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Overclocking Wall Hit with Phenom II x4 965 BE

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January 2, 2013 2:24:46 PM

Hello,

I have recently kinda hit a wall with my processor's clock speed. Right now it is at 3.9 GHz without me changing the Vcore voltage. I wish to at least push it to 4 GHz then I'll be happy. However, when I increase the multiplier, the Prime95 test is failed.

So, I tried increasing the voltage on the CPU (the voltage was already high with stock settings so increasing it made it go past 1.5 V).

Doing this made it last awhile in Prime95 testing but it eventually failed. Also my temps were pretty warm (almost 60 C)

So since the voltage is already high I was wondering what else I could do to push the CPU to 4 GHz? I have done a little research and it sounds like I might have to tweak the memory and northbridge freqs but I am not super sure about it.

Any help would be appreciated!

Btw this is my first time overclocking I feel pretty good about it so far.
a c 132 à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
January 2, 2013 2:37:45 PM

Since you are using a BE cpu with any unlocked multi, you are not stressing the memory controller or anything else.

When you used to increase bus speeds, you would stress other parts of the system.

Chances are this is just what your chip can do, All are different.

You can try to drop the memory frequency, but I am not sure it will help any.
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January 2, 2013 2:41:04 PM

I've been reading that 3.9 is is it for that chip, what kinda cooler u running?
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January 2, 2013 2:43:46 PM

I was thinking this might be the end as well :( 

I am running a Cooolermaster Hyper 212 EVO
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January 2, 2013 3:22:07 PM

Unless u do a custom water loop, 3.9 is probly it, not really worth it on a 99 dollar chip tho
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January 2, 2013 3:24:20 PM

Thing is I have seen people OC it to 4 GHz and i just want that extra 100 MHz then I'll be happy haha but if not then Ill just be happy with what I got. Im pretty impressed with it so far to be honest
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January 2, 2013 3:46:27 PM

Your not going to notice 100MHz increase. However increasing your NB to 2800-3000Mhz will provide significant performance gain.
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January 2, 2013 4:27:59 PM

Well make sure you have a manually controlled fan curve set up so your cpu fan cranks up to 100% at around 52C.

Are cool n quiet, C1E, as well as spread spectrum disabled? And be sure windows power management is set to performance mode with min/max cpu settings at 100% and system cooling policy is set to active.

Since you are new to overclocking I'd recommend you disable LLC for now and if you understand offset voltage use that if not just use manual voltage.

What HSF are you using?

Don't go over 60C cpu temp!

If prime fails you need more voltage on the vcore, sometimes 4.0Ghz on a deneb will be hard to hit with air cooling. 4.0Ghz was my max with a 212+ in P/P

Sheepsnowadays is right the N/B bump will provide substantial performance gains, but continue to focus on the cpu clocks untill you're 100% satisfied then work on the N/B overclock.
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January 2, 2013 4:57:43 PM

had my 965 running at 4.1 on a crosshair formula iv your temp does seem high so that will be the problem as the max temp for that cpu is 62 C
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January 2, 2013 5:07:48 PM

mlcaouette said:
Well make sure you have a manually controlled fan curve set up so your cpu fan cranks up to 100% at around 52C.

Are cool n quiet, C1E, as well as spread spectrum disabled? And be sure windows power management is set to performance mode with min/max cpu settings at 100% and system cooling policy is set to active.

Since you are new to overclocking I'd recommend you disable LLC for now and if you understand offset voltage use that if not just use manual voltage.

What HSF are you using?

Don't go over 60C cpu temp!

If prime fails you need more voltage on the vcore, sometimes 4.0Ghz on a deneb will be hard to hit with air cooling. 4.0Ghz was my max with a 212+ in P/P

Sheepsnowadays is right the N/B bump will provide substantial performance gains, but continue to focus on the cpu clocks untill you're 100% satisfied then work on the N/B overclock.


Cool n quiet are disabled as well as C1E however I have not checked spread spectrum. Also I believe Windows Power Management is seto to performance mode although I will double check. I am very skeptical on increasing the voltage from this point on as the temp is pretty mmuch the max it will be without being the in the danger zone.
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January 2, 2013 5:22:58 PM

Have you set up the manual fan curve as I suggested to bring temps down? If temps are still a problem you should reapply the TIM and reevaluate case airflow (maybe try with the sidepanel off).
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January 2, 2013 6:24:20 PM

I just ran Prime95 Small FFTs and my computer seems stable. Running Blend test now.

And mlcaiuette I have not. What is the best way to do this?
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January 2, 2013 6:56:34 PM

I use asus ai suite II for fan control, but if that is not an option you can usually control them within the bios. You can also use speedfan but it is a little bit more work to set up than the other methods.

What is your vcore set at for 4.0Ghz and what does cpu-z report it to be under load?
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January 2, 2013 7:06:43 PM

Looks like AMD overdrive also offers fan control
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January 2, 2013 7:16:22 PM

Ok. I am not home at the moment but I will use AMD Overdrive to tweak fan settings.

Also, in BIOS CPU Voltage is set to 1.5 V. However, CPU-Z reports 1.568 V under Prime95 load.

Thanks for all the advice by the way
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January 2, 2013 7:55:17 PM

That's really high above the recommended max of 1.55v. Is LLC disabled?
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January 2, 2013 8:32:34 PM

I busy ocing the same chip right now and its at 3.8ghz 1.47v but under load it goes down to 1.43~1.44 temps are good at 45c do i try to go to 4ghz or stop here and try messing with the cpu/nb but i dont know wich voltage to use here and is it standard 2000mhz? will going to 2400 need more voltage and will this affect the ram in any way?
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January 2, 2013 8:54:34 PM

spaufkop said:
I busy ocing the same chip right now and its at 3.8ghz 1.47v but under load it goes down to 1.43~1.44 temps are good at 45c do i try to go to 4ghz or stop here and try messing with the cpu/nb but i dont know wich voltage to use here and is it standard 2000mhz? will going to 2400 need more voltage and will this affect the ram in any way?


Start a new thread and link it to this one, then I'd be happy to help you out. We don't want to clog up the original posters thread.
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January 2, 2013 8:59:54 PM

Ok sorry about that.
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January 3, 2013 3:40:34 AM

Sorry for being gone for a bit. What is LLC? Btw after 7 hours my 4 GHz 1.568 V OC has dropped a "worker" on Prime95 Blend Test
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January 3, 2013 3:41:28 AM

Also my memory timings arent set to the manufacturer's default of 9-9-9 if that makes any difference.
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a c 132 à CPUs
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January 3, 2013 3:56:01 AM

I would see how far you can get with large in place. while blend tests memory and indeed incompatible or not 100% memory can be caught with it, any cpu issues can also give an error on blend.

LLC is load line calibration. It prevents voltage drop at load and when set real high can even increase load voltage. It is sometimes desirable if you just need that little bit and do not want to use and offset or loose power savings settings. Let not mess with that, your voltage is already high enough.

What are your memory timings? lower numbers are like overclocking while higher numbers are like underclocking. If you are shooting for lower numbers, make sure you are running at the memory's required voltage or even a bit over(don't go overboard.).

While overclocking it is best to try to take the memory out of the equation, so maybe running it at stock or even slightly under while testing the cpu may be an idea.

Once the cpu is stable, then you can try to tighten memory timings and whatnot.
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January 3, 2013 4:05:19 AM

My memory timings are at 11-11-11 for some reason while the clock speeds are 1600 MHz which are stock for my specific memory. I have not touched the memory voltage so it remains at 1.5 V.

Load Line Control is set to Auto (there is no disable option).

I ran Small FFT in Prime95 with no error. Since it doesnt test RAM does that mean it is a RAM issue if Blend Test failed?
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January 3, 2013 4:13:20 AM

how long did you run for?

some times you need ever so slight voltage tweaks, but at those timings, the memory should not be hard to run.

What memory is it anyway?
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January 3, 2013 5:39:12 AM

Getting into/past the 4.0ghz range on our CPU isn't impossible at all, but it does often require some degree of patience and enough attention to detail to start picking up on behavior trends. For example, I actually have found that at least with my model motherboard, there is a much easier path to stability with the NB set to stay within 1.8-2.0ghz of the processor's clock. Higher and it's instant failure, lower and I get random crashes under heavy load. You might do well to try leaving the rest as is and kicking up the NB multiplier one stage from wherever you are almost stable at. If that doesn't do it alone, I'd start playing with very gradual voltage increases to the NB and NB-CPU.

Keep in mind, there is no guarantee that you can hit the speed you're shooting for and still remain within the specified voltage limits either. Most of the time, there is a wall for a given system configuration that isn't going to be crossed without ignoring the guidelines and trusting your judgement. That isn't to say I encourage or discourage you to do so, but the truth is you can usually keep upping the power to open the door to higher clocks right up to the point where you eventually fry something. So, if all else fails, this is one possible path to consider. If I want to use the BIOS profile for my highest stable OC, my 965 is running WAY higher voltage than anyone would call sane. I just watch the temps and otherwise just hope I remain lucky.

Your memory timings shouldn't be that high by default. 11-11-11 being selected automatically by the system points to the possibility of your motherboard not supporting that specific model of RAM module. Whether you have already looked into that or not, I would suggest you try going to 10-10-10-30-1T or 9-9-9-24-2T at the 1600mhz frequency. Loose timings are generally easier to stabilize, but there is a definite point where you can go too far in that direction too.

What power profile are you using in Windows, and is the cooling method set as passive or active? This is something I overlooked for the longest time.
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January 3, 2013 1:52:47 PM

My Windows profile is high performance as was suggested by mlcaouette.

I cannot find an "active" or "passive" fan setting but however my BIOS has a CPU SMART fan control setting where when disabled it runs at fastest speeds but when enabled varies according to temperature. I can disable it and see the results of this.

Also I will work on changing memory timings
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January 3, 2013 4:39:31 PM

AMD's fans have a thermal sensor so yeah, go a head and disable it if noise does not bother you.

That said, it will still get faster if things get hotter due to this sensor(it is like a little green or blue resistor near the motor.).

If you want to FORCE full speed, shorting that out will do it, but it could get quite loud then.
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January 3, 2013 10:17:06 PM

Just to clarify I was suggesting to disable LLC or set it to it's lowest setting until we find what's stable, then the OP can fiddle with LLC to bring idle voltages down.

It seems like the auto setting on your motherboard is cranking LLC to it's max, considering that you set the voltage to 1.50v in bios and under load you were hitting 1.56 according to cpu-z.

What kind of motherboard are you running so I can better assist with settings and there available options.

For memory timings and frequency just manually set them to manufacturers specifications.
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January 4, 2013 2:38:11 PM

Ok sorry for the abscence I have been tweaking my computer a bunch haha.

I managed to get memory stable at 9-9-9-24 and with these timings I get stable up to 3.9 GHz. I am barely stable at 4 GHz. But I found a setting in my BIOS called Hardware Thermal Control (or something like that) which I disabled and it seemed to help me achieve these settings.

mlcaouette my motherboard is http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And again, thanks for all the help guys I learned alot from this experience as well as boosting my computer's performance! :) 
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January 4, 2013 6:31:54 PM

Anything else you you need help overclocking? Northbridge maybe
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January 4, 2013 9:49:25 PM

How would I go about overclocking the Northbridge? I tried it and my computer wasnt really stable at all haha
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January 4, 2013 10:03:30 PM

Just like the cpu, you'll wanna shoot for about 2800Mhz on the N/B. The voltage to change (if you need to) will be cpu-N/B and it is safe up to 1.3v.

Let me know how it goes and keep an eye on those temps.
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January 5, 2013 12:42:23 PM

mlcaouette said:
Just like the cpu, you'll wanna shoot for about 2800Mhz on the N/B. The voltage to change (if you need to) will be cpu-N/B and it is safe up to 1.3v.

Let me know how it goes and keep an eye on those temps.


If your BIOS looks like mine, just always double check that you are setting "NB-CPU" and not just "NB" or "NB-HT" instead. 1.3v is totally safe for the setting you mentioned, but nooot so much for the actual NB. Don't ask how I learned that one....

NB is a good place to focus once you are at the speed you've got stable now. Just be mindful that you are working within a much tighter range of viable settings- there aren't usually half-step multipliers (ie 10.5x), so you are making much more significant adjustments at a time (10x to 11x on the NB is +10% of the frequency; 20x to 20.5x on the CPU is +2.5% of the frequency). So, be conservative with how much you change at one time.
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