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X2 550 BE Unlock - Strange Stability Issues

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October 4, 2012 1:06:23 PM

So I've been reading loads on this and have tried unlocking my 550, I'm new to core unlocking and overclocking but I've done a lot of reading and a lot of testing and my theory is that I have 'uncovered' either an issue with my RAM that I didn't know about or an issues with the MB but I want to confirm before going out and buying components.
So I unlocked to 4 cores and can get the system to boot to windows with the RAM running at it's rated 1333 7-7-7-20 with 1.8v. I don't have to change any of the core settings and all seems stable to boot up.
I run prime small FFT and it seems to be able to run all day - blend causes almost immediate crash.
If I run windows for a while it will freeze/crash too.
So I play around with settings for days trying to get it stable, can't get it stable
Next I lock down the cores again, back to 2 cores with standard settings, run prime small FFT no probs again but blend immediately crashes still.
So from what I've read on the internet the fact I can boot into windows no probs and run small FFT all day says my unlocked cores should be ok, not only that but blend crashes my pc with cores locked or unlocked the same shows (or strongly hints) that the issue is with my memory. I've tried different ram settings, relaxed timings etc but it still immediately crashes on blend. It's definitely more stable on 2 cores and I can play games, use my computer for days like this but blend = immediate crash...

So my question is what is or could be causing the instability in my system, specs below

400Mb corsair PSU
HD 7850
X2 550 BE
4Gb OCZ 1333Mhz 7-7-7-12 1.8v DDR3
2 x 1Tb Seagate HDD
1 x 512Mb Seagate HDD
DVD RW
Some USB stuff

I know my PSU is only just powerful enough but it's a good PSU and should have enough juice, what's the best recommended course considering I can't test with other parts and don't want to start shelling out without knowing what's up - my system seems stable all the time except when using prime on 2 cores, but I'd really like to get up and running with 4 cores as they 'seem' stable

Cheers

James
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 4, 2012 1:55:05 PM

vincerhodes said:
So I've been reading loads on this and have tried unlocking my 550, I'm new to core unlocking and overclocking but I've done a lot of reading and a lot of testing and my theory is that I have 'uncovered' either an issue with my RAM that I didn't know about or an issues with the MB but I want to confirm before going out and buying components.
So I unlocked to 4 cores and can get the system to boot to windows with the RAM running at it's rated 1333 7-7-7-20 with 1.8v. I don't have to change any of the core settings and all seems stable to boot up.
I run prime small FFT and it seems to be able to run all day - blend causes almost immediate crash.
If I run windows for a while it will freeze/crash too.
So I play around with settings for days trying to get it stable, can't get it stable
Next I lock down the cores again, back to 2 cores with standard settings, run prime small FFT no probs again but blend immediately crashes still.
So from what I've read on the internet the fact I can boot into windows no probs and run small FFT all day says my unlocked cores should be ok, not only that but blend crashes my pc with cores locked or unlocked the same shows (or strongly hints) that the issue is with my memory. I've tried different ram settings, relaxed timings etc but it still immediately crashes on blend. It's definitely more stable on 2 cores and I can play games, use my computer for days like this but blend = immediate crash...

So my question is what is or could be causing the instability in my system, specs below

400Mb corsair PSU
HD 7850
X2 550 BE
4Gb OCZ 1333Mhz 7-7-7-12 1.8v DDR3
2 x 1Tb Seagate HDD
1 x 512Mb Seagate HDD
DVD RW
Some USB stuff

I know my PSU is only just powerful enough but it's a good PSU and should have enough juice, what's the best recommended course considering I can't test with other parts and don't want to start shelling out without knowing what's up - my system seems stable all the time except when using prime on 2 cores, but I'd really like to get up and running with 4 cores as they 'seem' stable

Cheers

James


I went to Newegg and just started checking what the wattage PSU was recommended for that 7850 and those that post that spec all say 500 watt PSU is needed.

So...., if that is true that would explain better performance with 2 cores over 4 (less wattage needed to operate the CPU) and general instability issues.

I also checked Seasonic 400W PSU 12V rail and it is 30 Amps as opposed to 38 Amps with the 500W PSU. I do not know if you ever plan to go Crossfire or not but I'd say a higher rated PSU is in order. Remember you are powering usb stuff as well. I would also buy more PSU than I need for your current set-up and for future possible expansion.

Good luck to you. :sol: 
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October 4, 2012 2:12:16 PM

The psu is fine for that system.

I have to question your memory. I never knew 1.8v DDR3 existed.

Look at the sticker on your dimms and tell me it DOES NOT say 1.8v.
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October 4, 2012 2:31:46 PM

geekapproved said:
The psu is fine for that system.

I have to question your memory. I never knew 1.8v DDR3 existed.

Look at the sticker on your dimms and tell me it DOES NOT say 1.8v.


I guess I'm old school , but if the mfg says 500W recommened for their product that is what I would use at the very least. LINK Scroll down in details.

Before SB I bought OCZ 16000 DDR3 rated for 1.9V for my Q9550 platform. :sol: 
a c 108 à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 4, 2012 2:54:10 PM


4Gb 1333Mhz DDR3 at 7-7-7-12 seems really *iffy* to me.

You should check the JEDEC ratings of your memory in the SPD tab of CPUz.

a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 4, 2012 3:09:24 PM

Ok guys I completely agree that if P95 Blend causes a crash that just screams memory problems.

Quote:
I've tried different ram settings, relaxed timings etc but it still immediately crashes on blend. It's definitely more stable on 2 cores and I can play games, use my computer for days like this but blend = immediate crash...


Maybe his voltage is set incorrectly and he has timings that are too tight, at least part of the time any ways.

I assumed, maybe incorrectly, that he set his ram @ stock settings first then tested as well. Also that PSU he has obviously is working in his PC but is always at or nearly at its max and eventually heats up enough that it cannot keep up with the current demands.

Sure would be nice if the OP would come back with more info, like what USB devices is he running as well. :??: 
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a b K Overclocking
October 4, 2012 6:39:52 PM

arthurh said:
I guess I'm old school , but if the mfg says 500W recommened for their product that is what I would use at the very least. LINK Scroll down in details.

Before SB I bought OCZ 16000 DDR3 rated for 1.9V for my Q9550 platform. :sol: 



Those recommendations are highly overstated. My computer uses more power than his and I'm running a 380w psu with 150w of headroom left.

Old DDR3 may have been high voltage, but anything made in the last year is 1.5v or less.


a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 4, 2012 10:44:34 PM

Quote:
Those recommendations are highly overstated. My computer uses more power than his and I'm running a 380w psu with 150w of headroom left.


You probably have some headroom at idle but check this review on a 5850. LINK

At the beginning of this review it states the wattage as 151W, but obviously it uses more under load and no it doesn't run maxed out in a game all the time.

Quote:
Old DDR3 may have been high voltage, but anything made in the last year is 1.5v or less.


When SB first came out DDR3 had a 1.65V and as time went by it became 1.5V. Yes it may have been at least a year since that voltage became the standard. So I can agree with you on that without reservation.

But...., if I were building a PC for someone I would definitely use a higher wattage PSU with his specs. Just me I guess. :) 
a c 185 à CPUs
a c 150 K Overclocking
October 5, 2012 12:01:57 AM

arthurh said:
I guess I'm old school , but if the mfg says 500W recommened for their product that is what I would use at the very least. LINK Scroll down in details.

Before SB I bought OCZ 16000 DDR3 rated for 1.9V for my Q9550 platform. :sol: 

Eh, they over state those requirements....better having happy customers I suppose. :whistle: 
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 5, 2012 12:09:54 AM

arthurh said:
Quote:
Those recommendations are highly overstated. My computer uses more power than his and I'm running a 380w psu with 150w of headroom left.


You probably have some headroom at idle but check this review on a 5850. LINK

At the beginning of this review it states the wattage as 151W, but obviously it uses more under load and no it doesn't run maxed out in a game all the time.

Quote:
Old DDR3 may have been high voltage, but anything made in the last year is 1.5v or less.


When SB first came out DDR3 had a 1.65V and as time went by it became 1.5V. Yes it may have been at least a year since that voltage became the standard. So I can agree with you on that without reservation.

But...., if I were building a PC for someone I would definitely use a higher wattage PSU with his specs. Just me I guess. :) 


Did you even read your own link? That's the power the entire computer draws with a 130w cpu. I have a 65w cpu and a tiny micro motherboard.

The max power a 5850 uses is 150w. When I upgrade to a new 7850 and a Ivy quad, my new parts will use LESS power, not more, so I'll still be running my 380w.

He doesn't need a higher wattage psu.
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October 5, 2012 12:25:08 AM

Quote:
Eh, they over state those requirements....better having happy customers I suppose. :whistle: 


If you know absolutely that they will not buy another GPU in the future, you might get away with it. I build to last so mostly my builds are robust, even for my customers.

The over statement as I understand it is what the GPU is capable of drawing in watts. Since we usaully do not run our GPUs maxed out all the time you could use a lower wattage than called for PSU and work okay.

If I am missing something please do tell me as I do not want to be giving out bad info, I'm human too ya know. :hello: 
October 5, 2012 10:34:23 AM

Hi,

Sorry it's took me a while to get back, been busy with work.

So my RAM is this RAM... as you can see it's rated 1.8v 7-7-7-20 1333 RAM, bought it in June 2009 so yeah it's fairly old.

PC has been running perfectly for a few days now with my RAM setup as above in BIOS and CPU locked to 2 cores but again I know if I run prime blend it will die immediately.

As for the PSU I know it's only just enough but it should cover what I have installed, I calculated using the extremetech PSU calculator and left headroom for ageing etc - also my recent GPU upgrade uses less power than before due to newer tech. The PSU is a Corsair CX 80+ certified so not a crap PSU either.

As for USB devices I've got XBOX controller dock for charging, XBOX wireless receiver and a wireless Mouse/Keyboard receiver wired up.

If I need to shell out on RAM, MOBO or PSU then I'm happy to if it will make my system stable, I just don't know where the problem is though - still thinking RAM tbh and it's the cheapest option to upgrade.
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a b K Overclocking
October 5, 2012 1:21:14 PM

arthurh said:
Quote:
Eh, they over state those requirements....better having happy customers I suppose. :whistle: 


If you know absolutely that they will not buy another GPU in the future, you might get away with it. I build to last so mostly my builds are robust, even for my customers.

The over statement as I understand it is what the GPU is capable of drawing in watts. Since we usaully do not run our GPUs maxed out all the time you could use a lower wattage than called for PSU and work okay.

If I am missing something please do tell me as I do not want to be giving out bad info, I'm human too ya know. :hello: 


Yes your missing something. The overstatement is because they don't know if your running a 175w overclocked cpu, or a 35w cpu. They don't know if you have a mini-itx mobo or a full high end ATX board. They don't know if you have 1 hd or 10 hd's. They don't know if your running a soundcard, 2 dvd drives, 10 fans and 5 usb devices (speakers, mouse, keyboard, ext. hd, coffee warmer, printer, etc.

The second main reason, is a cheapo 500w psu, may only put out 350 real watts, because like cheap speaker manufacturers, they use cheat calculations to come up with a wattage figure. Ever see cheap car speakers that say 100w, but they really are like 10w?
So while a 400w psu would be more than capable of running the system, they tell you to use a 500w to cover those that have cheap crap.

Also, newer tech uses less power, not more, so a gpu or cpu upgrade will likely use less power. For example, I'm running a 380w psu with a 65w dual core cpu and a 150w HD5850. When I upgrade to a 95w Ivy Quad core and a 110w HD7850, I'll be using 10w less than I do now.
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a b K Overclocking
October 5, 2012 2:11:25 PM

vincerhodes said:
Hi,

Sorry it's took me a while to get back, been busy with work.

So my RAM is this RAM... as you can see it's rated 1.8v 7-7-7-20 1333 RAM, bought it in June 2009 so yeah it's fairly old.

PC has been running perfectly for a few days now with my RAM setup as above in BIOS and CPU locked to 2 cores but again I know if I run prime blend it will die immediately.

As for the PSU I know it's only just enough but it should cover what I have installed, I calculated using the extremetech PSU calculator and left headroom for ageing etc - also my recent GPU upgrade uses less power than before due to newer tech. The PSU is a Corsair CX 80+ certified so not a crap PSU either.

As for USB devices I've got XBOX controller dock for charging, XBOX wireless receiver and a wireless Mouse/Keyboard receiver wired up.

If I need to shell out on RAM, MOBO or PSU then I'm happy to if it will make my system stable, I just don't know where the problem is though - still thinking RAM tbh and it's the cheapest option to upgrade.


There are reasons that OCZ is no longer in the RAMs business :D 


a c 95 à CPUs
a c 224 K Overclocking
October 5, 2012 2:42:44 PM

vincerhodes said:
So I've been reading loads on this and have tried unlocking my 550, I'm new to core unlocking and overclocking but I've done a lot of reading and a lot of testing and my theory is that I have 'uncovered' either an issue with my RAM that I didn't know about or an issues with the MB but I want to confirm before going out and buying components.
So I unlocked to 4 cores and can get the system to boot to windows with the RAM running at it's rated 1333 7-7-7-20 with 1.8v. I don't have to change any of the core settings and all seems stable to boot up.
I run prime small FFT and it seems to be able to run all day - blend causes almost immediate crash.
If I run windows for a while it will freeze/crash too.
So I play around with settings for days trying to get it stable, can't get it stable
Next I lock down the cores again, back to 2 cores with standard settings, run prime small FFT no probs again but blend immediately crashes still.
So from what I've read on the internet the fact I can boot into windows no probs and run small FFT all day says my unlocked cores should be ok, not only that but blend crashes my pc with cores locked or unlocked the same shows (or strongly hints) that the issue is with my memory. I've tried different ram settings, relaxed timings etc but it still immediately crashes on blend. It's definitely more stable on 2 cores and I can play games, use my computer for days like this but blend = immediate crash...

So my question is what is or could be causing the instability in my system, specs below

400Mb corsair PSU
HD 7850
X2 550 BE
4Gb OCZ 1333Mhz 7-7-7-12 1.8v DDR3
2 x 1Tb Seagate HDD
1 x 512Mb Seagate HDD
DVD RW
Some USB stuff

I know my PSU is only just powerful enough but it's a good PSU and should have enough juice, what's the best recommended course considering I can't test with other parts and don't want to start shelling out without knowing what's up - my system seems stable all the time except when using prime on 2 cores, but I'd really like to get up and running with 4 cores as they 'seem' stable

Cheers

James


What makes you think you can buy the cheapest available hardware then get maximum gains from it, there's no guarantee you can open the 2 closed cores and have a stable CPU under stress loading, you were never given those guarantees.

AMD had a reason to close those cores and just because you can side step and open them does not mean they'll run stable.

And just because you opened Pandoras box and now have closed it, that your initial actions may be the reason you have problems now, did you ever have a stable system in the first place?

Do you even know!

geekapproved said:
The psu is fine for that system.

I have to question your memory. I never knew 1.8v DDR3 existed.

Look at the sticker on your dimms and tell me it DOES NOT say 1.8v.


The power supply may be fine until you bring overclocking into the picture and this is the overclocking section!

So many get into trouble with the barely getting by power supplies and wonder why they don't handle loads that were not specified to handle.

As far as you not knowing of 1.8v DDR3 memories existence;

The first link will really educate you!

If you are completely unaware of 1.8v DDR3, 2.0v DDR3 should shock you!

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820220344

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820104016

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227310

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820104261

http://www.ocztechnology.com/ocz-ddr3-pc3-10666-platinum-edition.html



arthurh said:
I guess I'm old school , but if the mfg says 500W recommened for their product that is what I would use at the very least. LINK Scroll down in details.

Before SB I bought OCZ 16000 DDR3 rated for 1.9V for my Q9550 platform. :sol: 


arthurh said:
Ok guys I completely agree that if P95 Blend causes a crash that just screams memory problems.

Quote:
I've tried different ram settings, relaxed timings etc but it still immediately crashes on blend. It's definitely more stable on 2 cores and I can play games, use my computer for days like this but blend = immediate crash...


Maybe his voltage is set incorrectly and he has timings that are too tight, at least part of the time any ways.

I assumed, maybe incorrectly, that he set his ram @ stock settings first then tested as well. Also that PSU he has obviously is working in his PC but is always at or nearly at its max and eventually heats up enough that it cannot keep up with the current demands.

Sure would be nice if the OP would come back with more info, like what USB devices is he running as well. :??: 


As a fellow overclocker I'm fully aware of your power supply recommendations being to some stated as overkill but your intentions are to keep the OP well on the safe side of things power wise.

If you've missed anything here is that the AMD CPU the OP has opened 2 closed cores on was never a guaranteed stability endeavor.

geekapproved said:
Those recommendations are highly overstated. My computer uses more power than his and I'm running a 380w psu with 150w of headroom left.

Old DDR3 may have been high voltage, but anything made in the last year is 1.5v or less.


arthurh said:
Quote:
Those recommendations are highly overstated. My computer uses more power than his and I'm running a 380w psu with 150w of headroom left.


You probably have some headroom at idle but check this review on a 5850. LINK

At the beginning of this review it states the wattage as 151W, but obviously it uses more under load and no it doesn't run maxed out in a game all the time.

Quote:
Old DDR3 may have been high voltage, but anything made in the last year is 1.5v or less.


When SB first came out DDR3 had a 1.65V and as time went by it became 1.5V. Yes it may have been at least a year since that voltage became the standard. So I can agree with you on that without reservation.

But...., if I were building a PC for someone I would definitely use a higher wattage PSU with his specs. Just me I guess. :) 


geekapproved said:
Did you even read your own link? That's the power the entire computer draws with a 130w cpu. I have a 65w cpu and a tiny micro motherboard.

The max power a 5850 uses is 150w. When I upgrade to a new 7850 and a Ivy quad, my new parts will use LESS power, not more, so I'll still be running my 380w.

He doesn't need a higher wattage psu.


geekapproved said:
Yes your missing something. The overstatement is because they don't know if your running a 175w overclocked cpu, or a 35w cpu. They don't know if you have a mini-itx mobo or a full high end ATX board. They don't know if you have 1 hd or 10 hd's. They don't know if your running a soundcard, 2 dvd drives, 10 fans and 5 usb devices (speakers, mouse, keyboard, ext. hd, coffee warmer, printer, etc.

The second main reason, is a cheapo 500w psu, may only put out 350 real watts, because like cheap speaker manufacturers, they use cheat calculations to come up with a wattage figure. Ever see cheap car speakers that say 100w, but they really are like 10w?
So while a 400w psu would be more than capable of running the system, they tell you to use a 500w to cover those that have cheap crap.

Also, newer tech uses less power, not more, so a gpu or cpu upgrade will likely use less power. For example, I'm running a 380w psu with a 65w dual core cpu and a 150w HD5850. When I upgrade to a 95w Ivy Quad core and a 110w HD7850, I'll be using 10w less than I do now.


This power supply argument is totally irrelevant!

There are no guarantees opening a closed AMD core will be a successful endeavor, personally I suggest the OP close the cores he has opened and get back to a stable system, (It may require a complete BIOS Clear CMOS to have the closing of the cores actually become effective!), and if that's not possible, well let this be a lesson of what not to do, and next time buy from the beginning what you can depend on, to go past hardware specifications and requirements.

Ryan
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 5, 2012 5:41:21 PM

I never said 1.8v memory doesn't exist. I said it's friggin old if it's 1.8v.

I also never recommended he unlock his cores and overclock.

And the power supply argument is COMPLETELY relevent to the conversation I was having with Arthur.

Not sure what part of the conversation confused you.
a c 95 à CPUs
a c 224 K Overclocking
October 6, 2012 6:06:30 PM

geekapproved said:
The psu is fine for that system.

I have to question your memory. I never knew 1.8v DDR3 existed.

Look at the sticker on your dimms and tell me it DOES NOT say 1.8v.


geekapproved said:
I never said 1.8v memory doesn't exist. I said it's friggin old if it's 1.8v.

I also never recommended he unlock his cores and overclock.

And the power supply argument is COMPLETELY relevent to the conversation I was having with Arthur.

Not sure what part of the conversation confused you.



I quoted exactly what you said!, and here's quoting it for you again.

Obviously I'm not the one confused here! ;) 


October 8, 2012 12:42:29 PM

Thank you all for your responses.

Ryan - while I'm sure you know what you're talking about, your quotes/comments seem aimed at antagonising... I don't assume anything and didn't say that I did, I'm just trying my luck like everyone else who attempts this, where did I say I'm assuming I can unlock... FYI the cores are locked down now and my computer is running just fine and seems stable for literally everything except running Prime blend - i.e. I can play games, watch films and leave my computer on all the time if I wish.

Oh and the comments about buying cheap components are complete rubbish, obviously if money was no object then I wouldn't be here trying to unlock a 2 core to a 4 core, I'd just buy a better processor to start with... like almost all people trying to unlock a 550 BE I'm just trying my luck with cheaper components.

What this has demonstrated to me is that I probably never had a completely stable system as far as prime was concerned... if I was doing this over again I would have run Prime first to make sure it was stable to start with... what I am going to do now is buy some new RAM first, see if that gets me stability and if so try to unlock again, if I need to then I'll also upgrade my PSU.

Again thank you all for your help, it's been really useful and if I have any luck unlocking then I'll post updates.

James
a c 108 à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 8, 2012 4:14:29 PM


First try to reduce your RAMs timings ....

Run CPUz and check the JEDEC standard (under the SPD tab) -- take that one notch slower.

OCZ 1333Mhz 7-7-7-12 1.8v DDR3

If *12* is your tRAS, that is a whole 'noher issue. JEDEC DDR3 standards are 7-7-7-20 for DDR3-1066 and 8-8-8-24 for DDR3-1333

Take manual control and run something like 9-9-9-28 at 1333 -- you may be able to drop your volts, too, once you check for stability.

October 9, 2012 12:34:31 PM

Will give it a try when I'm back home, I've tried using the JEDEC standards and it was more unstable - without looking I think they were 8-8-8-24 but I don't think I tried one higher - will let you know.
a c 108 à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
October 9, 2012 2:14:15 PM


Sad to say, but OEMs can *over-clock* memory, too.

It is important to tweak timings and voltages (!) in finding your sweet spot -- some would recommend taking your timings even lower to take the RAMs completely out of the equation.

It is also important to use OEM qualified memory for the motherboard. It gives you a legitimate reason to hound them mercilessly when there are problems regarding operations.


October 10, 2012 11:18:15 AM

8GB GSKILL 1600Mhz RAM ordered, will see if I can get a stable system tomorrow
!