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Worth doing?

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January 16, 2013 10:03:09 PM

Hi,

I am saving for a new pc at the moment so this seems a good time to experiment with my existing one. I have never overclocked before but I did read some of the guides on here (about three months ago so I will have to read them again). The prospect did not seem too intimidating although I was still a little vague on a couple of areas.

I am now on the brink of actually attempting an overclock but before I do, I would like some opinions on whether it is worth it with my current hardware and what kind of results I can expect. My current setup is:

Cpu: Yorkfield Intel core 2 quad Q8200
Ram: Samsung m3 78t5663rz3-cf7 (2x2)
Mobo: P5ql pro
Gpu: Nvidia Geforce GTX 285

I have not actually researched how to overclock my gpu yet but that's what Google is for (either that or I'll be back here crying, saying "please help").

My cpu's idle temperature is low 40's and when running at full load will be around 60 (one core 60 the others 57-59). I don't want to spend money on additional fans or other parts so I would have to gauge what I can do with my current cooling.

So with my hadware do you think it will be worth my while? And if anyone fancies helping a noob and taking me through it step by step thats fine (I'm scared! :lol:  ).

More about : worth

a b K Overclocking
January 20, 2013 11:08:20 PM

OCing this rig will only marginally improve its performance. What heatsink/fan are you using? If the stock Intel fan, you should not attempt an OC with it.

Also, inferring from your other 2 posts, you seem to want to change your PCI speed. Doing this could make any PCI devices you have installed become unstable. Do you have any PCI devices installed at this time? BTW, if you are using the on-board AUDIO, that is a PCI device, for example.
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January 20, 2013 11:32:16 PM

COLGeek said:
OCing this rig will only marginally improve its performance. What heatsink/fan are you using? If the stock Intel fan, you should not attempt an OC with it.

Also, inferring from your other 2 posts, you seem to want to change your PCI speed. Doing this could make any PCI devices you have installed become unstable. Do you have any PCI devices installed at this time? BTW, if you are using the on-board AUDIO, that is a PCI device, for example.

I do not want to change my pci speed. I am trying to lock it at 333.33mhz or whatever it was as the guide said. It said if left on auto it can change when the fsb is raised I am trying to stop that from happening. I am using standard cooling but my temps at max load (for a long spell) is just shy of 60 which is why I was tempted to give it a go.
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January 21, 2013 12:00:50 AM

COLGeek said:
OCing this rig will only marginally improve its performance. What heatsink/fan are you using? If the stock Intel fan, you should not attempt an OC with it.

Also, inferring from your other 2 posts, you seem to want to change your PCI speed. Doing this could make any PCI devices you have installed become unstable. Do you have any PCI devices installed at this time? BTW, if you are using the on-board AUDIO, that is a PCI device, for example.

BTW I forgot to say thanks for replying. Its like waiting for a bus, nothing for ages and the three show up at once (in this case people trying to help). I am not the fastest typist in the world so I was panicking trying to respond to three people at once on different threads.
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a b K Overclocking
January 21, 2013 1:22:52 AM

If you google these terms "p5ql pro overclocking guide" you will find several sources describing successful OCs of your mobo and should give you the info needed to tweak your config.

I recommend you DO NOT OC your memory. Doing so will likely result in the system becoming unstable. Tweak the CPU and GPU, but leave the memory on AUTO or default. Any gains you might gain would be overshadowed by the problems that would likely result.
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January 21, 2013 1:27:42 AM

COLGeek said:
If you google these terms "p5ql pro overclocking guide" you will find several sources describing successful OCs of your mobo and should give you the info needed to tweak your config.

I recommend you DO NOT OC your memory. Doing so will likely result in the system becoming unstable. Tweak the CPU and GPU, but leave the memory on AUTO or default. Any gains you might gain would be overshadowed by the problems that would likely result.

I wasn't really looking to OC the memory but thanks I'll leave that well alone. Obviously with stock cooling I'm not expecting too much. I just want to get some experience for when I build (God help me, failing that my friend will have to do) my next pc.
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a b K Overclocking
January 21, 2013 2:28:52 AM

First, OCing a socket 775 CPU is different than OCing a modern CPU (AM3+, 1155, or 2011), so I wouldn't worry about it too much. In fact, with the tools available on modern systems, they can automatically OC quite effectively.

I highly recommend you not OC using a stock socket 775 heatsink. You may end up with a crispy system.
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January 21, 2013 2:39:20 AM

COLGeek said:
First, OCing a socket 775 CPU is different than OCing a modern CPU (AM3+, 1155, or 2011), so I wouldn't worry about it too much. In fact, with the tools available on modern systems, they can automatically OC quite effectively.

I highly recommend you not OC using a stock socket 775 heatsink. You may end up with a crispy system.

Too late I've already bit the bullet. It seems happy enough at the moment but I'm keeping a close eye on the temperatures.
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a b K Overclocking
January 21, 2013 1:59:53 PM

Good luck, then. What speed did you set your OC to?
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January 21, 2013 3:17:53 PM

COLGeek said:
Good luck, then. What speed did you set your OC to?

Sorry I didn't reply, had to :sleep:  2.8ghz. I clocked FSB 400, strap to north bridge 400 (1 to 1) and RAM at 800. It seemed comfortable enough (normal operation) Unfortunately testing in Prime95 revealed errors and produced a little more heat than I'd like (low 70's).

I did notice that when running at default my RAM (using CPU-Z) runs a tiny bit under 400mhz but when running overclocked (just set it at 800 (bios) didn't fiddle with otherwise) it ran very slightly over 400mhz (CPU-Z). My voltages were all left at auto (as per guide) but in the guide it said that auto normally applies slightly high voltages. Can wrong voltages produce errors in stress testing? Or is the issue with voltages just heat related (when too high)?

Also does ram need to be set at exactly (in my case) at 800 or will it run lower for example at 799? I currently have returned to stock but I am trying to figure out a divider that will produce a lesser OC but finding one that will get exactly 800 out of my Ram is defeating me (although I haven't had much time to experiment). Any tips would be appreciated.
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a b K Overclocking
January 21, 2013 3:27:29 PM

The minor memory speed variances are normal. This has no impact on the temps of the CPU. The CPU's heat is based on its settings.

So leave the memory settings as is.

You can try manually setting the CPU voltage settings, by dropping the core voltage by as small amount as your BIOS will allow. If you do this, do it in very small baby steps, checking stability after each adjustment.
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January 21, 2013 3:37:52 PM

COLGeek said:
The minor memory speed variances are normal. This has no impact on the temps of the CPU. The CPU's heat is based on its settings.

So leave the memory settings as is.

You can try manually setting the CPU voltage settings, by dropping the core voltage by as small amount as your BIOS will allow. If you do this, do it in very small baby steps, checking stability after each adjustment.

Thanks, do you think adjusting the voltage may reduce errors? Also a thought occurred to me although I haven't had a chance to look into it and do the maths. I had my multiplier set to 7 (max) I could also change that to 6 (min) to try and produce a lesser OC. Does my RAM need to be set at exactly 800 or is that simply the maximum? And again thank you.
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a b K Overclocking
January 21, 2013 3:44:50 PM

Your memory does not need to be set exactly to 800. Leave that alone.

A lesser multiplier could help. If you mobo allows it, try 6.5.
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January 21, 2013 3:46:26 PM

COLGeek said:
Your memory does not need to be set exactly to 800. Leave that alone.

A lesser multiplier could help. If you mobo allows it, try 6.5.

Right I'm off to experiment. Cheers
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a b K Overclocking
January 21, 2013 3:47:31 PM

Napalmhardcore said:
Right I'm off to experiment. Cheers

Remember...baby steps then check.
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January 21, 2013 6:01:35 PM

COLGeek said:
Remember...baby steps then check.

I'm having problems at the moment. I am getting failures very quickly in Prime95, normally one of the cores is failing in within the first 2 tests.

CPU-Z is showing different voltages than I am setting and it is fluctuating therefore it is difficult to establish where I should start from.

I also have a suspicion one of the various settings I do not know what does may be influencing my stability. I think I am going to have to write them down and Google each one to make sure they are not causing problems.
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a b K Overclocking
January 21, 2013 8:13:43 PM

Start from stock speeds and then inch upward is the technique most use.
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January 22, 2013 10:25:59 AM

COLGeek said:
Start from stock speeds and then inch upward is the technique most use.

Got a stable OC!

I have also seemingly encountered a quirky board/CPU on my very first OC. Going one increment at a time I took the voltage right down to where it didn't even boot into windows (not intentionally) right the way up to a point where my pc was acting... well a little strange, and my temperatures were climbing too high. I was beginning to lose hope.

Then while Googling some of the settings in my bios I came across a review that said they went into the bios, turned off the speed step etcetera (I'll cover my settings shortly), then raised the fsb to 400 while leaving everything else on auto (including voltage). I tried this and it worked! The really annoying thing is the values selected by auto are exactly the same as the ones I explicitly entered (thats what I meant by quirky).

I've just completed a 6 hour blend test on P95 with no errors and max temperatures 71 69 70 68 (in order core 1 to 4 respectively)

So in case it helps anyone in future (and just so you know what I did) the settings I changed were.

C1E disable
Set multiplier to 7x
CPU and PCIE spread spectrum disable
Raised FSB to 400
Everything else was left default/auto

Thanks very much COLGeek, one last question. Does that sound strange to you? The fact that when set to auto it selected exactly the same settings I had entered yet when I did it, it would not run stable. The only possible explanation I have is after setting my FSB it says in the bios when setting either (I can't remember which way round it is) the stap to north bridge that the RAM speed will be set automatically or vice versa. I explicitly set all three values. Maybe one needs to be on auto for a little wiggle room so to speak. I've got a lot to learn. Thanks again.
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Best solution

a b K Overclocking
January 22, 2013 10:29:58 AM

Not strange, just one of those quirks of OCing. Setting to auto lets the system manage minor variations in order to remain stable. Actually, it is logical.

Good job!
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January 22, 2013 10:31:38 AM

COLGeek said:
Not strange, just one of those quirks of OCing. Setting to auto lets the system manage minor variations in order to remain stable. Actually, it is logical.

Good job!

Thanks :) 
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January 22, 2013 10:33:20 AM

Best answer selected by Napalmhardcore.
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