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Safe 24/7 Voltage for TWO HD 7970s in Crossfire

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I've tried searching, and I've found little threads on safe voltages for HD 7970s (none with an answer, people just saying to push voltages up only when overclocks are unstable... duh) and none on two in Crossfire.
So right now I've pushed the Core Voltage up to 1200 on Afterburner (1.2v?), is that safe for a 24/7 overclock?
The default is 1112. I've also set the power limit % to an extra 20 on top of the 1200 vcore. Is this safe for a 24/7 OC, considering temps are in check?

At just 1045/1565 on the stock 1112 voltage, Unigine Heaven 4.0 crashes after just a few runs and one card ceases to function completely until I disable/re-enable crossfire and restart (black lines and objects will show and vanish constantly all over the screen in game otherwise).

I've had so many problems like that, that I thought one card was defective, once the darker colors in games in games just become a horrible sludgy black that was moving like it was eating my screen while the lighter colors stayed the same.

However, I tested each card individually and they both work like normal, and then when I put them both back together, that problem left me. So I'd assume both cards work just fine.

So back to the main question, is 1200 on the Core Voltage with a 20% extra power limit on After Burner safe for a 24/7 overclock, running two HD 7970s in CF, and how far can I push up the voltage and be safe from degrading my two cards? Cheers.

EDIT: Oh and what temps am I aiming to stay under? Under 85c fine? Right now they're hovering around the 79-81 degrees Celsius mark, capping out at 82, with an auto fan profile on AB. I want to get as much power out of these cards as possible WITHOUT damaging them, or at least being able to have them for the next 2-3 years.
Edited by Evanlet - 5/31/13 at 9:06am
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post #2 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evanlet View Post

I've tried searching, and I've found little threads on safe voltages for HD 7970s (none with an answer, people just saying to push voltages up only when overclocks are unstable... duh) and none on two in Crossfire.
So right now I've pushed the Core Voltage up to 1200 on Afterburner (1.2v?), is that safe for a 24/7 overclock?
The default is 1112. I've also set the power limit % to an extra 20 on top of the 1200 vcore. Is this safe for a 24/7 OC, considering temps are in check?

At just 1045/1565 on the stock 1112 voltage, Unigine Heaven 4.0 crashes after just a few runs and one card ceases to function completely until I disable/re-enable crossfire and restart (black lines and objects will show and vanish constantly all over the screen in game otherwise).

I've had so many problems like that, that I thought one card was defective, once the darker colors in games in games just become a horrible sludgy black that was moving like it was eating my screen while the lighter colors stayed the same.

However, I tested each card individually and they both work like normal, and then when I put them both back together, that problem left me. So I'd assume both cards work just fine.

So back to the main question, is 1200 on the Core Voltage with a 20% extra power limit on After Burner safe for a 24/7 overclock, running two HD 7970s in CF, and how far can I push up the voltage and be safe from degrading my two cards? Cheers.

EDIT: Oh and what temps am I aiming to stay under? Under 85c fine? Right now they're hovering around the 79-81 degrees Celsius mark, capping out at 82, with an auto fan profile on AB. I want to get as much power out of these cards as possible WITHOUT damaging them, or at least being able to have them for the next 2-3 years.

It all depends on your temps. If you can get good temps with 1.3v then use that for 24/7, but I doubt that you would get good temps with that voltage. I usually stay around 1.25v on air and if you are under water you can easily go up to 1.3v. Make SURE you watch your VRM temps on both cards, but especially your top card. As for your memory it's the same thing, you can push it up to 1.65v, but I doubt your VRM's wouldn't stay cool enough on air to allow for that. Degradation is caused by an excess of heat and voltage. Not saying you can push these to 1.6v on the core and be safe even with good temps, but with these cards being hardware locked at 1.3v it guarantees that you will be in the safe zone as long as your temps are in the safe zone. Much different than overclocking a CPU with the freedom in voltage. As for temps, I wouldn't let your core temps go over 80c and don't let your VRM's go above 85c. I personally don't let my core and VRM's go above 73c. Do whatever you can to cool them. Put your fan speeds at 100% and put a shop fan blowing right between both of your cards to it cools the VRM's. That is what I do. So all in all, just have fun and watch your temps and you should be safe. Maybe consider getting some water blocks for your cards.
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Wow, thanks for the answer. Very informative and brought up something I didn't even realize existed (kinda new to OC'ing). +Rep
So my core temps are capping out at around 83c, but hovering around 79-82c after a loop or two in Unigine, is that fine?
My VRM temps on my top card hit 83c for the first one and 79c for the second one, after one loop in Unigine.
I'm going to assume the VRM temps on my bottom card are a lot lower, as when I quickly tabbed to it after, it was only at around 40c for VRM1&2.

Should I be worried about the VRM temps on the top card? Is it absolutely important that it doesn't exceed 85 or can it go a little higher without damage?
Also, according to threads I've read here, 100% fan speed 24/7 should be acceptable, but on various other forums people are saying that they wouldn't exceed 85% for a prolonged usage.
Edited by Evanlet - 5/31/13 at 10:23am
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post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evanlet View Post

Wow, thanks for the answer. Very informative and brought up something I didn't even realize existed (kinda new to OC'ing). +Rep
So my core temps are capping out at around 83c, but hovering around 79-82c after a loop or two in Unigine, is that fine?
My VRM temps on my top card hit 83c for the first one and 79c for the second one, after one loop in Unigine.
I'm going to assume the VRM temps on my bottom card are a lot lower, as when I quickly tabbed to it after, it was only at around 40c for VRM1&2.

Should I be worried about the VRM temps on the top card? Is it absolutely important that it doesn't exceed 85 or can it go a little higher without damage?

Yea those are "ok" temps, I would try to get them lower though. I wouldn't feel comfortable running my cards every day with those temps. Are your fans on both cards at 100%? Maybe take off the heatsinks and replace the thermal paste? That would shred off a couple degrees. Also try putting a fan right up to both of them to help keep the air moving.
post #5 of 14
If you can keep the temps at bay then it's practically impossible to fry your GPU with 1.3V you can set in AB. Monitor your GPU-Z graphs and you will find your actual voltage being far from what you have typed in.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RavageTheEarth View Post

Yea those are "ok" temps, I would try to get them lower though. I wouldn't feel comfortable running my cards every day with those temps. Are your fans on both cards at 100%? Maybe take off the heatsinks and replace the thermal paste? That would shred off a couple degrees. Also try putting a fan right up to both of them to help keep the air moving.

Oh, these temps are just what Heaven and Valley are reporting, and the temps I get with BF3 and Crysis.
Otherwise on all other games, if an fps that isn't bf3, the framerate is capped at 90/120 or V-Sync is always on, temps don't generally rise up past 60-70c biggrin.gif
This system is still relatively new (have had it for a couple of months), and an update, upped the Fan to 85% and now after a run in heaven it reaches only 78c, but still eventually reaches what it did before.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fulvin View Post

If you can keep the temps at bay then it's practically impossible to fry your GPU with 1.3V you can set in AB. Monitor your GPU-Z graphs and you will find your actual voltage being far from what you have typed in.

That's great to know and reassuring also. Yeah I noticed that too and searched it up, but according to my findings GPU-Z's voltage readings are inaccurate and from what I read, someone recommended that another hardware monitor be used to watch over voltages.
Edited by Evanlet - 5/31/13 at 10:35am
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post #7 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fulvin View Post

If you can keep the temps at bay then it's practically impossible to fry your GPU with 1.3V you can set in AB. Monitor your GPU-Z graphs and you will find your actual voltage being far from what you have typed in.

Exactly
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Ok so after 2x5runs of Heaven, and dropped the voltages as low as possible (stable, but the odd color issue pops up visibly every while but no crashes, if I lower it any more then it will crash after prolonged use... I'm like on the very edge in terms of voltage).

So I've gotten my two HD 7970s to 1155/1560 @ 1.206v, core temp caps at 84c and VRMs at 90c for the first card. Is this still OK (no damage)?
My bottom card seems to be fine, 66c cap the lazy bastard.
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post #9 of 14
You can sustain 1.3v unless you are under water and have lots of radiators. 2 cards @ 1.3v will pull a lot of juice and thats all extra heat. Let me give you a example.

My System + HD 7970 @ 1.112v @ 1125/1575 + HD 7970 @ 1175v @1125/1575 pulls ~ 500W average when playing a demanding game that load up the CPU well and GPUs close to 99% each. Now if i OC both my cards @ 1250/1875 @ 1.3v that jumps to 750W. Thats like adding another GPU. In Airs i would not go over 1.2v. Also keep in mind the card does not like high temps. I can do 1.3GHz if temps are under 45C. Also 80C+ is not really something you would want once the card is overclocked because you will hit instability.
Ishimura
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Ishimura
(21 items)
 
Silent Knight
(13 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 3770K @ 4.6GHz ASRock Z77E-ITX eVGA GTX 1080 Ti Hybrid AVEXIR Blitz 1.1 16GB DDR3-2400MHz CL10 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingCooling
SanDisk Ultra II 960GB Toshiba X300 5TB Corsair H100i GTX eVGA Hybrid Water Cooler  
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
4x GentleTyphoon AP-15 Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit LG OLED55C7P  Razer BlackWidow Chroma  
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
eVGA SuperNOVA 750 G3 Define Nano S Logitech G502 Proteus Core PECHAM Gaming Mouse Pad XX-Large 
AudioAudioAudioAudio
Audioengine D1 DAC Mackie CR Series CR3 Audio-Technica ATH-M50 Sennheiser HD 598 
Audio
Sony XB950BT 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD Phenom II X4 955 @ 4.2GHz ASUS M4A79XTD EVO AMD Radeon HD 7970 3GB @ 1200/1500 2x 4GB G.SKILL Ripjaws X DDR3-1600 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveCooling
OCZ Agility 3 60GB WD Caviar Green 1.5TB 2 x Seagate Barracuda 2TB XSPC Raystorm 
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post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evanlet View Post

Ok so after 2x5runs of Heaven, and dropped the voltages as low as possible (stable, but the odd color issue pops up visibly every while but no crashes, if I lower it any more then it will crash after prolonged use... I'm like on the very edge in terms of voltage).

So I've gotten my two HD 7970s to 1155/1560 @ 1.206v, core temp caps at 84c and VRMs at 90c for the first card. Is this still OK (no damage)?
My bottom card seems to be fine, 66c cap the lazy bastard.

I guess it's ok, but if you run temps like that every day your cards won't last as long as one with the same temps and voltage, but with lower temps. Try lowering the memory voltage down to 1.5v and lower the overclock down to 1500Mhz. Those colors sound like artifacts from a too high memory OC
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