Hi, I have been out of pc's for a few years now and haven't really kept up on the trends. The last system I overclocked was a Athlon 2500+ barton on a Kocab 18g mobo with a Geforce 5900 xt. I took it up to 2.2ghz I believe, with minimal cooling and destroyed it after a year or two(I kinda forgot that I overclocked it, the dust gathered and POOF). Before that I was overclocking K6-2's and 3Dfx cards with house fans pointed in the open cases. Boy those were the days.. Anyways for the first time in almost a decade I have got myself a somewhat bare-bones system consisting of:
Antec Atlas 550 case with 550w psu
MSI G31tm-p21 mainboard
Intel E6300 Core 2 duo 1.87ghz
2x2gb Kingston DDR2 800mhz ram-KTD-DM8400C6/2G
Seagate 250gb sata hd
and one big exhaust fan
I added a couple more fans to get the air moving more and also threw in a Galaxy Geforce GTS 450 gc I picked up for real cheap. The goal for this system was just to get me up and gaming again cheaply but, I have ran into some issue's with frame rates being just slightly slower than I would like in some games. So here I am wanting to crank up the E6300. I have read all the good stuff about how insanely far these can be pushed and want to give it a shot. I have an idea what cpu cooler I will go with, I wont name any names. The case cooling seems very adequate. The only problem is I barely remember jack from when I was younger doing this stuff. I know tons of people have had much success with this cpu and I was hoping for a little insight as to what settings actually need to be adjusted per my setup. I did a lot of reading in the last few days and I'm still feeling lost. From what I've read I have gathered that many people are only adjusting the fsb clock speed up from 266mhz to 300-400mhz without adjusting any other settings and getting stable results. As far as adjusting memory voltage/timing, its way over my head at this point. Then I read on another few how-to's and guides that tell you will need to lock the pci-e/pci speed and lock the memory speed, set the memory voltage to 2.2 or 1.8, adjust cpu voltage, memory latency and so on and so forth.... This is where I am lost. I understand the fsb X multiplier lingo but, there seems to be alot more to it than there used to be. By no means am I asking for a complete explanation on how to overclock, just maybe some pointers or first hand experience from some helpful people who have done this or something similar.
that you need to do is to overclock the CPU rather than the VGA is true .. if you oveclcock vga what happens is the bottleneck will worsen, and this is a guide to overclock your system and need to watch and keep the temperature :
Ok, I have read through that guide a few times earlier today and a few times after you posted the link. I don't understand the relationship between the fsb clock and memory clock. I am very confused about the "dividers?" This stuff wasn't a big deal years ago. All of the numbers are so much different these days. What I would really like to do is a fsb of 333x7 or 366x7 but I'm not understanding how to setup the memory so I don't go over 800mhz? And I'm also having trouble finding any info on the timing of the memory. I'm trying to relearn enough of this to get this thing overclocked and stable, nothing more. The more I read the more confused I'm getting
you should be able to unlink the memory clock in BIOS and just set it to 800mhz. Forget memory timing at this stage. Focus on the CPU. The motherboard will also have a point at which the FSB cant be pushed further without instability. First things first, get some temperature readings at stock speeds. Download HWmonitor to monitor temps and prime95 to put some load on the cpu. measure idle temps and temps under load and get back to us. if your getting over 65C under load then you have no room for overclocking without better heat sink and fan. The best value HSF at the moment is the Coolermaster Hyper 212+. With that and a fan for your north bridge (if it doesnt already have one) we should be able to get you close to 3ghz. After getting a new HSF for my e6600 im off to try get it over 3ghz, it did 3ghz on the stock HSF.
Ok, after a very late night and a date with a six pack I can now say I understand what I'm doing. I got all the hardware monitoring apps.. hwmoniter, coretemp, cpuid, everest, prime 95. I went ahead and bumped my fsb to 333, locked my pcie freq, set my divider @ 1:1 etc. I got 40-45c on the cpu while idling. Loaded prime95 and watched the temps go strait to 65+c. I panic'd shut her down, restarted and did a prime95 test at stock settings. 38-42c idling and 58-62c loaded. I will be going to Microcenter today and picking up the best cpu cooler I can. I also installed a fan in the side of my case over the video card but I have a question. Should this fan be intake or exhausting?
Not sure what the standard reply is but my solution is Test it yourself! Its really easy to flip the orientation and following an informed opinion won't always give the best results. There are lots of variables and simply a quick test to put your mind at ease.
As I type I am overclocked to 333x7-2.33ghz with the CoolerMaster 212+ and running prime95 in the background. With 100% load my core temps have stabilized at 49*c on HWmoniter and 44* on coretemp. The idle temps are about 30-38*c. I haven't touched any other settings except the setting a 1:2 divider and locking the pci-e freq. The ram latency/timing is set to auto but when I check it in the bios it appears to be running correctly at 5-5-5-15 I believe. Whats next? seems like I've got some headroom!
ok, you dont need to panic until it gets to 80C, just dont run it at that temp for extended periods. you should be able to get to 3ghz with those temps providing your FSB is stable and you increase CPU voltage a bit. try to keep your ram at 800mhz or under otherwise you will have to overvolt it and lower timings which is tricky and risky.
Ok, I seem to be stuck at 333x7, if I increase any further I can't seem to keep the memory speed in check. I tried going to 400 because it seems to be the only point other than 333 where I can set a divider to get the memory @ 800mhz and no go. It wont boot up at all. One problem seems to be that with any number in between 333 and 400 I cant set the memory to 800 due to having only 6 divider options. I haven't tried many settings but nothing I have tried seems to want to boot up. It also seems that I do not have memory or cpu voltage control from the bios. I really want to crank this thing up higher, any idea's?
can you set it to under 800? a few mhz over 800 should be ok, but too much and you will need to start playing with memory voltage and timings to get it stable. If your motherboard doesnt support voltage increase then there isnt much you can do. I dont think those g31 motherboards are rated above 1066 mhz anyway so it may be a challenge to get stable overclocks. You may just have to settle for the 333x7
Ok, the furthest you can push this thing is 340 with a 1:20 divider. The memory will push till 816mhz and that's it. I'm going to leave it at 333x7 and start looking into a better cpu or a new mobo, or heck I may buy both and some new ram too!
With the 25% overclock I am seeing a pretty good increase in frame rates, but it'll still get down around 18fps in FSX with weather and lots of traffic/scenery.
My $200-300 build is starting to cost more and more...
that setup is not worth spending any more money on IMO. http://www.msi.com/product/mb/G31TM-P21.html#Spec your motherboard can suport quad cores. Id say if you can find a q6600 or similar from ebay and overclock to 3ghz, which should be pretty easy, thats about as far as i would take that setup. If you have to replace the motherboard you should switch platforms as it will cost you too much to upgrade your current setup for the performance you will get, you may as well go an AMD quad core with a board that will support the new bulldozer processors. then at least you have access to high clocked quad cores that will be much cheaper than finding old core 2 quads.