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Cannot access BIOS settings for overclocking 975XBX/BadAxe

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May 8, 2008 5:20:18 PM

I have an Intel 975XBX / BadAxe revision 305 with an e6600 CPU. I am interested in upping the FSB for some mild CPU overclocking. I've played around a little bit with SetFSB in Windows XP, and it seems to work fine. SetFSB, Clockgen, etc. do have the disadvantage of not applying on restart. So once I've worked out a good overclock, I'd like to set it in BIOS.

My problem is that the BIOS on my motherboard doesn't seem to allow any changes to the FSB, or any frequencies. There's a screen called "Advanced Chipset Features," with an option that says something like "Change Defaults." When I click on that, it brings up a warning screen about changing settings potentially hurting the computer, etc. There is no option to proceed past this warning screen, however. All I can do is hit escape to go back to the prior screen. I can't find any screens anywhere in the BIOS that let me change the FSB. The main info. screen lists various frequency information, but does not let me change any of the settings. It does not appear to matter whether I have gone to the "Change Defaults" screen under "Advanced Chipset Features" or not.

Does anybody have any ideas how I can change the FSB settings in BIOS for this motherboard? The computer was built by ABS out of what look to be standard components, so I don't believe the manufacturer disabled any such functionality. I've noticed some mention on other forums of flashing revised software onto the board, which I have not done. Might that help? Should I look for more recent drivers for the motherboard?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you,

Hunter
May 12, 2008 2:23:19 PM

Follow up: I was able to resolve this issue by flashing the BIOS of the board to the most recent version. After I did that, once I went to the "Change Defaults" screen, it actually advanced past the warning page and let me change various features. This board is a bit odd in that you cannot manually set the FSB to a particular frequency, but rather need to increase a "burn-in percentage." Upping that setting increases the FSB.

I also downloaded the Intel Desktop Control Center for this motherboard, and that seems to work pretty well.

Final tip based on my experience: I had not realized that you need to underclock your memory to fully overclock the CPU via the FSB. I have Corsair 800 MHz memory. As I increased the FSB, it increased both the CPU and the memory speed, and pretty quickly the memory was maxed out. This meant that I could barely overclock the CPU via the FSB without the memory giving me problems.

To fix it, I went into the BIOS and manually set the memory to operate at 533 MHz. As the 975XBX/Bad Axe motherboard has a basic FSB speed of 266 MHz, setting the memory at 533 MHz generates a 1:1 FSB to memory ratio (as the memory is DDR, doubling the basic FSB speed give you the memory speed you need if you are trying to achieve a 1:1 ratio). As the memory is now underclocked, I can raise the FSB (and thus the CPU speed) quite significantly without maxing out the memory.

-Hunter
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