This is the perfect tool to squeeze the last drop of juice out of Intel’s ‘Raptor Lake’ processors.

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The new microprocessors from Intel and AMD are already here. The increase in performance offered by both the Ryzen 7000 and the 13th generation Core compared to their predecessors is very important, and there is no doubt that this is good news. However, we users are interested in not forgetting that these CPUs also They are very demanding with refrigeration. And that they can consume a lot of energy, especially Intel chips.

Fortunately, users have at our disposal tools that can be very useful to get the most out of these processors, and, what is more important, they also allow us to act on their consumption. In fact, if we are willing to sacrifice part of its performance at certain times, we can significantly reduce its consumption. And, consequently, also our electricity bill.

The tool that we are going to investigate in this article is called Extreme Tuning Utility (XTU), has been developed by Intel, and allows us to act on the behavior of Intel Core microprocessors from 7th generation onwards. It is a very valuable utility for game enthusiasts. overclockbut it is also very useful for users who only need to act on the operating parameters that contribute to significantly reduce consumption of your CPU.

Extreme Tuning Utility exposed

This article is not intended to be a detailed guide to this tool, so we suggest you investigate the most relevant parameters that allow us to act on the behavior of our processor. In this way, those who are not familiar with this software will be able to approach it in a more friendly way, and, if they need it, they will be able to delve deeper into it without difficulty.

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When we manipulate most of the parameters that XTU gives us, we are actually introducing modifications in the BIOS

When we manipulate most of the parameters that XTU gives us, we are actually introducing modifications in the BIOS of our PC. Of course, the interface of the Intel tool is more friendly, and many users will be much less intimidated than working directly on the BIOS. However, it is important for advanced users to know that the BIOS usually puts a wider range of parameters at their fingertips than XTU, although, interestingly, this tool exposes some variables that are not easily accessible through some BIOSes.

Let’s get into flour. The first capture collects a section of the tab Advanced tuningand here we have two parameters that we are very interested in not overlooking: Turbo Boost Short Power Max Y Turbo Boost Power Max. The first allows us to limit the instantaneous consumption of the CPU when Turbo Boost technology is enabled, and the second limits its sustained consumption under the same conditions. Default Turbo Boost Short Power Maxas we can see, does not limit CPU consumption, so by limiting it we can significantly reduce it.

Before moving on it is important that we remember that through XTU we are acting on the BIOS, so we need to be careful and manipulate only those parameters whose effects we know. Processor Core IccMax Y Core Voltage they are two especially delicate variables because they allow us to manipulate the voltage of the CPU core. Ideally, only users who are familiar with the overclock resort to them.

advancedtuning1

In the next section of the tab Advanced tuning we have the variables that allow us to activate and deactivate the technologies Turbo Boost Technology, Turbo Boost Short Power Max Y Overclocking Thermal Velocity Boost. The first one allows the CPU to adapt the clock frequency at which the cores work to the stress to which they are being subjected. If the workload is moderate, its frequency is reduced to minimize its consumption and reduce the energy it dissipates in the form of heat, and if the stress is maximum, its frequency is automatically increased.

If the workload is moderate, the frequency of the cores is reduced to minimize their consumption and reduce the energy they dissipate as heat.

This technology allocates the most demanding execution threads and require lower latency to the fastest CPU cores. Also, if the parameter Turbo Boost Short Power Max is enabled one or more cores can work at the highest possible clock frequency for a short time if the workload is at its maximum and the CPU is within safe power and temperature limits.

Finally, activating Overclocking Thermal Velocity Boost we are allowing the processor to practice a overclock automatic on the most stressed cores, but it is important that the cooling system is efficient enough to prevent them from exceeding their maximum temperature threshold and going into thermal throttling.

advancedtuning2

In the next section of the tab Advanced tuning we can see the multiplication factors that act on each of the CPU cores. The processor we are using is a Core i9-13900K, and it has 8 high-performance (AR) cores and 16 high-efficiency (AE) cores. Each of the AR cores is capable of simultaneously processing a maximum of two execution threads, so this processor can deal with up to 32 threads at the same time. threads.

Advanced tuning3

from the tab Real Time Memory we can act on it timing of the memory modules of our PC. The manufacturers of these modules usually indicate their latency using the nomenclature ‘CL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS’, so that a DDR4-3200 PC4-25600 module can have about timings of, for example, 16-18-18-38. In this case, the CL parameter has a value of 16, tRCD of 18, tRP of 18, and, finally, tRAS of 38. These four quantities tell us how many clock cycles the main memory invests in carrying out certain operations, so the ideal is to be as low as possible. Let’s see in more detail what these parameters mean:

  • CL (CAS Latency): the acronym CAS comes from the English term Column Address Strobe, which we can interpret as signaling the memory positions of a column of the capacitor matrix that constitutes the main memory. This parameter tells us how many clock cycles the memory needs at the request of the controller to read the first information bit of a piece of data once it has accessed the row in which the memory location that contains it resides. One way to simplify this definition to make it a bit more affordable, but also a bit less precise, is to describe this latency as the number of clock cycles from when a data request is made until it is available. The CL parameter is usually the one most clearly described by memory module manufacturers.
  • tRCD(Row address to Column address Delay time): This parameter indicates the minimum number of clock cycles that will elapse from the moment in which the controller signals a row of memory positions until the moment in which it accesses the column that contains the position in which the data resides. intends to recover. It is important that we keep in mind that the timing tRCD is indicating a minimum value of clock cycles, and not an absolute value.

Intel Core i9-13900K and Core i5-13600K 'Raptor Lake' review: We have a new performance record.  and consumption

  • tRP (Row Precharge time): this parameter reflects the minimum number of clock cycles that will elapse from the moment in which the access request to a new memory location is carried out until the moment in which the row in which the location resides is accessed containing the data to be retrieved. As with the tRCD parameter, the timing tRP indicates a minimum value of clock cycles.
  • after (Row Address Strobe time): the last timing that we are interested in describing the minimum number of clock cycles during which the row of the memory matrix in which the position in which we need to read or write resides must be accessible for this operation to be carried out successfully. Like tRCD and tRP, the tRAS parameter indicates a minimum value of clock cycles, and not an absolute value.
memory setting

from the tab Stress test we can ask the XTU tool to subject our CPU to a high workload to check if the changes we have introduced in the parameters do not compromise stability of our PC. This component is also very interesting because it does not allow us to stress only the CPU; We can also test the main memory if we have manipulated any of the parameters that we have seen a few paragraphs above.

testestres

Finally, from the tab benchmarking we can run a performance test to check if the changes we have introduced by acting on the BIOS parameters exposed by XTU actually lead to an increase in productivity of our processor. And, if so, this component allows us to quantify it.

Tests

The new microprocessors from Intel and AMD are already here. The increase in performance offered by both the Ryzen 7000…

The new microprocessors from Intel and AMD are already here. The increase in performance offered by both the Ryzen 7000…

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