The BIOS on the MSI P55-GD65 is a great mix of features and overclocking capabilities that offer a lot of functionality for the enthusiast that is look for it.
The one area that lacks a bit on the MSI motherboard is the hardware monitor utility on the board that only offers up a pair of temperature and fan speed sensors in addition to the four voltage monitoring results.
CPU specifications are well laid out and displayed for users that might have forgotten what processor is installed in their own computer or didn’t know what features were available to it.
This section of the BIOS allows you to turn on and off the features of the CPU as you see fit – some features like C1E and EIST can hold back your overclocking efforts.
The Cell Menu in the BIOS is where all the good stuff happens – where the tweaks and overclocking take place. The menu gives you the current settings of the CPU at the very top for a reference point and then lays the options on you below that. You can set some of the performance related CPU settings right here (as opposed to entering the CPU feature menu) and get down the settings like the base clock of the CPU. The default is 133 MHz (and in air cooled overclocking the 200 MHz range is pretty good) but the MSI Cell menu allows you to get as high as 600 MHz!
There are two unique overclocking features on the MSI P55-GD65 motherboard: OC Genie and Base Clock buttons. We will go over the former in our overclocking section but the base clock buttons allow the user to increase the base clock of the system in 1 MHz increments after the system has already booted and you are in the operating system. These are physical, hardware buttons on the motherboard itself. You have the option here to disable those buttons for safety’s sake if you want.
The memory controls in the P55-GD65 are pretty impressive allowing you to adjust the memory ratio, DRAM timings and even look at the available XMP platforms right on one screen.
For those users looking for a lot of control over the voltages on your system, MSI has it in spades.
This shot here shows the maximum voltage settings available to the user as of the retail BIOS available on 10/18/09 and should provide more than enough headroom for even the most extreme overclocking.
These two BIOS screens show the XMP settings available on our testing Corsair memory modules as well as the manual controls for memory timings.
As all motherboards should have by now, the MSI P55-GD65 integrated the BIOS flashing tool directly into the BIOS itself so you no longer need to worry about have a floppy drive or even a bootable USB drive. You can also save your BIOS file to a USB drive on this screen so you can share your settings with other users or even technical support.
Finally, a nice touch in any motherboard BIOS these days, is the ability to save settings as profiles that are easily interchangeable.