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A few questions about my new PC.

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September 11, 2013 2:17:46 PM

Hi. I recently had a new PC built.

Case- Corsair Carbide 500r
Motherboard- MSI z87 G45 Gaming
CPU- i5 4670k
GPU- Crossfire 7950
RAM- 2x 4gig Gskill Ripjaw 1600xmp

My first question is about the case. It came with 4 fans, 2 in the front, 1 on the side panel and 1 in the back. There are two holes on the top for more fans or a radiators. My computer guy put one fan on the top. He used the hole that's closer to the front. he said putting another fan there won't be good because the hot air will get stuck in there. I want a second opinion on that. There's no overheating at all, but the top GPU can reach over 75 degrees, but it's hot in NY right now.

I brought over a bunch of stuff from my Alienware Aurora. We could not mount the liquid cooler on this socket so we put on some old Asus Heatsink+fan.
The CPU stays cooler under load than my old i7 did with that liquid cooler. It's usually like 45-60 under load. I'm thinkin if I should order a better CPU cooler. which leads to my next question, overclocking the CPU.

I'm thinking about overclocking the CPU for some performance increase.
How should I go about doing this? It seem's the MSI motherboard bios or w.e it's called has all the options there.

I play a game called SWTOR, It's an MMORPG and a highly CPU bound game. With my old i7 920 I would get as low as 10fps during big combat scenes. Now with this new i5 I'm at 30fps during those same scenes but it can still dip into the low 20s in some cases. I think that with this hardware I should be at an even 60fps full time in that game. But I'm not. So I'm wondering if overclocking the CPU would help with that. I mean I'm pretty sure I'm seeing a bottleneck in that game, I know it makes no sense but that's how bad this game is.

My next questions are about my motherboard. Firstly, I have that 1600xmp RAM and my computer guy told me the XMP was turned on automatically but when I looked in the bios it said disabled. Should I turn it on or is just an overclocking feature... Sorry I'm clueless about this =/

What does this OC genie button do? lol
Does it really even overclock anything? I tried pressing it but didn't see anything.

After I got this motherboard I read somewhere in the book that it has a feature that takes the graphics of the CPU and adds it to the GPU. Is this something I have to enable or is it automatic? I think it's on because the last few days I've been playing Devil May Cry and this game is not very demanding so I sometimes see 0% GPU usage lol.

Last thing... for some reason every time I restart my computer or turn it on after it's been off, my wireless USB adapter doesn't show up. I have to pull it out and put it back in for the PC to see it...=/

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September 11, 2013 2:48:39 PM

It is usually recommended to set up the fans so that the fan(s) on the front of the case are intake fans and the ones on the back and top are exhaust. This promotes airflow through the case, and helps heat escape, since heat rises anyway.

Your CPU temps seem fine right now. If you do overclock, however, I'd look at improving the cooler.

As far as the actual overclock, I'm not certain if overclocking the Haswell chips are much different than the Ivy Bridge chips, so I'll avoid telling you how to actually do so since I don't want to tell you wrong and have something go wrong.

If SWTOR is CPU bound (not sure, I've never actually played it), an overclock would help.

XMP is not turned on automatically.

The OC Genie button gives an automatic overclock to the processor. On the MSI Z77A-GD55 I use on my computer, it will overclock my I5-3570K from 3.4 GHz to 4.2 GHz, a mild overclock.

Sorry about the long post.

Casey
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September 11, 2013 2:55:49 PM

I think my post was a bit longer than yours lol so no worries. And thanks for the reply.

I'll look into a better cooler later.

SWTOR is an MMO, I think all MMOs are CPU heavy because of all the people in them. Player's move sporadically unlike NPCs so the CPU needs to work harder I guess.

I'll try the OC genie again and see if that helps at all. I'm talking about the OC genie button that's in the BIOS, not the button on the actual board.
When I pressed it, it lit up but I did not see the speed of the CPU go up in the BIOS. Maybe I'll see it when I get in windows?

So about the XMP. Should I enable it there in the BIOS? If yes, do I need to do anything else there? Or just enable it.
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September 11, 2013 3:06:48 PM

Pavel Pokidaylo said:
I think my post was a bit longer than yours lol so no worries. And thanks for the reply.

I'll look into a better cooler later.

SWTOR is an MMO, I think all MMOs are CPU heavy because of all the people in them. Player's move sporadically unlike NPCs so the CPU needs to work harder I guess.

I'll try the OC genie again and see if that helps at all. I'm talking about the OC genie button that's in the BIOS, not the button on the actual board.
When I pressed it, it lit up but I did not see the speed of the CPU go up in the BIOS. Maybe I'll see it when I get in windows?

So about the XMP. Should I enable it there in the BIOS? If yes, do I need to do anything else there? Or just enable it.


On my MSI board, the OC Genie button just activates the settings in "OC Genie" mode in the BIOS. You should have the option to activate it either by the button or in BIOS, but in my opinion it is safer to use the button because if your computer won't start after you overclock it, you can just press the button and it will switch back to the standard settings. The change in CPU speed won't be noticeable until you restart if you overclock through the BIOS.

I'd go ahead and activate XMP.

You're on the right track as far as MMO's being CPU heavy. There's a lot of communication between your computer and the server you connect to, and that takes CPU power.

I don't know how I missed this in my first answer, but I didn't even notice the last two questions. The feature you found in the manual is a GPU virtualization technology called Virtu MVP. Basically it combines the integrated video chip in the CPU with a discrete GPU. I'm not sure how well it works with CrossFire, though. There should be a program to install if you want to try it, though.

As far as your wireless adapter problems, which adapter are you using? Also, do you have any other USB devices that have any problems?

Casey

Casey
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September 11, 2013 4:01:51 PM

The Adapter is a Linksys AE2500. I don't seem to be having problems with any of my other USB devices and I have several. Mouse/Keyboard, Headset, Xbox 360 Controller, webcam. The webcam may be having a problem but I don't think it's because of the USB, I think it's because I disabled it in the recording devices tab because my PC keeps using the webcam for my sound input device instead of my headset.

I also have a good Wireless network card I can put in, if the motherboard has a slot for it that is. I bought it together with my Router and the wireless adapter but never used it.

I'm going to go into the BIOS now and hit the OC genie button and enable XMP and restart the PC.

Oh, I also just saw my computer guy he reformatted my hard drive because it wouldn't let me do it here for some reason. I told him about the fan on the top and he said people have different opinions. I think it would be better to make that top fan blow out instead of in. And maybe add a second fan up there to blow out as well. But what do I know lol
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September 11, 2013 4:16:06 PM

I was just wondering about any other USB devices having problems just to see if maybe it was a problem with the USB controllers in the motherboard. It sounds like something limited to just the wireless adapter. Have you tried reinstalling the drivers?

If you do end up having to use the wireless card you have, is it PCI or PCI Express? Your motherboard has PCI Express slots only.

As for the fan issue, if you are happy with how the computer runs and how the temperatures are, I'd leave it alone. However, since you are going to be overclocking, I'd keep the temperatures in mind. Wouldn't want to risk burning up all that new hardware, now would we?

Casey
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September 11, 2013 4:16:11 PM

Ok so I went into the BIOS and apparently the XMP was enabled this time. It was grayed out and said extreme memory profile (enabled) and said 1600 there. Maybe it wasn't enabled before because my old HDD still had all the old stuff on it? It still had windows on it but my new SSD had windows also and was the boot priority.

I pressed the OC genie button in the BIOS and restarded the computer. There was a message in yellow saying OC genie is activated and it is not recommended to change any settings in the BIOS now. In the BIOS the CPU frequency was still 3.4ghz. But I just opened Realtemp and it shows 4000mhz. I pressed the XS bench button and it showed 4000mhz too. But I don't know if it's even worth it to keep OC genie on because I mean the CPU is 3.4ghz stock but with that Turbo boost 2.0 it's 3.8ghz.

Oh and I saw in the BIOS there was a setting for VIRTU. When you hover over it the box on the side that tells you what it is said it's some graphics oh I can't even remember lol but there were two settings for it I think. D-mode and I-mode.
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September 11, 2013 4:23:50 PM

D-mode and I-mode describe which card gets used as the primary video card. D-mode will be the discrete card, while I-mode is the integrated video card in the CPU.

As for the overclock, that's a bit disappointing, however, from what I've been reading, the Haswell chips tend not to overclock as well as the older Sandy Bridge (2000-series) and Ivy Bridge (3000-series) chips due to temperature.

XMP settings should be completely independent of the operating system of your choice, so I don't know what happened there.

Casey
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September 11, 2013 10:06:42 PM

Well 4000 is what I got from OC genie. I think if I were to do it manually I could get it higher than that. I'm fairly certain I saw an icrease in performance in SWTOR after using OC genie. The temps were ok but it did get a lot hotter than it was before.

I'm using an old Asus Heatsink+fan for cooling the CPU right now. Without OC genie and under load my temps ranged from like 40-55 (somewhere around there). With the overclock I was seeing over 60 with a max of 69 I believe. I turned off the OC genie now. I'm thinking about getting a good cooler and doing a manual overclock.

Corsair makes a dual radiator that fits perfectly into the top of this case. Maybe I should get that, I don't know. Do you think that Cooler master 212 or w.e it's called would be enough cooling for overclocking or should I go with a liquid cooler?

So that VIRTU setting in the BIOS is not what I need right? I need to install something else to add the CPU graphics to the GPU?

by the way, I have also read that the Haswell CPUs have slightly less overclocking capability than the Ivy bridge. And the guys at Tomshardware tested 5 motherboards, mine included. So they were able to reach 4.7ghz on the CPU overclock that they did with 4 of the boards, but my board could only get 4.6ghz. Not that I'm overly concerned with a little more frequency.
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September 11, 2013 11:59:47 PM

I'm using a Hyper 212 Plus on my I5-3570K, and under normal load (playing a game) it will reach upper-50s to lower-60s. If I run Prime 95's Torture Test or Intel BurnTest, I can just touch 70 degrees. I'd recommend you get the Hyper 212 Evo if you go with the Cooler Master. The base on it is smoother than the Plus.

Casey
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