CPU Guide

Live from Taipei - MSI Master Overclocking Arena 2010

Live from Taipei - MSI Master Overclocking Arena 2010

Competition Mechanics

Competition Mechanics

The basic premise behind MOA 2010 is no different from that previous year’s MOA competition. The key here is to achieve the maximum amount of performance gain by overclocking the components. Judges from MSI will run the benchmarks using the same equipment as the contestants without any overclocking done to obtain a baseline score. This will then be compared to these scores obtained from the contestant's overclocked system - largest gain wins, of course.

This year’s competition will be split into two phases. In Phase One, contestants will run Super PI, a popular CPU benchmarking tool that calculates the value of the mathematical constant Pi (π) up to 32 million digits and attempt to clock the shortest time possible. Contestants are given 2.5 hours for this phase and can submit as many scores as they like.

In the second phase, contestants will have to run 3DMark Vantage, a popular benchmarking that measures the potency of a system’s graphics performance. Scores from the Performance preset will be recorded and contestants are given 3.5 hours to try and achieve the highest score possible. As usual, there’s no limit on how many scores they can submit.

Of course, as in any overclocking endeavor, the hardware plays a crucial role and MSI has pulled out all the stops to ensure that the contestants get only the best. For example, the motherboard used in MOA 2010 is none other than their flagship XPower motherboard. As for graphics, contestants will be using the newly launched MSI N480GTX Lightning, a really high-end card not just for its GPU, but also because of the amount of features that MSI has given it, such as a whopping 16 phase PWM design, copper MOSFETs, independent memory power via 6-pin PCIe connector, Proadlizer 4 next-generation capacitors, and Triple Over Voltage for adjusting GPU core, memory and PLL voltage values.

To complement the high-end motherboard and graphics card combo, contestants will also be supplied with Kingston HyperX 2250MHz memory, 10,000rpm Western Digital VelociRaptor hard drive, and 1050W Enermax Revolution 85+ PSU.

This is the list of components that contestants will be using:

  • Intel Core i7-980X
  • MSI Big Bang-XPower
  • MSI N480GTX Lightning
  • Kingston KHX2250C9D3T1FK3/6GX
  • WD VelociRaptor 600GB
  • Enermax ERV 1050EWT
  • Enermax Acrylux KB009

To add, all systems are running 64 bit Windows 7 Ultimate and this is the list of BIOS, drivers, software and utilities provided:

  • Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit
  • A7666IMS.138 Motherboard BIOS
  • Forceware 258.96 WHQL
  • Super PI/mod 1.5 XS
  • 3DMark Vantage V1.0.2
  • CPU-Z V1.55
  • GPU-Z V0.4.4
  • MSI Afterburner v2.0.0 Extreme
  • CPU-Tweaker v:1.5
  • wPrime V2.03 / wPrime V1.55
  • OCX SPI Tweaker V1.0.8