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A8N-E, can't drop maxclock below DDR333

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MikeMars

New Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Hi,

I've got an A8N-E, with an A64 3000 (E3/venice), and I'm having problems getting it overclocked. I've got 4x1GByte of PC3200 dual channel Samsung memory (fairly bog standard stuff, 3,3,3,8, 2T at DDR400 or 2.5,3,3,7 at DDR333). I've set it to 3,4,4,7 to try to help with system stability. There are a bunch of other timings which I've ignored.

I can drop the MAX MEMCLOCK down from DDR400 to DDR333, which gives me enough headroom to get to 2160MHz at the CPU, any higher than this and the thing crashes (Prime95 fails after a few hours at 250/2250).

However, if I drop MAX MEMCLOCK down to DDR266 or DDR200, the system hangs before POST. This basically means that I'm limited to 2200MHz?

My bios is 1010.004beta (dated December), the chipset drivers are 6.70 from nVidia, OS is XP SP2. I run my system 24/7 at 100% load (I have Apache running etc, and I also crunch for climateprediction.net, so I'm looking for a 100% stable system)

Current configuration:

HTT at 240MHz, x9 multiplier = 2160MHz CPU
HT mult = 4x
Memory is now set at 196MHz with 3,4,4,8 (using 'max memclock' of DDR333 +3,4,4,8, originally 2.5,4,4,7)
Set CPU voltage to 1.5 in Bios (shows as 1.52 in CPU-Z)
Set DDR voltage to 2.65
PCI locked at 33.3
PCI-e locked at 100
CPU temp at 100% load is now 49/50c (originally 44c at 100% when stock)

Was unstable at 250MHz (2250 cpu/204 mem).

My 'stock' settings are in the following report from CPU-Z, everything is set to 'auto' or similar in the bios when this was run. I'm not sure why dram frequency was set to 165 here (in bios it was showing as 333). However the timings do match the 'DDR333' column (the DDR400 column has slacker timings, the bios is set to 'Automatic' at this point, so has presumably decided it prefers the look of the offerred settings at DDR333 over DDR400?). Also, CPUz reports memory as 2GB when it's physically 4GB (3GB useable).

CPU-Z Report

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

CPU-Z version 1.31.


CPU(s)
Number of CPUs 1

Name AMD Athlon 64 3000+
Code Name Venice
Specification AMD Athlon(tm) 64 Processor 3000+
Family / Model / Stepping F F 0
Extended Family / Model F 2F
Brand ID 4
Package Socket 939
Core Stepping DH-E3
Technology 90 nm
Supported Instructions Sets MMX, Extended MMX, 3DNow!, Extended 3DNow!, SSE, SSE2, SSE3, x86-64
CPU Clock Speed 1813.5 MHz
Clock multiplier x 9.0
HTT Bus Frequency 201.5 MHz
L1 Data Cache 64 KBytes, 2-way set associative, 64 Bytes line size
L1 Instruction Cache 64 KBytes, 2-way set associative, 64 Bytes line size
L2 Cache 512 KBytes, 16-way set associative, 64 Bytes line size
L2 Speed 1813.5 MHz (Full)
L2 Location On Chip
L2 Data Prefetch Logic yes
L2 Bus Width 128 bits



Mainboard and chipset
Motherboard manufacturer ASUSTeK Computer INC.
Motherboard model A8N-E, 2.XX
BIOS vendor Phoenix Technologies, LTD
BIOS revision ASUS A8N-E ACPI BIOS Revision 1010-004
BIOS release date 11/09/2005
Chipset nVidia nForce4 rev. A3
Southbridge nVidia nForce4 MCP rev. A3
Sensor chip ITE 8712

Graphic Interface PCI-Express
PCI-E Link Width x16
PCI-E Max Link Width x16



Memory
DRAM Type DDR-SDRAM
DRAM Size 2048 MBytes
DRAM Frequency 164.9 MHz
FSB:DRAM CPU/11
CAS# Latency 2.5 clocks
RAS# to CAS# 4 clocks
RAS# Precharge 4 clocks
Cycle Time (TRAS) 7 clocks
Bank Cycle Time (TRC) 10 clocks
DRAM Idle Timer 16 clocks
# of memory modules 4
Module 0 DDR-SDRAM PC3200 - 4 MBytes
Module 1 DDR-SDRAM PC3200 - 4 MBytes
Module 2 DDR-SDRAM PC3200 - 4 MBytes
Module 3 DDR-SDRAM PC3200 - 4 MBytes



Software
Windows version Microsoft Windows XP Professional Service Pack 2 (Build 2600)
DirectX version 9.0c


CPU-Z shows the following SPD timings:
Freq - CasLat, RasToCas, RasPrecharge, TRas
133 Mhz - 2.0, 2, 2, 6
166 Mhz - 2.5, 3, 3, 7
200 Mhz - 3.0, 3, 3, 8
 
OP
M

MikeMars

New Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Just as an update to the above: Someone suggested that having 4 sticks of ram might be causing a problem. I took two of the sticks out, and the dividers still don't work under DDR333, however on the other hand I was able to raise the memory speed a little, so currently running at:

CPU 255x9 - 2295
Memory 2x1GByte, 3-3-3-8, 214MHz, set to 'DDR333' (= 5/6)
Updated bios from 1010.004beta to 1010 (dated late December).

If anyone has any further suggestions on how to change the mem dividers downwards successfully, I would be very grateful ...