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Can I overclock my Core 2 Duo E8600 with my setup?

Last response: in Overclocking
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February 11, 2012 12:25:34 AM

My Setup:

Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I have 3 GB of RAM:

Two Kingston 1 GB Ram
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Two Kingston 512 MB Ram (KVR800D2N5/512)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This is what I want to OC: Dual Core E8600 3.3GHZ (still need to purchase)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=19-115-...


Would this work? Any hardware incompatibilities? Do I need to change any options to OC safely?


Thanks in advance!

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Not sure if this makes any difference, I also have the following:

Antec earthwatts EA380
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Crucial M4 64GB SSD I plan on purchasing as primary OS (XP)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I also have an artic cooler freezer pro 7

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a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
February 11, 2012 2:36:29 AM

I would remove the two sticks of 512MB RAM; having all four DIMMs populated will make your OC much more difficult. I would also look for a 500W 80+ Bronze or better PSU, assuming you will add a discrete graphics card. The Arctic Freezer Pro will work fine.

As soon as you have your system set up, run memtest86+ on your system's stock settings, one stick at a time, and if both pass, then again together. Let memtest run until it has successfully completed a complete cycle. Any errors and you have bad RAM - RMA for replacement - if you cannot RAM it, buy a new set of RAM, and repeat the memtest86 tests.

After you are sure the system works at stock, run some stress tests like Prime95 and OCCT to ensure the system is stable at stock. Once you have that, you can change some BIOS settings for OC. Disable all the CPU options in the BIOS except hyperthreading and increase the CPU voltage to 1.3V

Then get a pencil and paper to write the down the other BIOS settings you change and the results. You want your OC to POST, boot to the OS, and run stable under stress. If you are really, really lucky you'll start with a 400FSB with the RAM divider setting your RAM at its rated settings and achieve a stable OC. But every board and CPU are a little different, so it is likely you will spend a great deal of time through trial and error finding the highest FSB that your system will run stable.
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February 11, 2012 4:50:07 PM

Hey thanks that is a useful guide.

I have a very light setup (Nvidia GeForce 7600GS) and ran the PSU calculator and recommended wattage was about 270W without OC (Stock 3.33GHz 1.2 VCore) and with OCing (4.00Ghz 1.2 VCore) it only increases slightly to 277W. I think I saw a newegg review who said they didn't have to change Vcore and OC'd it at 4Ghz.

Also to be safe I changed it to 4.00Ghz 1.33 Vcore and it increased to 298W/248W. (Recommended PSU wattage/Minimum PSU)
(http://extreme.outervision.com/PSUEngine)

Should this be okay with my 380W? if not I can still invest in a better PSU but would like to save money if I can.

I am more concerned about RAM sticks, can I leave 3? (Either three 1GB's or two 1GB's and one 512MB)


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Btw I have never OC'd before and was wondering- If I followed your instructions to the T and maybe did a little more HW, how safe is it? Over time, does it put any significant risk of damage to my motherboard or any other components or is it just my CPU? Are my hard drives and data at risk?
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February 11, 2012 5:20:26 PM

connect4 said:
Hey thanks that is a useful guide. You're welcome.

I have a very light setup (Nvidia GeForce 7600GS) and ran the PSU calculator and recommended wattage was about 270W without OC (Stock 3.33GHz 1.2 VCore) and with OCing (4.00Ghz 1.2 VCore) it only increases slightly to 277W. I think I saw a newegg review who said they didn't have to change Vcore and OC'd it at 4Ghz. You don't have to change your PSU, give it a try.

Also to be safe I changed it to 4.00Ghz 1.33 Vcore and it increased to 298W/248W. (Recommended PSU wattage/Minimum PSU)
(http://extreme.outervision.com/PSUEngine) When those CPUs came out, most OCers recommended 1.3V, if I remember correctly. 1.36V was the max recommended.

Should this be okay with my 380W? if not I can still invest in a better PSU but would like to save money if I can. Yes, see above.

I am more concerned about RAM sticks, can I leave 3? (Either three 1GB's or two 1GB's and one 512MB) As I said, I would only use 2 1GB sticks, having more than two DIMMs populated will make getting it stable more difficult. If you use more than two, increase your northbridge voltage one or two increments from the default voltage.


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Btw I have never OC'd before and was wondering- If I followed your instructions to the T and maybe did a little more HW, how safe is it? What do you mean by a little more HW? If you're asking about HDDs or other add-in cards, you should be good. Over time, does it put any significant risk of damage to my motherboard or any other components or is it just my CPU? In theory OCing the CPU and RAM could cause damage through the additional heat generated, so watch your temps. I've been OCing both my E8600 and Q9650 for almost 3 years with no adverse effects. Are my hard drives and data at risk? No, you won't be OCing them, and they are located far from the CPU and RAM, so there is no heat-related issue with them.

See above. Look at my configuration. I've had my E8600 stable at ~4.2GHz, but I cannot find the CPU vaildator link right now.

I highly recommend keeping a log of the settings you make to your BIOS and the results: POST, boot to the OS, and stable. Using a log will show the FSB/RAM divider you already tried, so you won't try the "Fails" again.
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a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
February 11, 2012 5:50:43 PM

Here is my log:

Memory Timings FSB CPU CPUv SBv NBv RAMv MemStrap Memory Clock POST mem test86+ boot to OS
5-5-5-15 333 3.330 auto auto auto auto auto 800 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 334 3.330 1.25000 1.51000 1.26500 1.92500 333/800 802 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 400 4.400 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1057 1 0
5-5-5-15 400 4.000 1.23750 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 960 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 400 4.000 1.23750 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 400/1066 1066 0
5-5-5-15 425 4.250 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1021 1 0
5-5-5-15 426 4.260 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1023 1 0
5-5-5-15 428 4.280 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1028 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 429 4.290 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1030 0
5-5-5-15 430 4.300 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1033 1 0
5-5-5-15 433 4.330 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1040 1 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/667 867 1 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.25000 1.64000 1.30400 2.10000 333/800 1045 1 0 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1045 1 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.22500 1.64000 1.30400 2.10000 400/1066 1159 0
5-5-5-15 440 4.400 1.24375 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1057 1 0
5-5-5-15 440 4.400 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1057 1 0
5-5-5-15 440 4.400 1.24375 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 400/800 880 1 0
5-5-5-15 444 4.440 1.25000 1.51000 1.26500 2.10000 333/800 1066 1 0
5-5-5-15 446 4.460 auto auto auto auto auto 1071 0
5-5-5-15 450 4.500 auto 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 0
5-5-5-15 450 4.500 1.25625 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 400/800 900 0


This didn't copy as well I had hoped from the excel log, but you get the idea. The "1" indicates success and "0" is FAIL. When I got to the OS and ran Prime95 and OCCT, the system was stable.

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a c 168 à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
February 11, 2012 6:59:01 PM

Removing RAM:
No. You're wrong. Leave the 3GB of RAM in there. You can run MEMTEST easily enough to ensure your RAM is working properly.

Also, RAM is installed in pairs usually unless you only have one stick. Again, run MEMTEST and leave it if things are fine.

Overclocking CPU:
You need to invest in a CPU heatsink. Spend roughly $40. Need to spend a little time reading comments. NCIX is a good place to start.

Power Supply:
You haven't mentioned your graphics card unless you're just keeping the current one. That's the most important part in deciding on a PSU.

???
It's hard to help if I don't know what you're attempting to accomplish. You don't want to invest too much in an older system. There's no point in getting a new CPU, PSU and graphics card to upgrade this as a gaming PC for example. At that point it's best to build a new system as that would run you $500 or so.

Anyway, if you give me more details I can help better.

Did your current CPU die? Why are you getting a faster one? (because for games your graphics card is the bottleneck)
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a c 168 à CPUs
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February 11, 2012 7:02:52 PM

RAM update:
If you have a 1GB graphics card, you can probably access about 2.5GB of RAM but it's still best to keep all 3GB if possible.

(32-bit Windows can "see" 4GB of total memory which also includes the VRAM on your graphics card. If you had a 1024MB graphics card you would might be able to access 2.5GB of System RAM, but with a 512MB you might get 3GB)
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February 12, 2012 8:52:02 PM

treefrog07 said:
Here is my log:

Memory Timings FSB CPU CPUv SBv NBv RAMv MemStrap Memory Clock POST mem test86+ boot to OS
5-5-5-15 333 3.330 auto auto auto auto auto 800 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 334 3.330 1.25000 1.51000 1.26500 1.92500 333/800 802 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 400 4.400 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1057 1 0
5-5-5-15 400 4.000 1.23750 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 960 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 400 4.000 1.23750 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 400/1066 1066 0
5-5-5-15 425 4.250 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1021 1 0
5-5-5-15 426 4.260 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1023 1 0
5-5-5-15 428 4.280 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1028 1 1 1
5-5-5-15 429 4.290 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1030 0
5-5-5-15 430 4.300 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1033 1 0
5-5-5-15 433 4.330 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1040 1 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/667 867 1 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.25000 1.64000 1.30400 2.10000 333/800 1045 1 0 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1045 1 0
5-5-5-15 435 4.350 1.22500 1.64000 1.30400 2.10000 400/1066 1159 0
5-5-5-15 440 4.400 1.24375 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1057 1 0
5-5-5-15 440 4.400 1.25000 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 1057 1 0
5-5-5-15 440 4.400 1.24375 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 400/800 880 1 0
5-5-5-15 444 4.440 1.25000 1.51000 1.26500 2.10000 333/800 1066 1 0
5-5-5-15 446 4.460 auto auto auto auto auto 1071 0
5-5-5-15 450 4.500 auto 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 333/800 0
5-5-5-15 450 4.500 1.25625 1.51000 1.29100 2.10000 400/800 900 0


This didn't copy as well I had hoped from the excel log, but you get the idea. The "1" indicates success and "0" is FAIL. When I got to the OS and ran Prime95 and OCCT, the system was stable.


Hey thanks for the log, its a great idea.

I still have to purchase and wait for my E8600 to arrive, but I think I might just test out my E2180 right now just to see how much real time difference it makes.
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February 12, 2012 8:59:59 PM

photonboy said:
RAM update:
If you have a 1GB graphics card, you can probably access about 2.5GB of RAM but it's still best to keep all 3GB if possible.

(32-bit Windows can "see" 4GB of total memory which also includes the VRAM on your graphics card. If you had a 1024MB graphics card you would might be able to access 2.5GB of System RAM, but with a 512MB you might get 3GB)


Hi photonboy,

I have a Nvidia Geforce GS7600 512MB.

I am getting a new CPU to increase speed on my computer. I want to get as much out of this system before I invest into a brand new machine.

so I should also get a heatsink on top of my arctic cooler freezer pro? Is it not enough by itself? I also have a "cooler master" case.

And I can keep 4 sticks of ram, as long as MEMTEST passes? And only to remove some if it fails? Worst case scenario, I can always just go with two sticks? (2GB/2GB or 1GB/2GB vs 1GB/1GB)
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March 3, 2012 8:33:54 PM

Best answer selected by connect4.
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a b K Overclocking
March 4, 2012 1:35:04 AM

connect4 said:
Hey thanks for the log, its a great idea.

I still have to purchase and wait for my E8600 to arrive, but I think I might just test out my E2180 right now just to see how much real time difference it makes.
You're welcome. Have some fun with it.
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