First of all, a HUGE thank you to TopicClocker for this thread. I actually read all 100 pages of it and there is a ton of good info. It was instrumental in helping me decide to purchase one of these CPUs and in helping me overclock it.
Now on to my issue, I purchased the G3258 / MSI Z97 PC Mate $99 micro center deal because it was just too good to pass up. I'm coming from an Phenom II 940 with a mild overclock (3.3ghz, apparently I lost the lottery, it just ran too hot to go higher). I've had it for over 5 years and the benchmarks here helped convince me this was a decent time to upgrade before doing a massive upgrade in a year or two. I also didn't want to wait until it totally gave up the ghost and at a total outlay of $99 (plus some random ram I ... acquired), the performance gains were worth it.
I started my overclock with the OC Genie just to see where it would start me and it put me at 4.3GHz with a 1.3 vcore I believe. The problem was, it wasn't stable. It would crash on any benchmark. I started reading this thread and both Haswell overclocking guides mentioned in here to try and get it better. As it stands today, I'm back at 4.3 GHz, again with 1.3 vcore but it is more stable. It ran x264 entirely through last night (85C max temp) but then just failed it again this morning about 1.5 hours in. I was able to play games for about 6 hours straight so I know it's "relatively" stable but I would like it to be able to at least pass x264 regularly. I was playing mostly TF2 but I also play D3, a little LoL, etc. Nothing overly taxing on the processor, I believe it was in the low 60's while playing.
Any suggestions or things I haven't thought of to try and get it stable? Since MicroCenter is pretty close, do you think I should just return the CPU and try the lottery again thinking I may have just a bad example? Anyone familiar with how well MicroCenter will take back a used processor? With so many people hitting 4.3-4.4 on 1.2x volts, it's frustrating to not be stable even at 1.3. I have backed down the voltage but it BSODs with a 124 pretty quick when I do that. Temps don't even hit 70+ before it's rebooting.
Here is where my system sits currently:
VID: 1.300 (current reading 1.301)
VCCIN: 1.9 (current reading 1.904)
Ring: 1.15 (current reading 1.144)
Vcore is currently low (as expected since it's idle) but does go to 1.3 ish on load.
I wasn't able to find the VCCIN LLC anywhere in bios ... does it go by another name? I couldn't find anything that even looked like it so perhaps that's not an option in the PC Mate?
Anything I missed? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks guys.