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Old December 29, 2008, 04:40 PM
Evylldemon's Avatar
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Default Core i7 overclock

So i recently got a new processor/mobo/ram set up and im stoked to get it up and running and getting a decent overclock going. I have never overclocked before and only just started learning about what it means and how to do it. Here is my thought processes and what I plan to do, just looking for some input and recommendations and hopefully this thread and help others with the same process.

Hardware:
Intel i920
Gigabyte EX58-DS4
G.SKILL 6GB DDR3-1333 9-9-9-24
EVGA GTX 260 Core 216
Corsair TX750
TRUE 120
300GB main HDD

Step 1
Assemble PC and boot. Assuming all goes well I should then test the CPU and RAM to check load temps. Should I use Prime95 for this? (does it use all 8 threads or is there a better prorgam for Core i7s?) I plan to use the EasyTuner6 prorgam that comes with the mobo to check temps and whatnot, but I also have Everest and CPU-z. Is it worthwhile to run Memtest initially or is it OK to assume that the memory is ok? Anything else I'm missing?

Step 2
Assuming all went well and I have a reasonably low load temp, it's time to start overclocking. I'm aiming for 3.5-3.6 (BCLK of 170-180) on air. Initially I plan to set it to 172 (for 3.6Ghz at Turbo). I also read that I should turn off power save functions in the BIOS, which ones are these? is there just one? Also, should I leave the Turbo boost on or turn it off? I saw two different places that said different things.

I'll lower the RAM multiplier to 6x and the uncore to 13x to make sure they don't affect the overclock stability at first.

Now I need to set voltages. This is where I'm lost. How do I know what voltage to set it to for this level of an overclock. Every guide/review I've read uses a 4Ghz OC so I'm not sure what to set the Vcore and QPI/vtt for only 3.6Ghz. I'd also like to avoid spending hours on end finding the ideal point if possible.

Step 3
Once I have all the settings where I want, boot it up again and cross my fingers. What's the best way to test stability at this point? 3Dmark vantage enough? should I run a program like Prime95 for an hour or two? CPU-z should show the full load speed (BLCK x 20/21) because I've disabled the power save functions.

Step 4
Assuming all went well with the above steps. I'll now set the memory mutliplier to 8x (pushing it to 1376Mhz) and uncore to 17x. Would such a minor memory OC require an increase in voltage? If i end up getting 180 (meaning memory at 1440, will that require more voltage)?

Once these are set, boot and run memtest. If everything checks out, I'm good to go.



Question recap:
1. What program should I use to check stability and load temps for teh Core i7?

2. What power save functions do I turn off, should I turn off Turbo boost initially, and finally, when all said and done, do I turn the power save functions back on?

3. What voltages should I use for Vcore, QPI/vtt and Vdimm (memory)?

4. Should I use the same program from Q1 for stability and temp tests after the OC, and what am I looking for in the temperature, how hot is too hot?


Again, I'm VERY new to this so any and all help is very appreciated.
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Old December 31, 2008, 09:39 AM
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Got the computer up and running. Apparently Prime95 has a multi thread version so I'll try that out once I get the rest of my software installed. Look looking for some tips on voltage for my OC though.
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Old December 31, 2008, 10:02 AM
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3.0 "I kill SR2's" Charlie
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1. Prime95 - you already have it. Real temp for CPU temps.
2. I left Turbo Boost on. You can leave the power saving functions (EIST, SpeedStep and others) on, but I always disable them when oc'ing.
3. Those were my settings for 4.0, on Air:
Quote:
4009MHz (21x191): 1.3975V VCore, QPI voltage at 1.3750V.
4. Yes, Real temp and Prime - you can also do some crunching to test the stability using BOINC (see the sticky in the FAH section); my 920 while crunching hit 72C no problem at 4.0, even 4.1 under Boost.

Make sure to oc the Ram too - the board stability is amazing: my Gskills did 1620Mhz stable (1.7V), when they are 1333MHz stock...
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Old December 31, 2008, 12:13 PM
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Damn, methinks my Ultima-90 is my bottleneck. With only 3.7GHz, and 1.3375V I am peaking @ 73˚C.
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Old January 1, 2009, 04:40 PM
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Well I've got a stable OC so far. only 3.5Ghz (166x21) right now. May do more later. I ended up using Everest ultimate, Core Temp and EasyTune6 to monitor temps. They all showed roughly the same thing (though easytune was significantly lower for some reason)

Here are my settings:
BCLK 166

Voltages:
Vcore: 1.275
QPI/vtt: 1.28
Vdimm: 1.54

I turned Turbo boost off initially then turned it back on later. I turned off almost all the power save settings charlie mentioned; a guide i read said to do the same thing. I left pretty much everythings else at auto but put the other multipliers on their default setting manually (QPI at 36x, uncore at 16x and RAM at 8x)

RAM is running at the stock 1333 (166x8) and is stable after two passes of memtest86. I ran 4 instances of Orthos at once for 3 hours to check the overclock stability and there were no errors with an average temperature across cores of 60 degrees (based on everest and coretemp). I haven't benchmarked it yet to compare against the stock scores but I'll do that later and let you guys know.
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