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Overclocking Pentium Dual-Core - RAM Speed?

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March 2, 2008 12:38:07 PM

I've decided after reading the "Extreme Overclocking Budget Box" article (http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/Intel-Pentium-Dual-Core-E2140-overclocking,review-29816.html) to upgrade my system in a similar fashion to the article. I've found an E2160 for £43, and the MSI P35 NEO2-FR motherboard for £67.

What I'm not sure about is what RAM to buy - the article suggests G.E.I.L. Black Dragon DDR2-800. I've initially selected 2GB (2x 1GB) Corsair TwinX XMS2 PC2-6400 (800MHz) RAM (http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProductID=585722). However, I'm wondering if it's better to select RAM that matches the FSB of the CPU and overclock both the CPU and RAM, or to buy some PC2-8500 RAM (e.g. Corsair TwinX Dominator PC2-8500 (1066MHz) http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProductID=462617) and underclock the RAM. Which would be more stable? I'm willing to pay the extra £15 for the PC2-8500 RAM should it give a better long-term result.

Also, the article uses an E2140 CPU clocked at 1.6 GHz with a locked 8x multiplier. I can only find E2160's at the moment, which are clocked at 1.8GHz with a 9x locked multiplier. How will this effect the overclocking? Will I need to take the FSB higher or lower to achieve a 3.0 Ghz clock speed? I'm only planning on taking the CPU as far as 3.0GHz, as I'm planning on using the stock cooler.

Sorry if these are simple questions - I haven't overclocked a CPU before!

Many thanks.
March 3, 2008 1:19:09 AM

Stick with the E2160. You'll be fine with DDR2 800 this way. With a higher multiplier, you can use a lower fsb to reach 3GHz. Read the guide here for more info.

As for ram, if you're not into OCing the ram to extreme heights, any DDR2 800 ram from good brands will do. It will be good for up to 3.6GHz on the E2160.
March 3, 2008 3:40:12 AM

I own an E2180 and I have it running at 3.0ghz without a problem. I had to up the voltage to the cpu by .5 and I slightly increased the voltage to the ram. I have 2 gigs of OCZ DDR2 667. I am pleased with the results. I used to have a Pentium D 920. It ran at 2.8ghz stock. It would not overclock at all. I am pleased with the speed boost over my old processor. I am using a better heatsink than the stock one that comes with the E2180. I have heard that the stock cpu cooler works okay for overclocking. My case has poor airflow, so I wanted to make sure my overclocked cpu would not fry. Anyway, the Pentium Dual Core series are a good deal.
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March 3, 2008 6:48:39 AM

Evilonigiri said:
Stick with the E2160. You'll be fine with DDR2 800 this way. With a higher multiplier, you can use a lower fsb to reach 3GHz. Read the guide here for more info.

As for ram, if you're not into OCing the ram to extreme heights, any DDR2 800 ram from good brands will do. It will be good for up to 3.6GHz on the E2160.


Thanks for the advice. I'll stick with the PC2-5400 DDR sticks as they're £15 cheaper.

nexrad_chris said:
I own an E2180 and I have it running at 3.0ghz without a problem. I had to up the voltage to the cpu by .5 and I slightly increased the voltage to the ram. I have 2 gigs of OCZ DDR2 667. I am pleased with the results. I used to have a Pentium D 920. It ran at 2.8ghz stock. It would not overclock at all. I am pleased with the speed boost over my old processor. I am using a better heatsink than the stock one that comes with the E2180. I have heard that the stock cpu cooler works okay for overclocking. My case has poor airflow, so I wanted to make sure my overclocked cpu would not fry. Anyway, the Pentium Dual Core series are a good deal.


Good to know other people are using this chip for overclocking without problems. I've yet to see any comments about people who it's failed for. What motherboard are you using btw? Have you used a non-stock cooler?

I may initially stick with the stock clock speed, as according to CPUBenchmark.net the E2160 should be about twice as quick as my current Athlon 64 3700+ at 1.8GHz, let alone at 3.0GHz!
March 3, 2008 7:00:23 AM

Evilonigiri said:
Stick with the E2160. You'll be fine with DDR2 800 this way. With a higher multiplier, you can use a lower fsb to reach 3GHz. Read the guide here for more info.

As for ram, if you're not into OCing the ram to extreme heights, any DDR2 800 ram from good brands will do. It will be good for up to 3.6GHz on the E2160.


BTW - Doing some research I notice in this thread http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/246050-29-overclocking-e2160-0ghz that you don't recommend Corsair RAM for overclocking. Is there any particular reason for this?
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