ASRock must have an interesting relationship with Intel, as despite the chip maker going to some length to disable overclocking on its non-K Skylake CPUs, ASRock continues to make it possible. In this latest instance, it’s used an external clock generator on two of its motherboards, which circumvents an Intel update that closed a previous loophole.
ASRock recently made headlines for making it possible to change the BCLK frequency of non-K Intel Skylake CPUs that were otherwise unable to be overclocked. It was a big deal, as much like overclocking of yesteryear, it allowed those that hadn’t paid for the privilege to improve the performance of their hardware, often to levels of much more expensive chips.
Other manufacturers followed suit in short order, giving many a nice additional jump in the power of their processors – all for the price of a few extra degrees on their chip’s temperature gauge.
Intel wasn’t particularly happy with that, so shortly after it released a firmware update to shore up that breach in its overclocking borders. The update is distributed in a way that makes it a necessity in future motherboard BIOS updates, closing the loophole.
However, ASRock has now found a workaround, to the workaround, of a workaround, and has launched a couple of motherboards which use an external clock generator. That means that its CPUs can once again be overclocked whether they’re K chips or not.
The unfortunate difference this time around, is that eager overclockers will need one of its specific motherboards to be able to take advantage. Either the new Fatal1ty H170 Performance/Hyper, or the Fatal1ty B150 Gaming K4/Hyper.
As TechReport points out, ASRock doesn’t draw too much attention to this feature, stating that it is more for offering a “wider range of frequencies,” than enabling overclocking where it wasn’t intended, but it does make it possible.
No pricing or availability information has been released for these boards as of yet, but they are expected to debut just north of $100 a piece, so we’ll keep our eyes peeled and will update you when we learn more.
- Alder Lake CPUs: Everything we know about Intel’s upcoming 12th-gen hybrid chips
- The best motherboards for gaming
- How to overclock your CPU
- The best gaming desktops
- The best motherboards for 2021