i7-920 is stable at 20 x 190 BLCK but not 19 x 200 BCLK, why?

Discussion in 'Processors and motherboards Intel' started by Darren Hodgson, Feb 23, 2013.

  1. Darren Hodgson

    Darren Hodgson Ancient Guru

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    I've been running my ageing Core i7-920 C0 @ 3.8 GHz for some time now but it has never really been 100% stable on 19 x 200 BCLK with a VCore of 1.3 V, a CPU PLL of 1.88 V and a QPI/DRAM of 1.3 V. My memory is rated for 1,600 MHz @ 1.5 V. However, it was enough for most games so I just left it at that.

    Last week I started to get system freezes within a few minutes of booting into Windows after installing an Intel chipset driver update but they still occurred after I restored to the older drivers so I figures it was my CPU overclock that was unstable. This seemed confirmed when I dropped the timings down to 20 x 160 BLCK and everything worked great, including games, for four days without a single crash or freeze. I've just been experimenting with settings to get the 3.8 GHz stable and come to the conclusion that it is the 200 BCLK that is the issue as I can run the CPU at 21 x 181 BCLK or 20 x 190 BCLK and play games with no problems (I played Crysis 3 for two hours and left Unigine Valley running the Extreme HD benchmark last night for 45 minutes while watching the rugby with no issues). I was using these voltages though: 1.35 V for VCore, 1.96 V for CPU PLL, 1.35 V for QPI/DRAM, everything else was on Auto.

    So why can't I get 200 BCLK stable on my system? I've never been able to achieve 4 GHz with my CPU eitherr even 21 x 190 BCLK is not stable at the voltages in the paragraph above. Is there a BIOS setting I need to tweak manually to get BCLK stable. I'd prefer a 200 BCLK so I can run my memory at its rated 1,600 MHz speed. Should I just leave it 20 x 190 BCLK? Or is 19 x 181 BCLK better because it seems like lower BCLKs are more stable than higher ones (is that right)? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Veteran

    Veteran Ancient Guru

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    Firstly its a c0, Your never gonna get that thing to 3.8 stable, Trust me i been there and done it spending many many hrs in the process years ago.

    You may get 3.6 though.
    Your ram needs to be increased to 1.65v and your Pll is way too high, drop that down to 1.88-190.

    Increase the vcore to around 1.38.

    Make sure LLC or Vdroop is enabled.

    Dont use a multiplyer of 20 as x58 chips dont like even numbers.
    Use either 19 or 21 then increase bclk to around 3.6 or nearest equivalent.
    Make sure you also take the uclk off auto and set it manually which is double the speed of your ram speed.

    So for example if your ram is running at 1623 then the uclk is around 3246.

    X58 boards have to be set manually to really get the best out of them, it takes alot of time stability testing and patience.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2013
  3. XBEAST

    XBEAST Ancient Guru

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    Lower CPU and RAM multipliers and raise BCLK. Perhaps your motherboard simply can't go over 200 MHz BCLK.
     
  4. Darren Hodgson

    Darren Hodgson Ancient Guru

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    I seem to have got my PC stable at 3.8 GHz with a 20X multiplier and 190 BCLK with a VCore of 1.325 V, a CPU PLL of 1.9 V and a QPI/DRAM of 1.325 V, although that has only been tested out with Crysis 3 and a 30+ minute backup using Acronis True Image 2013, the latter in particular stresses all 8-threads to 100% for prolonged periods of time. Temps max out at 78-82 C across all four cores which is hot admittedly but as I'm planning on upgrading in the next few months anyway, very likely to a Haswell CPU, then I'm really not that bothered if my CPU dies in the meantime. If it does then I will just upgrade earlier to an i7-3770 or i7-3820. I think my i7-920 is definitely coming to the end of its life one way or the other.
     

  5. Veteran

    Veteran Ancient Guru

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    Try stability in Linx,Occt,IBT or Prime 95 and i guarantee it will fail within minutes or even seconds at that vcore.

    Using games for TRUE stability testing is not a true test of stability.
     
  6. CosmoPoLitan

    CosmoPoLitan Active Member

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    This is very true; my current i7 920 C0 will refuse to be stable at x18 or x20 no matter how much voltage I throw at it.

    These are my current mobo settings for 100% stability for comparison, hope it helps:

    CPU Freq: 19x200 = 3.8Ghz
    QPI: x36 = 7.2Ghz
    Uncore: x16 = 3200Mhz
    RAM Freq: 1600Mhz
    RAM Timings: 9-9-9-24-1T
    Load Line Calibration (LLC): On
    VCore: 1.375v
    QPI/VTT: 1.335v
    CPU PLL: 1.88v
    QPI PLL: 1.2v
    IOH Core: 1.2v
    ICH Core: 1.2v
    RAM Voltage: 1.5v <--- weird I know but my current RAM won't stay stable above this.

    What Veteran said earlier is 100% correct, you NEED an odd multiplier as well as LLC/Vdroop enabled. Also, I cannot stress enough how much time and patience is required to get 100% stability especially when you move onto your voltages. I would say it probably took me 2 to 3 hours a night for a week of tweaking voltages and then testing to get it stable.

    You can achieve a stable 3.8Ghz with your i7 with the right amount of work and patience.
     
  7. Darren Hodgson

    Darren Hodgson Ancient Guru

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    My PC seems to be stable now on the current settings but we'll see how that works out over the next few months. I really don't have the time and patience to spend hours fine-tuning though but I appreciate your help, CosmoPoLitan. I'll bear that in mind if I need to tweak further should my PC start blue screening again. Thanks.
     
  8. Dragam

    Dragam Banned

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    Sorry to say, but thats bull****... my 920 c0 is running rock solid at 3,8 ghz... and has been for years.

    Using 180 baseclock, 21 mulitplier, 1.2vcore, 1,64v on memory - all other voltage settings changed from "auto" to the standard values, as they dont really need to be increased at 3,8ghz.

    Uclk set to lowest avaible option.

    And it doesnt even get very hot during full load in games, despite using an old ****ty v8 cooler... 60-65c during full load in games.
     
  9. Veteran

    Veteran Ancient Guru

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    My 920 c0 was stable as well at 3.8 ht on but i couldnt get it to go an inch higher.

    LoL i guess your another one that shouts his mouth off with no proof of what your saying, but ill give you benefit of the doubt.

    If your so much of an expert then would you post some pictures please of your cpu fully stable in Linx,(20 passes on max memory)Occt(Linpack 1hr),Intel burn Test(20 passes on max memory) and Prime95(4 hrs minimum) please.

    LOOOOOOOOOOOL.......1.2 on the vcore!!!
    That CPU would fail in seconds!!!

    Time for you to Walk the Walk if you can Talk the Talk, I look forward to your pics and a good laugh:)
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  10. WhiteLightning

    WhiteLightning Don Illuminati Staff Member

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    1.2 vcore is super low for 3.8 Ghz on a C0
     

  11. Dragam

    Dragam Banned

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    I dont see the point in running several hours in stress tests - i purely use my computer for gaming, so game stability is what im after, where i havent had a single stability issue.

    That being said, i have completed a 30 min run in prime95 with said settings, but ended it after that, as i again dont see the point in testing for non-gaming conditions (which 100% load for several hours aint).

    And you can believe what you want, but yes, it runs entirely stabile with 1,2 vcore 180 baseclock 21 multiplier.

    Id like to add that im in no way an expert in overclocking, but i know this from my own experience.


    As a side note, i got my brothers 920 stabile at 180 baseclock, 21 multiplier and 1,225 vcore - it became unstabile in prime95 with 1,2 as im running mine at.
     
  12. Dragam

    Dragam Banned

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    Im aware of that, which is why im very pleased that its stabile, as it results in very low temps (relatively speaking) :)
     
  13. Dragam

    Dragam Banned

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    As im not going to let some random chimp call me a liar, i just did a 10 min prime95 run... and i know its not your "minimum 4 hours of testing" but any instability due to lack of voltage should show immidiately, and blue screen the system, so 10 min is plenty to show if the system lacks voltage...
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 2, 2013
  14. Veteran

    Veteran Ancient Guru

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    10 mins is not enough and the reason why you dont show more than 10 mins is because it fail wont it?

    You say it will BSOD the system after 10 mins well thats the whole point, to find instability...DUH!

    Why dont you up your vcore?
    Things getting too hot already?

    It will fail again and again and again, dont matter how many volts you put through it i guarantee it!

    Try Linx like i said, That will fail your lousy overclock in seconds.
    Dont forget to post pictures.

    Infact i dont care wether you post pictures or not, I know from experience that your oc is not stable at all.

    Been there done that....(Yawn).

    Cant be arsed wasting my time typing in this thread unless it helps Darren.

    As Duncan Bannantyne would say, Im OUT!:tool:
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  15. Dragam

    Dragam Banned

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    Tell me dude, is your IQ the same as your age? If not, then try to act like it.

    Sux that you had a bad chip that couldnt obtain stability at 3,8 ghz, but that doesnt mean that everyone else have bad chips aswell... mine has been running at 3,8 ghz 24/7 for the past several years, without any issues what so ever... as has my brothers, although at 0,025v higher than mine.
     

  16. Darren Hodgson

    Darren Hodgson Ancient Guru

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    C'mon guys, lets keep it civil please.

    I will say that I can see where Dragam is coming from because that is pretty much my attitude to overclocking, i.e. if is stable for all the games I play, which is the primary use of my PC, then I don't generally spend hours stress-testing. I just can't be bothered. Yes, I agree, it is lazy but then I consider the playing of the games to be the actual testing and if I get BSODs then I tweak the settings further until they go away! The most demanding app I run on my PC is Acronis True Image 2013 which stresses all 8 threads for the best part of an hour with 100% load on each one as it backs up my C: drive. I have had freezes running that when my games have all been stable.

    Veteran is absolutely right though in that you cannot confidently say your PC is 100% stable unless you stress it beyond what games and apps would. If it passes hours of Prime95 and Linx then you're guaranteed stability for everything you do on your PC. That is the point of running these tests. That might be very important for some people who could be concerned about data corruption from unstable systems that freeze during heavy CPU loads but as I only play games on mine I'm not unduly concerned so long as the games run fine.

    My PC seems to be OK at the moment though and I've not had any freezes or crashes from playing games and running Acronis so hopefully that means it will be stable enough to last me until the summer when I hope to be upgrading to a Haswell CPU along with a new motherboard and RAM. Temperatures are a little high (peaking at 80 C after a few hours on Crysis 3) but at this point I'm really not concerned with the lifespan of the CPU when I'm looking at upgrading anyway.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  17. Veteran

    Veteran Ancient Guru

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    Yeah wont be long till the summer Darren.
    Im in 2 minds wether to upgrade myself, im 50/50 atm as i love my 930:)
     
  18. Darren Hodgson

    Darren Hodgson Ancient Guru

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    I feel that my i7-920 is coming close to the end of its life now, Veteran, and at over four years old, it is one year longer than I've ever owned a CPU for before. I guess that shows how ahead of their time the Core i7 CPUs were and if it wasn't for PCI-E 3.0, SATAIII and USB 3.0 then I suspect I could have got another year out of it without a doubt. That said, I just cannot shake off the feeling that the CPU is on borrowed time now... or, maybe, it's just that I want something new and more exciting?

    But I do want a more modern motherboard with the faster ports as well as an EFI BIOS and I think that the higher clocks and improved design of the newer CPUs is going to benefit me as we all move into the era of next generation consoles.
     
  19. Dragam

    Dragam Banned

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    What you are saying is all true - my rig is purely a gaming rig, so game stability is what matters to me, in which i never have any issues with my settings (not that i have any issues anywhere else for that matter).

    Thats REALLY hot for crysis 3 though - i top off at 65c in crysis 3.

    Have you tried the settings i mentioned? Possibly with vcore upped to 1,25 if your cpu needs a bit more juice to be stabile.
     
  20. Veteran

    Veteran Ancient Guru

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    I think as long as my cpu is not bottlenecking my card(s) ill keep it but the new consoles may change all of that.

    All depends what you play as well.
     

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