Der8auer X299 VRM Disaster Update–Still A Disaster
Ben Jones / 3 years ago
Overclocker Roman “Der8auer” Hartung lit the Internet ablaze last week when he called Intel’s X299 motherboards a “disaster” for overclocking. Now he has a new video update which addresses criticisms levied towards his video. Some websites and individuals called Hartung out shortly after his video came out. Some even proudly announced how they could not replicate his numbers so he must be wrong. Hartung however, is a veteran overclocker and knows his hardware more than most reviewers who just re-word the promotional materials they are handed. Naturally, he lays the smackdown by explaining in the most simple way why these critics are wrong.
A Throttling Issue
The main reason why many were not getting the same result as Der8auer is because they forgot to account for one thing: throttling. This is an automated response that the system performs to keep temperatures in check and is inherent in both AMD and Intel systems. There are two types, CPU throttling and VRM throttling depending on what is happening. You can tell CPU throttling apart from VRM throttling because of the step down from the clock frequency. If the steps are incremental, for example 4600MHz to 4500MHz, then it is the CPU throtttling. If it drops down from 4600MHz to 1200MHz, then it is VRM throttling.
Der8auer also points out that these critics who tried to replicate his results not only did not account for throttling, they also were measuring it using the wrong tools. CPU-Z is not refreshing fast enough to show throttling for example, which is what many use. He suggests a combination of CoreTemp (CPU temperature) and HWInfo (VRM power consumption).
There are settings in the UEFI which users must disable or enable first. According to Hartung, there are instances in X299 where it would seem like it is running fine overclocked, but benchmarks show otherwise. When the DIGI+ VRM control on ASUS motherboards is not set to 140% for example, it will throttle. There are also several other throttling issues detected beyond CPU and VRM throttling as well according to Der8auer, including VCCin and when running AVX-512 load. Although further investigation into these would have to be explored at a later time.
Power Consumption and VRM Cooling Still an Issue
Hartung boils down the entire issue into one undeniable fact: Intel’s latest HEDT CPUs simply consume a lot of power. Motherboard vendors vary on the temperature limit they set on their products, but it is there to keep the system alive. A similar issue happened with AMD and their FX 9590 where many boards were just inadequate to run it. Some who even claimed initially that their VRM was good enough eventually rescinded later as some would melt their boards down because the CPU was pulling too much even at stock. Although, the criticism for the inadequate VRM cooling on current X299 motherboard still stands, according to Hartung.
Der8auer X299 VRM Disaster Video #2 (Update)
The entire video is over 23 minutes long but is concise and detail oriented. Any user looking to upgrade to the X299 platform or learn about how to overclock hardware properly should watch it. Hartung even explains his testing methodology: