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1st time clocker w/ a E6400 & p5n32 se deluxe. HELP!

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December 28, 2006 11:37:40 AM

Hey guys, thanks for looking and maybe you can help me. I just bought a new PC from CyberpowerPC, and I am looking to stretch it out a bit without getting to crazy. My specs are as follows, and my 3dmark06 score is a 2652 with the 5% mobo preset overclock.

Core2duo e6400 2.13
ASUS P5n32 SLI Deluxe mobo
Stock cooling, INTEL LGA775 CERTIFIED CPU FAN & HEATSINK, w/ 3 fans, 1 on the side, top and back
kingston 4 x 512 memory - 2gb total
Biostar geforce 7600gt GC 580 400
Creative X-fi sound card.

I have been reading a few of the online guides, but don't feel comfortable enough with the terminology. I tried overclocking the CPU through the mobo preset percentages of 5%, 10% and 15% but the only one I can get windows to boot under is the 5% overclock, which puts it @ a whopping 2.2 but even that crashed after an hour of playing Oblivion. What am I doing wrong? On a side note Im having the same problem w/ my 7600gt, if I try to overclock it by just a bit it becomes unstable.

I also want to keeping the cooling like it is w/o any upgrades.

Any help would be graciously appreciated.
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
December 28, 2006 12:27:35 PM

A bit more info is needed:

#1: What are your CPU and case temps?
#2: What CPU cooler are you using?
#3: What RAM speed, timings, and voltage are you running?
#4: What PSU are you using?
#5: What case, chassis fans, and airflow do you have?

Also, your video card appears to be already overclocked since stock specs for the 7600GT are 560MHz & 350MHz (700 DDR). Pushing it further might cause the instability.
December 28, 2006 12:48:35 PM

1. IF Im looking at the right temp, around 62-65 celcius.
2. stock INTEL LGA775 CERTIFIED CPU FAN & HEATSINK, with a fan on the side, top and back.
3. 512MB Speed 533MHz Architecture DDR2 SDRAM, all of these are at the default, not sure how to change or check these.
4. NZXT PF-500 500Watt Power Supply
5. TURBO X-DREAMER CASE 350 WATT W/ WINDOW & LCD Temperature

Thanks for the quick response, I really do appreciate it. hopefully we can get this thing going.
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December 28, 2006 1:44:05 PM

Ouch, man. I'm afraid I bear bad news:

Your temps (if that 62-65 is idle) are high (HSF may not be on quite right)
Your RAM is slow and unlikely to OC much (if at all)
Your PSU is tier 5 (crap)
You're using some automatic tool (crap - you can't tell what it's doing), make exact, direct adjustments to frequencies and voltages in the bios.

Here (briefly) is how it works:

Core2 "E" series have locked multipliers, so the only way to overclock them is to raise your FSB speed. This also means your RAM has to run faster.

The stock FSB for these is 266MHz.
The CPU speed is the multiplier (8 on an E6400) * the FSB.
RAM runs at double the FSB speed.

So, non-overclocked, your RAM needs to be able to do 533MHz. Say you raise your FSB to about 300MHz. Now your CPU is at 8 * 300 = 2400MHz, and your RAM must be able to run 2 * 300, or 600MHz. RAM sold as 533MHz is pretty much the cheapest DDR2, unlikely to be the top-of-the-line components that will run well faster than their rated speeds - all it can handle is the stock 533MHz.

Also, your PSU is probably not providing very stable power, which is probably not helping when you push your system.

Unfortunately, it looks like you've got a machine with several components that can barely hold up to stock speeds :( 

Sorry, but unless you get faster RAM and a better PSU, I think you're stuck.
December 28, 2006 1:56:19 PM

That sounds about like my luck, Since I just bought it, Im not really into replacing the PSU, and can I not overclock the cpu w/o overclocking the memory? or do they go hand in hand?

Is there no way I can get a little more out of the processor? Is the manual OC not adjusting the PSU? because upon each crash it says something about the power along with the failure to boot.

This just turned my day downward. I thought for sure I could OC this thing.
December 28, 2006 2:10:52 PM

The only Core2 that can be OC'd without affecting the RAM speed is the "X" (extreme) line, like the X6800, because it has an unlocked multiplier.

And no adjustment can change anything about your PSU. That's a hardware problem.
December 28, 2006 2:16:34 PM

I may not be a pc pro, but Search like crazy in the pursuit of knowledge. I found this on a search, tell me what you think/


Kingston ValueRAM PC2-4200. Next, we benchmarked Kingston's 4-4-4-12 latency, 533MHz DDR2 offering from its ValueRAM line. Similar to the Corsair ValueSelect memory, Kingston's ValueRAM also lacks heatspreaders. Once again, though, the bare-PCB DDR2 DIMMs held up just fine in our tests. In fact, Kingston's ValueRAM PC2-4200 was one of our best performers, scoring both the top overall PCMark04 Memory score of 12724 (when overclocked to 688MHz) and the top overall PCMark04 Memory score of 10243 at a stable speed (overclocked to 685MHz).
December 28, 2006 2:25:17 PM

Well, then, your RAM may be able to clock higher, though you'll almost certainly have to make some adjustments to its voltage and latency to get it to run at higher speeds.

So the PSU is probably the big problem here, and maybe the CPU is getting too hot.
December 28, 2006 2:30:36 PM

"though you'll almost certainly have to make some adjustments to its voltage and latency to get it to run at higher speeds. "

I know how to get to the BIOS, and seen the voltage and latency in question. Do you have any recommendations on what to set these to? Or where a straight forward guide might be that I can follow?

Again this is my 1st attempt @ OC'ing, and I need as much help as I can get. Trying not to learn the hard way. :) 
December 28, 2006 2:43:41 PM

One thing you'll definitely want is memtest86+. Download the ISO image, burn it to a CD, and after you make your adjustments, boot from the CD. It will test your RAM, and show you if you have errors.

Anyway, this is your RAM, right? It looks like the same stuff from the article you quoted. Try memtest with the stock settings first. Then I'd try 5-5-5-15 timings, and you might or might not need 1.9V.

Oh, and wusy's guide is always a good starting point for OC.
December 28, 2006 2:57:56 PM

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Kingston-Technologies-51...

Sorrry, forgot how to post a direct link, but the above is the link for my memory, and it looks the same to me.

I looked at his guide, but it makes me nervous. Also can I adjust the memory w/o adjusting the CPU speeds? AAnd what kind of dmg can i expect if I go to high.
December 28, 2006 3:35:29 PM

Overclocking the FSB and memory too high will just result in instability or no post. Only way to do any real damage is upping the voltages, which you won't have to mess with if you only want a small overclock. Read wusy's guide and follow it closely, there is not a better way to explain it then how he has done so.
December 28, 2006 3:39:00 PM

After some thought, my cpu temp is about 32 celcius, the other temp was for my 7600gt
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
December 28, 2006 3:55:40 PM

Quote:
After some thought, my cpu temp is about 32 celcius, the other temp was for my 7600gt


OK, 62-65C is not too bad for a VGA temp. 32C at idle is really good. Download either Intel TAT or Prime95 to load your CPU to 100% and let us know what the CPU temp goes to on full load.

Back to your VGA card, did you overclock it? If so, bring it back down to stock settings before attempting to overclock the CPU. Also, go into the BIOS and lock your PCI express bus speed to 100 MHz to increase stability. While you're at it, lock the PCI bus to 33.3 MHz if you have the option in the BIOS.
December 28, 2006 4:40:29 PM

Quote:
can I adjust the memory w/o adjusting the CPU speeds?

You can adjust the memory speed without changing FSB by using different RAM ratios (on some boards they are listed as multipliers).

At 266MHz FSB:
a 1:1 ratio (or a multiplier of 2) gives 533MHz for RAM
a 5:4 ratio (or a multiplier of 2.5) gives 667MHz for RAM
a 3:2 ratio (or a multiplier of 3) gives 800MHz for RAM

I doubt your RAM will run at stock timings and voltage at 667MHz, and certainly not at 800MHz. For a small OC of 5%, you only need to raise your FSB to 280MHz (which will take your RAM to 560MHz). Like tool_462 said, you shouldn't need to raise any voltages, so you aren't going to do any damage.

Quote:
my cpu temp is about 32 celcius

Glad to hear it, that's much more hopeful. And it's good to hear that your system wasn't shipped with the HSF poorly installed after all.

If you try it and it's still unstable, I blame your power supply.
December 28, 2006 5:16:43 PM

Jesus, after all of the research I have done trying to educate myself has made my brain literally hurt.

Thanks for all the info guys, I will be working on my pc in a couple of hours after i get home form work.

Right now, my goal is to clock the E6400 at or around 2.5 to 2.6. From what I can tell this speed will be safe using a stock cooler. Do you guys think this is possible with my ddr2 being 533 stock? And do you know of any guides more closely suited for overclocking a P5N32 SE Deluxe with a C2D E6400? I just want to make sure Im being as safe as possible and the guides I have read so far don't seem clear enough, at least for a layman like me.

Thanks again for the awesome help.
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
December 28, 2006 5:46:59 PM

As NAP said, you can up the timings on your RAM to make it more stable at a higher frequency. For example, if your RAM is DDR2-533 with stock timings of 4-4-4-12, you can up the timings to 5-5-5-15 and it might allow you to run a higher frequency such as 667MHz speed. It may also help to bump up the RAM voltage up 0.1 or 0.2 volts to make it stable.

If you want your CPU at 2.6GHz, you'll need a FSB of 325MHz, which will overclock your RAM to 650MHz. Whether or not you can do this with the stock cooler depends on the resulting temps and stability. I would guess that the stock cooler will get you there. The general goal is to be under 60-65C when stressed at 100% load and remain stable.

How high you can overclock will be determined by your weakest component. It's my guess that it's the RAM that is holding you back.
December 28, 2006 11:59:09 PM

woot! <- I got the memory up to 5-5-5-15 and ran a memtest85+ with no problems, took it about 25 minutes. thats with mobo on auto for memory voltage, uped that from auto to 1.85 after the memory test. TAT says temp is idling around 42-46c on the 1st, and 42c on the 2nd processor. Ran a 3dmark06 and it never got above 56c as best as i can tell from TAT. The FSB is at 1066 right now, what should it be at to get it to 2.4? And should adjust the CPU VCore voltage, or the NB or SB Chipset Voltages? And if so by how much to keep the cpu OC stable?

Thanks again, Im so excited, until it blows :) 

edit : What about FSB termination voltage? should it be on auto or turned up?
December 29, 2006 2:00:42 AM

By increasing the timings and not increasing the frequency, you're just running your RAM at settings lower than it's spec'ed for. But if you got no errors, it's still a good sign. Have you tried memtest at 4-4-4-12?

Anyhoo:
The 1066 FSB is the "quad pumped" speed - it's actually 266MHz * 4

Your CPU has a multiplier of 8 => 266MHz * 8 = 2130MHz

If you want your CPU to be at 2400MHz, your FSB needs to be at 2400 / 8 = 300MHz ( * 4 = 1200MHz)

For my OC to 3.4GHz, I don't need to change the chipset voltages at all, and I only had to bring my CPU voltage up to 1.325V. Your planned OC is much smaller, you probably won't have to change any voltages. I'm not sure what leaving them on "auto" will do (but it might change voltages automatically on you, which could be bad). If available, use a "+0.0" or "normal" setting instead of "auto".

Basically, when you OC, you want to be a control freak, so you can know exactly what's going on and have some idea what you need to change, or why it isn't working, etc.
December 29, 2006 11:26:54 AM

Yes, my 1st mem test was 4-4-4-12, and when it passed I then upped it to 5-5-5-15, and again it worked great. So then I went on to processor, and got it up to 2.4 with no problems at all. For some strange reason, TAT was showing that my CPU was running 3 degrees cooler than when it was @ 2.13, and thats after 3 hours of Oblivion with everything on max. So now Im thinking I should go higher, any suggestions? I ran a 3Dmark06 after the OC, and scored a lowly 2456, I scored a 2652 earlier, with the preset 5% manual overclock provided on the mobo, but the pc crashed a bit later faulting the OC. What gives?

Also when I open CPU-Z, under the cpu tab, the BUS speed at the bottom is showing around 300 MHz, shouldn't this be 100? or 33.3? Or Im I thinking of something else.

Thanks again for the help, I did not think I would be able to do this.
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
December 29, 2006 12:03:47 PM

The bus speed displayed on CPU-Z is the FSB (Front Side Bus) and it should be 300 since you are running at 2.4GHz (300 x 8 = 2400MHz). It's the PCI bus that is 33.3 and the PCI-express that runs at 100.

You might still be able to hit 333MHz FSB if your RAM can take it. That would put you at 2.66GHz (333 x 8 = 2664MHz) and would run your RAM at DDR2-667 speed.

Did you adjust any voltages in the BIOS?
December 29, 2006 1:09:32 PM

No, didn't have to, I did up the mem voltage one notch, but think maybe that was not needed. Im gonna try 2.6 tonight and see how stable it is, Im thinking that I can hit 2.6 with no adjustments to the voltage whatso ever.
!