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Help Overclocking E8400?

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January 31, 2010 2:39:20 AM

I am completely new to overclocking, but wanted to give it a shot. Would anyone be willing to assist me? I built my rig about a year and a half ago, and as with all my previous builds, I typically leave all hardware at their default specs. I'd like to squeeze a bit more juice out of this one before moving on to a brand new PC entirely. Here are my specs:

Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 3.0 GHz
ZALMAN CNPS9700 LED 110mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler
EVGA 132-CK-NF78-A1 LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 780i SLI ATX Intel Motherboard
Kingston HyperX NVIDIA SLI-Ready 4GB (4 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066
MSI NX8800GT 512M OC GeForce 8800 GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16
2x Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s
Antec NeoPower 650 Blue 650W ATX12V

I've read that the E8400 can be fairly easily pushed to 3.6-3.8 GHz without many problems, but I have no experience with this, and didn't want to screw anything up. Any assistance will be greatly appreciated...

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January 31, 2010 11:23:03 AM

This should be your first stop.
HOWTO: Overclock C2Q (Quads) and C2D (Duals) - Guide v1.6.1
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/240001-29-howto-overc...

Next stop should be a guide for your particular motherboard. Google is your friend.

The Zalman 9700 is, by today's standards, an average heatsink.

Keep your core voltage under 1.3625 volts and your COU temps iunder 70 C.
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January 31, 2010 2:47:54 PM

Yeah, I actually found that guide last night during my searches. Good info in it. I've already got a guide for my mobo as well.

I'm surprised to hear that my cooler is only "average". At the time of purchase, many were bragging on its performance.

Thanks for the info and reply. I've got a solid jumping point now with this potential overclock....just need to do a bit more reading first.
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February 2, 2010 5:05:48 AM

Ok, I've read the guide posted above a couple of times, along with several other guides, posts, and various tidbits related to this project. So, I decided to dive in and check things out, but I would appreciate some input on what direction to take next.

All I've done so far is increase FSB speeds in small increments, and loaded into windows after each one. Right now I'm sitting at 4.0GHz (which I'm happy with, for now), and everything appears to be stable. My temps are within norms so far, 36-38°C idle and ~55°C load. I left voltage on auto, and it is at 1.312V. I left memory linked to FSB and auto settings as well, but I noticed my timings increased to 5-7-7-24.

So I guess my next question would be should I attempt to stress test using Prime95, or attempt to set my memory timings to 5-5-5-15? Also, should I manually set my voltage to 1.312V, or leave it on auto?

Thanks for any assistance provided.
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February 2, 2010 3:27:58 PM

Odd...this morning my idle temps are around 33-34°C...several degrees cooler than they were last night.

Anyone have an opinion to my questions above? I'm eager to continue this, but not quite sure which direction to go.
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February 3, 2010 10:52:37 AM

Anyone?
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