800 DDR3 1600MHz
  • VGA: PNY GeForce 9800GT 512MB
  • Audio: Onboard Realtek ALC892 HD Audio
  • Disk Drive: 2.5" 160GB Seagate Constellation 7200rpm 32MB cache
  • Optical Drive: Pioneer DVD ± R/RW Combi
  • Enclosure: Thermaltake Armor A90
  • PSU: Corsair HX750W modular

Intel Socket 775 Core 2 Quad DDR2 System

  • Motherboard: ASUS P5B Deluxe WiFi-AP (Intel P965 Chipset) with version 1221 BIOS
  • Processor: Intel Q6600 Core 2 Quad 2.6GHz overclocked @ 3.4GHz
  • System Memory: 2GB OCZ Platinum Rev2.0 PC2-6400 DDR2 800MHz @ 942MHz
  • VGA: PNY GeForce 9800GT 512MB
  • Audio: Onboard 8-channel HD audio
  • Disk Drive: 2.5" 160GB Seagate Constellation 7200rpm 32MB cache
  • Optical Drive: Pioneer DVD ± R/RW Combi
  • Enclosure: Thermaltake Armor A90
  • PSU: Corsair HX750W modular

Test Software

  • Lavalys EVEREST Ultimate Edition v5.50.2160
  • Futuremark PCMark Vantage 1.0.2.0
  • Maxon CINEBENCH R11.5
  • Passmark Performance Test v7.0
  • Capcom Street Fighter IV Benchmark
  • Windows 7 Ultimate Edition

During testing, with both the ECS P55H-AK motherboard and the Gigabyte motherboard, RAM speeds were as follows; While CPU was at stock clock speed RAM was running at 1333MHz 9-9-9-24 and under overclocked settings RAM was running at its rated speed of 1600MHz. This review is not about the RAM, it's about the motherboard and the maximum stable base clock, and I made this decision so as to not compromise results.



 

Comments 

 
# RAM frequency multiplierServando Silva 2010-10-17 19:51
Hi Steven. I saw you talked about a 2:12 multiplier and you even listed it in the pros. Isn't it the case for every P55 motherboard? As long as your CPU uses that multiplier it will appear (with the proper BIOS update). You can find higher dividers with an Unlocked processor, but 1600MHz seems pretty general for me. Even ITX motherboards handle this multiplier as far as I know. Let me know if you've tested a P55 motherboard without a 2:!2 divider.
Thanks for the article.
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# RE: ECS P55H-AK Intel P55-Express MotherboardMefist0 2010-10-18 02:04
Memory controller is in processor, why you are asking about MB? Only Core i7 8xx support ratio 2:12, other desktop soc1156 processors doesn't support this ratio.
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# Memory MultiplierSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2010-10-18 03:32
With my Gigabyte GA-P55-US3L Mobo I could only choose from a 6,8 or 10 multi, so I was suprised to see the P55H-AK offer 2:12 also.
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# Spend Less,..........RealNeil 2010-10-18 06:31
The 1156 platform seems to be coming into it's own recently. At first, I was disappointed in the PCI-E bandwidth limitations they possess, making an SLI or Crossfire setup work in a limited way. I bought an ASRock P55-Pro Mainboard for $99.00 and put an i5-750 in it with some Ripjaws RAM in it. While it always worked well, it wasn't that easy to OC until the latest BIOS came out. The new BIOS has an auto-magic setting that does all of the tweaking for you. (sort of a lazy-man's OC) It gives you a choice of a 40% or a 50% overclock and as I said, it does everything for you. So now my 2.67GHz. CPU is running at 3.8GHz. (40%) and is completely stable. I think ASRock has it going on, because there is absolutely nothing to it and a $99.00 board that performs so well is a steal.
#valid.canardpc.com/cache/banner/1431409.png: #valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=1431409
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# No word on temps!PSM 2010-10-18 13:51
Hi Steven, thanks for this fine review. But to be honest I'm a bit disappointed that there is not any thermal/power report on this promising motherboard. It's becoming a bit of a trend for reviewers not to include temps and wattage of mobos recently. Yes this p55 and it doesn't get hot like x58 boards but it still needs cooling. And this ECS one has lots of extra chips that dumps even more heat than a regular p55 mobo. Just having pretty looking heatpipes is not enough for a highend board because there are boards like EVGA classified 4-way sli and MSI eclipse x58 which have sinister looking cooling solution, but heats up beyond comfort level. Some highend Asus boards have the same problame. So it would've been nice if you provided some temps along the way. Also power consumptions should've been mentioned for such a heavily loaded board. Regards.
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# RE: ECS P55H-AK Intel P55-Express MotherboardSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2010-10-18 15:16
Temps here; #i945.photobucket.com/albums/ad297/hatchet_2009/Untitled-1-1.jpg
As for power consumtion, I dont have the proper test equipment.
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# RE: ECS P55H-AK Intel P55-Express MotherboardPSM 2010-10-21 08:59
Thanks for the temps. Though 70c+ is still out of my comfort Zone. But that can be understood. Anyway this is a good sign that companies like ECS are coming up with highend parts. But they've to consider this as a longtime practice. ECS should follow the path of ASUS and reserve their black series for enthusiasts. And if they can keep the price down reasonably, that's the way to do it. Else one odd highend mobo in a while won't fetch much attention. Regards.
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# USB 2?Testy01 2010-10-18 15:45
Thought it strange that under the features on page 2, USB2 still has an old definition calling it the "Latest connectivity standard" Meh.
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# RE: USB 2?Steven Iglesias-Hearst 2010-10-19 02:56
Well since USB 3.0 has not become the "Standard" yet I guess this dialog is still valid....
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# RE: ECS P55H-AK Intel P55-Express MotherboardStan 2010-10-19 00:46
One more idiotic design.

Overcrouded southbridge with rebranded PCIe v.1.1 NVIDIA NF100

Once again: NONE of the moderd GPU needs even 1GB/s bandwidth
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