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Could use some help/advice

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tbonedude

Registered
Hey guys, new member T-Bone here..as well as this is my first post!!!:salute: But...I cannot seem to get past the 4ghz barrier for some reason..

Now I am a noob at overclocking, and fortunatly I have no problem admiting this because I am here in search of help. Maybe its something simple.. something overlooked..I am not sure so any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Specs - (If any more information is needed please let me know)
Ram - G.Skill ddr2 (2x2gb 5-5-5-13 @ 2.1v)
Cpu - P2 X4 (NON B.E.) (945 @ 3.9ghz @ 1.44v, deneb core) - (15x260)
Mobo - Asus M4A785-M
http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=946531

So, in my infinite wisdom.. I decided to do all the major nono's as far as overclocking is concered.. I dont know my max reference, i dont know what my board is capable of.. hell.. to be honest I dont know anything.. and im here for advice. Lets see if anyone can answer a few questions i've got.

My stock is 3.0, im at 3.9.. yet I dont really know much of whats going on.. do I keep my current clocks and with the advice of OC members try to tweak them as they are? Or would it be better to start over and properly identify my max capabilities?

While in the attempt to OC my p2x4, I started reading dolks guide, as well as a few others I found on google.. but again, in my infinite wisdom, I skipped ahead in those wonderfully prepaired, and time consuming tutorials because .. well insert your whitty comment here :D :cool: haha, but again.. I am here looking for the proper advice now. So basically when I started, I was pumping my reference +5 at a time, booting, stressing, and then repeting. Once I got to about 3.6 I bumped my voltage up a notch and continued on, and this went on until 3.8.. Once there, I couldent get any higher.. no matter what, bumping voltage did nothing for me at that point, so I began to read farther in (btw, dolk, you are a god umong gods the guide is magneficient) dolks guide, and I figured my memory was a bit too high, so I dropped back from 400 to 333 and now im stuck here at 3.9 (gskill and cpuz say it will run [email protected] on am3 but, i couldent get it stable at even stock speeds.. if anyone could help with that too I would appreciate it.)

:: Edit ::

I still need help with this.. havent gotten any responses yet.. still stuck at 3.9 not stable (i can boot, but bsod a few secs/mins into prime..) my last stable for 12+ hours was 3.7 same voltage with overdrive stability and prime 95..
 
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QuietIce

Disabled
Joined
May 7, 2006
Location
Anywhere but there
:welcome: to Overclockers.com!


What are your load temps and vCore at 3.7 GHz?

What cpuNB multiplier are you using?

Do you have all the "common" OC values set to manual?
(vCore, vDIMM, RAM timings, cpuNB voltage and multiplier)

Is 5-5-5-13 really the stock settings for that RAM at 533 MHz???
(Check the CPU-Z SPD tab.)


Just a few quick questions that beg answers ... ;)
 
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tbonedude

Registered
Hey QuietIce, thanks for the response and warm welcome mate.

Load temps and vCore for 3.71 ish.. were 48 max at 1.45 volts

vcore, vdimm, and a few others are set to manual but I do need some further information on which to set / what each option controls

No, 5-5-5-13 is not the stock timings for 533, they are 5-5-5-15-23-2T @ 2.1v

Im not sure why its at 13 insted of 15.. but that was while it was under AUTO..I've since read some more of dolks wonderful guide, but im still having some issues.. inside of my bios when I manually set the timings on my ram, it says (Auto, DCT0, DCT1, BOTH) im not sure what to choose, if I choose both.. theres like 40 settable options (will get a picture of this if needed)

My last stable was 3.7ghz @ 1.45 volts @ 333mhz ddr (around 880 once oc'd) I've since went back to 3.0 because i was just getting frustrated...I know this p2 can handle some really good clocks, especially from what i've seen.

I am on air cooling, but i've got a very nice copper heatsink with heat pipes, and i took off the fan that came with it, and slapped on a 80x80x38mm tornado fan that pumps like 80cfms, it keeps the thing damn cool, even under OC testing i didnt go past 55C at 3.7 the highest was like 48 or so

Yes I am running a am3 cpu, on a am2/am2+/am3 board, im limited to ddr2, but i can run up to ddr2 @ 1066 i just cannot seem to get stable past about 3.4 if im running 1066 mode.. I appreciate all the help so far, and I hope togather we can get this rig where it should be.

:: Edit ::
If it helps any, im running Asus PC Probe II for my temps in farenheit, everest ultimate edition for temps in celcius, cpuz for core/timings, and prime 95 for stressing (Use to use coretemp32, but it does'nt read my phenom's temps for some reason...)
 
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QuietIce

Disabled
Joined
May 7, 2006
Location
Anywhere but there
DCT is the RAM slot pairs so choose BOTH even though you're only using one pair of slots. Can't remember what DCT stands for but you can Google if curious. (I originally wrote "channels" here but it's not related to the dual-channel you would normally associate with that word so I changed it to hopefully avoid confusion.)

You really need to set those RAM timings (and vDIMM) manually - just follow the values listed under the SPD tab for 533 MHz but keep the speed under 533 MHz. The values you're showing with the Auto setting is exactly why we set those timings manually. As you can plainly see the BIOS doesn't have a clue when it comes to OC'ing. ;) Don't know how the GSkills work since I've never owned them - but have heard plenty of good things.


Odd that CoreTemp isn't reading your temps correctly. Must be the board difference since it works fine on all my ASUS boards. The good news is that usually Probe II is pretty close to CoreTemp - it just takes a few minutes for the sensor to warm up instead of being almost instant.

If you're pushing 55°C that could easily be the problem. Phenoms (all AMDs actually) like to run cool. My personal limit for the Phenom is 55-56°C, anything more and you're probably decreasing your OC's top end. Also, being an mATX usually means poor cooling of the power chips, which is what we start taxing when we crank up the vCore. Never did like an mATX for OC'ing unless it's modified for it. You might consider some heatsinks for your power chips.


No comment on cpuNB voltage and multiplier? cpuNB speed can be found in the upper right of the memory tab ...
 
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tbonedude

Registered
Im currently back at stock speeds, and im going to follow your advice to set all of it manually (I did figure out the dct thing as I googled it due to being impatient, and most of them were set, I had to set the voltage because 1066 wasent possible at 1.8 volts which is what the mobo was trying to run it at, hense my orgional issue running stock @ 533 (1066) so now that im at 2.1 like im suspossed to be im gonna try to continue on.)

I couldent find the NB multiplier on cpuz but from my bois when at 3.9 it was set to 7x and it was showing as 2400mhz in cpuz, im gonna try again and see how far I can get.

I also was lookin into heatsinks for the rest of my board from other modded pics, but havent since found anywhere that I could buy such things if you could point me somewhere I would appreciate it. I also did a little tweaking to my custom HSF setup and now my idle temps are in the 20's (24 currently) and load at 3.5 was only 38c as well as i dropped my ambient case temp a few degrees by putting in a new intake fan, I didnt even notice my old one died, but it was 2+ years old.

Thanks again for all the help and information, ill do some testing and stressing now and see what I can get with this new information you've provided me.

My ultimate goal is to get 4ghz stable.. if I cannot due to what ever reason I am fine with that, because in all honesty 3.8-3.9 is still a pretty solid overclock, especially for someone whos only just learning the basics would you agree?

:: Edit ::
Viewing from my other pc, via kvm switch so I can do it all at once, I've located all the timings I need to set under dct 0 but, theres identicle ones under dct1 as well, should I set those even tho im not using those slots as well? IE. tcl,tras,trap 5-5-5 for dct zero, and set the same settings for the dct 1 options? or just enable both, but only set the first timings?

:: Edit ::
So im back at what I was, 3.9 ghz, fortunatly I took notes and pictures the first time around so I was easily able to emulate the same settings to get the same results, pictures are below.

33bpq89.jpg
950591.png

http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=950591

Still not sure if im suspossed to set both timing sets for DCT0 and 1, so if you could let me know I'd apprecaite it. I've got 2 mini temp probes, 1 on a north bridge heatsink, and 1 for ambient case temp, and during all my overclocking nothing except the cpu has risen in tempature, so im pretty sure even being a mATX I can get to my desired speeds.. hopefully at least. Sorry for all the edits.. but I couldent dare to do a double post :D
 
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QuietIce

Disabled
Joined
May 7, 2006
Location
Anywhere but there
A few things - quick ones first.

Use BOTH for your RAM settings instead of either DCT. I've never seen a case where one would set different timings for the DCTs and you certainly wouldn't want to do that for OC'ing.

Your RAM timings are still off. CPU-Z SPD shows 5-5-5-15-48 but you're running 5-5-5-15-26.


The cpuNB speed is labeled "NB Frequency" (top right on the memory tab) and is currently 1820 MHz, which is the same as your HT link speed. The HT Link speed is fine (at 7X) but the cpuNB really needs to be increased to 8-9X (2200-2600 MHz at your current clock speed). That setting is usually in BIOS but I can't guarantee that for an mATX board - you'll have to look around or check the manual.

Heatsinks for your power chips (those blacks squares to the left of the CPU) can be found many places - but I like Sidewinder for that kind of stuff. Any of the "micro" sinks near the bottom of this page should be fine if they're not too big. Since your power chips are set between the caps (capacitors - or those might be coils) you'll need to measure them to make sure the sinks will fit between them. If you're real handy with a hacksaw you can get a larger sink and cut to fit.
http://www.sidewindercomputers.com/memandvidcar.html


OC'ing takes time to get right and you're doing well so far. You're pushing the limit of most CPUs so it may take longer then "normal" to get what you want - just be sure to enjoy the ride while you're at it ... :)
 
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tbonedude

Registered
They are set to BOTH for the option, my question was now that its set to show both sets for each set of ddr slots, do I also set the unused slots timings?

Example...sorry for the bad example.. lol
AUTO
Ram Speed (533/400/333/266/200)
Voltage (input manually)

DCT0
Ram Speed
Voltage
tcl
tras
tcrp

Dct1
Ram Speed
Voltage
tcl
tras
tcrp

BOTH
Ram Speed
Voltage
tcl
tras
tcrp
tcl
tras
tcrp

While under the BOTH option it then shows timings for both sets, see what I mean now? Should I also set those unused slots timings, and if so, do I use the same exact values as the ones I use for dct0?

:: Edit ::
TRC shows as 48 as you said, but my max in my mobo is 26.. any way of setting it so that they both show the same value?
I also just dropped my main multipler from 15x to 14x (trying to avoid half values such as 14.5 because another oc'er advised I should do so, would you agree?) and im gonna try to bump up my reference clock a bit more and see if I can get neer or past 3.9 with a lower divider.
 

QuietIce

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Joined
May 7, 2006
Location
Anywhere but there
I guess the BIOS has changed too much for me to advise you. On my boards when you use BOTH you only set the timings for BOTH and nothing else. The others (DCT0 & DCT1) gray out and can't be set. :shrug:

Don't know what to do about the '48' except to let that value float (set to auto).

Half dividers were avoided on K8 CPUs for several reasons but K10's, which includes all Phenoms, don't have those issues. Once you've got your CPU OC'ed you can play with different ways of getting there to provide more control over RAM and cpuNB speed but for now I'd leave it at 15X ...
 
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tbonedude

Registered
I appreciate all the advice and info quietice, but for now im reverting back to dolks guide, and a few others. My plan for now is to drop back to stock conditions and go ahead and figure out what it is thats holding me back.. I should have done this at first but I was so caught up with the excitement of my new overclock that I never took into account the hardwork you guys actucally put into this.

I have recorded all my previous settings in my notebook along with pictures. I hope that going back and finding my max reference will help me achieve 4.0ghz stable. I went and checked those other sets of timings I was talking about, unfortunatly my board dosent grey them out, and after testing with dual channel mode.. you can set each ram slot individually for there timings, so im gonna go ahead next time and set the unused slots, but not use them for stability, I did see quiet a difference especially in prime 95 testing that setting those unused slots helps to balance everything, and it will help for me in the long run being more comfterable and understanding of each and every setting such as trp tras and tcl and hopefully by late tonight / tomorrow I can figure out some better information and get some better results.

Im also gonna go ahead and find some heatsinks for my mosfets? I think thats what there called, regardless my mobo temp hasent done anything but stayed at one constent tempature, or go lower due to massive air flow.. but either way im still gonna take precaution.

*About coretemp, Im not sure if its this board, or this p2 chip.. I had an x2 with a very similar mobo (m3n4a) and coretemp worked just fine on that, so ill look into it

*Also gonna look at getting a new mobo, asus preferably, along with ddr3 and a new waterblock (I had liquid cooling from my x2, but the waterblock wont fit..) so if you have any ideas for me as a good mobo I would appreciate that.

I thank everyone who read this thread and especially QuietIce for his amazing knowledge and I hope to be back real soon with some solid and STABLE results :D thanks everyone.
 

QuietIce

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Joined
May 7, 2006
Location
Anywhere but there
Dolk's done a great job and is what I usually recommend but you seemed to make it clear in your first post that you didn't want to go that route. :shrug: Personally, I'm glad you decided to "backtrack" and follow it. Dolk follows the traditional component testing sequence that was started (to the best of my knowledge) with the s939 and has added additional information specifically for the Phenom II. It's a much better way to OC than jumping willy-nilly from one thing to the next trying to get it right. ;)


Will be watching for your next update. Good luck ... :)
 

Dolk

I once overclocked an Intel
Joined
Mar 3, 2008
You won't be able to get to 4.0ghz stable.

So after the shock subsides, let me tell you why :D

The C2 Phenom II CPUs (which you have) where the first batch of Phenom IIs to come out. They were designed to reach up to 3.8ghz stable on a Air or WC setup. Anything higher than that is most likely unstable due to the amount of voltage needed for the CPU. This also results in a high increase in Temperature for the Phenom II. Also 95% of the Phenom II C2s will only let you enter the 4.0ghz stage while under suicide run or in temps under 30C load. This rule also applies to 3.0ghz CPU-NB.

But the good news is that you have gotten your 945 stable at 3.9ghz. You should be very happy about this. Most people cannot due this (like me, but than again my 940 has seen water literally, and Dryice).
 
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tbonedude

Registered
Dolk, the God him self! No offense quietice.. haha

No its not a shocker at all, I honestly figured that with my air cooling, even being pretty nice as it is.. I figured 4.0 would be hard.

Monday morning I plan on getting at the very least a motherboard (probably asus/giga) And depending on how much that is I might go ahead and get another p2 chip, hopefully one of you could recommend one that can get up to and beyond 4.0 (weather it can get beyond 4.0 on air, is not needed, I just want to know I have the ability, I will redo my water cooling system probably by this thursday)

So yeah, if all goes well, monday order a new mobo/waterblock that fits am3 and possibly a new p2 with better stepping/week/year and hopefully a BE to make it much easier on me.

Btw Dolk, I wasent stable at 3.9 I could boot.. and play games yes, but that is not stability and you my friend at least your guide, taught me that. However, under prime 95 I couldent even get the program to run longer then 10 seconds until a blue screen, yet everything else was 100% stable. The last stable clock I had was 3.82 @ 1.45 volts 24+ hour prime.. so that falls right within what you said about my p2 chip it self.

So /end thread until I get a new mobo/p2/copper block and once that time comes its game on! I will be sure to post again as you have all been incredibly wonderful to me and I truly appreciate all your help quiet ice, from the bottom of my case :D