|MSI Z68A-GD80 Intel Motherboard|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Motherboards|
|Written by David Ramsey|
|Thursday, 02 June 2011|
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Z68A-GD80 UEFI BIOS
Like other Z68-based motherboards, MSI's Z68A-GD80 has a fancy new graphical BIOS. The main screen is divided into five sections: Green Power, Utilities, Overclocking, Games, and Settings. You can navigate the BIOS using your mouse or the arrow keys on your keyboard. MSI doesn't use a color change or highlight to indicate your current selection; instead, the icon's contents animate with spinning gears, wiggling controllers, bouncing meter needles and the like.
The sections break down like this:
The Settings section is one you'll want to dive into the first time you turn on the board, because MSI has set the default mode for the SATA ports as IDE, and you probably would much rather it be AHCI. After selecting "Settings", click the "Advanced" button and then go to the "Integrated Peripherals" section to set the SATA mode. Restoring the default BIOS settings after an overclock failure will also reset the SATA ports to IDE, so if your system fails to boot after a reset, check this setting.
The Overclocking section, as I mentioned, has everything you need. All settings are made by selecting choices from pop-up menus, so you never have to type in settings directly.
MSI thoughtfully warns you (as you can see in the upper right of this image) never to set the CPU voltage beyond 1.4 volts...but the BIOS will let you if you want to ignore this advice. Which I do for this review, if only slightly. Now, let's dive into the testing!