As you might expect with a budget board in a mATX form factor, the BIOS on the Asus M2A-VM does not contain a plethora of overclocking and tweaking options. However, it does have a much more open BIOS than the MSI motherboard we looked at last month.
Right off the bat we can adjust a few overclocking settings such as the voltage going to the north and south bridge chips.
Memory voltage can be increased to 2.1v.
The CPU voltage can be increased by 0.1v — this is just a minor tweak setting for users needing that last little push of stability.
The multiplier can be adjusted as well; up and down if you are running an FX processor and down if you using a standard Athlon X2 CPU.
The Vcore voltage can be increased up to 1.55v for overclocking the CPU.
Overclocking the on-die processor bus speed is possible up to 400 MHz, twice the default 200 MHz.
The Asus BIOS also allows you to enable or disable the AMD Cool ‘n’ Quiet funcationality — leaving it on will allow the system to lower power consumption when full CPU speed is not necessary.
You can set the default memory speed from DDR2-400 to DDR2-800 and a couple of settings in between depending on the memory modules you use in the system.
You can manually adjust the HyperTransport bus between the processor and chipset here.
All of the on-board features can be enabled or disabled here in the BIOS.
Though the hardware monitoring is pretty basic, the information the Asus M2A-VM motherboard provides can be useful including the fan speeds, voltages and temperatures.
A unique Asus feature in the BIOS is the ability to use your PC and a music CD as an alarm clock!
Most Asus BIOS’ have had support for profiles and the fact that we are seeing it on the budget-based M2A-VM motherboard indicates that the feature is here for the long run.
Another great feature of the BIOS I like is the ability to flash the BIOS from within the BIOS — no longer do you need a bootable floppy disc to safely update your motherboard.