Lowest safe voltage for a Core I7

I have a Core I7 950. my vcore is set at 1.1v with the stock 133 bclk and 24.0 multiplier. I wanted to drop my voltage even lower, so that I can see how low I can get my temps.

Is there an unsafe minimum voltage?

Can lowering my voltage create problems in the long run, such as raising your voltage can?

Can I create system instability by lowering my voltage and never know about it because I never get any system shut downs? Is there any other way of knowing my voltage is too low besides my system shutting down?


Can I try to lower my vcore to 1.0v?

Any input is appreciated.
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  1. Hello,

    1) No
    2) No
    3) Yes and yes
    4) Yes

    Try lowering your vcore as much as you can. At some point, your PC will not boot. Augment it little by little until you find a voltage at which it will boot. Once that's done, run Prime95 for as long as you can (minimum an hour) to dertermine if your overclock is stable, and what your max temps are. If Prime95 crashes, you'll have to augment the voltage a little bit until you're able to run it for long periods of time.

    And I thought that the max multiplier for the 950 was 23 ? Do you have Intel TurboBoost enabled ? That might explain why you get a multiplier of 24.

    Good luck !
    al360ex
  2. Quote:
    The lower voltage you go, the safer you are. You will just crash if too low. But no harm can come to the hardware. however, you could corrupt your data on disk


    To corrupt your data, you'd need a vcore so low that it wouldn't even boot. It would crash during posting, so it's quasi-impossible.
  3. Thanks for the replies guys.

    To Alex: Yes, I have Turbo Boost and speed step enabled. I get a 24x multiplier under load, which I can see in cpu-z while Prime95 is running.

    I'm guessing that while lowering my voltage and running Prime95, I should get to the point where Prime95 is crashing WAY before my voltage gets low enough to not even post? I'm guessing .01 decrements?

    If my computer stops booting, do I just clear the cmos and raise the voltage back to a safe level?

    Thanks.
  4. You can't lower your voltages AND running Prime95 at the same time...You lower the vcore from the BIOS, you Save and Exit, then your computer reboots. If it POSTs and boots, lower is again. At some point you might get it to POST but it won't boot. You just go into the BIOS and increase the vcore a little bit. If it won't POST, well then you just clear the CMOS and start over again, with a slightly hight vcore.
    As for the increments, I'd go with 0.05 until it doesn't POST. Then go up 0.01 at a time until it POSTs and boots. Then run Prime95 for at least 5 minutes. If it crashes, augment the vcore by 0.01. If it doesn't crash...run Prime95 for one hour, more if you can. Check your temps (shouldn't be a problem, since you decreased the voltage). Then let it run overnight. If it doesn't crash, your 100% stable. If it runs only for like 4 hours, you'll be like 90% stable, but you won't have any problem. If it can't run for 4 hours, then augment the voltage again.

    You can use smaller increments if you want (like 0.005) but it will take more time.

    Have fun !
    al360ex
  5. No because it would simply not boot at that point. No boot ->nothing written to the disk->no data can be corrupted
    When you POST, it is at the most basic level possibl: the BIOS on the motherboard. Your computer can POST without a hard drive or OS. It means that if it doesn't POST, you haven't reach a "higher" level i.e. the operating system located on the HDD. So you can't corrupt any data.
  6. Oh, sorry, I didn't read carfully enough. Yes of course you can. But your PC will simply crash. You reboot, augment the vcore a little bit, then try again.
  7. You guys should stop arguing. lol

    Anyway, I understand that you lower your vcore in the bios and Prime runs when Windows is loaded. I'm not sure where the confusion of that came up Alex.

    Anyway, I've been having problems with my memory. My motherboard sometimes boots up in the morning only seeing 4 of my 6 gigs of memory. I have my Dram voltage at 1.65v and my QPI/DRAM (vtt/uncore/imc ect) voltage at 3.250v. I'm trying to see if this will help. My memory issue.

    As to how this relates to the topic, I'm now curious whether pushing my QPI/Dram and Dram voltages up and my vcore downward can have a bad effect on my processor? I don't want to fry anything, so I'm leaving my vcore at 1.1v until I know otherwise.

    Ideas?
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