I'm writing as I'm testing. My specs- Asus M2N-sli, a delux or something edition, 1 gb of ddr2 800 ram, amd athlon X2 5000+, 8600 gt, 650 w no-name PSU.
I'm new to OC, but I think I did a fairly good job OC'ing my cpu and gpu. I used a stock HSF on my cpu, but I put a cpu fan over the heatsink of the gpu. The gpu (8600gt), was originally intended to be a "silent" card.
The gpu's core is running at 680, the memory ar 2*853. I am running linux, so I used the nvidia-settings with coolbits enabled. There was no option to clock the shaders, should there be any ? I started with autodetecting the optimal clocks, then I lowered them a bit. Now, the card idles @ 48 C. While playing nfs s with wine (at 1024 * 768) during a race it hits 56-60. When showcasing a car or just browsing through the garage it can hit up to 66, which imho is weird. While I ran unigine tropics benchmark, around half through it, the system froze to a standstill for a few seconds, then, it ran fine for 3 seconds, then the whole screen was filled with artifacts, even though I ran the benchmark windowed. Restarted and clocked the memory to 800, about 100 hz slower than the "Auto Detect" suggested. And again, a massive slowdown, 3 secs of "life", and then artifacts. It never ran past 63 C. Ran tests with stock speeds, a 5 fps drop, but it worked, phew, haven't screwed the memory. AFAIK, the only difference between a 8600gt and a 8600gts is that the gt models don't have any cooling system for the video memory. This is weird, because I ran the tests when OC'd yesterday, and they ran fine. I don't remember the clock speeds though, and it was unigine sanctuary, running at a higher resolution, but it ran fine.
My stable tropics run results and settings:
Binary: Linux 32bit GCC 4.3.3 Release May 26 2009
Operating system: Linux 2.6.31-14-generic i686
CPU model: AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 5000+
CPU flags: 3003MHz MMX+ 3DNow!+ SSE SSE2 SSE3 HTT
GPU model: GeForce 8600 GT PCI Express 185.18.36 512Mb
Mode: 1024x768 windowed
That's enough about gpu. The cpu is a 5000+ non BE, stock speed is 2,6 ghz. My goal was 3,0. I set everything but the ref speed on auto and just increased it by 5 to 10 clocks at a time till I hit 231, and I achieved my goal. I think the vcore is running at 1,35v. I am using the stock cooler, replaced the thermal grease with zalman "Super-thermalk grease"(the best I could find in the shop ), the idle temps are 31 C, while running the Unigine benchmark- 47. I managed to get the temps as high as 50 while running nfs s and burnP6 at the same time. Running stress -cpu 32 made it heat up to 49. I am planning on getting a better cooler once I get enough money.
So, my questions are:
1) Are these temperatures stable ?
2) Is a new cooler a nececity ?
3) Should I try and find a OC on my 8600gt ?