UEFI and Software
I spoke a little about MSI’s new Command Center with the Z87-G45 Gaming review, but now that we have had a little more time to play with it I can talk a little more in depth. MSI has finally started to combine all of their various programs into one suite to make installation easier and to keep things simple for the customers.
The first page that opens when you boot the program up is the CPU tab where we can adjust each core’s clock speed. Along with that you can adjust the fan speeds or turn on smart mode. On top of being able to adjust the clock speed there is also an option down at the bottom that lets you bump up the CPU ratio as well to get even bigger overclocks.
The second tab is the DRAM page, here we can see a remnant from the CPU page where we can adjust the CPU voltage or set it to auto like it is in the photo. The same can be done with the DRAM voltage as well with a power slider.
When you click GPU up top it takes us to the GPU Frequency and GPU voltage pages. Here we can actually overclock the onboard GPU just like you would in the BIOS. MSI made it as easy as possible with sliders for both the ratio and voltage, you can’t ask for an easy way to overclock.
Next is the RAMDisk option. This is what I would call a value add feature of the MPower, this software normally will run you $30-$40 if you are looking to do more than 4 gigs of ram. By packing the software into Command Center you don’t have to buy it and it might even show more people the benefits of using a RAMDisk as a scratch disk when video editing or anything else that requires quick access.
The OC Genie page basically gives you a way to turn on OC Genie without opening up your case to get to the button on the motherboard. All you have to do is click on the button on screen and it will prompt you to reboot your computer for the changes to take effect.
Down on the bottom of the software the is also an advance option. In that option you can open up more advanced selections of voltage, dram, and fan controls where you can tweak your system even more.
Overall I was really impressed with MSI’s software, I think they are on the right track with combining everything. I do feel the software was a little sluggish at times and I ran into a few issues where I had to reinstall it. I expect to see MSI tweaking the software as time goes on to fix any issues.
For the BIOS we have a video walkthrough of us flipping through all of the options in MSI’s Click BIOS 4. As a whole the design is very similar to what we saw in the G87-G45 Gaming but the coloring is yellow to match the MPower rather than the red.
The MPowers Click BIOS 4 is basically the same as the Z87-G45 Gaming. Rather than try to say the same things differently, part of the following section is the same as from the review of that board.
The top bar of Click BIOS 4 gives you the time and temperatures right up top for you to see while you are adjusting settings on all of the BIOS’s pages. The three options on the left stay open all of the time but the right side of the screen sometimes has three options but when you are adjusting settings the right side shows a short explanation of each option to help you understand what you are looking at.
The UEFI overall worked well with my mouse but if you watch the video you will see that I did have a problem when I get more than one option deep into settings, clicking the back button would take me all the way back to the home page, it was a little frustrating. The other issue I ran into is how the bios reacts to scroll wheel use. As it should, when you scroll it arrows down through the options listed on your screen at the time. My problem was if you move the mouse over those same options while scrolling it stops everything you are doing because mousing over an option overrides whatever location you are currently on. Considering how much room the BIOS options take up, this made scrolling to find the option I need a little difficult. Beyond those two issues though the bios was filled with interesting features like the board diagram that will even show you what hard drives you have plugged into what SATA port visually. I think MSI still needs to tweak the UEFI to make it a little smoother to use, but they have a good UEFI as a base to work from.