Teaser hints at customizable, high-res UEFI for Gigabyte’s Haswell boards

Add another image to the growing pile of shots teasing Gigabyte’s upcoming Haswell motherboards. So far, we’ve seen board close-ups and an updated EasyTune software interface. In its latest reveal, Gigabyte provides a glimpse of its next-generation UEFI.

The screenshot is shrunken, and some of the details have been blurred, so there’s only so much we can glean from the latest teaser. (A slightly larger version of the image is available in the gallery below.) That said, even this limited view of the interface suggests Gigabyte has made big changes from its existing firmware—and I don’t just mean switching from blue accents to orange ones. The new UEFI appears to ring a central options panel with real-time monitoring panes that track key system variables. It looks like users will be able to select which options appear in a customized options panel, as well.

While we see little of the underlying graphic, the background image seems to have a much higher resolution than is typical for motherboard firmware, which is usually rendered at only 1024×768. The screenshot has a 16:9 aspect ratio, suggesting the UEFI may support resolutions up to the now-ubiquitious 1080p. Although it’s hard to see, "F3 Resolution" appears in the bottom right corner, hinting that users will have some control over how many pixels the firmware fires at the display.

Now that motherboard makers have become more familiar with the UEFI replacement for the old-school BIOS, we should see more innovative firmware interfaces and features. A higher-resolution GUI would certainly be welcome, and I quite like the idea of a customizable options panel. We’ll be able to tell you more about Gigabyte’s new UEFI and what other motherboard makers are doing with their next-generation firmware when Haswell launches in June.

Comments closed
    • Chrispy_
    • 6 years ago

    The BIOS categories are a mess, and there are too many of them.
    Should be:

    [list<][*<]Yes, your computer booted, congratulations on assembling it correctly. [/*<][*<]Which of these drives would you like to boot off? [/*<][*<]OMG DO THE REST IN YOUR OPERATING SYSTEM ALREADY![/*<][/list<]

    • melissamando230
    • 6 years ago
    • Bensam123
    • 6 years ago

    Nice. This is actually really cool, especially if you can easily tailor a start list or some set of features you always access and would like access to. Like submenus or such.

    Most of the time when OCing for instance there are always values you need access to, but aren’t on the same page (such as power states, voltages, multipliers, temperatures, and fan speeds). Those usually cover like three to four pages. You could probably even add in boot order to that too.

    I’d honestly really like to see a integrated version of memtest and prime95. One manufacturer used to include memtest, but that disappeared. It can’t cost them that much to license free software, for how extraordinarily awesome it is. There are a lot of features like that which would be really, really, really helpful.

    Memtest, prime95, furmark, anti-virus scanner (there are tons of free ones), and maybe some sort of cloning software all wrapped in a minimalist UI with their own motherboard monitoring and tweaking software on top of it. I’ve actually started using a live-cd when overclocking so I never boot into my OS and can run prime95 without crashing my primary install, which is great for getting in that initial stable OC.

    • Krogoth
    • 6 years ago

    How much time does the average enthusiast spend in the UEFI/BIOS screen? 5 minutes, maybe 10 minutes tops unless they are troubleshooting some hardware related issue or fine-tuning that mad overclock and/or fan profile. UEFI makes it possible that you can do all of that within an OS that has proper UEFI support (one of the UEFI’s improvements over BIOS).

    Otherwise, the EFI/BIOS never gets touched at all.

    A fancy GUI for UEFI/BIOS makes absolutely no sense. Only idiots at marketing think that this would be a brilliant idea. You just need an interface that is simple and straight-forward because most of the time you are trying to troubleshoot a hardware related issue within UEFI/BIOS. The default resolution should be at least 640×480 or 1280×720/1280×800 for widescreen displays to ensure compatibility.

      • squeeb
      • 6 years ago

      What he said.

      • Anomymous Gerbil
      • 6 years ago

      Who said it can’t display at 640×480 or 1280×720 or whatever? Why is it bad that it *can* display at higher resolutions?

      You seem to just go looking for negatives everywhere, and (as in this case) you make some up when you can’t find a real one.

        • Krogoth
        • 6 years ago

        BIOS/UEFI are tools nothing more. A fancy GUI for BIOS/UEFI is like putting lipstick and bling bling LEDs lights on a clawhammer. It is obnoxious and gets in way of doing the tool’s intended job.

        640×480 and 1280×720 make sense because the vast majority of the monitor can handle those resolutions in the event that you have do some troubleshooting (8 of 10 times the reason why you are using BIOS/UEFI).

        The people who care about the fancy eye candy are ricer, wanna-be enthusiast teenagers that rice-up their PC chassis with cathode tubes, LEDs and other non-sense.

          • JustAnEngineer
          • 6 years ago

          … and motherboard reviewers.

          Everyone else sets this stuff up one time and never looks at it again.

          • Anomymous Gerbil
          • 6 years ago

          Like I said…

      • destroy.all.monsters
      • 6 years ago

      As someone that builds and repairs I see BIOS screens often. At least this one doesn’t make my eyes bleed and is a dark color (and I don’t have to see Fatal1ty’s face).

      The fonts aren’t bad either. If I have to do surgery on someone’s computer I’d rather the BIOS screen look like this.

        • Chrispy_
        • 6 years ago

        Best UEFI BIOS [i<]layout[/i<] ever, (by no means the best [i<]BIOS[/i<]) [url<]http://cdn-static.zdnet.com/i/story/13/39/294482/BIOS.jpg[/url<] Tree on left, options on right, NO STUPID CRAP IN YOUR WAY.

          • indeego
          • 6 years ago

          Kind’ve a PITA for KB only navigation, however.

          • destroy.all.monsters
          • 6 years ago

          It’s clean looking which is good. It’s not as dark – and I can’t say I’ve worked on one of those yet but I’d venture to guess that glare is still somewhat of a problem.

    • brucek2
    • 6 years ago

    That looks really busy. My bet is we’ll see other UEFI approaches that will do more with less effort while looking much more streamlined.

    Really it reminds me most of all those aftermarket car stereos targeted at teenage boys, where priority #1 was clearly to stick as many different colors / gauges / buttons as possible on the deck, with sound quality and everything else coming after that.

      • Krogoth
      • 6 years ago

      You hit the nail on this.

      This is entirely marketing decision to go after that demographic.

      • MadManOriginal
      • 6 years ago

      It’s almost all text, I’m not sure what you’re talking about with ‘colors/gauges/buttons’. There are icons for the different menus but that’s all I see as far as ‘buttons.’ The ‘gauges’ I see are graphs of various measurements over time which is actually pretty cool and a nice improvement over a simple reading like most BIOSes.

    • windwalker
    • 6 years ago

    That is by far the worse UI I have seen in years.
    The colour scheme is horribly ugly and unergonomic, there is too much information and it is badly organised and laid out.
    And to top it all off they feel so proud of it they are teasing it. It’s pathetic beyond words.

      • Farting Bob
      • 6 years ago

      Ive never met any software (windows, BIOS, UEFI) from any motherboard maker that conforms to any sort of known standard layout and UI conventions Its always sluggish as hell in windows with mismatch designs and non-standard windows. It’s not quite as bad as it was, but still UI design has never been a strongpoint for these guys.

    • Duct Tape Dude
    • 6 years ago

    How long until someone unmosaics the image? It’s pretty easy to guess it’s an i7-4770K if you blur your eyes… running at 1.154V VRIN (idk what that is) and a multiplier of 31?

      • SnowboardingTobi
      • 6 years ago

      Hollywood has had the technology to clean that up for years!

        • chuckula
        • 6 years ago

        ENHANCE!!! ENHANCE!!!!

    • GTVic
    • 6 years ago

    One thing missing from most if not all BIOSes is the ability to quickly save and restore settings. In a corporate environment you need one set of settings for the machine as it is being built (e.g. boot from USB) and then a locked down set for the end-user.

    This can be done in some cases if the manufacturer supports it (e.g. Dell) but the system is usually pretty difficult to setup. It would be much better if the BIOS designer built this into the BIOS.

    When you are dealing with 100 machines per day, having to go in manually and adjust things is a PITA. Password boot from USB would be good for tech support as well as reducing this down to a single set of settings.

    • SnowboardingTobi
    • 6 years ago

    A much higher res version straight from their FB page:

    [url<]https://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc1/905271_10151380594432120_249617402_o.jpg[/url<]

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 6 years ago

    The more they overtake the plumbing…

    • FatherXmas
    • 6 years ago

    “The screenshot has a 16:9 aspect ratio, suggesting the UEFI may support resolutions up to the now-ubiquitious 1080p.”

    I grant you that 16:9 may now be ubiquitous but not 1080p. Looking at April’s Steam survey the top resolutions over 1% are:

    1920×1080 – 30.73%
    1366×768 – 21.09%
    1280×1024 – 8.49%
    1680×1050 – 8.18%
    1600×900 – 7.57%
    1024×768 – 3.63%
    1280×800 – 3.05%
    1920×1200 – 2.91%
    1360×768 – 2.61%

    Plurality yes, ubiquitous no.

      • GTVic
      • 6 years ago

      1080p is a video signal spec, not a resolution.

        • Duck
        • 6 years ago

        Well you can read 1080p to mean 1920×1080@60Hz.

          • Deanjo
          • 6 years ago

          Not sure you can specify the Hz as part of 1080P is available at various refresh rates in use 24, 25, 30, 48, 50, 60, 72, 120.

            • Duck
            • 6 years ago

            No, but I mean it is implied or assumed when you say the resolution as just 1080p.

            • Firestarter
            • 6 years ago

            Well I for one would be most dissatisfied if I found that this EUFI does not support 1080p@120hz

    • Crayon Shin Chan
    • 6 years ago

    That is beautiful. I might just consider Gigabyte instead of Asus now.

    • nanoflower
    • 6 years ago

    Did anyone else notice the CPU upgrade feature listed in the BIOS? Is that supposed to be for Intel’s ‘pay for more speed’ feature or is that something else?

      • smilingcrow
      • 6 years ago

      Finally a valid use for TPM for consumers; buying drugs online.
      An i3 for speed, an i5 for crack and a K series if you are after Ketamine.

      • MadManOriginal
      • 6 years ago

      My guess is that it’s an automatic CPU overclock feature.

    • d0g_p00p
    • 6 years ago

    Looks like it’s designed for overclockers and allows you to tweak and monitor everything without having to boot into a OS. Either way looks pretty damn cool.

    • smilingcrow
    • 6 years ago

    I can’t wait for multi-4K-monitor UEFI support as then my life will be complete.

      • jossie
      • 6 years ago

      Also when there are UEFI versions of Steam and Chrome

        • smilingcrow
        • 6 years ago

        UEFI as the new O/S to oust Windows from its perch; ugly Polly ugly Polly, bring back the start menu, ugly Metro ugly Metro, the year of Linux!
        Damn parrot, get back in your cage.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 6 years ago

          Direct hardware access, for the very best in performance, too.

    • chuckula
    • 6 years ago

    At that resolution I don’t think Haswell’s IGP will be able to give you smooth framerates for the UEFI menu. Can you do inside-the-second benchmarks to expose microstuttering when you adjust the VCORE?

      • derFunkenstein
      • 6 years ago

      So really no different than any UEFI implementation before it, then.

        • chuckula
        • 6 years ago

        Exactly. Also, after reviewing the screenshot in more detail, I think that the anisotropic filtering quality leaves much to be desired. I would recommend at least a Trinity A5800K or Kaveri part if you want to try to do UEFI using an APU. Of course, a 7990 with frame pacing drivers would be the most desirable if you want to use UEFI with a high-resolution display.

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