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Help me overclock my Q9550

Last response: in Overclocking
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September 7, 2009 5:47:16 PM

I'm new to the OCing scene but I've read up on the general concepts so I'm not just asking for plug and play values (though those would be nice!). First my system specs:

Gigabyte EP45-DS4P
Q9550
4 gigs Corsair PC6400 DDR2 RAM (800mhz)
Windows 7 64-bit
Zerotherm BTF90 cooler

I started out by reading through a tutorial for OCing my particular processor and got no where. I couldn't even get it to boot without the mobo reverting to previous values. The only way I could do any overclocking at all, initially, was just to leave everything at defaults and change the FSB to 400mhz for 3.4 ghz.

Doing this, I could run P95 small FFTs for about 4 hours before I got some odd program crashing. One time it was Catalyst CC, another time it was CPU-Z, etc. So I decided to up the volts on the CPU to 1.35.

I have been monitoring my CPU temps and I'm fine with temps at this voltage (not higher than 60C). I've also been monitoring the volts to my RAM and CPU. I'd noticed some dips below 1.8 volts on my RAM (using Speedfan) so I increased the volts on the DRAM to 1.9 and I didn't notice any dips below 1.8 which I believe is the RAMs necessary voltage.

Unfortunately, after about 5 hours of P95 with no errors, Windows search index or something crashed.

All my other voltages are auto set. Any thoughts on the next step to stabilizing this system? Like I said, I'm not looking for just some numbers to plug in and have work. I really want to know the "method" to this madness. TIA.

More about : overclock q9550

September 7, 2009 6:29:24 PM

Is your fsb:ram ratio at 1:1? Because if it isnt than your ram is being overclocked as well and may be the cause of the crashes?
a b à CPUs
September 7, 2009 6:33:45 PM

The Q9550 can handle a 400 MHz FSB easily with the P45 chipset
and the specs for your motherboard include 1600 MHz FSB (quad-pumped).

And, leaving your RAM settings on AUTO,
you should end up with a 1 : 1 FSB : DRAM ratio.

Our new Q9550 is running very reliably
in an ASUS P5Q Premium with the FSB clock
set to 400 MHz.

I suspect that your problem does not result from
stock RAM settings, because your RAM is rated DDR2-800
(400 MHz @ double data rate).

So, double-check whether your RAM is being overclocked
automatically by the BIOS, or not: if CPU-Z reports a
DRAM frequency of 533, you should lower it to 400 MHz
manually in the BIOS.

Sometimes a specific BIOS will make the wrong choices
from among the options given to it by the SPD chip
(serial presence detect) on the DIMMs.

Also, you didn't say whether your RAM is 4 x 1GB or 2 x 2GB:
filling all 4 DIMM slots does put more stress on the Northbridge,
where the memory controller resides on the P45 chipset.

I'd look elsewhere, e.g. CPU overheating if you are
using Intel's stock HSF:

http://www.supremelaw.org/systems/heatsinks/warning.htm

This is a very cost-effective solution to Intel's defective push-pins:

http://www.sidewindercomputers.com/lgbowiscsp.html


Hope this helps: good luck!


MRFS
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September 7, 2009 9:19:14 PM

I'm using 2-2 gig sticks. I've been monitoring temps and I'm certain it's not overheating. As I said, it doesn't even crack 60C.

The RAM should be 1:1 since I'm only clocking my FSB to 400mhz and the RAM is 800 mhz. It's set on auto, so I'll see if something's going on there. I don't recall if CPU-Z reported overclocked RAM. I'll check that next.

Any other ideas?
September 7, 2009 9:24:58 PM

Overclocking is a party between CPU, RAM, and MoBo. When you change the CPU multiplier, everything else needs to change to the same ratio. The safest, and simplest way to do it is to set what you are able to, to auto. That way you don't have to do the math yourself. Because you have a Gigabyte board, I assume it has the C.I.A. and/or performance enhance options?

I have an 8200 (stock @ 2.66Ghz) that I'm running at 3.2Ghz no sweat.

You should be able to OC easy because your boards FSB is 1600MHz (and seeing your CPU Bus speed is 1333Mhz, it has plenty of room to move).

The only thing holding you back may be your RAM. I have 800Mhz Corsair RAM too and it is the reason that I can't OC much more than I have. Currently my RAM is at 802MHz, but pushing it much higher causes problems.

Keep in mind - simple is safer: don't go changing voltages etc unless you know exactly what you are doing.
September 7, 2009 11:13:25 PM

I started out very simply but didn't get the stability I needed. At least I think it wasn't stable. I didn't get any P95 errors, but I did have programs crashing oddly. The problem is I don't know if that's just because Windows and its programs are often flaky (I'm a Mac guy but I'm also a geek and I loved building my first computer!) or if I have genuine instability.

A couple more tests: I tried setting my DRAM speed to 800mhz manually and that failed. The BIOS called it SPD or something and made it 2.00D, in accordance with the key in the BIOS. I changed the MCH Frequency Latch to 400mhz, again failed. Turned SPD to auto and made MCH frequence latch 400mhz and it booted but programs behaved oddly (i.e., not starting, unusual errors).

Interestingly, my FSB/DRAM ratio is set to 5:6. It seems like it's pegged to that ratio because even at my stock speed, all defaults in BIOS with a 333 FSB, I get a 400mhz DRAM speed in CPU-Z. When I OC to 400 FSB, I get a DRAM speed of 480mhz - too fast for my RAM I think. As I said, manually setting the DRAM speed to 800 doesn't work.
September 8, 2009 3:52:38 AM

hi, dude i am not being rude but please look through older posts, there are many about q9550 and their overclocking. Also 500 fsb is possible if you do it right. i got mine upto 4100mhz, it was prime 95 stable, intel burn test stable, 24/7 stable; Temps never went above 50C but i have a huge watercooler. :bounce:  i can go higher but my motherboard isint that hardcore. btw i have run my chip @ 4.4ghz before with stability. I have a ram that was rated @ 800mhz but is now running at 1066mhz, my board is evga 780i. Gl. LOl and yeah you dont have to be a geek to build a PC, although i am disappointed you own a Mac. :pt1cable: 
September 8, 2009 4:01:50 AM

I believe 1.35 is kind of high for 3.4ghz, i have mine at 1.25 @ 3.75 ghz. If you overvolt your pc it will give you problems!!!!. Also can you specify what stepping you have?....stepping matters a lot, and remember all chips are made different, and overclocking is a matter or time and patience. :) 
September 8, 2009 5:15:34 PM

Im not gigabyte user but: 2.00 should be your 1:1 ratio, with A being 266MHz MCH strap, B being 333, C is 200 and D is 400MHz. Finding a guide based on Gigabyte mobo will help you a lot.
a c 172 à CPUs
a c 197 K Overclocking
September 10, 2009 9:39:56 AM

sbanawan said:

A couple more tests: I tried setting my DRAM speed to 800mhz manually and that failed. The BIOS called it SPD or something and made it 2.00D, in accordance with the key in the BIOS. I changed the MCH Frequency Latch to 400mhz, again failed. Turned SPD to auto and made MCH frequence latch 400mhz and it booted but programs behaved oddly (i.e., not starting, unusual errors).

You need the 2.00B setting. Then your memory frequency will be double the FSB and increase proportionally. And your stability should improve.

freezed1 wrote:
"I believe 1.35 is kind of high for 3.4ghz, i have mine at 1.25 @ 3.75 ghz."

This is a YMMV thing. There are just so many variables: CPU VID, stepping, CPU cooling, case.

I need 1.37 volts to reach 3.6 GHz. I can boot at 3.8 GHz. but it's not stable.

And like MaDMagik said, google for a Gigabyte P45 OC guide.
September 10, 2009 5:00:32 PM

I just restarted my comp and went into bios and looked at my configs for you.

I have a Q9450 on a X38-DS4 so our systems are pretty similar.

If you are using 400fsb, use 200 D - i doubled checked this for you. I am using the 200D strap in my bios.

C.I.A - disabled
Performance Enhance - Standard
C.1.E - disabled
EIST - disabled

those are all the common errors that people might forget when they OC, hope that helps you

btw, I think your Vcore is way too high, I only needed 1.26875 to hit 413fsb but every system is diff.

another thought, run memtest to test out your ram just in case :) 
September 10, 2009 8:32:11 PM
October 11, 2009 11:50:00 AM

freezed1 said:
hi, dude i am not being rude but please look through older posts, there are many about q9550 and their overclocking. Also 500 fsb is possible if you do it right. i got mine upto 4100mhz, it was prime 95 stable, intel burn test stable, 24/7 stable; Temps never went above 50C but i have a huge watercooler. :bounce:  i can go higher but my motherboard isint that hardcore. btw i have run my chip @ 4.4ghz before with stability. I have a ram that was rated @ 800mhz but is now running at 1066mhz, my board is evga 780i. Gl. LOl and yeah you dont have to be a geek to build a PC, although i am disappointed you own a Mac. :pt1cable: 


I am new to this but I do haveppen to have the very same CPU and Motherboard that you state in this post.

Is it possible for you to send me the settings that need to be changed in my BIOS to get this particular overclocking speed.

I'd most certainly would appreciate it

Cachaco :D 
January 13, 2010 2:02:08 AM

freezed1 said:
hi, dude i am not being rude but please look through older posts, there are many about q9550 and their overclocking. Also 500 fsb is possible if you do it right. i got mine upto 4100mhz, it was prime 95 stable, intel burn test stable, 24/7 stable; Temps never went above 50C but i have a huge watercooler. :bounce:  i can go higher but my motherboard isint that hardcore. btw i have run my chip @ 4.4ghz before with stability. I have a ram that was rated @ 800mhz but is now running at 1066mhz, my board is evga 780i. Gl. LOl and yeah you dont have to be a geek to build a PC, although i am disappointed you own a Mac. :pt1cable: 


absolutely true. i have a stable 475mhz fsb clock / multiplier @ 8,0 on air. whats first and foremost if u wanna overclock ur gear is to have a solid motherboard. sure it costs more, but youll get that money back in the form of a healthy OC
January 13, 2010 4:11:12 PM

Check the date before posting
January 13, 2010 7:20:12 PM

MaDMagik said:
Check the date before posting


and if i dont?
!