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990fxa Chipset supports 2133mhz (OC), is clocking it easy?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
So I really wanted to wait for the next generation AMD Zen platform to come out and go DDR4, plus 14nm, I like efficiency!. However, this spring I want to build a new rig with my tax return check. So I am going FX to keep costs low, I picked out an MSI 990xa motherboard that supports 2133mhz (o.c.). Basically if I buy ddr3 2133mhz it should just recognize it? Or will i have to go in there and mess with voltages. I do not want to lose stability but it has OC Genie 4 on the board and I like MSI bio's but I have never O.C. my memory before past the motherboards limits, nor had a board with a (oc) classification. I typically buy reference speeds. But the latencies are so good on these, like 9-10 for 2133mhz? I run 9 for 1600 haha. So on my new rig I wanted some of this quicker memory with lower latencies. If not, it supports the 1866mhz without the little (oc) label. So just some insight on what those mean on the board.
Edited by rambow70 - 11/2/15 at 8:33pm
 
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post #2 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by rambow70 View Post

So just some insight on what those mean on the board.
Do you mean "What does (oc) mean?"

(oc) means that the memory won't automatically run at that speed. You have to make changes is teh BIOS to make it do so.

As for any "automatic" overclocking (overclock genie), stay as far away from that as you can get! Automatic overclocking just uses settings that someone at the motherboard manufacturer thinks will overclock a typical motherboard with typical components. Their goal is to be able to automatically overclock the widest range of combinations that they can. The compromises necessary to do that result in using settings that in all likely hood are not the "best" settings for a particular combination.

It's like buying a "generic" shirt site unseen and only knowing it's a style and color most will like and it's a size that will fit most people. What do you think your chance is for getting a shirt that's good for you?

A little info about memory speeds and latency:
Latency is the number of computer "clock ticks" that the memory takes to complete what it has to do. Since each clock tick is a specific, finite length of time, latency is really measures of time (in nano-seconds).

A rough mathematical representation for memory specified as 2000 MHz with a latency of 10 would be:
Speed 2000 MHz = 2, 000,000,000 clock ticks per second (2 billion per second)
A latency of 10 takes ten times a 2 billionth of a second to complete, or 20 billionths of a second.

But, no matter what "clock speed" the memory runs at at latency is always 20 billionth of a second.
So, if you speed up the clock ticks (overclock) each clock tick is shorter and it takes more of them to get to 20 billionth of a second. So at 3000 MHz that 2000 MHz memory takes 15 clock ticks instead of 10, so you would have to set (manually) a latency of 15 in the BIOS. Note that the above is all an approximation of the way "typical" memory would work. In practice the latency at 3000 MHz may be 14, 15, or 16, and memory and memory controller voltages may, or may not have to be adjusted upwards too.

Back to overclock genie:
If it "guesses" a latency of 16 and 14 would actually work, you're loosing performance (almost 15%), If it guesses 14 and 16 is actually needed then no boot.

I hope that helps.................
Edited by billbartuska - 11/2/15 at 9:36pm
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post #3 of 6
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I understand Latency perfectly, I have been building these guys since 2008 when I was in 7th grade and used to be really into this stuff. Recently I haven't been. I used to overclock by under clocking the North bridge (bus between the cpu and the memory) which would lower your memory frequencies. Next you would raise your memory frequencies back up to what it once was (ddr2 800mhz) then your north bridge would increase causing the cpu frequency to raise as well. Then you adjusted CPU voltages accordingly. So that is how I used to OC and OC memory but it was always reference speeds and there is no more north bridges (at least in Intel cpu's) they placed that on the chip. So my question I guess is answered. If the board supports 2133mhz and the ram is 2133mhz at that frequency I just have to play with the BIOS. Which again I am no stranger to, but with all these new self overclocking features and how things have changed I was curious if it just did it by itself now days AND if the board says 2133 (oc) and 1866 without the (OC) would that reflect reliability? That was the question I guess.
 
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post #4 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by rambow70 View Post

I was curious if it just did it by itself now days AND if the board says 2133 (oc) and 1866 without the (OC) would that reflect reliability? That was the question I guess.
Ah, the old "Lower the memory divider and raise the FSB days". Fortunately they have now given us a lot more things that can be changed and we can get higher, stable overclocks, unfortunately, it's a lot more confusing now.

The answer to you question is Yes, the automatic overclocking option in the BIOS does it all automatically, but the problem is trying to figure out what it actually did when it doesn't work!

As for reliability, that's why we test overclkocks for stability. But that's a whole other discussion about how stable is stable. Prime 95 for stable for 24 hours, or just use it and see.

And, also that automatic overclock uses settings that someone somewhere came up with that are supposed to overclock the the typical computer setup with typical components. Kind of a "one size fits all" approach, so you mostly get get inferior overclocks or instability and have no idea why.

So, yes, memory overclocks can be stable, just so you don't go nuts. After all, the "official" memory spec only goes up to 1600 MHz, so anything above that is "cowboy country". The listings in motherboard specifications that say (oc) are very dooable, even quite higher. It's just a matter of tweaking all those new BIOS settings.

And one of my favorite sayings is "Overclocking is a slow and methodical process of trial and error, mostly error, often accompanied by cold sweats in the dark of the night. ...and than you succeed."
Edited by billbartuska - 11/3/15 at 8:13am
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post #5 of 6
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That's good insight but I guess that I am not really asking my question. I am not going to use OC Genie, I will use more traditional methods I am used to. I am also not taking a 1600mhz stick to 2133 or 1866mhz. What I was wondering is it even considered overclocking if the board supports a list of memory frequencies and you purchase said frequency. So if I bought the 1866mhz, the non OC classification, and I go in manually and adjust the 1866 memory to run at 1866 which the board supports it should work or if I have to adjust it isn't overclocking because those are both specs that they were made to run at. If I went past what the board or memory stick said then yes it is OC but if it is listed on the board as a supported frequency and I buy the corresponding stick, I shouldn't have to do any OC and just maybes let my bios know that it will be running at that speed. Is that clearer? Sorry if I am not being clear. And you might have answered it with the "auto oc" but like I said if I go the non OC classification memory standard.
Edited by rambow70 - 11/3/15 at 8:55am
 
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post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by rambow70 View Post

What I was wondering is it even considered overclocking if the board supports a list of memory frequencies and you purchase said frequency. So if I bought the 1866mhz, the non OC classification, and I go in manually and adjust the 1866 memory to run at 1866 which the board supports it should work or if I have to adjust it isn't overclocking because those are both specs that they were made to run at.

Uh, yes you would be overclocking, as the "official" memory spec only goes up to 1600 MHz, so anything over that is overclocked - whether by you or by the manufacturer by rewriting the SPD tables.

If I went past what the board or memory stick said then yes it is OC but if it is listed on the board as a supported frequency and I buy the corresponding stick, I shouldn't have to do any OC and just maybes let my bios know that it will be running at that speed. Is that clearer?

With default memory settings the BIOS sets the memory speed (and latencies) by reading the SPD table that corresponds to the default BIOS clock speed (or clock speed that you have set.in the BIOS). It doesn't matter what the memory's speed spec is nor what the board will run at with default settings though, it's overclocking if it's over 1600 MHz. It doesn't matter how you got there.

Sorry if I am not being clear. And you might have answered it with the "auto oc" but like I said if I go the non OC classification memory standard.

That help?
Edited by billbartuska - 11/3/15 at 10:58am
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