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Overclocking E4300 on ASUS P5L-MX

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January 1, 2007 7:09:30 PM

Hey All,

I just wanted to know if anyone has any experience with the P5L-MX, (and this build in general). I know it isn't the best board for overclocking, but I am planning on building a new computer (my first build, and my first overclock) and I am trying to keep the cost to a minimum. It looks to me like the E4300 will be the perfect chip to overclock (and a good price), so that's why I'm going with it. Now, I know that this board is low end, but it seems to have what I need; dual channel memory, pci express, since I'm not a gamer the onboard video should do fine for now (I can always upgrade later if I feel like it), and from the reviews it seems to be OK for overclocking, at least up to ~320 FSB. Apparently the onboard NIC stops working at 320, but people have just bought a cheap NIC and went up to ~360. Either way, since I plan on using stock cooling I probably won't be able to reach much higher than 320 anyways, and I'd be perfectly happy with 300FSB on the E4300, which would be 2.7GHz, a 50% overclock.

So, with that in mind, I'd love to hear from anyone who has any experience with this board, or any of the other components as well. I'm not sure of all the options that will be in the bios, so if anyone knows what is and isn't there that would be relevant to overclocking, please let me know. Also, any other comments, suggestions, concerns about this build are welcomed.

Here's my planned setup.

E4300 C2D
ASUS P5L-MX Socket T (LGA 775) Intel 945G Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
CORSAIR ValueSelect 1GB (2 x 512MB) DDR2 667
Western Digital Caviar SE 160GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

Thanks in advance!
January 3, 2007 9:20:30 AM

650i Ultra will hover in the ~$100 price and will be excellent overclockers. ECS has a P965 for $78, the sole fact that is a P965 should get you to the desire 333Mhz.
You will have to buy a gfx card for both of them, but the onboard LAN works up to 333Mhz at least.
You wont need anything but stock to reach this, so dont worry about that.
January 3, 2007 7:14:09 PM

You know, if there's one thing that I havn't looked into enough, it's the pros and cons of the different chipsets...It's one thing that I didn't really consider when looking for the hardware I wanted to use in this setup, I just looked for the features that I wanted in the mobo and not the chipset. Maybe I should take your que and look into that more.

What are the benefits of those two chipsets you mentioned over the 945G that the P5L-MX has?

Thanks!
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January 3, 2007 7:42:37 PM

Both the 650i Ultra and P965 are great overclocking chipsets. Being that the P945 has all the features you are looking for, the 965 and 650i would also suit your needs well.

I second Dario's opinion on reaching for a 650i/650i Ultra chipset board for extreme budget OCing. Another place to look is the Gigabyte DS3 or S3 which is a great budget board and by the time the E4300 retails it will probably be ~$110.

Been busy as hell the last two weeks or so, haven't been around at all so I may have missed a new 650i board or two so I hope others can recommend a particular board, as I only can recommend the chipset in general.
January 3, 2007 11:54:14 PM

Thats 650i SLI, were talking 650i Ultra which will clock very slighty (due to binning) below the SLI version.
If a board can support all the features you want then the only difference would be the overclocking options youll get, and the internal latencies. Which neither are important for a budget system as you only want bang for da buck, not breaking any WR.
January 4, 2007 6:34:30 AM

hmmm very interesting. maybe I'll think about getting a 650i board instead of a 680i board 8)
January 4, 2007 7:31:14 AM

Quote:
If a board can support all the features you want then the only difference would be the overclocking options youll get, and the internal latencies. Which neither are important for a budget system as you only want bang for da buck, not breaking any WR.


My thoughts exactly, which is why I chose the motherboard I did. It has what I need for the best value I can find. Sure it's not going to get to FSB 450...I don't plan on getting close to that.

I have a couple more specific questions now...I have been looking at the manual for the P5L-MX online and I see many things that I will need for overclocking...FSB frequency settings, RAM speed, RAM voltages, RAM timing settings...the only thing I don't see that I can think that I could possibly want is CPU voltage settings...There are also some things that I am not sure what they are...Like what exactly is Front Side Bus termination voltage (2 options, 1.2V and 1.3V)? Also, anybody know what VID CMOS setting is (description says "Allows you to set the VID CMOS setting at which the processor is to run"...the value in the screen shot is 62)? The options for the ram speed are shown as the DDR2 data rates (533, 667, 800...). Now, when I set this, will this be independent of the FSB frequency? As in, as I raise the FSB speed, but I keep the RAM set on 667, the ram will continue to be run at 333 MHz? Or are these the memory speeds assuming I have the FSB set to the CPU default speed? And if I set the memory on 667, and up the FSB, the ram will now be overclocked?

Thanks again!
January 4, 2007 3:15:07 PM

Quote:
what exactly is Front Side Bus termination voltage (2 options, 1.2V and 1.3V)?
Exactly what it sounds like, the FSB generator/termination has its [/quote]own voltage and it will help when youre clocking high in the FSB.

Quote:
The options for the ram speed are shown as the DDR2 data rates (533, 667, 800...). Now, when I set this, will this be independent of the FSB frequency?
Those are the multipliers calculated from stock speed. 533Mhz is a 1:1, 667Mhz is a 4:5 and so on, until 1067Mhz thats a 1:2.
January 4, 2007 5:14:24 PM

Quote:
Exactly what it sounds like, the FSB generator/termination has its own voltage and it will help when youre clocking high in the FSB.


Ah, it was the word "termination" that got me...I didn't realize that termination simply meant the voltage that the font side bus was running at.

Quote:
Those are the multipliers calculated from stock speed. 533Mhz is a 1:1, 667Mhz is a 4:5 and so on, until 1067Mhz thats a 1:2.


Now, when you say that 533 is 1:1, we are assuming that we are using a processor that has a stock FSB speed of 266 (1066 after quad pumping), right? Of course, with the e4300, the stock proc speed will be 200, so it will actually be ddr2 400 that is the 1:1 setting, so if I set my ram to ddr2 400 and oc my fsb to 333, for instance, then my ram will be running at 667, correct?
January 4, 2007 6:51:00 PM

OK, After doing some searching, I have found that I may have been wrong that there is no cpu voltage setting. It appears that the VID CMOS setting has to do with the cpu voltage. However, I don't know what the settings mean because they are not in voltage units. The possible values for VID are whole numbers(62, 63, etc...) and I don't know what they correspond to in Voltage. Doing a Google search has turned up that each increment in the VID corresponds to a specific value of voltage increase, but I need a starting point and the increment amount to calculate the actual cpu voltage...Anyone have any ideas?

Thanks!
January 5, 2007 12:19:12 AM

Quote:
Now, when you say that 533 is 1:1, we are assuming that we are using a processor that has a stock FSB speed of 266 (1066 after quad pumping), right? Of course, with the e4300, the stock proc speed will be 200, so it will actually be ddr2 400 that is the 1:1 setting, so if I set my ram to ddr2 400 and oc my fsb to 333, for instance, then my ram will be running at 667, correct?
Yes.

My guess is that they are percentages. A screenshot would certainly help.
January 5, 2007 2:19:39 AM

If the motherboard has all those overclocking options, it will certainly have a CPU vcore adjustment option. I know there are boards that dont, but the fact that it has advanced memory adjustments and north bridge voltage lead me to believe you will have plenty of adjustments available for the CPU voltage.
January 5, 2007 3:17:34 AM

P5L-MX manual

OK, here's a link to the motherboard's manual that I have been getting my info from...Hopefully some of you might have the time and be willing to take a quick look through the bios settings and let me know what VID CMOS is and if you can find where the Vcore settings are (CPU settings are on page 68 )...Because I would also think that it would have Vcore as a setting, seeing as it has all the others. It looks to me like the only way I have to control the CPU voltage is through this wierd VID setting.

Please let me know if I am just missing it.
January 5, 2007 9:32:02 PM

I have experience with this board and it is not for overclocking. One should look elsewhere if they plan to overclock.

There are 3 adjustments available for voltages:

Memory: 1.8, 1.9, 1.95 & 2.0 :( 
FSB Termination: 1.2 & 1.3
MCH Chipset: 1.5, 1.55, 1.60, & 1.65

There are no voltage adjustments for the CPU. From what I've read the VID is the Voltage I.D but it is not a direct adjustment of the vcore. Unfortunately I believe that option may be limited to Pentium 4 style processors because the option was not available (no matter what I adjusted) for the E6300 I was using. You'll notice that the manual picture shows they're not using a C2D CPU.

I tried what little overclocking I could. I don't remember the exact results. Only that they were dismal at best. I think a 290ish FSB was the best I could get before instability occured. I was only using stock cooling but temperature was not an issue here. We're talking about the 945G chipset which is the bottom of the barrel for C2D Intel chipsets. An enthusiast was far from Intel's mind when they designed it.

Now overclocking aside, I can tell you that the rest of the board works fine and I would recommend it for any standard office application computer.

EDIT: I forgot note that I was using the onboard graphics. Higher results might be obtained by using a discrete card.
!