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My AMD Phenom II X4 940 BE 3.0 ghz and Left 4 Dead 2

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December 16, 2009 7:22:02 PM

I recently upgraded my old X2 5600+ to a Phenom II X4 940 BE 3.0 ghz socket AM2+. I am able to overclock the chip easily on my Asus motherboard to 3.6 ghz and it runs Fallen Earth, my favorite MMORPG, without a problem. However, when I try to play Left 4 Dead 2 (opitmized for quad core processor), the game won't even boot up unless I drop the clock to 3.3 ghz or lower. My system will reboot if I try to run Seti@Home or Folding@Home above 3.3ghz also. Is this a cooling problem? My chassis is well cooled with two fans blowing in and two blowing out, but I'm only using the stock cooler that came with the Phenom (it has copper heat pipes that I've never seen on a stock cooler before). Any ideas or suggestions on how to get everything to run at 3.6 ghz? Or should I not bother and be satisfied with a stable 3.3 ghz?
December 16, 2009 7:25:37 PM

By the way, I'm using a XFX ATI Radeon HD 4870 1 gb graphics card. The GPU easily overclocks from 750mzh to 780mhz and the memory from 900mhz to 1066mhz, and I get noticable improvement in FPS in Fallen Earth.
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December 17, 2009 7:36:04 PM

Need specs on the rest of your platform.
Memory~ brand/model?
MoBo~brand/model?
Powersupply~brand/model?
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December 18, 2009 12:19:25 AM

Oops, here ya go.

Asus M3A78-EM mobo
SpecTek Inc PC6400 2 x 1 gb DDR2
Xeon 500w powersupply

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December 18, 2009 9:53:51 PM

fencer55 said:
Oops, here ya go.

Asus M3A78-EM mobo
SpecTek Inc PC6400 2 x 1 gb DDR2
Xeon 500w powersupply


Either get a better fan or lower your o/c. The standard fan is very good for default speed, but not enough for o/c above 3.4ghz i think. I have the same CPU and love it.
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December 19, 2009 4:11:09 AM

Lower your HT Link Multiplier if you haven't already. It does affect stability. Anyway can you run prim 95 for a few hours with that 3.6Ghz clock? What are your temps under load? Sounds to me like you probably need better cooling.
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January 11, 2010 1:49:52 PM

Are there any high-end coolers out there that don't require a backplate to attach firmly to the AM2+ chipset? I really don't want to pull my mobo to add a better cooler. Any suggestions?
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Best solution

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January 18, 2010 6:22:09 PM

XIGMATEK HDT-S963

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Well, any decent 92mm cooler should do if your motherboard at least has the cheap plastic back plate. If you want to go with a 120mm or a heavy 92mm cooler you should pull the board to use the back plate they come with.
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January 18, 2010 11:12:58 PM

Thanks, I may get one. BTW, upgrade my memory to Patriot Extreme Performance DDR2 6400 (timings 4-4-4-12) and took out that TekSpek crap I was using, and my FPS increased by another 10-20 FPS! Unbelievable, I never knew fast memory could have such a huge effect on the system. I just ordered 2 more sticks, for a total of 4gb! Only $49.95 a pair on Newegg as I write this.
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January 26, 2010 12:40:34 PM

Best answer selected by fencer55.
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January 26, 2010 12:54:53 PM

I purchased a Rosewill cpu cooler that reviews say is easy to install and does not need a backplate and it pushes the air straight to the rear case fan (not all cpu coolers do this). I'm hoping that it will be good enough to get my cpu to 3.6 ghz. I'm installing it tonight, so we'll see.

If not, my FPS rates in my favorite games is still really awesome at stock speeds (Left 4 Dead 2 FPS stays at 60 FPS constantly, that's the max the game will run, and in Fallen Earth the FPS is between 40 in a town and goes up over 100 FPS when traveling in the desert). Also, I'm getting a new exhaust fan in the back of my computer because my current 120mm fan is making noise and is 3 years old, so I suspect its not drawing as much air as it once did.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I'll let you know how I fair.
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January 27, 2010 12:36:20 AM

^ well, those Rosewill CPU coolers aren't the best, but aren't too bad either. Just be sure to inspect it for any defects in workmanship while you are still able to return it :D . It may be good enough to get your CPU to 3.6GHz, but I guess you'll find out. Good luck and happy overclocking.
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January 28, 2010 2:36:08 AM

EUREKA! This inexpensive cooler does the job no problema! I've been running Prime 95 torture test for 4 hours and the high temp is 53 degrees C (AMD says max temp is 62 degrees C). I'm super happy about my new overclock (unobtainable with the stock cooler). Every game I own gets maximum FPS allowed by the game (Left 4 dead 2 constantly at 60 FPS), and with my favorite MMORGP, Fallen Earth, my FPS averages 60 to 80 FPS with FPS up to 120+ while traveling through the desert. I did have to bump the voltage by 150 millivolts and the Hypertransport had to be reduced to 1.6 ghz per previous posters suggestion, but it runs completely stable. I couldn't have done this wihtout the advice of previous posters (especially the HT speed reduction suggested) and I'm as proud as a peacock because I've succeeded for the first time in my life at a substantial overclock for minimum $$$ spent. Thanks Toms Hardware! Your forums are the bomb!
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