First ever overclock. E8400, ASUS P5K-E, DDR2-1000

Discussion in 'Die-hard Overclocking & Case Modifications' started by DonMGard, Jun 24, 2008.

  1. DonMGard

    DonMGard Member

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    Okay, so I've been reading up on overclocking and this is going to be my first serious attempt. I think I've got a great CPU for OCing, and my RAM should do pretty well, I think, also.

    As you can see, I have an Intel E8400 and G.Skill DDR2-1000 (F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ) in an ASUS P5K-E/WiFi-AP. I have an Arctic Freezer 7 Pro for cooling my CPU.

    I am not highly interested in OCing my GPU because it is already factory overclocked to 700MHz core clock and 2000 MHz mem clock; however, if someone has experience with this particular card I would definitely try.

    What I know:
    -I would definitely like to overclock my CPU to at least 3.6 MHz.
    -This requires a FSB of 400MHz and a multiplier of 9.
    -My Vcore might need to be set to about 1.35.
    -My memory box says the timings are 5-5-5-15 at 2.0~2.1V.
    -My PCIE frequency should be set at 100

    Questions:
    -Is DDR2-1000 uncommon? My Bios has a listing for 1002 MHz, will this be appropriate for my RAM, or should I go one lower, to 889 MHz (I think that's the number).
    -Is it possible to use lower timings with my RAM stably? 4-4-4-12 maybe?
    -Is it better to use the BIOS or an OC utility like ASUS's AI Suite? I figure BIOS.
    -My BIOS has these features I know nothing about
    --DRAM Static Read Control
    --Transaction Booster
    --Clock Over-Charging Mode
    --CPU Spread Spectrum
    --PCIE Spread Spectrum

    Basically, what suggestions, tips, and/or information can anyone give me. I realize nobody likes dealing with noobs, but everyone has to start learning from the bottom. I thank you in advance for any and ALL help you offer.
     
  2. Jenova_link

    Jenova_link Master Guru

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    I think you should get there with no problem. I got my to 3.6G same CPU but i'm using Corsair PC 8500 1066mhz. I leave the mem alone and just step up on the CPU. I got the FPS for the CPU up to 1600 at a miltplier of 9.5. i got 3.6Ghz stable using a Zalman 9700LCD cooler. I do not mess with the votage for the cpu unless i'm planing to go higher and it won't boot than i'll increase votage but for now i'm good. Remember OC is not easy every system is different I have to clear and CPR my system a few time before it :pc1:stable. Just play with it add 20-40mhz each time and see if it'll boot and where you at on temp and speed.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
  3. DonMGard

    DonMGard Member

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    Thanks, Jenova.

    While I was out, I did some minor OCing. I raised the FSB to 376. I set the CPU/RAM strap (I think) to 400MHz so that my RAM would still be at 1002 MHz.

    Is setting the strap to 400MHz and keeping my ram at 1002 MHz a good move, or should I try OCing the RAM higher? I really would like to if I can. I'm a little less knowledgeable about OCing RAM, though, so if you could help me out a lot that would be great.

    Mainly, I have NO idea what the strap is or does, I just know that I changed it and my computer didn't fail to boot like when I only changed the FSB.

    I did change the DRAM Command Rate to 2N (BIOS said it could help increase DRAM overclocking). The other settings are Auto and 1N (Performance). Should I set it to 1N or 2N?
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
  4. contrvlr

    contrvlr Master Guru

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    First thing I'd do before overclocking, would be to upgrade that psu.
     

  5. DonMGard

    DonMGard Member

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    It's the next thing on my list, contrvlr. I know someone who can get one cheap for me, but I'm limited by his timetable.
     
  6. DonMGard

    DonMGard Member

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    I achieved my 3.6 GHz easily. I also tightened my memory timings to 5-4-3-11. 1:1 ratio, even.
     
  7. Tat3

    Tat3 Ancient Guru

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    Remember to keep an eye on the temperatures + run some tests to be sure that your system is stable.
     
  8. DonMGard

    DonMGard Member

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    Ran Memtest86+ overnight 10+ hours with no errors. Tested with Prime95 for a while, but not more than an hour or so. I'll do a longer test soon. Temps seem fine. Highest CPU temp load at 62C.

    I've noticed I can get 4-4-4-10 timings through one whole memtest with no errors (havent tested longer) if I up the DVcore to 1.2V. 1V higher than recommended on box. Is this dangerous? How do I tell what voltages my memory is rated for? (Specifically maximum voltage.)
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2008
  9. gampamu

    gampamu Ancient Guru

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    Generally speaking, you don't want to exceed the specified voltage. Shortened module lifespan is the typical consequence of vdimm elevated above spec. Besides, the performance gains that can be realized by increasing the vdimm above stock with most current modules are, at best, very small.

    When using the memtest to check the memory stability, one pass is definately not good enough. It's best to run it overnight. The next best thing is to run the test #8 for 5 passes and then follow up with 15 passes of test #5 (takes 20-30min).

    Alternately, you could tweak and test the memory in Windows using Prime and Memset. While running Prime at Custom, 2048 to 4096FFT (very high memory stress), tweak with timings settings with Memset. Too tight of a setting will either cause either Prime error or system lock-up. Work with one setting at a time, keep detailed notes, and don't use the "save" feature. Once the optimal settings are determined, "move" them to the BIOS.

    Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2008
  10. gampamu

    gampamu Ancient Guru

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    You must be underclocking your RAM at 800 since you said your memory divider setting is 1:1 (assuming 400FSB/9x multiplier). You should also try the 4:5 divider and run your modules at 1000. Everest and Sisoft Sandra are both good memory benchmarking tools.
     

  11. DonMGard

    DonMGard Member

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    How do you "move" them to the BIOS? Just transfer the settings manually, or does meset do it for me? Also, I don't have access to some of the timings (tRRD, tRTP, etc.) only main ones. Where do I find these in BIOS?
     
  12. DonMGard

    DonMGard Member

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    Woot! Upgraded my PSU to a Corsair 750W.

    Is having a higher FSB Strap to NB better than a lower setting? I'm still not 100% sure on that.

    I'm planning on hitting 3.8 GHz CPU soon.

    Also. I need something clarified. When a single core CPU runs at 3.0 GHz, it is one CPU running at 3.0 GHz. This I know. But what about a dual core? Do both cores run at 3.0 GHz or do both cores "sum up to" 3.0 GHz? What about quad cores?
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2008
  13. Rubenvb

    Rubenvb Active Member

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    Normally a lower FSB strap setting is better, but it limits the multipliers you can use. FSB strap tightens the timings of your chipset when it gets lower. You can set the Strap on auto and see if your available memory speeds are automatically adjusted (don't know if this also happens with the P5K, but the bios does this wiht my p5q).

    A dual core 3.0GHz CPU is exactly that: 2 cores running at 3.0 GHz. So the effective clock speed you could be using is 6.0 GHz. Of course no application is perfectly multi-threaded and the chipset and dual core design isn't perfect so that's not really what you're getting. A quad is (for intel) 2 dual cores slapped together or (for amd) four real cores, thus in both cases nearly quadrupling your processing power over a single core CPU.
     
  14. Krydel

    Krydel Member

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    the newer e8400s clock really well. Yesterday, i managed 4ghz easily at 1.25v and 4gb ram at 5-5-5-15 timings. Booted first time, runs cool, and 8hours+ stress test stable.

    The only issue i had is i tried to boot it with 4-4-4-12 timings and it didnt like it - so if something isnt working and you dont know why, loosen the timings.
     
  15. ScoobyDooby

    ScoobyDooby Ancient Guru

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    For the sake of addressing your inquiry better, I'm just going to add to your OP..

    What I know:
    -I would definitely like to overclock my CPU to at least 3.6 MHz. <--- Sweet!
    -This requires a FSB of 400MHz and a multiplier of 9. <--- U r Correct
    -My Vcore might need to be set to about 1.35. <---- Depends on the board and your chip, but I only ever need 1.3v+ and this takes me to 4ghz. I can be stable @ 3.6 with only 1.24v.. The 8400s tend to NOT like very much V until you get up to 4.. at least this is what I've found with my own personal experience

    -My PCIE frequency should be set at 100 <-- generally you always want to keep the PCIE bus @ 100. I have read up in the past regarding what kind of improvement can be expected by upping this value, and supposedly it doesn't do much.

    Questions:
    -Is DDR2-1000 uncommon? My Bios has a listing for 1002 MHz, will this be appropriate for my RAM, or should I go one lower, to 889 MHz (I think that's the number).
    Ultimately you need to play around with it. I mean, your ram may like certain clocks and dislike others. You will need to play around with the voltage timings and clock speed to see what correlates well with your fsb & cpu clocks.

    -Is it possible to use lower timings with my RAM stably? 4-4-4-12 maybe?
    Sure is! Technically by you tightening your timings, you're actually overclocking it.. maybe not clock speed, but you're speeding up how fast your ram processes and syncs with the fsb, so again, you need to get stable with your regular 5-5-5-15 timings, and then use a program like memset to adjust your timings and see how low you can get them.

    -Is it better to use the BIOS or an OC utility like ASUS's AI Suite? I figure BIOS.
    I personally never enjoyed using the asus brand software.. never found it to work well through windows so I would generally always oc in the bios with all of my asus boards. With this new gigabyte board though, I do a bit of both.. in windows to adjust voltages, and bios to adjust clocks.

    -My BIOS has these features I know nothing about
    --DRAM Static Read Control <--- wouldn't touch it.. unless there is evidence it is necessary
    --Transaction Booster <--- may want to look for ocing guides on your board through google to find out whether or not this setting impacts an oc positively or negetively.
    --Clock Over-Charging Mode <--- again, may want to look this up..
    --CPU Spread Spectrum <--- keep disabled.
    --PCIE Spread Spectrum <--- keep disabled.

    Hope this helps!
     

  16. Luky1

    Luky1 New Member

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    GPU:
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    Sorry about reviving an older thread but I had very similar questions...

    This is really my first system to OC. I have a P5K mobo that I flashed the bios to ver 1201. I started with an old P4 3GHz that I had laying around (in case I trashed it and that is also why I have an older P5K as it will also run a P4) and then upgraded to a E8400 Wolfdale.

    I did a lot of reading and some experimenting and I have been able to hit 4.05GHz with no problem (450MHz with 9x multi, Vcore 1.36v and pencil mod=almost no Vdroop) and a 5:6 divider on my 1066MHz DRAM. RAM is 2.2v with 5-5-5-15 timings. It kept going up to ~65C+ running prime95 so I got a new case (antec 902), and a sunbeam-tech core contact freezer that I upgraded with a silverstone FM121 fan. I also lapped the CPU and cooler.

    Now it will run about 55C on prime95. Today I got a new zalman ZF1000 GPU cooler to replace the ZF900 that I was running and thought I would play with my OC a little more. I was able to increase the BUS to 500MHz, which puts the FSB at 2000MHz and the RAM at 1000MHz with a 1:1 divider with a 8.5x multi (4.25GHz). I ram Prime for about 30mins without a problem and hit about 58C.

    I want to know if I should try to hit 533MHz (to run the RAM in 1:1 will make it 1066MHz which it is rated for) and which puts the FSB at 2132MHz. Will this high FSB cause issues with the NB? I tried it once and it would not boot. Did not try upping any voltages yet. I think my NB is at 1.4v. How high can I safely go? Also figured I would have to drop the multi to 8x (4.26GHz) or 8.5x (4.53GHz). Am I better off with lower FSB and high multi? Also how does the divider impact the performance? 5:6 vs. a 1:1? I don't quite get the NB strap and some of the calculations...

    I play some games (MOH, COD4, HL2, and Crysis) and surf the net with this machine.

    Thanks for any tips you can provide...
     
  17. Neo Cyrus

    Neo Cyrus Ancient Guru

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    45nm Core 2s are extremely sensitive so be careful with the amount of voltage you put through it.

    I would not recommend overclocking an E8400 unless you have a really good heatsink/fan.

    In my case I had it set at 1.4v (what it shows in windows) for 4GHz which was more than it should be at but that's what mine takes to be stable in Orthos. I have it currently set at over 1.5v in the BIOS which is 1.44v-1.456v in Windows (1.42v under load) to make sure it's stable at 4.1GHz which is waaay overkill. That's approaching dangerous levels. Even with a Tuniq Tower 120 on it my CPU reaches around 65 degrees.

    I highly recommend keeping it below 1.45v (what it shows in Windows) unless you use water cooling. You should be able to keep it 100% stable at 4GHz with 1.4v or less anyway.

    Do not start by testing with higher voltage, the lower you can keep the voltage at the better. Start by not increasing the voltage at all and just OC as much as you can on stock voltage. When mine was new it was stable at 3.6GHz with stock voltage, I don't know if it is anymore but I doubt it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2009
  18. Luky1

    Luky1 New Member

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    Sounds like you have the Vdroop issue. I had a similar problem when I first started to OC this set up. I did the pencil mod and now I have very little Vdroop. When I said it is Vcore at 1.36v that is under load. It is set in the BIOS at 1.38v. I have not had to go over 1.38v (set) so far...

    Also my CPU cooler works really well (core contact freezer). It was a huge improvement from my Zalman CNPS9500A. They have decent reviews/performance (especially for the cost) and then I lapped the CPU and the cooler and added a Silverstone 120mm 2400rpm high CFM fan to make it even more efficient. I also kept the mounting bracket from the Zalman that clamps from the back so it is very sturdy and has good pressure to the CPU. I believe this will keep up with any other air cooling solution out there right now (that will fit in my case).
     
  19. LedHed

    LedHed Banned

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    You need to be using Intel Burn test to stress that CPU, I had my E8500 stable for Prime 11 hrs @4.4ghz, however after only 15 passes of IBT it found errors.

    Run for 20-40 passes and that will ensure absolute stability.

    The 45nm Wolfdale does really well on fairly low voltage (1.22V for me to hit 4.0ghz).

    I get 26C Idle 49C Load (4 hours of Crysis) with Antec 900 + Tuniq Tower 120.
     
  20. Neo Cyrus

    Neo Cyrus Ancient Guru

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    That's because Prime 95 doesn't seem to push these CPUs to 100% which is why I use Orthos.
     

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