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Limited BIOS options? Trying to OC i7 920, with 0 success.

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Anonymous
a b K Overclocking
October 10, 2009 8:40:54 PM

Hi, guys. I've read a number of articles on here and decided to join the discussions and post a few questions. I finished my first ever computer build. I will go ahead and list my computer specs at the end so you have an idea what I'm working with. My main problem is the BIOS on my ECS X58B-A2 Black/Deluxe motherboard. In the M.I.B. II section (where you make the OC adjustments mainly) the options are VERY limited and don't conform to any of the specs that I have read about on the forum. Is anyone familiar with this type of board or have any advice? I can change my Base Clock ratio, my DRAM frequency, the Uncore frequency, the PCIE clock (left this at 100). When I get down to the voltage numbers I don't have nearly as many options and they are worded a lot differently than I have seen (some I am not sure what they are?). I'm a complete noob when it comes to overclocking, but no slouch to general computer settings and such. I am guessing now I should have sucked it up and gotten an ASUS or MSI board, but here I am. Any help would be fantastic. I have tried changing some of the figures and it seems whenever I change anything and save the bios and exit, my computer won't even POST and allow me to go to the bios. I have to repeatedly hold the [Pg Up] button down and start up to reset the bios to default settings. Hopefully after I get a few more components, I can upgrade my motherboard and it will be less of an issue.

My build:
Coolermaster HAF 922
Intel Core i7 920 (2.66GHz)
Xigmatek Dark Knight S1283V
ECS X58B-A2 Black
6GB OCZ Gold DDR3 PC3-12800 (1600)
XFX 8800GT XXX Alpha Dog Edition 512MB GDDR3 256-Bit
Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7200.10RPM
Seagate Barracuda 1TB 7200.12RPM
22X Lightscribe DL DVD-RW+/-
a b K Overclocking
October 10, 2009 9:06:37 PM

Quote:
... I am guessing now I should have sucked it up and gotten an ASUS or MSI board, but here I am... Hopefully after I get a few more components, I can upgrade my motherboard and it will be less of an issue.
simsthepirate,

I think you've described the problem quite well. ECS is not exactly an overclocker's motherboard, so unfortunately, you won't be able to really crank it up until you purchase a board designed for overclocking. I would suggest flashing your BIOS, but it most likely won't provide you with the options you need. Get back to us after you replace your motherboard, and we'll be glad to help you.

Comp :sol: 
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a b K Overclocking
October 10, 2009 9:40:46 PM

^+1. ECS is note known for it's OCing.
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Related resources
October 10, 2009 11:22:31 PM

i do not have this ECS X58B-A2 Black board but it is a successful overclocking board, as i have found by searching it's reviews info on the internet. I got these specific bios settings from another forum
http://www.pcshoptalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=19744

ALOT of other people do have this ecs motherboard and a core i7 920 at 4ghz 1.31875v with HT on is impressive.

CompuTronix said to flash your motherboards bios to the latest version. very important to do that!

*Remember to clear cmos using jumper method often after a failed overclock attempt.

for 4ghz you can use these settings. THESE ARE THE MOTHERBARDS REVIEWER'S PERSONAL SETTINGS WHICH MATCH HIS HARDWARE:memory type, cpu batch and stepping... but they are similar to yours except for the memory voltage.
----------
bios options: Advanced setup

thermal management disabled
limit cpuid maxval disabled
enhanced halt c1e disabled
intel xd bit enabled
intel vt disabled
intel eist disabled
intel ht technology enabled
intel vt-d disabled
quick power self test disabled
bootup numlock status off
apic mode enabled
1st boot whatever
2nd boot whatever
3rd boot whatever
hard dick drive press enter
boot other devices yes
bios protect disabled
ecs ejiffy function disabled

-
bios options: mib II

performance level standard
dram frequency 1066mhz
configure dram timing by spd enabled
spd extreme memory profile standard
cpu overclocking func enabled
cpu overclocking freq 200
pcie overclocking func disabled
ratio cmos setting 20
auto detect dimm pci clock enabled
qpi freq auto detect auto
spread spectrum enabled
cpu voltage 1.31875v
ioh voltage disabled
cpu vtt voltage +0.052v
dimm voltage +0.105v = 1.568v ***WAIT! use your own ocz memory's recommended voltage which is listed as 1.65V. I am unsure of the +0.1XXXv conversion setting to match 1.65v.

sb voltage disabled
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Anonymous
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2009 2:57:21 AM

rivalneighbour said:
i do not have this ECS X58B-A2 Black board but it is a successful overclocking board, as i have found by searching it's reviews info on the internet. I got these specific bios settings from another forum
http://www.pcshoptalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=19744

ALOT of other people do have this ecs motherboard and a core i7 920 at 4ghz 1.31875v with HT on is impressive.

CompuTronix said to flash your motherboards bios to the latest version. very important to do that!

*Remember to clear cmos using jumper method often after a failed overclock attempt.

for 4ghz you can use these settings. THESE ARE THE MOTHERBARDS REVIEWER'S PERSONAL SETTINGS WHICH MATCH HIS HARDWARE:memory type, cpu batch and stepping... but they are similar to yours except for the memory voltage.
----------
bios options: Advanced setup

thermal management disabled
limit cpuid maxval disabled
enhanced halt c1e disabled
intel xd bit enabled
intel vt disabled
intel eist disabled
intel ht technology enabled
intel vt-d disabled
quick power self test disabled
bootup numlock status off
apic mode enabled
1st boot whatever
2nd boot whatever
3rd boot whatever
hard dick drive press enter
boot other devices yes
bios protect disabled
ecs ejiffy function disabled

-
bios options: mib II

performance level standard
dram frequency 1066mhz
configure dram timing by spd enabled
spd extreme memory profile standard
cpu overclocking func enabled
cpu overclocking freq 200
pcie overclocking func disabled
ratio cmos setting 20
auto detect dimm pci clock enabled
qpi freq auto detect auto
spread spectrum enabled
cpu voltage 1.31875v
ioh voltage disabled
cpu vtt voltage +0.052v
dimm voltage +0.105v = 1.568v ***WAIT! use your own ocz memory's recommended voltage which is listed as 1.65V. I am unsure of the +0.1XXXv conversion setting to match 1.65v.

sb voltage disabled


About to try these settings and see. I appreciate your help. Thanks for not being one of those "HEY, I NEVAR USED ECS SO IT MUST BE JUNK," posters. ;P Other than the limited options in BIOS, I enjoy the board.
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Anonymous
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2009 3:44:42 AM



I had to tweak the settings a bit, but it was a great starting point! I am at 3.61 stable now after benching it a little. Going to try running a few games to check performance. Thanks, rival!
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Anonymous
a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2009 3:45:35 AM

Oh, and I use 19 for the multiplier, because I read 19 and 21 give more stability for some reason. -shrug-
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October 11, 2009 4:48:57 AM

Also keep an eye on your temps. use coretemp http://www.alcpu.com/CoreTemp
make sure your temps do not get into the 80c, the numbers will turn yellow.
3.6-4GHz on is a respectable overclock. INTEL says 1.375-1.38vcore (thanks CompuTronix) is safe for corei7 920with your cooling, Xigmatek Dark Knight.
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a b K Overclocking
October 11, 2009 8:35:23 AM

rivalneighbour,

I stand corrected. Excellent find and great information. Well done! :D  I would, however, like to offer a few observations.
rivalneighbour said:
bios options: Advanced setup

thermal management disabled
"Thermal Management" should be enabled, since it provides for processor overtemp protection.
rivalneighbour said:
... make sure your temps do not get into the 80c ... INTEL says 1.375-1.8vcore is safe for corei7 ...
I think you made a typo on "1.375-1.8vcore". Obviously you meant 1.375-1.38. Nevertheless, the following is for everone's benefit.

Since overclocking and temperatures are all about specifications, it's very important to be specific, otherwise the topic makes about as much sense as trying to compare apples-to-oranges thermal fruit salad in a blender. :pt1cable:  My objective is to assure that enthusiasts understand Intel's specifications, standards and test methods, so they can better decide how to apply and manage their overclocking options.

From Intel's Processor Spec Finder - http://processorfinder.intel.com/List.aspx?ParentRadio=...

All Core i7 9xx variants:

Vcore Max 1.375v
Tcase Max (CPU temperature) 68c
Tjunction (Core temperature) 73c

From the Core i7 and Core 2 Temperature Guide - http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/221745-29-sticky-core...


"Section 1: Introduction

Core i and Core 2 processors have 2 different types of temperature sensors; a CPU case (not computer case) Thermal Diode centered under the Cores, and Digital Thermal Sensors located on each Core. The case Thermal Diode measures Tcase (Temperature case), which is CPU temperature, and the Digital Thermal Sensors measure Tjunction (Temperature junction), which is Core temperature. Since these sensors measure 2 distinct thermal levels, there is a 5c temperature difference between them, which is Tcase to Tjunction Gradient. Core i7’s / i5’s and Core 2 Quad’s have 1 Tcase and 4 Tjunction sensors, while Core 2 Duo's have 1 Tcase and 2 Tjunction sensors ...

... The monitoring utilities provided by motherboard manufacturers monitor CPU temperature, while some popular freeware utilities monitor Core temperatures ... Real Temp ... is recommended for users interested in monitoring Core temperatures only ... SpeedFan monitors Tcase (CPU temperature) and Tjunction (Core temperature) ... "


The Thermal Specification shown in Intel's Processor Spec Finder is Tcase Max (CPU) not Tjunction (Core), which is a very common misconception among most enthusiasts. Since there's a 5c gradient between the CPU sensor and the Core sensors, (shown in the following Intel document) - http://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/0709/0709.1861.pdf - just add 5c to the value shown in the Spec Finder to determine the corresponding Core temperature, which is 73c for all Core i7 9xx variants.

Intel's second and frequently misunderstood Thermal Specification, Tjunction Max, (100c for all Core i variants) applies to overtemp protection such as Throttle and Shutdown, so you don't toast your transistors. As such, any i7 Core temperatures which exceed 73c should be considered "overtemp". Further, when specifications are exceeded, then processor degradation becomes a concern, which is explained in the following AnandTech article - http://anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/intel/showdoc.aspx?i=3...

Prime95 Small FFT's is the Standard for processor thermal testing, because it's a steady-state 100% workload which yields steady-state temperatures, whereas Blend (the default torture test) is a memory cyclic workload which yields fluctuating processor temperatures. Small FFT's will reach 97% thermal saturation within 7 to 8 minutes, so a 10 minute test is adequate. Thermal testing should be conducted as close as possible to 22c (72f) Standard ambient, with case covers removed, the computer clear of any desk enclosures, and all fans at 100% RPM to eliminate cooling variables, and to produce consistent and repeatable results for comparisons. If the Gradient between CPU temperature and "mean" (average) Core temperature is not ~ 5c, then BIOS is incorrectly coded. CPU temperature and Core temperatures can be individually calibrated in SpeedFan by following the Calibrations Section in the Temperature Guide.

OCCT and Burn Test (reminiscent of TAT) use LinPack, which shows thermal signatures that resemble the ups and downs of a bad day on the stock market, and cycle between light workloads, through test segments which spray all processor registers with all one's, (100% thermal load, which equates to 115% workload), and can push an overclocked i7 at Vcore Max 1.375 with HT enabled, right on past Tcase Max to ring the Tjunction Max bell like a fire alarm! :o 

Since there are very few applications or games that will spike, let alone sustain processor workloads beyond 70% to 85%, utilities which load all registers with all one's are not representative of real-world computing. While these utilities are certainly very useful for stability testing, they are inappropriate for thermal testing. The 3DMark benches are excellent for stability testing, as are applications for ripping and encoding.

To make sense of CPU temperature and Core temperature, compare them to a 4 cylinder car that has 5 temperature guages; 4 of the guages are cyclinder head temperatures (closest to the heat source), and the 5th guage is the overall engine temperature, which is 5c lower than the other guages, and is the temperature guage with which we're all familiar. We know that red (HOT) for the i7 9xx is 68c (Tcase Max) on the engine temp guage and 73c (Tjunction) on the cylinder head temp guages, but if we push the engine too hard and peg all the guages, (95c Tcase overtemp / 100c Tjunction Max) then the engine will shut down.

If you'd like to learn more about processor temperatures, then just click on the link in my signature.

Hope this helps,

Comp :sol: 
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Anonymous
a b K Overclocking
August 12, 2010 6:02:14 PM

Anonymous, I know this is an old thread, but I have this board and your configuration and would like to know what settings you used to achieve the overclocking you did. Thanks man.
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August 12, 2010 8:32:10 PM

u should have gotten amd
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!