This past weekend, Gigabyte held its third GO OC NA final in Industry, California, and put fourteen of the best overclockers together in the same room and let them loose on Intel’s Core i7-980X processor and Kingston’s HyperX memory. We were there and have all the info, and more pictures than you can shake a memory stick at.
Here’s how it worked in a nutshell. There are four benchmarks in use for this specific event: Super PI 8M, MaxxMem, Pifast, and Wprime 32. Results from these generate a point score that contributes to an overall score, and obviously the highest cumulative score at the end wins. The top three contestants in the North America finals will receive some serious prizes, but only the top two will receive a paid ticket to Taiwan to compete in the final championship event!
For this event, benchmarking was split into two rounds, with Pifast and Wprime up first (primarily processor oriented), followed by a brief intermission, then round two consisting of SuperPi and MaxxMem (which focus on memory bandwidth). This was a bit of a departure from previous years, as GPU overclocking was not a factor in any of these benchmarks this time around. Each Kingston SSD came preloaded with an identical OS install that had all benchmarks, drivers, and allowed utilities (such as CPU-Z, SetFSB, and EasyTune6) installed.
Oddball implements such as coffee cups were quickly conscripted as well, perhaps a Caution: COLD warning needs to be added. It didn’t take long for the various types of torches to come out either. Mostly these were used when the processor had gotten too cold to boot, as the operating temperature required to boot a processor must be much warmer than the temperatures it can sustain under loads. Although the torches and heaters were sometimes also used to take apart frozen blocks of equipment as needed.
Not sure how cold LN2 is? If it helps any, liquid nitrogen will begin to “boil” away back into its gas form at temperatures warmer than -195.7 Celsius, although there were plenty of hints at the event for anyone that wasn’t sure. If the LN2 container and hose beginning to freeze solid weren’t clue enough, the frozen vacuum thermos bottles icing up like a nice chilly drink certainly spoke of the temperatures within!
Sno.lcn rounded out the first round fairly well, although it is a safe bet that expression speaks all by itself.
During the ten second countdown of the first round, sno.lcn managed to post an official score at the five second mark, keeping his overall score fairly close to mikeguava who both had been going back and forth for the latter half of the first round.