Hello, well i want to be clear on first point. I am in no way trying to persuade anyone into buying any hardware. What works for me may not work so well for the next person. I will however share my experience so far with this board and CPU.
First off, i had a lot of issues with overclocking beyond 4.3-4.5GHZ on my i7 3820. I kept reading guides and going over MSI settings since different brands use different terminology for same features. Then it started going better, not perfect obviously but better.
#1 my cpu, I had a crap ton of problems trying to Overclock it on a Gigabyte x79-UD3 board. To the point the Bios corrupted and i went looking at motherboards for a replacement to hold me over. All X79 boards seems to have complaints way more than any generation i can remember.
Sure everyone says the RIVE x79 is the best, And i would expect so at the high price it carries. I want a RIVE but for now it's not in my budget. So i went for the MSI Big Bang Xpower ii since it seemed to have the least of complaints of the comparable boards, and was on sale for 300$.
Short version on straps, i found my CPU wouldnt do 1.25 strap on either gigabyte or MSI at bclk 100 - mine came awake at 115 bclk with 1.25 strap. I think this is my cpu and not a mainboard issue since i couldnt post on 2 different x79 boards.
cpu validation at a lower vcore, i found 1.430 to be better for stability.http://valid.canardpc.com/2687593
As far as stability, i haven't run 24 hours of this or that stress testing, I did some Intel burntest and a decent amount of gaming.
I am not going to say its 100% stable at current settings, because i havent done a full array of tests to verify such. However since my last adjustment of Vcore to 1.430 it's been pretty reliable so far, and i am on crappy air cooling as it will show in my temps for Hardware monitor.
I am digging around for my old water cooling equipment to see if i can re-use anything i would like to put this on water and push harder.
My 3dmark 11 score for 4.950GHZ http://www.3dmark.com/3dm11/5879611
Edited [unfortunately i left Adaptive power on in nvidia control panel. so at 4.830ghz, i scored 21993 http://www.3dmark.com/3dm11/5891791
I think its safe to say most x79 Mainboards will do 4.3-4.5Ghz with an i7 3820 since its limited at 43/44multi. and possibly 105 Mhz bclk without toying with Straps.
If your seeking more information from my setup i can get all the bios settings and stuff. I havent had this board long, so my opinion may change but right now its doing what i want.
Also as far as Power savings, i have all mine turned off so i cannot comment on that.Edited by DeadlyDNA - 2/11/13 at 9:44pm