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Unable to OC Q6600 using Asus Striker II Formula

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March 7, 2008 3:06:02 PM

Hi All,

Just wondering if anyone would be able to share their expertise/experiences regarding OC'ing the Q6600 (2.4Ghz).

I have read that many people out there have been able to OC'd their Q6600 well beyond the 3Ghz mark using a standard HSF but I have been quite

unsuccessful. I have read many OC'ing guides on the net and have tried so many different BIOS configuration combinations for eg: various CPU/DDR

frenquencies, voltages, multiplier speeds, DDR RAM timings, temperatures are acceptable and I have only been able to get my Q6600 stable at 2.66Ghz, anything higher results in

Vista failing to boot and/or if it does boot, it ends up crashing due to major instability issues. which I think is quite sad.

I would be satisfied with my Q6600 running stable at 3Ghz but would be even more happy if I could get it to run stable at 3.2Ghz and I know I'm not

asking for much because I have read that others have been able to successfully OC using air cooling up to approx 3.4Ghz.

I have listed my specs below so if any of you guys/girls out there that have a similar config and have successfully OC'd their Q6600 to decent speeds, I

would love to hear from you.

If you also by looking at my specs, if you suspect that any of my components may be a problems/causing a bottleneck then please point it out.

Also if I failed to list/mentioned required information then please ask.

System Specs:
Asus Striker II Fomula (1333 FSB) - BIOS Rev 0902
Intel® Core™2 Quad Q6600 2.4Ghz (Stepping B, Revision G0)
x2 Corsair Twin2X Dominator 2048MB PC8500 5-5-5-15 (1066Mhz) = 4096MB
x3 Western Digital Raptor 74GB 10000 RPM 16MB Buffer = 222GB (RAID 0)
x2 Inno3D GeForce 8800GTS 512MB DDR3 OC Edition (700/2000Mhz) = SLI
SoundBlaster X-Fi XtremeGamer
ThermalTake Toughpower 750 watt (modular)
Samsung 226BW 1680x1050 2ms (DVI)
Vista Ultimate 64bit

Thanking you all in advance.

PS:
If any of you would like to further discuss this via MSN just give me your details and I'll add you.

Vio|37
March 7, 2008 4:56:01 PM

you didn't tell us what voltages and changes you've been using.

Some people need like 1.35Volts or more for 3+ Ghz. You just might need more than others, every chip is different, some are good OC'ers, some aren't.

My E8400 neds 1.425V in bios for 4Ghz, others need only 1.35.
March 7, 2008 10:15:38 PM

I would start by setting all settings to default. Then tweak your memory... start by setting all the timings manually. In your case 5-5-5-15-2T, and Link it with the cpu fsb and set to sync.
Then I would start by raising FSB up to 300. This should give you 2700mhz. If it boots then you are ok... restart and raise to about 333. This should give you 3000mhz. Then if it doesnt boot simply raise cpu volts up one (for example... my mobo allows me to raise up .01V incrememts... i think) so raise up one whatever from stock or auto. Conitnue to do this until it boots. If it wont even boot at all then start all over in smaller increments (clear CMOS) like 300/310/320..... You should be able to get to 3.0ghz without touching the voltages... but if you cant you will have to mess with them.

If you impatiant. Set the memory like mentioned... set the voltage for cpu to 1.4 and see if it even boots at 333mhz fsb or 3000mhz cpu frequ. If it doesnt than you have some bum component. It could be memory... might be a good idea to memtest at every instable instance to eliminate memory. Could be PSU if it's hardlocking... could be CPU if everything else is good.

Good luck!
Related resources
March 8, 2008 12:44:41 PM

Beurling

I have tried so many different combinations of voltages that if I posted them here, it would be the size of a novel.

Let's just say at one point I even set my CPU vCore to 1.5 and also raised all the other voltages and still no go.

I also read in another forum that someone said that the PSU I'm using is under powered therefore that is the reason to why I can't OC well.

Your thoughts?

Vio|37
March 8, 2008 12:49:23 PM

hughyhunte

Thanks for the reply.

I have already tried setting all my BIOS settings to default.

I have also tried linking the DDR frequency to the CPU frequency setting to sync.

Performing the above I have tried to OC hoping to reach average clockspeeds and I can't even get it on stable at 2.8Ghz.

My Motherboard supports voltage increments of .06, so it is quite customisable.

Still mission unsccessful.

Vio|37
March 8, 2008 4:45:34 PM

I doubt it's a PSU... is the rig hardlocking on boot? If it's just a BSOD than I dont think that a PSU is a culprit. Try using just one memory module that you have and then try with the other.
March 8, 2008 4:46:14 PM

When there is some instability run memtest to see if the memory is the culprit before deducing it to the CPU or NB/SB
March 9, 2008 1:37:01 AM

Hi mate,

I find that if I push the PC8500 frequency in eccess of 1066Mhz only then it'll unable to POST but as long as I keep the RAM under 1066Mhz it does pass POST.

I hit the wall when POST passes and you see the Vista loading progress bar, about 3 secs after that the systel halts with a message stating something along the lines of "Hardware Failure"

I admit that I have not run any RAM tests but this is the 3rd set of RAM modules I've therefore quite unlikely that all 2 sets are faulty.

Vio|37
March 9, 2008 5:51:20 AM

I'm wondering if you might have a corrupt install of Vista... Although highly unlikely.

What are you idle temps in bios for cpu?

There could be a possibility that your PSU may be faulty... I would try another one if you have it laying around. Maybe remove a GPU to see if that helps.

There should be no reason that you cant get this sucker to well above 3.0, have you had this chip for awhile or is it new? Could be looking at a bad chip.
March 9, 2008 6:08:05 AM

I've managed to successfully OC my Q6600 and have got it running stable on 3Ghz using the standard Intel cooler with my ThermalTake 750w PSU.

I'm running at "9 x 333Mhz = 3000Mhz"

I tried to OC it to 3.2Ghz and also tried higher voltages but was unable to successfully pass POST.

Would it be safe to assume that I'm unable to exceed 3Ghz due to the standard Intel cooler I'm using desptie that I'm getting the below temps running at 3Ghz?

Current temps and voltages are listed below:

Temps
CPU: 50
Motherboard: 40
North Bridge: 70
South Bridge: 58

Voltages
Vcore: 1.35
CPU (PLL): 1.6
CPU (VTT): 1.36
North Bridge: 1.3
South Bridge: 1.5
RAM: 2.2

Your thoughts?

Vio|37
March 9, 2008 7:39:04 AM

Is the CPU temp under load? If it's not and it's the reading in bios than that's scary!
March 9, 2008 10:22:10 AM

That is my CPU temp at idle. :( 

I'm thinking about investing in a decent CPU cooler.

I hear that the Zalman 9500/9700 are awesome.

A little heavy in weight but awesome.

What are your thoughts?

Vio|37
March 9, 2008 7:21:11 PM

If that's your temps at idle DO NOT CONTINUE TO OVERCLOCK... set voltages and FSB at auto.

That's exactly why you arent able to overclock.

I dont like any coolers that dont have metal screws that attach to the motherboard.

The best investment in my rig is my thermalright ultra-120 extreme. Got it on Directron.com for 54 bucks. Fan costs 10 bucks. mounts very solid like.

I think the zalman has metal screws too but to small for my liking unless you get the largest one... I think they make 120mm but not sure.
March 10, 2008 11:43:52 AM

Hey there all,

Just wanted to let you guys know that today I bought a Zalman 9700NT and my CPU idle has dropped down from 50 to approx 32, which is a major improvement.

So i tried to OC an hopefully push on beyond the 3Ghz limit but the furthest I was able to OC, with the stable being stable is a max of 3.1Ghz.

I was hoping that with the new cooler I could have at least hit 3.2Ghz or maybe 3.3Ghz but looks like I'm unable to OC my Q6600 any further.

Should I give up guys and settle for 3.1Ghz or would any of you guys have some last minute advice/tips I could try in order for me to OC a little higher?

Let me know.

My settings are:

Voltages
Vcore: 1.34375
CPU (PLL): 1.58
CPU (VTT): 1.34
North Bridge: 1.3
South Bridge: 1.5
RAM: 2.2

9 x 345 = 3.1Ghz.

DDR Ram set to 1066Mhz

Ram timings set to 5-5-5-15.

PS:
Now that I'm running the Zalman 9700, it's safe to say that the reason that I can only hit 3.1Ghz is NOT due to CPU heating issues.

Vio|37
March 10, 2008 6:22:01 PM

First off congratulations on the lower temps... that must feel good!

I think that you might be rushing the overclocking a bit. You need to get memtest and make sure that your memory is stable at those timings. I know it's pc8500 memory but it's still overclocked from the FSB.

Also you should be doing one thing at a time. All settings should be auto/default and then you should be looking for max stable overclock with just the cpu fsb being raised... then raise the voltage for just the cpu... then once you cannot go any further determine if it's the memory, cpu or NB/SB that is keeping you from higher frequencies. You will know with memtest and prime95. Once you figure that out you should start raising the NB/SB voltage.

I can tell you right now that you are doing pretty good voltage wise with the 3.1ghz overclock. I'm going to refer you to xtremesystems.org for the full Q6600 overclocking thread. People there have the same set-up and can tell you what voltage configurations they are doing to get there max overclock... I know that not may can get to 3500-3700 with anything below 1.4v min.

Good luck dude!

This is for the Q6600 G0 stepping http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=15...

Here is a thread for your motherboard... http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=17...

Get involved with the people that have the same components with you and they can guide you a lot better than anyone... especially considering there pretty hardcore enthusiasts over there at xtreme!

You can thank me later!
March 11, 2008 8:27:27 AM

hughyhunter

Firstly, thanks for all your help mate.

If it wasn't for people like you always willing to give advice this would have been a much more difficult mission for me.

It does feel good knowing that my CPU temp has dropped down 15 to 20 degrees. :) 

OC'd at 3.1Ghz CPU temp averages from between 32 to 35 depending how hot it is in my study.

I did stress test my system last night using Prime95 and ran the Torture Test all night for approx 8hrs and when I checked up on it in the morning, it was still running strong.

Mate I can't believe you referred me to "xtremesystems org".

Thanks heaps for that and can you believe I have already signed up for an account there. :) 

I'll check out some of the posts there and see if I can get anymore useful tips.

I'll keep in touch mate and will let you know how I go.

Vio|37
March 11, 2008 4:37:31 PM

Awesome!

I found a lot of help over there at xtremesystems... the guys over there start threads on specific motherboards and procs as soon as they come out. Some of the threads are watered down but they are true dedicated enthusiasts. NOt that the people here arent... it's just different I guess.

Those temps are perfect. Now you can start bumping up the FSB a little at a time to see where the max is with that voltage that you selected.

Good luck!
March 11, 2008 6:28:56 PM

Thanks again hughyhunte

I shall keep you posted on how I go on my mission.

:) 

Vio|37
March 28, 2008 1:52:33 AM

I have the same mobo and CPU and could not overclock at all. Then I used the CPUID program to check the CPU voltage and found it was much lower than what I'd set in BIOS. So my advice is to increase BIOS voltage until the real voltage is 1.35V. Then you should have no problem overclocking.

Also Anandtech showed you need to disable Loadline calibration. Don't try overclocking memory and CPU together at first so unlink the bus speed from the memory speed. I have 3.1GHz and have not even tried to go faster yet. According to the web sites I've read 3.3-3.6 on air GHz or so should be possible.
March 28, 2008 11:09:41 AM

overcock with 2 ram only.as 4 sticks many reported problems.what is your q6600's stepping and VID?rememeber to disable all the clever feature of the cpu and motherboard.speedstep,eist,spread spectrum etc.
March 28, 2008 5:41:13 PM

There's nothing wrong with Ocing with 4 sticks of ram.
March 28, 2008 8:36:32 PM

4 sticks of memory used to be difficult to overclock with on older 939 socket motherboards. New 780i/790i and P35/x38 overclock with 4 sticks very well.
March 29, 2008 12:51:27 AM

well just applying some old technic to diagnose the system.so how did it go?
March 29, 2008 7:28:42 PM

While you and some other people might know what 'some old technique' is, I'm sure there are many who doesn't. Place some effort into explaining your posts.
July 20, 2008 9:48:09 AM

Hei People, I got 3.50 GHz stable. It passed 8h of Prime 95 with 4 3ds. I think it is a very good result with the Asus Striker II Ofrmula because I haven't heard anyone to get same results on this board!!

If you would like to know settings used and screen shots of my results, you can take a look there.

We are discussing about it in that forum, you'll need to regiter in order to post and be informed if someone makes a better overclock!
!