Last week, the latest BIOS update for ASRock (opens in new tab) Z170 motherboards removed the Sky OC function, which was the company's term for the ability to overclock non-K Intel Skylake processors. Today, Intel has confirmed that it will be updating its CPUs to stop users overclocking processors they shouldn't be able to.
Towards the end of last year, ASRock announced that a BIOS update (opens in new tab) would allow base clock frequency overclocking on restricted Skylake processors. Some other motherboard vendors followed suit, adding the feature in beta BIOS updates that overclockers snapped up. Intel, it seems, wasn't too happy about it.
Intel confirmed to PC World (opens in new tab) today that a microcode update will be closing the loophole. ”Intel regularly issues updates for our processors which our partners voluntarily incorporate into their BIOS,” an Intel spokesman said to PC World. “The latest update provided to partners includes, among other things, code that aligns with the position that we do not recommend overclocking processors that have not been designed to do so. Additionally, Intel does not warranty the operation of the processor beyond its specifications.”
In other words: if you want to overclock a Skylake CPU, you better pony up for the more expensive K-series chips.
A similar situation arose with Intel's previous architecture, Haswell. Limited non-K overclocking was available for a short period, but was fairly quickly dropped by the company.