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Ram divider on Asus A8N-E?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
This is my first time overclocking an AMD64 chip (it's an X2 4200 Manchester, for the record.) I'm trying to adapt Death's Ultimate Overclocking Guide as much as makes sense, and I'm fairly certain I've found the max FSB for as in step 1. Now I want to move on to step 2, finding the max FSB for the RAM, but I cannot for the life of me find where to play with dividers in this MB's BIOS. Maybe I'm just a newb with AMD64, am I not supposed to be able to mess with RAM dividers? Does the 1:1 mantra still apply with K8? CPU-Z shows the FSB/DRAM info as "CPU/6", so it looks like it is already being divided...but I didn't set it....

Somebody set me straight, if possible. Here's some background info on the parts and what I've done so far, if it is relevant.

* 2 GB Patriot basic PC3200 RAM. Upped vdimm to 3.0, loosed CAS to 3.0 (default was 2.5). So timings are 3-4-4-7.

* HT is at 3, vcore set to 1.5, cpu frequency set to 260. This boots into Windows and does not crash, no Prime torture testing done yet though. (Cannot find anywhere to set vdd either...is that no longer separate from vcore in the AMD64 world?)

* There is a BIOS setting for memory frequency, and it is at 400MHz. If I try to increase this setting to match what the FSB will be running at, it sets all of my other settings for the FSB back to Auto and uses that number as the FSB number...? I can't set this to Auto either though, I can only set *all* memory settings to Auto; which means the RAM reverts to cas 2.5, and the FSB won't go over 230 with cas=2.5.

Any suggestions are welcome. I'm not planning on overclocking this to the absolute max, this PC is for my mom. So maybe the CPU/6 autoresult is fine.
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post #2 of 9
Asus does not use the percentage or frequecy (i.e. .67%/133MHz) in their bios they use the DDR type. So if you set your cpu frequency to 260MHz with the default multiplier of 10X it will result in 2600MHz clock speed, which I am certain you know. Now if your memory is set to DDR333 (166MHz) with the 260 you will have a net frequency around 216MHz with your memory. I am assuming that your bios does an initial test on your bios settings and if it can not post it will set everything to default to get a successful post. You will just have to play around with the multiplier, frequency and memory settings to achieve the best scenerio to maximize your the above stated.

Edit: You might want to lower your VCore too, AMD dual core typically do not need as much voltage as single core Athlon 64's and definitely a lot less the XP's. You will likely be able to get to 2.6GHz with 1.4 volts or even 1.35. Don't be so quick to increase the voltage on your memory either. You really need to know what type of IC chips your memory has to apply the appropriate volatage. Winbond UTT BH-5, Winbond UTT CH-5 and such like the extra voltage, but if you have some with Infineon, Samsung TCCD or Micron type IC's they do not like the extra voltage and will perform better around 2.6 to 2.7 volts. You will have to do some research on the memory to find out what voltage to set it at.
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post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
I upped the vcore 1.5 because I could not find a way to increase vdd, FSB is really all I was testing at this stage. Same with vdimm, it wouldn't go past 230 until I upped vdimm to 3.0. I'll research what type of IC chips are on the stick, and I'll be doing memory bandwidth tests and such a little ways down the road.

The good news is that it's been running Prime95 at 256 for several hours, so at least I found a stable FSB. I'm still not clear on the RAM speed, though. Sounds to me like the RAM dividers I am used to in K7 are not around in K8? And that a 1:1 ratio for RAM:FSB is not so important?
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post #4 of 9
They are the same as the K7 architecture, it is how the bios for Asus boards is set up. Let me lay it down like this FSB of 200 with a DDR400 setting in your bios it would be running a 1:1. If you ran it at a FSB of 260 with your memory running at DDR333 an approximate 13:11 ratio because your memory will have a frequency of 216MHz. So DDR400= 200MHz, DDR360= 180MHz, DDR333= 166MHz, DDR300= 150MHz, etc. So DDR400x260=260MHz memory frequency, DDR360x260=234MHz, etc.

The 1:1 ratio is ideal but with the K8 and PC3200(DDR400) this is not sometimes attainable, so most run with dividers. While others get PC4000 (DDR500) memory so this 1:1 ratio is attainable at higher overclocks, because the native frequency of 250MHz makes it easier. Clear as mud? I hope this helps.
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post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Gotcha. So the trick for me now is to figure out how to see whether I can increase the MHz setting on the RAM to try and make it run faster than its rating, without losing my settings on the CPU. Or just deal with the CPU/6 divider, it's probably not a big deal for this PC's intended use.

Does the DFI board you're using work differently, e.g. with straight up dividers like I am used to? I was probably going to get a DFI for myself when I build by new rig next year.

Can anyone who has the A8N-E board tell me one way or the other whether it is even possible to adjust vdd? I'm just not finding it. Not that I think I need it anymore, my FSB was Prime95 stable at 256MHz, which is plenty. Now I'm just curious more than anything else.
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post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by VulcanDragon
Gotcha. So the trick for me now is to figure out how to see whether I can increase the MHz setting on the RAM to try and make it run faster than its rating, without losing my settings on the CPU. Or just deal with the CPU/6 divider, it's probably not a big deal for this PC's intended use.
No, you underclock the CPU when you are trying to overclock the memory. That way, if the OC fails, you will know that it was the memory that failed. It's the same with CPU, underclock the memory. It's the same with everything though. You have to isolate and test, be it CPU. MOBO, memory, cooling, PSU, video.....
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post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Yeah, all that I know. It's not overclocking basics that are getting me, it's understanding the changes in the process going from K7 to K8 in general, and this motherboard specifically.

E.g., I haven't figured out how to underclock the CPU while overclocking the RAM. Sure, I can lower the CPU multiplier down to six or so; but as soon as I set my RAM setting to Manual and select a DRAM speed that is not the default 400 MHz, the entire page of CPU overclocking settings gets reset to Auto, so I lose my underclock.
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post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by vulcandragon
Does the DFI board you're using work differently, e.g. with straight up dividers like I am used to? I was probably going to get a DFI for myself when I build by new rig next year.
It is more to do with who wrote the bios the motherboard company is using now. I have not used a lot of boards over the years, but in my experience the Abit bios is the only one that used the straight up dividers as you would say. Phoenix Technologies is the creator/writer of the bios for DFI boards, and they use the MHz version instead of DDR or ratios. I have used an Abit and although it did take a little getting used to in the end I prefer the way the Phoenix bios is set up.
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post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by euphoricmix
It is more to do with who wrote the bios the motherboard company is using now. I have not used a lot of boards over the years, but in my experience the Abit bios is the only one that used the straight up dividers as you would say.
Ahh...and of course, I'm used to Abit on my K7. Guess I just need to get used to the other format.
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