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  Daily Column November 14th 
  Nov 14, 2001, 09:30am EST 
By: Sander Sassen

As we’ve been making some progress with the Tiger MP, let me just inform you what we’ve come up with sofar. First off we’re still trying to work out some of the issues with Tyan on the shutdown problem, and the BSOD problems with the Radeon 8500 haven’t been fixed yet either. However we found out that the latest revision of the Tiger MP, Revision 3, actually has a new PPL, or rather clockgenerator, opening up a new window of opportunities to those craving for more speed. This clockgenerator allows for FSB settings up to 150MHz in 2MHz intervals, not too bad if you can get it up and running stable.

PLL Clock generator

Fig 1. An older revision Tyan Tiger MP featuring the ICS9248AF-64 which only supports up to 133MHz FSB. The newer revisions have the ICS9248BF-153 and up to 150MHz FSB support.

I’m sure this wasn’t intentional on Tyan’s behalf, and there’s no BIOS support for it, as they’re very conservative in memory timings and actually design for stability and compatibility, hence the Tiger MP has no memory tweaks or other options of increasing the performance. Our guess is that the previous clock generator is either in short supply or has been discontinued in favor of the new one that has the same functionality with some extra’s thrown in.

On top of that we’ve found a way to increase the rather conservative memory throughput on the Tyan Tiger MP. By using a number of well known 3rd party utilities we’ve been able to increase the throughput by more than 200Mb/s by changing the memory timings and interleaving. We’ll be sure to touch upon this in the forthcoming article and also do some benchmarking and stress testing to see whether a ‘souped up’ Tiger MP is actually fit for everyday office use or is just for the performance hungry hobbyist.

In the meanwhile we’ll be getting in a Revision 3 Tiger MP and we’ll be sure to test and evaluate some of the alternate FSBs to see whether they can be used safely. Furthermore we’re naturally going to see how far we can push it in an attempt to see just how much headroom is left with the 760MP chipset and Tyan’s implementation of it. This will give a good indication as to what performance upcoming 760MPX chipset motherboards from, for example, Asus are going to be capable of. For testing and evaluation of the platform we’ll be sticking to stock speeds though as the average consumer won’t be bothering with these tweaks and Tyan certainly doesn’t endorse them.

Sander Sassen


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