Help overclocking my asus 5850 direct cu

My GPU is hitting a bottleneck in skyrim(heavily modded). I have my E6600 oc'd to 3.3ghz and it shows only about 60-70% usage. My 5850 on the otherhand is averaging in the 95%+ usage.

I downloaded MSI afterburner and unlocked the voltage control. The issue I am having though is either I am doing something wrong, or my card cant overclock worth a crap.

I cant even get above 800mhz core on the stock voltage. I maxed it out in afterburner to about 1.28v and I got artifacts at only 900core and 1100memory. Earlier when I attemped this same overclock it insta failed and I had to restart my computer.

This card should be able to do so much more. What am I doing wrong?
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  1. This is pathetic.

    The best I could do with the memory at a few mV above stock voltage was 1250mhz(which is decent I guess). With the core though, I could only do like 750-775 before I had to raise the voltage. I raised it 0.05v everytime furmark crashed.

    I ended up maxing out afterburner at 1.28v and STILL could not hit 900core, even with the memory decreased to 1200.

    I am so frustrated right now. Can anyone think of what I am doing wrong, if anything? Did I just get a crappy card? This is the first time Ive tried overclocking it since buying it in 2010. Just about every thread Ive found on overclocking this thing, everyones was running faster AND a lower voltage.
  2. Im starting to lose hope and just give up on this thing. Im thinking I just got a bad card that doesnt overclock well.

    I literally cannot overclock more than 75mhz before needing to raise the voltage significantly..

    It is not my powersupply either, it is a good thermaltake with a built in 8pin and 6pin.
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