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OC'ing Formula-Z with FX 8320 - Did I hit a wall?

post #1 of 54
Thread Starter 
Ok, so I built my system with the intention of overclocking. Obviously, as I've spent a lot of $$ on parts and what not, and on 3 year old architecture. Mostly because i wanted to save a few bucks, but also because of the plethora of guides relating directly to my CPU and/or the motherboard. I figured, hey, everyone thought highly of them for a reason, they're still great bits of hardware.

Anywho, on with the story, then to the question. I've followed one guide that explained multiplier overclocking, which is the route I ultimately have gone. And A few questions were left unanswered, to which I eventually came to find the answers. But not before giving up for a few weeks, then following another guide that went over FSB overclocking (Jayztwocents). I followed the guide, and tweaked here and there, and again, after hitting a wall I was left with more questions. To which I gave up for another week or two before finding a few more answers and multiple more attempts, fails, resets, re-analyses, approach changes, pushing past where I was comfortable to find it was fine to begin with, then giving up on FSB and manual overclocking all over again. After stepping up the DIGI Power controls, then using Asus AI Suite II's auto-tune, I had a 4.477Ghz overclock. But the heat under prime95 small-FFT test approached the thermal limits followed by a sudden whea_uncontrollable_error, i again reset and gave up for another week or so.

Finally, I've gotten to a point I'm comfortable at. Stock settings for my FX 8320 are 17.5 multi, 200 FSB, 1.345V on the CPU. The only manual settings I've changed from there (aside from power saving and DIGI Power) were the multi, CPU volt and used the DOCP (or whatever it is) setting for the XMP memory specs (1600Mhz 9-9-9-24 1.5v, something like that, timing is probably wrong). So now I'm at 4.3Ghz, multi at 21.5, fsb on auto, CPU/NB and HT link bus on auto, CPU voltage a 1.3625V. I'm comfortable with this, but really I'd like to push to 4.5Ghz. Every time I push further, though, it seems like I get more and more whea_uncontrollable_errors and I'm not exactly sure what to do. They most often happen when I run blend on Prime95. So that made me question the integrity of my memory module kit. But after running Memtest86+ for a full cycle (as from what I've read successive cycles are nice, but has extreme diminishing returns after the first cycle). After yet another question as to how to fix that, i threw caution to the wind and started bumping up the CPU voltage for the heck of it. To recap a quick bit: I was able to run an 800Mhz boost to the CPU without barely increasing the voltage on the CPU, but now to get an extra 200Mhz I've gone as far as 1.4125v. It did manage to get more stable, but one thread stopped on blend test due to an error. I plan on bumping the voltage up another notch to 1.425V. and testing it yet again. So some quick math relations: ~23% clock boost equated to ~1.3% voltage increase, whereas an additional ~5% clock boost equates to an additional ~6% voltage increase (maybe more)?

I really wanted to avoid going over 1.4V as the heat just rapidly increases and I don't want to prematurely fry the chip any more than I would have normally, and I don't think my Corsair H105 with EK-Vardar F3-120 fan replacements will be able to dissipate that heat.Yes, I replaced the corsair SP-120 fans as they were incredibly loud and only tolerable at a silent fan curve. These Vardar F3 fans are on standard fan curve and are nearly as quiet at 1350RPM as they are at 1600RPM. Perhaps I could put them on the Turbo fan curve as my voltage increases, but isn't the point of water cooling to reduce fan noise and RPMs?

So now, at last, is time for my question. I know it all comes down to silicon lottery blah blah, but what I want to know is is it common for this to happen? Is it typical to hit a wall all of a sudden and in order to squeeze an extra 200Mhz you need to juice the heck out of the voltage? Or am I doing it wrong? Is there some other setting I need to change to stabilize?
Edited by schubocks - 2/7/16 at 6:29pm
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post #2 of 54
Just to get you started http://www.overclock.net/t/946327/official-asus-crosshair-v-formula-990fx-club/7720#post_21763765
remove AI Suit as it's known to cause issues.

Manually enter all Dram specs from the sticker on the Dram itself into Bios (not DOCP)

DL HWInfo64 and spend a little time to rename values and rearrange to something usable Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Explains values for the CHV-Z in HWInfo64 http://www.overclock.net/t/946327/official-asus-crosshair-v-formula-990fx-club/6580#post_21007875

Maybe a snip of a 10 run pass of IBT AVX set to "Very High" found here http://www.overclock.net/attachments/13202
along with HWInfo showing (like snip above) will help give us a better idea of where you're at.

Us the f12 key in Bios with a thumb drive (FAT32) in a USB 2.0 port to take snips of your Bios settings and post will also help.

As far as the wall? All CPU's have them. You just need to over come them is all.
Heat will be your biggest factor. But with a little patience and a lot of testing it may surprise you what you can do.
 
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post #3 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by schubocks View Post

... but isn't the point of water cooling to reduce fan noise and RPMs?

So now, at last, is time for my question. I know it all comes down to silicon lottery blah blah, but what I want to know is is it common for this to happen? Is it typical to hit a wall all of a sudden and in order to squeeze an extra 200Mhz you need to juice the heck out of the voltage? Or am I doing it wrong? Is there some other setting I need to change to stabilize?

The "point of" watercooling is to remove heat faster. Quiet gets expensive as you need multiple fan facings (4-6?) with quiet, low air flow fans. Watercooling can be inexpensive, effective, or quiet, but only two of those at one time.

Re: Your overclocking,
If you haven't done so yet disable all "automatic" speed controls like turbo, etc.
Stay as far way as possible from (like never ever use them!) Ai suite and memory XMP profiles.

As for your "voltage" question, most people start out with higher than needed voltages. You don't realize it, but you're compensating for other, non- optimized settings with high voltage. As you start overclocking, by the time you get to 4.5 GHz or so you've figured out a lot about what settings you need. If you went back to the speed you started at, and used what you had learned getting to 4.5, you could run much lower voltages at, say 3.5 GHz. than when you started there.

When a CPU's speed is changed "Automatically" the voltage changes too. But voltages don't just snap from one voltage to another.



These overshoots and undershoots are compensated for automatically. If you eliminate the automatic corrections you will have an easier time overclocking. Learn abvout vdroop and voltage offsetting. It is possible to have voltage not change at all as CPU speed changes. Do that to get your overclock, but note that it has a significant effect on power consumption, but you can always go back later and set offsets to save power.if you want.

Also, as you pass through 1.4 volts, heat starts to increase exponentially, and heat is going to be what limits you overclock with an AIO cooler.
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post #4 of 54
Others are covering the details of OCing just fine, but you seem to have gotten some bad information about water cooling. This thread just started yesterday and the 1st post at least has some good info.

http://www.overclock.net/t/1590547/why-you-should-probably-not-buy-a-clc-cooler
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post #5 of 54
Thread Starter 
Regarding the anti-"CLC" post, I do appreciate your input. Sincerely I do. But that post you linked seems to be from someone who got bit by water cooling. I had a hyper 212 evo on my old i7 920 using an Intel DX58SO motherboard and it's auto tune software, that thing got hot. Stock cooler I was getting 80's low 90's, the 212 got me below 70's. Thinking now, maybe it would have been good at this application, but water will generally outperform air every time, unless you get one of those crazy coolers that have 2 towers and weigh more than a newborn baby. That said, I know the risks of water, and know that CLCs are not permanent solutions. As with any component that has moving parts, it will wear out. It will die. I'm not against custom loops either, but at this point, I've put a lot of $$ and time just into getting this rig going, and need to close the wallet for a bit until i can do more research on close loop parts and costs. So moving on.

Per the suggestion to ditch DOCP, I did. And took it a half step further by setting manual settings on clock and NB voltage just because I knew that was going to be next. heh. As for the CPU Power Saving settings as they're currently enabled. When I push my OC and run tests, they're disabled. Having an OC, in my opinion, doesn't mean I have to sacrifice some power savings too.
BIOS-Pics (Click to show)






I'll have to run an IBT in a few minutes, didn't think about changing the CPU power settings while I was in the BIOS so that I could run tests. Will Update this in a bit.

*UPDATE*
Running IBT kept crashing my video. The first attempt to run it, my screen froze, unfroze, went black, came back with missing parts of windows (ie desktop image showing instead of program), flashed black again, then crashed with some driver_corrupt like error on a blue screen. After rebooting and trying again and the same sequence of events unfolding, stopped IBT and refuse to run it again. I actually used IBT a while ago with no issues, so I'm not sure what's going on with it now. maybe I messed something up with all these tests and have corrupt files? I don't know. I was lazy and didn't use an alternate drive/OS for testing. or maybe it's just IBT doesn't like something that I've changed since the last time I used it.
Edited by schubocks - 2/8/16 at 10:37am
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post #6 of 54
Actually I wanted you to look at the noise charts as you stated that clc is quieter, and it's not. The rest of that thread is an opinion fest and there is no need to do that here too. Unless you really want to............

About IBT, what level were you running it at? If it is "very high" try it at "standard" to see if it gets better. First just get it running and then push it. It does sound like it could use some more vcore.
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post #7 of 54
Thread Starter 
no no, debating opinions is silly. lol. But I see your point.

I re-ran IBT on standard, though I don't see the point of standard vs very high, as for my memory configuration, the used memory never exceeds my first module. But I did re-run in standard, and got another blue-screen. This error was 'video_tdr_failute'... currently re-installing drivers, rebooting then trying another run. If that fails, I'll install the latest drivers (avoiding doing it at first as latest nvidia drivers has a bug and flagged it as a removable device) and rerun again.
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post #8 of 54
Thread Starter 
Ok, after using the most up to date drivers from nVidia, I managed to not get a blue screen crash on IBT standard test. I did however have 1 or 2 soft crashes (ie screen goes blank then reappears).

Here's the results screenshot
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

*UPDATE*
I decided to just go for broke and put IBT on very high, and I got 2 soft crashes followed by a hard crash. The following is the BSOD I got. Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

And for a baseline test, i decided to set all my overclocking back to stock and ran IBT at vey high. I wanted to see if, well, honestly, how reliable IBT actually is. Seeing as how IBT tests CPU and memory only, I kept asking myself why would my video drivers even matter? During and IBT on very high at stock CPU settings for 5 runs, I had 9 minor screen freezes (anything that lasted longer than 2 seconds) and 1 soft crash (video cut out and came back). So if on stock settings, I can't even get a clean run of IBT, I question the usefulness of that program. I don't mean to start an argument, and I know that just cause one test succeeds doesn't necessarily mean it's right and maybe IBT is just pointing flaws in my hardware all together. But it just seems odd that if no OC settings can't pass flawless, maybe something's wrong elsewhere. Maybe it's not even IBT. I don't know.
Edited by schubocks - 2/8/16 at 12:34pm
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post #9 of 54
You are assuming the the "stock" default settings are the best for you particular combination of CPU, memory, and video. They are not. They're just what some programmes thought would work with the widest variety of components.

Have a look at OCCT for stability testing. It shows speed, temp and volts. Run IBT at the same time for even more stressing.
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post #10 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by billbartuska View Post


Stay as far way as possible from (like never ever use them!) Ai suite and memory XMP profiles.

Does XMP set 2nd and 3rd ram timings to be most compatible with the ram set? When i set my timings manually on my ram (tightened from stock), i have split second lags in games every 10 seconds or so, When i enable XMP then manually adjust the 1st timings to my tightened timings, it's smooth as.
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