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Tips on overclocking an i5 4670K

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June 22, 2013 9:54:40 PM

My Specs:
MB: Asus Z87-A
CPU: i5 4670K
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i
GPU: Asus GTX 670 DC2 2GB
RAM: Corsair XMS3 Classic 2x4GB 1600MHz
PSU: Corsair HX 850W
Case: Cooler Master 690 II Advanced

I would like to know what clock speed I should go for and how to achieve that using the Asus uefi bios. What settings should I change in the bios? And how to test stability.
a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
a b Ĉ ASUS
June 23, 2013 12:00:39 AM

By increasing cpu voltage and and increasing the multiplier and setting the cpu in O.C profile through the bios.
for stability test,use stress test program like PRIME95 and torture test it for 5-6 hours.If it doesn't crashes then it's ok,otherwise adjust carefully
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June 23, 2013 9:52:40 AM

If I were to set my frequency to 4.6 for all cores and set voltage to adaptive, would it work properly?
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June 23, 2013 9:59:41 AM

Also, which specific settings can I change to increase overclock potential?
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
a b Ĉ ASUS
June 23, 2013 10:05:11 AM

well i never used z87 or z77 boards but by the concept of O.C ing i can tell u that the more u increase the voltage,the more ur processor's lifespan degrades. So,increase the multiplier by 3-3.5x(i.e.,if the multiplier is set to x18, then increase it to x21-21.5)and the voltage to adaptive and check it's stability by running PRIME95 for 5-6hrs.
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June 23, 2013 10:47:23 PM

Should I let AI Suite III automatically overlock my system and just stick with that? What would the disadvantages be? Would it not give me the most stable result?
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
a b Ĉ ASUS
June 24, 2013 9:14:09 AM

Use TuboV to O.C ur processor, adjust freq., multiplier e.t.c .Yeah u can do that and from there u can tune your cpu's frequency,voltage. check this link, it might help you:
http://www.hardocp.com/article/2013/06/03/asus_z87a_lga...

there aren't such disadvantages, if u are a beginner, then try to O.C with this at first if u are not so sure that u can O.C from bios.
and it will also give u stable result.
At first try increasing the voltage by a bit and the multiplier also and see that it's stable or not using prime95 for 5-6hrs and u have a good cooler which would help you much in O.C ing.
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June 24, 2013 12:33:07 PM

I got my 4670k to 4.5 Ghz with about 1.190 V, initially I tested to see if I could get the system to boot by setting multiplier to 46 and volts to 1.2.

I would not recommend adaptive voltage in my opinion, because I found it ran voltage higher than it needed to be and this results in higher temperatures. So if you are looking to get the most with the least adaptive is not a good choice, manual control is everything. If you just want a stronger processor for the sake of it and don't want to learn about overclocking too much then sure use automatic controls, but it is frowned upon to let the computer make decisions that you should be making :) 

To justify, as well, the point of initially setting my multiplier to 46 was to find out if I had one of the good chips or one of the poor ones, it booted and was somewhat stable at 4.6 ghz and 1.2 voltage, but I wasn't liking the heat numbers.

Correct methodology after this initial test is to start somewhere reasonable while finding your overclock, reasonable being usually ~42 multiplier @ 1.2V and check for stability and watch your temps your goal is to keep them below 80C(Some people will say 80C, others will say 70C, you decide nobody really can say with this being new tech)

If your system is stable with stress testing like intel burn test or Prime95 blend test for an hour or so, then your system is at least somewhat stable and quite possibly completely stable so you can continue raising your multiplier. So now 43 @ 1.2 volts, stable? If No (turn back multiplier or raise voltage by 0.01 and retest) Else(raise multiplier and retest)

It is by this method that I raised my multiplier, checked stability, and it was constantly ok. I hit 4.5 but I am on air cooling and my temps were not so great at that point, ~85C so I started lowering voltage by 0.005 increments and testing stability more, this stage is fine tuning by the way, I got voltage to 1.190V, any lower and my system was freezing during stress testing. So I kept it at multiplier 45 manual core voltage set at 1.190V and stess tested several hours, was fine, been gaming and such for days and system is proving to be stable with temps(outside of stress testing) never going above 60C.

My system, by the way:
asrock extreme6 z87
i5 4670k
hyper 212 evo cooler
budget mid atx case thing is worthless gonna spend real money on a case next time after this awful thing
gtx 560 ti because I didn't have the cash to upgrade it yet
samsung 1600 2x4gb dimms
other stuff that doesn't affect this discussion

Hopefully you find this information helpful, I like you probably are, have heard that haswell sucks for overclocking but so far I am either lucky or good I suppose it doesn't matter which :) 

And disclaimer, this worked for me, if you decide to try the same method as I have it is NOT my fault if you fry your chip, overclocking can be hazardous to your computer you should know & accept the risks before partaking and be able to take everything that anyone says with a grain of salt, and be able to accept the potential consequences of the changes that you are making to your computer :p 
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June 24, 2013 1:42:42 PM

Thanks so much for all the info Kadathan. I actually tried the auto overlock using AI Suite III and it got me to 4.7 GHz but I noticed the voltage was around 1.35v at load so I decided to bring it back to stock. I'm now using a minor auto overlock through bios which brings it to around 4GHz.

If I were to use AI Suite to overclock, should I use the ratio only option or the bclk option? And then adjust voltages manually through the bios. There are a few voltage settings on the bios which I'm not too familiar with like offset voltage.

I was able to boot my computer at 4.6GHz@1.2v but prime95 and Intel Burn gave me instability errors. Should I be running Intel Burn at High or Very High settings or would standard be fine?
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June 24, 2013 2:05:16 PM

Well 1.35v is pretty high voltage for these chips, so toning it down was the right move I would say. That minor overclock is decent but I believe you could do better than 4Ghz, given that your chip boots at 4.6 1.2V you allegedly have one of the good ones, as many aren't capable of that hence all the haswell hate.

I am not familiar with AI Suite, but I am going to assume that is ASUS UEFI? I can tell you though that intel chips since Sandybridge are only overclockable with the ratio changes, changing the bclk will raise the clock speed on not only the processor but on all of what used to be controlled by Northbridge so you do not want to deviate from 100.00 bclk or risk breaking stuff really quickly, and permanently. Only AMD chips are variable with that I am led to understand.

To do all of this manually through the UEFI or BIOS, all you need to do is change the CPU ratio and change your voltage from adaptive to manual override, assuming such an option exists. As long as you are on manual, you do not need to worry about the computer using too many volts and creating more heat, and you don't need to worry about the complexity of offsets so ignore offset voltage as well. The pure simplest way is simply setting one number once manually until you determine your stable numbers and state, once you have those you can go back to adaptive.
The reason you don't use adaptive now is that during stress testing, even if you set maximum voltage to 1.20, if you are on adaptive the processor can still request up to 1.37V and recieve it despite your preset maximum. Apparently this is only an issue during stress testing though( I have not verified this) and the system usually is not able to request that much extra voltage, but adaptive is great for day to day use so I would set that for my 24/7 once I have my overclock worked out and am done with stress testing.

With your gear, I wouldn't be suprised if you could get and maintain a 4.7ghz overclock with decent temps on that watercooling loop, that does depend on your chip though and most people seem to be happy keeping a 4.5ghz overclock for daily use. It is your decision though where you are going to stop and I believe you will reach your own natural point of comfort so have at it and mess with your numbers a bit!

Also, Intel burn at Standard seems to keep most people happy. Wether you accept standard or demand more is purely your decision. Standard in this case, really does mean standard.
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June 24, 2013 2:31:42 PM

Well all I really do on this pc is game so would passing the standard setting on IntelBurn suffice? Also, I've been trying to tweak my voltage at 4.6GHz but I haven't been able to get stable system according to stress tests and I don't want to go over 1.3v.

Is there a big difference in Haswell performance between stock clocks and O.C.?
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June 24, 2013 6:20:38 PM

So I tried booting my system up at 4.6@1.2v but it didn't boot up this time so I tried 4.5@1.2v and it booted. I then stress tested it with IntelBurn on the High setting and it passed. It failed on Very High though. Is my system stable enough for gaming? And I'm guessing I got an average chip since it's not stable at 4.6 with a Corsair H80i...
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June 24, 2013 6:48:35 PM

My pc just crashed as I was trying to launch a game. I don't know what's up with this..4.5@1.2v and IntelBurn passed the High stress test...am I doing something wrong? Temperatures never go over 60C.
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June 25, 2013 8:51:34 AM

Sorry, had a night with the daughter completely forgot about what I was helping you with :( 

Yeah, your PC just needs to post/boot windows, passing stress tests at 1.2v 4.6ghz is unlikely you need more voltage for that, as you said north of 1.3 which is not without risks. So if you want to stay at 4.5, that is a good choice for a 24/7 clock and your temps sound good too.

As far as the gaming crash, the games you play are sometimes a better indication of stability than any stress test. So if you recieve a crash either with gaming or with stress testing, keep at 4.5ghz and raise your voltage by .01 and retry. It really sounds like you've pretty much found your spot you just need to keep making small adjustments based on how your system accepts the overclock. You could just jump up to 1.24V or something to save time stress testing, but thats what the computer would do...
You should take the time to get your max voltage unlder load determined so you can set your computer back on adaptive with the right numbers. In my opinion at least...

Edit for clarification: Stability is not determined by the temperatures your system puts out or by passing one stress test. It is one of the factors you need to balance around though. Overclocking generates more power, but draws more power so it can cause system instability. To correct the system instability you give the chip more voltage, in small increments, until you have your stable state again. The raised voltage has increased heat generated, so now you watch your temps now that you are stable so that you can ensure it is a safe setting for your computer longterm.

Stability in that equation, real longterm stability, I see many people say it takes 12 hours of prime95 to really get an indication if your system is stable, and even then some games can still crash the computer where the stress test could not. Think of it as bug hunting in software... You are doing everything you can to see if you can crash your PC through use, if you are unable, then your system is stable!
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
a b Ĉ ASUS
June 25, 2013 9:08:10 AM

yeah , i completely agree with Kadathan, after O.C ing try to play the modern games which would be better than the stresss tests as that time the real power of your get's utilized.
try decreasing the voltage by a bit and then play a game and see that if it crashes.
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June 25, 2013 10:04:06 AM

I really appreciate all the help guys. I can't thank you guys enough. I'm currently running at 4.5GHz@1.24v. I'm running Prime95 right now since I'll be heading out soon. I'll test some games out when I'm back if Prime95 shows that my system is stable. TurboV auto overclock gave me 4.8GHz when I tried it today but voltages were going over 1.4. I then manually brought the frequency down to 4.5 and left voltage at auto. I stress tested with these settings and voltages went up to 1.38. So I manually overrid voltages to 1.24. Is there a difference between auto and adaptive voltages?
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
a b Ĉ ASUS
June 25, 2013 11:03:54 AM

no not by much.the O.C you did is fine ,now try to do a stability test either by running prime95 or by playing games :) 
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June 25, 2013 12:38:00 PM

Prime95 gave me an error running at 4.5GHz@1.24v but IntelBurn passes at High setting. When I stress test using Intel XTU temps show around 65C while on AI Suite it shows around 50C. I'm going to test some games out later today.
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June 25, 2013 2:36:02 PM

So 4.5GHz@1.2 passes IntelBurn High stress test but crashes in game after around 30 minutes of play. 4.5GHz@1.21-1.25 doesn't pass stress test and crashes in game. Could there be something wrong with my RAM frequency? Should I try lowering it? CPU is around 60C at load and GPU is around 70C.
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June 25, 2013 2:59:41 PM

I just reset everything to auto through the bios and it gave me a max CPU frequency boost of 3.8GHz. I stress tested this with IntelBurn Very High and the voltage didn't even exceed 1.1v but it still gave me an error.

Could there be an issue with my motherboard bios?

Or could it be that I have a bad chip? I mean, I can boot my pc at 4.8GHz@ over 1.4v but if I can't even play half an hour of a game then what's the point of that? Stress tests pass when it's 4.5GHz@1.2v but games crash.
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June 25, 2013 3:43:30 PM

AI Suite is showing my Dram Frequency at 1063MHz when it should be 1600MHz..could this be a problem?
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
June 25, 2013 4:02:25 PM

What is your vrin set at? Also your cache voltage
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June 25, 2013 4:24:17 PM

Cache voltages are currently on auto. Where can I see vrin?
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
June 25, 2013 4:29:02 PM

Sphynx91 said:
Cache voltages are currently on auto. Where can I see vrin?


ASRock calls Vrin the cpu input voltage. Not sure what asus calls it.
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June 25, 2013 4:31:37 PM

Nevermind. My Dram Frequency goes up to 1600 when under load. I updated my bios. I'm now testing to see if it has changed anything.
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June 25, 2013 10:06:39 PM

Updating my bios has not changed anything. It seems like my system is only stable at default settings which is not what I got this processor for...I may try and get this chip replaced.
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
June 25, 2013 10:21:14 PM

Sphynx91 said:
Updating my bios has not changed anything. It seems like my system is only stable at default settings which is not what I got this processor for...I may try and get this chip replaced.


You can't just change the vcore with Haswell. You need to make other changes to get stability
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June 25, 2013 11:08:58 PM

What other changes should I make? I've watched many OC videos and read a lot of stuff on OCing a Haswell chip and most people just change the frequency and voltage and leave everything else on auto and they get awesome results. I can't even get AIDA64 to run for half an hour at 3.8GHz.
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
June 25, 2013 11:25:02 PM

Other than clearing CMOS and starting gently moving up once again step by step. It may be a problem on either your chip or mobo. I would probably lean more towards the chip. Haswell does have some chips that don't play nicely to overclocking and you have voided their warranty. Reset everything, start at bone stock and work your way up. Good Luck.
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June 26, 2013 3:37:37 AM

My system is unstable at anything over 3.8GHz (which is the default max boost clock). Shouldn't this "K" series chip be able to overclock even by a little with no problems? Aren't the "K" series meant to be overclocked? I bought the 4670K so that I could overclock it. Not being able to overclock and maintain a stable system is a good enough excuse to be able to return/replace it imo. TurboV gives me an auto overclock of 4.8GHz but it isn't stable so what's the point of that? When I bought this chip I was expecting it to at least overlock to around 4.2GHz and maintain stability but it can't even manage to do that.

Also, I got this Z87 motherboard and CPU installed at the local computer store where I bought the hardware. I noticed my CPU overheating the first day or two I started using it so I decided to open the case up and see what was up. Apparently they didn't mount my H80i properly and only a small edge was actually touching the CPU. Could that have maybe damaged the motherboard/CPU?

After I mounted the cooler properly I haven't had overheating. The max my CPU gets to in stress tests is 70C. So I know heat is not a problem. My system just isn't stable when my CPU is overclocked. Heck, I haven't even had the chance to test the CPU for a day at stock settings.

I'm going to call the computer store later today and ask them about their CPU and motherboard return policy. At this point, I'm willing to pay a 5-10% restocking fee.
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June 26, 2013 8:32:24 AM

Several things, first is that you probably didn't damage your chip. You can definately call and ask them about replacing it because you are getting some funny stuff, I can't say wether they will take it back or not but you can try.

You can work with this chip, however. When you get the results you are getting it is just more information to work with, so as ohyouknow said, clear cmos and start from a safe point again.

You mentioned ram and that is one possible area of help. You have 1600 mhz ram so it isn't overclocked, but you can still set your ram speed in the UEFI and set your ram voltage, it is either 1.5 or 1.65 depending on the ram. Other than that it sounds like you set the cpu to adaptive and did stress testing, I cannot recommend you do this as the cpu gets extra voltage when you stress test with it on adaptive. Under normal use setting your maximum would have worked but not running intel burn or prime95.

So if you still have the patience for it, start at 38 multiplier, do an hour of prime 95 with 1.2V and if there are no errors, increment up to 39 multiplier, 1hr prime 95 no errors then increment up multiplier. Keep going, now you know you have some trouble with your chip around 4.2-4.4 so you may need to increase your voltage around there to somewhere 1.3-1.35 to get your stress testing running without errors, don't give up on it when you get in these areas and have errors! Just keep incrementing voltage by .01V until you reach either stability or reach 1.35, this is why tweaking your OC takes so long!

If you reach your maximum voltage that you can run the chip at while keeping temps below 75C, or if you reach simply the max voltage you feel comfortable with, and you are still getting errors in prime or crashing when loading games, you do need to back off the multiplier, or there are several settings in your UEFI that you can disable to help your clock run better. Spread Spectrum, for instance, reduces electro magnetic interference output by your machine, but that is unnecessary unless you live in a server farm :p  Your home microwave ruins any clean environment you were hoping to run anyways. Also I turned LLC down to 3 on my ASROCK board, if you have an option to change LLC on your asus board I would set it to whatever is the "Medium" setting. If you only have off or on, then leave it on.

Do NOT run adaptive at this stage, either. Adaptive is for after you've obtained long term stability and have finished with all stress testing.

Try this stuff and I'll try to stick around to answer questions throughout the day, I keep having some really busy nights so I apologise for inconsistent answers!

Edit: If you can, take some pictures of your uefi so that we can see what you're working with and what your settings are. It is possible that you are making some input errors that would be nice to see, and also would be nice to see what options you have to work with.
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a b K Overclocking
a b à CPUs
June 26, 2013 8:42:09 AM

Sphynx91 said:
My system is unstable at anything over 3.8GHz (which is the default max boost clock). Shouldn't this "K" series chip be able to overclock even by a little with no problems? Aren't the "K" series meant to be overclocked? I bought the 4670K so that I could overclock it. Not being able to overclock and maintain a stable system is a good enough excuse to be able to return/replace it imo. TurboV gives me an auto overclock of 4.8GHz but it isn't stable so what's the point of that? When I bought this chip I was expecting it to at least overlock to around 4.2GHz and maintain stability but it can't even manage to do that.

Also, I got this Z87 motherboard and CPU installed at the local computer store where I bought the hardware. I noticed my CPU overheating the first day or two I started using it so I decided to open the case up and see what was up. Apparently they didn't mount my H80i properly and only a small edge was actually touching the CPU. Could that have maybe damaged the motherboard/CPU?

After I mounted the cooler properly I haven't had overheating. The max my CPU gets to in stress tests is 70C. So I know heat is not a problem. My system just isn't stable when my CPU is overclocked. Heck, I haven't even had the chance to test the CPU for a day at stock settings.

I'm going to call the computer store later today and ask them about their CPU and motherboard return policy. At this point, I'm willing to pay a 5-10% restocking fee.


Im not trying to be rude when i say this but if you would have listened to me days ago i would have helped you stabilize the overclock. You cant just set the multi and vcore like Ivy. You need to set the cache voltage and Vrin as well. Now do you want my help or are you going to complain and return it because you cant take 5 minutes to do the changes i'm telling you to do?
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June 26, 2013 8:43:00 AM

Ok. Thanks again Kadathan. I'll start stress testing until I have to go to work.
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June 26, 2013 8:43:02 AM

Ok. Thanks again Kadathan. I'll start stress testing until I have to go to work.
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June 26, 2013 8:46:08 AM

Should I change anything for the CPU cache ratio and voltage?
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June 26, 2013 8:52:13 AM

I can't find LLC in my bios. Also, should I enable Internal PLL over voltage? The description says that it increases overclocking capability.
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June 26, 2013 8:55:36 AM

And should I manually set a strap?
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June 26, 2013 9:02:05 AM

Hey Intel God. What should I set the cache voltages and vrin to start with? I really appreciate the help. I'm sorry if it sounds like I'm complaining. It's just that I had a much easier time overclocking my previous CPU (1090T BE) and I'm getting pretty frustrated with this one.
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June 26, 2013 9:15:17 AM

Leave strap and pll voltage alone for now. internal pll won't help your stability problems at this stage your Ghz are too low for it to have any real effect.

You can try making the changes Intelgod described, setting the cpu cache multiplier and voltage to the same as the core frequency and voltage, when I did this I found my system ran hotter so I elected to leave them on auto but there is no good reason to not try that. Leaving them on auto you may have better power savings and temps but higher chance of a bottleneck.

Vrin is input voltage, it is sort of a safeguard but I disagree with setting it as it simply raises voltage when your system gets unstable. If you want to set it, put it .1 higher to start and see if that helps, I didn't mess with this as my cpu went to 4.5 ghz without and stabilized, but heat is where I maxed out I didn't want any higher temps. You are on water so you might have better luck with input voltage than I would.

No LLC, hmm, it definately has it, it is a setting that compensates for vdrop but at higher voltages I believe it is dangerous to have too high, which is why you should maybe lower it! But it could also reduce stability so maybe lets not worry about this one for now. Did you find spread spectrum and disable it?
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June 26, 2013 9:19:57 AM

I haven't disabled spread spectrum yet. I'm running Prime95 at 3.8@1.2 right now. I'll make all the other changes after Prime95 has run for an hour.
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June 26, 2013 9:45:05 AM

Worker #1 gave an error 17 minutes into testing. Worker #3 gave an error 39 minutes into testing. Worker #2 and 4 are still running.
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June 26, 2013 9:46:38 AM

Worker #4 gave an error 43 minute into testing.
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June 26, 2013 9:51:24 AM

Worker #2 gave an error 46 minutes into testing.
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June 26, 2013 9:51:57 AM

This is all at 3.8ghz with 1.2V? Hm, not great results. But the blend test is testing memory as well, so factor that into all of this. Did you set your memory to it's proper settings as well?

That really shouldn't matter at this low clock but you can try setting memory mhz to 1600 and voltage to whatever the package your memory came in specifies.

Other than that, I would say try the same tests at 4.0ghz. It is possible that raising the clock in this instance could stabilize, honestly you should not be getting errors at that low setting.

Edit: Also make sure to do as intelgod suggested, set cache multiplier to 40 along with your core multiplier, and set cache voltage at 1.2V, same as core voltage.
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June 26, 2013 9:55:13 AM

I found CPU LLC on AI suite and set it to level 3.
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June 26, 2013 10:00:58 AM

Another thing, have you reset your cmos? Because those errors at 3.8 concern me, something is off. I think before trying the new settings, remove the cmos battery from the main board, keep it out for a good 15 seconds and then replace. Do this in a non carpeted area (I usually do not wear socks as well:p ) while keeping one hand on the metal siding of the case, unless you have some antistatic solution you can use. And of course make sure the system is unplugged as well..

There may also be a button on the back panel for resetting your bios, or a setting in the uefi but the only way I know to consistently describe to you is the battery option.

The idea here is to start with a clean slate and hopefully be more stable at lower clock settings, or that is what I would do at least.

Once cmos is reset your bios will be back to factory settings, so you will need to input your changes manually once again. Manual override core voltage 1.2, same with cache voltage, 1.2v, core multiplier and cache multiplier both at 40, llc to 3, spread spectrum off, give that all a shot and see if you are still getting stability errors, you could even do all of this at multipliers set to 38 instead of 40 to ensure consistency of tests if you want. But something right now is off.
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June 26, 2013 10:36:15 AM

I reset CMOS.

I started running Prime95 at 4.0GHz@1.2v and worker #4 gave an error 6 minutes into testing. I took some pictures of my bios and AI Suite settings. I will be posting them up shortly.

As I was typing this Prime95 gave an error and force closed...
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June 26, 2013 10:48:43 AM

Restarted a Prime95 blend test and all cores have passed 1024K so far. Now testing 8K.
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June 26, 2013 11:22:44 AM

All 4 workers passed 10K but 2 and 4 failed 896K.
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