Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Possible to overclock my Dell?

Last response: in Overclocking
Share
February 5, 2013 2:11:08 PM

Hi,

My PC is an upgraded Dell Inspiron 546, and I was wondering if it was possible to overclock it safely (well by safely, I mean with it being stable, I know overclocking can not really be called 'safe'). The first way I tried to do this was with the AMD Vision Engine controls, which had AMD Overdrive. I ran the 'CPU Overdrive Auto-Tune' which was meant to unlock the tools, and it tested to see how far the CPU gets before it causes a BSOD. Mine got to 4.5GHz with a temp of 52 degrees (Celsius) where it then crashed.

Upon reboot, the CPU overdrive feature had vanished completely.
I know Dell PCs can not usually be overclocked but I was wondering with the upgrades I have made it might be possible.

Any Ideas?

My Specs:

Phenom II X2 565 Black Edition 3.4GHz (upgraded) with stock cooler
Radeon HD 5670 (upgraded)
4gb RAM (stock)
550W CIT PSU (upgraded)

More about : overclock dell

a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
February 5, 2013 4:34:00 PM

Yes, you can overclock your Dell. I got my Inspiron 570 up to 4.3ghz with a Phenom X4 965. Actually, if you are a member of the Dell forums, me and Kisianik were the two who came up with the work-around that makes it possible for the 570's.

Let me go copy and paste the "How To" that I wrote!
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
February 5, 2013 4:44:38 PM

I don't have time to proof the whole thing again now, but here is the basic guide that I wrote out back in the summer. It will work on any Dell using a black edition Phenom chip that is running Windows 7. If you have specific questions, don't hesitate to ask!

Optimizing Inspiron 570 Performance: Clean Windows 7 OS and Overclocking Capability

Intro: I purchased the Inspiron 570 because of the great value the factory configuration offered. The Athlon II X2 270 processor, 500gb Caviar Blue had drive and 4gb DDR3 memory are more than capable of performing all the standard functions of a home office desktop or casual entertainment machine. The original intent was to simply upgrade the amount of RAM and possibly the processor to make it feel a bit snappier. That's when curiosity set in and I started pushing against the supposed upgrade limits. My goal has been to eventually own the fastest Inspiron 570, if not Inspiron desktop of any model. After having found the point of severely diminished returns from further upgrading physical components, the final bottleneck proved to be the factory BIOS and the inability to overclock the Phenom II X4 965 BE processor. After many different attempts to find workarounds, I discovered the most deficient way to both overclock the CPu and GPu from a single program and lighten the utility-heavy installation of Windows 7 that comes standard.

Prep: Give yourself at least an hour, but no more than two. Also you will need two empty 4gb USB drives to dedicate besides your preference of storage media for all personal files.

Step 1: Save all personal files (documents, pictures, music, ect.) onto external media. It doesn't matter if it's a few DVD's or an external hard drive, but be thorough and don't forget anything you care about recovering later on. Do not create some sort of backup image for this.

Step 2: Download the following programs to your computer, then save them to the first USB flash drive for installation later.

Windows to USB offical program: http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msstore/html/pbPage...

Catalyst Control Center v12.1:
http://support.amd.com/us/gpudownload/windows/previous/...

Aoemei Partition Assistant:
http://www.****/free-partition-manager.html

OCCT:
http://www.ocbase.com/index.php/download

Passmark Performance Test 64-bit:
http://www.passmark.com/download/pt_download.htm

*Any additional network adapter driver so you can get online and retreive the other needed hardware support later on.*

Step 3: Download the Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit ISO from the link below. This is the authentic ISO from Microsoft's official host site. I have double and triple checked that everything explained here complies in full with Microsoft's user agreement. Please note that this is only true if you download the same version you had installed on your computer at the time of purchase; any attempt to upgrade versions will likely fail and will certainly violate the user agreement.

Download URL: http://www.mydigitallife.info/download-windows-7-iso-of...

Step 4: Create a bootable image on the second USB drive by using the previously downloaded utility application. Shut down and disconnect any internal hard disks except for the drive you intend to use for the new OS install. If you are upgrading from the factory HDD to SDD, just install the empty SSD with the HDD unplugged

Step 5: Insert the USB boot drive into your computer, then restart. Press F12 when prompted to enter the boot menu and select this drive instead of your internal drive. It will eventually load a screen asking to select a drive to install windows. Here you need to delete *all* partitions that sit on the physical disc you are re installing the OS. Now select that unallocated space for the install. It will do it's thing and install Windows 7, stopping when done to prompt you for the activation key. Use the key that is adhered to the top of the Dell tower. After it accepts your key, elect to not instasll system updates at this time. We want to finish the whole process before complicating things. You should now have a *CLEAN* OS with no bloated list of utilities and freeware that come preinstalled on virtually all new computers.

Step 6: Insert the USB drive with the install files for the programs listed before. If you would like to partition your drive, do this first using the Aoemei tool. Otherwise, first install CCC 12.1 with all offered features if using the custom install screen. Restart when prompted. Right click on your desktop, open the Catalyst application, and scroll down to "performance". Enable overdrive, then select "CPU Overdrive". It will force you to run the auto-tune feature the first time through- when you either reach a successful overclock point you are happy with, stop the auto-tune. Otherwise, you can wait and eventually have the system crash and reboot itself, This is not anything to freak out about; it's how the program determines the limit for manually setting the processor clock. When you restart (select normal boot, no offered repair menus during startup) the desktop will load and you'll receive a pop-up letting you know your overdrive settings are ready to review.

Step 7: Install OCCT and run it prior to overclocking. This is to be cautious and make sure your temps are staying reasonable. Note that you will have to close and restart it to have an accurate processor speed listed after overclocking. Now, go into the same place you ran the auto-tune, scroll down and select the "manual" overclock slider as active, and select a clock speed. Apply and go ahead setting your GPU core and memory clocks if you wish to overclock them as well. When everything is selected and applied, "X' the program and it will remain active in the tray next to the clock on the menu bar.

Done! Reinstall any drivers you saved on on the flash drive to enable internet access, then simply google and reinstall the newest versions of any other drivers or updates you'd like. Just make sure you leave the CCC verrsion at 12.1 and do not update driver for the GPU!

If you added a new drive that now runs your OS, reconnect the old HDD while the computer is running. Run the Aoemei partition tool after connecting the old drive, either starting fresh by reformatting the drive and designating the new partitions created as "logical" and not "primary", or simply remove the flags such as 'boot" or "active". It's extremely intuitive and user friendly to navigate around and do this. Note that your OS drive will always be designated as "C:", so your previous C: drive will have a different letter assignment now. Just make sure you have the correct drive before changing anything!

Run your passmark test with the clocks reconfigured and see just how much it improves not only your CPU score, but also 2D graphics, 3D graphics, Memory and overall system composite score. I got a bump from high 2800's to the mid 3300's without yet maxing out the clock allowed settings.

.... there you go man. Have a blast!
Related resources
February 5, 2013 5:58:04 PM

Thanks! Will try this as soon as I have time and will let you know how it goes.

And thanks for the quick reply!
February 5, 2013 6:00:27 PM

Also I was just wondering if it would be fine to use the Windows 7 disk that came with the PC, or is it essential to download the one you provided?

Might save me a lengthy download
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
February 5, 2013 6:08:18 PM

No worries, glad I could help! Kisianik has been walking people through this over on the Dell forums with good success since I came up with it. I've slacked off...

If you have an original Microsoft version of Windows 7, that'd work fine. The key is NOT to use the Dell recovery media or their factory-tailored operating system. It's somewhere in the packaged software that they restrict the multiplier from being functional when using programs like AMD Control Center. You'll know it's an okay version if it excludes all of the Dell garb like their proprietary Dell DataSafe and such.


:hello: 
February 5, 2013 6:20:07 PM

One more question (I hope)

When I installed the new CPU I reinstalled Win 7 without all the Dell stuff.

Would it be possible to just uninstall some software (CCC, Drivers) and just install the ones you provided or would it be easier to just do it on a clean install?
a b à CPUs
a b K Overclocking
February 5, 2013 9:45:13 PM

Well if you've already done a clean Win 7 reinstall that's sanitary from all the Dell modifications, you should be able to just uninstall your current CCC suite (control center, driver, ect all would be able to remove together with their uninstaller). If you get in a spot where things seem sort of buggy, or if anything starts giving error messages as a result of replacing the newer version with an older one, you might have to go nuculear and do another fresh install. I suspect that won't be needed though. AMD Overdrive is supposed to be amazingly easy to use- it's just that you need to remove Dell's interference. I haven't even tried the newest CCC, it might work with the CPU again for all I know.

One more quick thing- change your windows power profile to "maximum performance" and make sure the processor settings are 100% with active cooling policy. Since I don't recall if Dell BIOS lets you disable cool n' quiet, this is the only method of actually keeping the clocks steady long enough to confirm anything. Once you've ran a benchmark or CPU-Z or another program to confirm the OC stuck, you can always change this back to whatever power profile you like for cooling sake. It's just hard to be sure of much when it idles at 800mhz and only reads the full OC frequency under total load.
a b à CPUs
February 6, 2013 8:10:14 PM

Since someone here mentioned my name a few times I decided to join conversation. Hey OC!

A few points not been addressed. First, the difference between my overclock and OCMusicJunkie overclock (I have 4GHz vs 4.3 for OC) is that I used AMD Overdrive, which is differ from CCC - it increases multiplier without voltage increase, so I am running 4 GHZ on much lower voltage than OCMusicJunkie, hence my motherboard will survive this abuse a bit longer.

Second point. The Toaster, you mentioned that you use stock cooler and your temps were around 52C(when you tried to overclock by yourself), those temps look very suspicious, so be ready to consider a cooling upgrade. Me and OC already changed cases for this reason.
Phenom II X2 565 Black Edition is 80 watt only, but still.

Just another 2 cents.
February 6, 2013 11:11:36 PM

Will this work on the 560 also? One more question. My computer didn't come with a windows 7 install disk. How do I get a copy without having to pay again?
a b à CPUs
February 6, 2013 11:41:26 PM

mcaposella said:
Will this work on the 560 also? One more question. My computer didn't come with a windows 7 install disk. How do I get a copy without having to pay again?


I think 560 has Intel not AMD, so we don't know? However there is always possibility of upgrading processor, first check your processor model, amount of RAM, and video card if you consider upgrading this as well, get CPUID to find information, next start new post please! And we will help you there, name it like Inspiron 560 upgrade - I am scanning Tom for Inspiron name at least once a day.
February 9, 2013 10:50:18 AM

Alright, so I decided to reinstall the latest version of CCC/AMD Vision Engine, whatever you want to call it, and suddenly AMD Overdrive decides to work. So I went and did some tests. First I disabled AMD Cool 'N' Quiet from the BIOS. And then overclocked to 3.9GHz. Idle the temps stayed at around 32C. But then I ran Folding@Home to see what 100% load did to it, I ran it for 30 mins, and in the first 20 the temps slowly rose to, again, 52/53C, where it stayed for the rest of the time.

Seeing as 52C was where I got when I ran auto-tune, I doubt these readings are accurate. Could this be the software I am using to check them? (at the moment some software called 'Speccy')

It looks like a better cooler is needed anyway, you said you changed cases when you did this, would a new fan not fit or something?
a b à CPUs
February 12, 2013 5:22:12 AM

The Toaster said:
Alright, so I decided to reinstall the latest version of CCC/AMD Vision Engine, whatever you want to call it, and suddenly AMD Overdrive decides to work. So I went and did some tests. First I disabled AMD Cool 'N' Quiet from the BIOS. And then overclocked to 3.9GHz. Idle the temps stayed at around 32C. But then I ran Folding@Home to see what 100% load did to it, I ran it for 30 mins, and in the first 20 the temps slowly rose to, again, 52/53C, where it stayed for the rest of the time.

Seeing as 52C was where I got when I ran auto-tune, I doubt these readings are accurate. Could this be the software I am using to check them? (at the moment some software called 'Speccy')

It looks like a better cooler is needed anyway, you said you changed cases when you did this, would a new fan not fit or something?


I need to find your motherboard model to see actual CPU cooler mountings prior to suggesting cooler, actually cooler is - Logysis Computer 92mm Hydro Bearing Ice Edge 400 XT CPU Cooler MC4004IEXT $30.80 at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Logysis-Computer-Bearing-Cooler-M...

February 14, 2013 4:47:02 PM

All I could find for motherboard model is 'Dell 0F896N (AM2)'
March 19, 2013 12:43:12 PM

If you don't have any luck with the recommendations above then try using the program SetFSB. Just make sure your board is supported. Although the board in my OptiPlex 760 wasn't supported I was able to use a PLL from a different model OptiPlex and it worked just fine. I overclocked my Core 2 Quad Q9550 to 3.43ghz up from 2.83. She's been running stable for weeks now and all on the stock cooler! If you need some info on how to get everything to work just message me. Hope this helps and good luck!



My Rig

Dell OptiPlex 760 Mini-Tower
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 running at 3.43ghz
8GB Corsair XMS2 DDR2 800mhz RAM
Evga GTX 650 Ti 2gb Vid Card
300GB WD VelociRaptor 10K RPM HD
Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit

;) 
June 30, 2013 3:16:14 AM

krivs388 said:
Although the board in my OptiPlex 760 wasn't supported I was able to use a PLL from a different model OptiPlex and it worked just fine.
;) 


I have a 760 but cannot get find a good PLL for setfsb. Which one did you get working in the end?
Thanks,
Phil
14 minutes ago

I have Optiplex 760 too, can't find a working PLL.Please tell me which PLL did you use?.krivs388 is inactive, i checked his profile :/  Any one else please?
!