How much of an increase will I get?
I have an e6400 and I think that I am not able to overclock anymore because of my ram. I have corsair 800 mhz, 5-5-5-15 ram running at 834 because my fsb is 417. I tried overclocking in numerous ways. I raised just about every voltage possible separately when I tried to get my fsb to 330-335. The only one that got windows to boot was raising the ram voltages a lot. But then later for kicks I decided to raise it to 420 with just raising my vcore a little and everything went haywire. My temps soared 10 degrees and my previous overlcok became unstable. I managed to fix this but is this a sign that ram might not be the problem. But getting back to my question, if I get ram rated at 1066 will I be able to get my processor closer to a fsb of 533 if I get better cooling (I am using a Scythe infinity now fyi)?
Well, the best thing I have found to get to the maximum limits of your system is to take it slow and easy and change one thing at a time and then test that one thing thotoughly before moving on to the next change. Takes a LOOOOOONNNNNGGGG time when you get near the limits.
I went from 2.66 to 3.0 GHz in about 10 seconds. Everything was stable and good. 3.2 GHz and 400 FSB took about 10 minutes. Tweaking the RAM and testing it took a day. Getting to 3.6 GHz took a week. Still haven't gotten 3.8GHz to work 24/7 under all test conditions. Slow and steady wins this race.
So, if you want to determine if your RAM is the problem, set it up where it boots and boot to memtest86. Run that for an hour and see if you get any errors. If no errors, change one thing and re-test with memtest86. As soon as you get an error, go back to the previous setting. Then change something else (if desired). Once you get all settings as high as you think you can go and stay stable, run memtest for 8 hours. If no errors, you have found your RAM limits.
The pickle that I was getting into was changing too much all at once. I like the oft cited approach of working the CPU first and the RAM later. Set the RAM at its lowest speed possible with really loose timings and a moderate voltage. Then work the CPU until you find its limits. Only after getting the CPU stable, then I start tweaking the RAM.
With this, I have been able to get my Corsair XMS2 (the 5-5-5-15 variety) running nicely right now at 800 MHz and 4-4-4-12 timing and 2.15V. I have had it up to 950 MHz and 5-5-5-15. I like it just where it is, though.
So, the short answer is maybe. But you need to do some work to find out.
THe key was cooling. I got it stable @ 3 GHz on stock cooling. 3.2 GHz was doable, but too hot for my tastes. I changed out the stock HSF for a Scythe Infinity and that helped enough to get me stable at 3.2 GHz. I was all done there until I read a post on here about case airflow management and how that helps tmeps a lot. The thread is here:
My Lesson in Case Airflow
Making those basic changes that I've detailed in that thread, I got the temps low enough that I felt comfortable upping the voltages and getting 3.6GHz stable. I also went to 3.8GHz and it runs windows and all my games fine, but won't pass Orthos. Since I want 24/7 stability at all conditions, I opted to back down to 3.6GHz.
Here's what my settings are:
PCIe 100 MHz
PCIe Sync 33.33
Load: 67 (TAT)
Load: 57 (Orthos pri 1)
Load: 54 (Orthos pri 9)
The TAT temp is high, but I have not found any real world app that gets the CPU anywhere close to that. It's stable there, so I can live with that.
Let me know if you want any more settings. Took a week of constant tweaking to find the sweet spot.
I can get 4.0 GHz to boot and load windows, but can't run any tests becuse it idles at 52C and any Orthos quickly runs the temp up to 74C or higher (I chickened out and shut it down).