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Not so New, Newb asking for OC input. on newest rig.

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May 2, 2008 7:18:25 AM

Ok, yes I could spend a couple more weeks hunting for answers to ALL my questions, but I've done a fair bit so far and thought I would give anyone who wished to help a chance to do so.

Here is the new build and where I have gotten so far with over-clocking it.

Dual Boot Vista Ultimate/XP Pro

CPU: Q6600 G0
Memory: 4GB 2x2gb Corsair CM2X2048-6400C5
Mother Board: XFX Nforce 680i LT
Video: Evga 9800GTX

CPU running at 3.2GHz
Multiplier = x9
Bus Speed = 356.3 MHz
Rated FSB = 1425.3MHz

Memory Timings
tRAS=4 tRCD=3 tRP=7 tRC=22 tCL=5 tCPC=0
tWR=5 tRRD=3 tRWT=5 tWTR=9
tRDRD=3 tWRWR=2

Video Card running at Stock Speeds
GPU = 675MHz
Memory = 1100MHz
Shader = 1688MHz

All the above is set in Bios.
In nTune I have the following set:
SPP = 4000MHz
MCP = 4125MHz

My questions are,

I cant seem to find the proper settings to enter for the
PCIe bus and the SPP/MCP settings in the 680i bios. (Phoenix ver. 6.00 PG 1/22/2008)

And nTune (I know has problems) doesn't seem to like me trying to OC the Graphics card. I have heard of Riva Tuner but frankly that is one scarey beast with far more to it than just simply upping the GPU, Memory and Shader clocks.

So advice for bumping the Video would be appreciated.
Im not looking for max speeds here (I know I could wring more out of the Q6600) just moderate OC's that dont require me to up the voltages or go radical on the cooling side, Im just using a CPNS7000 (I think) Cooler on the CPU and the stock cooling option on the 9800GTX.

Also any thoughts on upping the settings I already have or any other helpful advice is appreciated.

More about : newb input newest rig

May 3, 2008 3:18:53 AM

The 8800GTS out performs the 9800GTX clock for clock, so it's it may or may not be a good idea to go with the 9800GTX.

Refer to the OCing guides here, they show you the most basic things, including RivaTuner.
May 3, 2008 4:36:38 AM

Hey, look at that! 680i @ 3.2?? Amazing!!!!

--Lupi!
Related resources
May 3, 2008 6:11:46 AM

Ohh Im soooo amazed at your wit Lupiron think you could maybe do something really tricky and post something useful? I am well aware that the 680i / q6600 combo can be clocked much higher. Im working to balance safety and longevity with bang per buck. 3.2 is quite high enough for my pruposes.

You should read my post a bit more carefully.
====================================

Thanks for the suggestion Evil but Im already using the 9800, this is an actual build not a prospective one. One of the things I was really hoping someone knew was how to set the SPP and MCP clocks in the Bios instead of using nTune.

Id prefer to set these things up in the Bios and only OC the Video card via software after boot. Not really interested in modding the 9800 video bios to my prefered settings. But the 680i Bios is kind of sparse on info about OCing the SPP and MCP as are my findings on the web. As I said, I have done some looking around but havent found the little bit of info that I need. The SPP and MCP settings are easily found in the Bios but what I don't know is what the base freq. is, without that I dont know what to set the multiplier to to achieve my desied end frequency (4gig SPP and 4.125gig MCP)
May 3, 2008 6:38:00 PM

LOL! No, really! Amazing! As you are NOT aware, 680i and q6600s RARELY clock over 2.9ish! There may be higher OC potential! But only 10% of 680i boards over clock, like yours.

Sooooo... Useful information. Gotta think! I guess I really only know about the chip itself. Pretty sad, huh?

Wanna know anything about yer quad?

--Lupi!

May 3, 2008 6:53:06 PM

Lupiron said:
LOL! No, really! Amazing! As you are NOT aware, 680i and q6600s RARELY clock over 2.9ish! There may be higher OC potential! But only 10% of 680i boards over clock, like yours.

Sooooo... Useful information. Gotta think! I guess I really only know about the chip itself. Pretty sad, huh?

Wanna know anything about yer quad?

--Lupi!

Lol, yeah, 680i is one of the worst chipsets available on market for overclocking, almost as bad as 650i. Those are really high numbers. Good job. You should keep an eye on chipset temperature though.
May 3, 2008 7:04:11 PM

He thought I was making fun of him, hehe!

Hey Dagger, ever try and get a 1 clock cycle command rate? Man, I am having one hell of a time trying to do that. Its way fun, and in theory, your 2 tick command rate means you waste a extra cycle. As in, if you can eek out a 1 tick command rate, it technically doubles your ram speed.

So in theory, that means a 700 Mhz command rate 1 is faster than 1066 junk. :) ~ And if you can keep those timings... Woo-Hoo! I bet that means you fly. (Let the naysayers enter their "you'll never notice it" trash, because your computer sure the hell will, especially those of us who trash that Fing slug of a swapfile.)

--Lupi!
May 3, 2008 7:08:31 PM

Lupiron said:
He thought I was making fun of him, hehe!

Hey Dagger, ever try and get a 1 clock cycle command rate? Man, I am having one hell of a time trying to do that. Its way fun, and in theory, your 2 tick command rate means you waste a extra cycle. As in, if you can eek out a 1 tick command rate, it technically doubles your ram speed.

So in theory, that means a 700 Mhz command rate 1 is faster than 1066 junk. :)  ~ And if you can keep those timings... Woo-Hoo! I bet that means you fly. (Let the naysayers enter their "you'll never notice it" trash, because your computer sure the hell will, especially those of us who trash that Fing slug of a swapfile.)

--Lupi!

Someone has too much time on their hands. How is that working out? :p 
May 3, 2008 7:18:07 PM

Other than 780 at 4-3-3-10 2 tick, no post! LOL! I havent tried that hard. You'd want a 650ish 1 tick anyways. If it goes below that, you get near normal performance. I guess.

Who knows, once I get it stable at any speed, I'll just double the speed at normal settings and see whats faster, if its at least close, we know it can work.

Got me, two people trying is better than one! So get to work!

--Lupi!
a b K Overclocking
May 3, 2008 10:30:40 PM

Lupiron said:
LOL! No, really! Amazing! As you are NOT aware, 680i and q6600s RARELY clock over 2.9ish! There may be higher OC potential! But only 10% of 680i boards over clock, like yours.

Sooooo... Useful information. Gotta think! I guess I really only know about the chip itself. Pretty sad, huh?

Wanna know anything about yer quad?

--Lupi!


dagger said:
Lol, yeah, 680i is one of the worst chipsets available on market for overclocking, almost as bad as 650i. Those are really high numbers. Good job. You should keep an eye on chipset temperature though.

Agreed.
May 3, 2008 10:57:24 PM

Hehe, yeah! And dont you all fret! Lupi will be making an entrance into the competition once I decide on what to do.

I'd just use my p5k-e wifi, but I appear to have damaged the MoBo physically when I spent 2 hours forcing in some Reaper X 4-4-3-15 RAM. Now I get random re boots and mem problems, including the beepbeepbeep memory error, meaning ram is installed wrong or not present.

And it happens at stupid times. Can test Prime blend and small ffts fine, just when I go to click on a link in a web page! Random re boot! Halo 1 = Random Re boots sometimes. Crysis for hours stable, never a random re boot!

Waaahhhh, I hurt my poor MoBo!

--Lupi!
May 4, 2008 12:44:25 AM

My apologies Lupiron, if I misinterpreted.

My wife and I have the exact same setup and we both easily got OC'd to 3.2 and from my meanderings around the web, there seems to be quite a number of people who have hit 3.6 with air cooling and no voltage bumps. 4GHz with voltage bumps and better cooling than we use are not uncommon. Of course you need to have the G0 version of the q6600 and decent memory is needed.

Anyway I will look at the provided links again and thought I had scoured what was available on Toms....I guess I missed something.

Peeking at the Link I see you hit on a question of what is stable.
I don't bother with Prime or any long running stress testing, If I can do what I do, week in and week out without a snag, I am happy.

But Im still not finding what I need to know about setting SPP and MCP in the bios instead of using nTune. (I did first try Riva Tuner for OC'ing the 9800 but eVGA came up with a fairly simple utility to do it for me so that is what Im using now, got it at 775MHZ core and a locked shader which is around 1900 mhz and memory is at 1201Mhz) Now if I can just get rid of nTune fromt he equation I will be happy.
May 4, 2008 12:52:08 AM

Well I checked out the Thread, and didnt find any info on the SPP or MCP clocking in bios. I will keep looking. Again anyone with a 680i mobo who knows how to determine the proper settings to get the SPP and MCP up around 4Ghz, let me know.
May 4, 2008 12:53:34 AM

When the board is on Auto, it is adding VCore voltage as you up the FSB. So reaching 3.6 on a q6600 with zero voltage is prolly impossible. Since 3.8 or a lil more is near its technological limits.

But yeah, I agree with you as far as stability goes. That's cause alot of programs just cant use a quad at much past 3.6 anyways. Only the fake testing like Prime and Orthos can really find its "stable" vcore.

But I have ran a q6600 at 3.8 for like 2 weeks doing what I normally do. And it had zero errors of any kind. But a min or two on Prime and KBoom!

If you wanna DL and run the newest Core Temp, and tell me the VID of both your Chips, I will tell ya where you can easily overclock them too! And I wanna see how high a stable OC you can get with that 680i. I am guessing that for every 1 you found that OC'd on the web, there are 10 others crying on the forums for help because their board wont go past 2.8-2.9, lol! Like my board I had, and sold.

--Lupi!
May 4, 2008 12:59:02 AM

Ok I meant that *I* dont fiddle with the voltages :)  I thought I had turned off all the auto settings though. Ill look again. and will look for the core temp appy and run it. The Mobo I got is a fairly new revision of the Bios Jan 28 2008
or something like that.
May 4, 2008 1:26:25 AM

Well since this is a new build and Im not set up anywhere to host images, I'll just post the values from
Core Temp 0.98.1

Rev. G0 Kentsfield
Freq: 3206.25MHz (356x25x9.0)
Platform: LGA 775
VID: 1.2625v
Tj Max: 100c
Core 0: 42c 2% load
Core 1: 46c 2% load
Core 2: 39c 1% load
Core 3: 39c 1% load

CPU-Z 1.44.2
Memory timings are stable at
DRAm Freq: 395.9
FSB Dram: 9:10
CL = 5
tRCD= 3
tRP=7
tRAS=4
tRC=22
CR= 2T
May 4, 2008 4:00:10 AM

Hehe, I am very familiar with that VID. I had a primary comp with that same vid in it not to long ago. Looks like right around 1.38 Volts while fully loaded is your 3.6ish speed.

Thats not to bad at all, since the voltage recommended max is 1.5v.

I would honestly like to see if you can get it stable at that speed.

Like I mentioned, not to many people get good OCs with that chipset and a quad processor. And even I failed. Though I could prolly beat some OC out of my old board now, if I still owned it!

--Lupi!
May 4, 2008 10:48:28 PM

Well thank you for that. So far it has been rock solid at the above settings, but has only been running on and off for a week or so and I have not yet had a chance to run an extended gaming session yet. I might attempt to bump it up to 3.6GHz at some point. First I want to finalize my build image and get it saved off so I don't have to worry about doing a complete set of individual re-installs.
May 4, 2008 11:24:33 PM

Hey Lupiron, is there a thread where you discuss doing away with the swap file? I've been toying around with that idea once I install another 4gig in my system under Vista, not sure if I can make it work in XP.

I have the system set to Dual boot Vista 64 and XP 32.
May 5, 2008 2:52:59 AM

Well, what would you like to know about it? Other than its slow?

--Lupi
May 5, 2008 4:43:17 AM

Do you mean it (The swap file) is slow? Or that not using it and trying to run everything in physical memory is better? :)  I actually know this, Im a UNIX admin by profession and we try to always run from the memory and to prevent swapping. Im just not very technical when it comes to these WinTel platforms :) 

With the memory limit inherent in Windows XP and the fact that I only see about 3Gig (a little less) of memory, Im not sure I can run without the swap file in XP, but Im pretty sure that with 8gig in my Vista 64 build that I can run swap free...at least for now.

So IM wondering if you had tried running without it in XP 32bit? and what your results were.
May 5, 2008 6:15:55 AM

Hmm. I dont run it without the swap file unless I have more than 4 gigs of ram. Because it can speed things up for windows when you have less Ram, by allowing in ram but on hold junk to be written off to the disk.

The bad part of that, well, if its written to disk, and the program that was using it happens to look for it, you get yer memory hard fault, because its no longer in memory. And when it searches the disk... well, that disk is like a slug when compared to any type of RAM!

And System ram is like a slug to processor cache memory. So the closer you are to the processor, the faster your memory types.

All on die operations will be fast because the lev 2 communicates with the CPU at full speeds. Then system ram, but it's limited by the FSBs data width. Some chips now have Level 3, still on die though.

And then you have the swap file, acting like RAM, by allowing on hold ram maps to be mapped to the disk area as well. But when ever the original program goes looking for its data, it checks CPU cache lev 1, 2, main RAM, any other cached bios etc.. onward until you have a spinning hard disk with a huge latency. Like 100 x the latency of cheap ram! (Prolly more.)

So when you get rid of it, you no longer has the system looking for stuff on a disk, because it isnt allowed to map it out to the disk to begin with. So every program can find its data in ram. ;) 

--Lupi!
May 5, 2008 8:08:28 AM

Yeah, but see my point is, I have 4gig installed in this dual boot system and will end up with 8. However on the XP 32bit partition when I boot from there, XP will only see around 3gb of the total RAM, since the 32 bit system utilizes about a gig for hardware adressing. So windows only reports 3 or so gig (slightly less than 3 usually).

So, question is....is that 3 gig going to be enough? I guess I will have to experiment :) 
May 9, 2008 9:02:08 AM

Wow, this got lost, and I wouldnt run the swap file with less than 4 gigs.
Windows is a memory hog, and doesnt like it, from what I have tested, but thats Vista anyways.

--Lupi
May 9, 2008 9:46:37 AM

Well so far I have been running the 32bit XP partition with no swap file, but I havent really done any gaming. I do have a G15 keyboard and run the applet that displays CPU and Memory utilization. So far I dont seem to use more than 30 to 40% of memory. The real test is to see what happens when I try to run a game for a few hours.
May 9, 2008 10:14:58 AM

Couldn't you disable the swap file, onl for vista and leave it on for xp?

Anyways question for Lupi. My q6600 has a VID of 1.2375. What kind of max stable overclock and settings should i be able to achieve. I'm alrdy at 3.45ghz on my xfx 680i mobo with a loaded vcore of 1.312. So i'm just curious as to how far i could go.

Temps are already an issue, i think, so for now i'm good at this speed. But if for whatever reason i can reach a higher clock...curiosity strikes.

Also do you or anyone else now the limit on the system temp. My mobo passes 55C on prime small fft. I'm thinking it might be running hot. Therefore i may reseat the hsf.

one final question. Assuming i don't overclock further, which would leave my RAM @ 766mhz 5-4-4-15 2T, do you think i might be able to achieve 1T? I haven't been able to find i link to anyone that has tried. RAM is OCZ Platinum xtx 6400.
May 9, 2008 12:39:27 PM

Yes the Vista and XP partitions have their own swap files and yes I can change them independantly. I have been letting it run for almost a week with no swap file in the XP partition so far so good. This weekend I will do some gaming tests.


As for the Q6600 temps. I believe the max safe temp for the chip is 71c, I have mine OC'd to 3.2 right now and am not seeing any temps higher than about 53c under load. Im using a CNSP7000 or 9000 cooler cant see the labels while its running.
May 9, 2008 1:44:31 PM

Immagikman,

A couple of words about the 9800gtx. Please forgive me if I'm telling you some things you already know, I'm pretty new at this stuff myself.

1. The fan bug. There is a bug with nvidia drivers/bios for the 9800gtx that when it gets over 60C the fan reverts to an automatic 35% speed. This bug trumps any software fan control that I've seen. The only current fix I've found is actually modifying the wiring on the card, which is beyond my willingness to mess with. Nvidia, and EVGA have both recognized this problem and they have said that it will be resolved in the next round of nvidia software that's released. I would advise not OC'ing the card for anything other than short benchmark runs, until that's resolvled.

2. The good news: The card can OC like a champ, and once the fan can be set to stay at high percentages, I think the cooling is going to be more than adequate. I have had success around 810/1800/1200. I haven't been able to do any long time runs at those settings, because I'm afraid of the high temps, but it runs 3dmark06, and plays crysis with no artifiacts in the short times I've tried it. That OC, granted about 1500ish points in 3dmark06 for me.

3. Software If you are using the newest NVIDIA ntune software to manage your gpu clockspeeds, it works well for that, but please avoid the interactive bios tab for your MB, that can screw up pretty easy, I had to reset by jumper when I tried to use it. Noob mistake on mypart. EVGA has a nice tool for overclocking nvidia gpus. Rivatuner is a good tool. Once you find where the three clocks are, and the fan tab, if you're an ametuer like me, that's all you need. Any of the three softwares I've mentioned work fine for setting the clocks. I'm sure some of the other more experienced guys could probably suggest a few other tools.

4. For me the GPU seemed to be bottlenecked by my processor(Q9450) up to about 3.4 Ghz. I got about 4kof 3dmark gains going from stock 2.66 to 3.2, but the returns diminished between 3.2 and 3.4, and diminished even more between 3.4 and 3.6. 3.2-3.6 gained less than 1000 more points, most all of which were cpu score. I haven't tried anything over 3.6 because, again, I have a phobia of thermometers, and only air cooling. Bottom line is I think you'll get just about all you can out of the 9800gtx at 3.2 with your q6600, without worries of cpu bottlenecking.

5. I'm a noob, this post comes only from my personal experience with my current rig. I highly advise getting additional opinions on these issues, but I hope something above can be helpful for you.


Z.
May 9, 2008 6:11:51 PM

Lucuis, Thats a decent VID! They are not to common.
1.2375 is an easy 3.6. Maybe even 3.7 prime stable.
I ran a 1.2625 at 1.5000 Loaded @ 3.8 for 2 weeks with zero errors, it just wasnt prime stable.

I'd just do the 3.6, especially if you are fine with 3.45.
Loaded VCore wont be much more than it is, and the heat should go up maybe a few c at the most.

If I had to guess, loaded at 1.3500 should be more than enough! And well within' intel specs!

So far there has been 1.2250, and 1.2000 thats lower than yours!

Guess who has the lowest one??

:) 

--Lupi
May 9, 2008 6:20:23 PM

Oh, I guess it would help if I mention that Prime stable after 3.6 gets harder and harder to reach. At 3.6, its easy, stepping much past it, and remaining prime stable is hard!

If you investigate my VID threads, you will see why, but its to much typing again! Lets just say there is something we will call High VID syndrom. You see it as you near 3.6 on the high VIDs. High VIDs wont get prime stable much past 3.6.

Low VIDs can only get 3.7-3.8 prime stable, and then it takes ALOT more VCore than you would imagine! For instance, my q6700 runs at 3.6 @ 1.300 Volts loaded. To reach prime stable FOR THE FISRT TEST as I didnt go past it yet. (Thats like 17 mins, but a fair assumption of stability when it usually takes 30 seconds to Blue Screen, lol!)

To reach 3.8 stable in prime I needed 29 or so Bios VCore notches!!!!!!
1.440 Loaded. Just to get 200 Mhz! And the first 1 Ghz was only like 10 or 11 total bios VCore notches.

So, stability is in the eyes of the beholder/user. I know you can run all day long with zero errors and not be prime stable! Because Prime and such is the only thing that can crank that much juice out of your chip. Look at the VDroop. You can hit 100% with out much droop at all while doing normal junk, yet when you load small ffts it DRAINS current as the processor is forced to use only its Lev 2 cache for instructions, making that data loop that cranks so much power from it!

And then the more VCore you use, the less efficient it becomes, and then the more heat it makes, which makes the electricity even less efficient! So its a weird spiral thingie that happens!

Keep it cold, and they are happy. I had a 1.3250 VID q6600 at 3.6 @ 1.420 VCore! All because my core temps were 56 c. If it was 62 c, it would have blue screened. (as an example.)

--Lupi
May 9, 2008 11:42:25 PM

Thank you for all that info :) 

Anyways, i plan on leaving things as is, atleast for now. I got it prime stable currently, and temps reach 71c so that's as far as i wanna take it. And i think my mobo gets really hot too, it passes 55c during prime.

I still can't figure out why it tuns so hot. I've reseated my heatsink and it seemed to help some, but i see people running 1.4v loaded at temps lower then mine. At this point i'm considering water on the chipset and cpu.

btw ambient temp is kinda high at about 26-30c. No thanks to 3 computers, 4monitors, a heated snake cage, and heated fish tank ><
May 10, 2008 1:27:45 AM

As usual thanks for the wonderful information Lupiron and Lucius

To Ziegemon:

1. Great heads up, it explains the problem I have been having with Fan Control. Im with you, I dont mind tinkering but I dont want to mess with physical alterations to the hardware such as manually making jumpers or wiring.

2. Yes I have had really good luck jumping the clocks up on the 9800GTX above the Super Clocked rates on Factory OC'd units. Not sure how this will affect the life span though.

3. I do have the latest Nvidia software but I thought there was a bug with it since I had problems with the GPU Clock, but now that you explained that. I will have to revisit the issue once the Fix has been released.

4. I didnt pay that close attention to my gains for each adjustment but here is what I do recall. Q6600 and 9800GTX at stock settings I was getting something like 12.4k 3dmark06. When I OC'd the CPU from 2.4 to 3.2 I saw 3dmark06 of 14.5k, and when I OC'd the GPU to 775/1930/1201 I saw 3dmark06 of 15.575k

5. I live and work with Enterprise level UNIX systems, but tinkering with this Wintel stuff is kind of new to me, I know basic electrical theory and electronics but have never really tried to push a system to these kinds of limits before. So I guess in some ways most of us are new in some manner :) 
May 11, 2008 9:56:21 PM

I've recently downloaded the beta driver 175.16. It seems to have allowed the fan to maintain speeds over 35%. I'm going try running some overclocks when I get home.
!