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Petition for a beginner's guide to i7 OCing...

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I was wondering if one of the pro's here could possible give us beginners a how-to-guide for simply starting an OC of an i7 CPU.

What I'm looking for is where to start? What do you crank down and what do you raise... and by how much at a time? That sort of thing. Just a basic primer.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 11
Just wait a couple months; until i7 becomes more mainstream. You'll see lots of guides popping up.
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post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Well its not a detailed guide I'm after exactly, but some general advise on how to begin OCing. The very basics really, where to start. Not a guide to getting a max OC, just a beginner's map.

I've heard that you need to loosen everything up and then ratchet up the OC one setting at a time. So I thought somebody who has done it could tell us all what settings to loosen up and what to ratchet up in what order. That sort of stuff.
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post #4 of 11
- raise your frequency (or front side bus, FSB) slowly until your machine becomes unstable
- then raise vcore voltage until it becomes stable again.
- repeat!

repeat those steps until you either reach a desired speed, a max temperature, a max voltage, or until your chip cannot OC any higher.

most likely you will reach a max temperature or voltage before the speed you want.
and RARELY do people max their chips out before the other three happen.

enjoy your i7!
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post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoke12291 View Post
most likely you will reach a max temperature or voltage before the speed you want.
and RARELY do people max their chips out before the other three happen.
So you don't need to loosen anything up first, I can just OC from stock? How much should I crank each setting up at a time to be safe? I assume it shouldn't be very much... maybe just a few MHZ or volts?
Edited by HardwarzFan - 12/26/08 at 10:33pm
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post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by HardwarzFan View Post
So you don't need to loosen anything up first, I can just OC from stock?
read through these to get an idea.
Intel Overclocking Guide
Intel CPUs Essential Threads

be sure to start slowly though, you don't want to fry anything, especially on a nice new i7.
also remember to keep your temps UNDER 70c at most, I like to keep mine below 60c, while stress testing. (prime95, small fft, for > 8 hours.)

and yes, some CPUs can overclock from stock voltage (and stock RAM timings/voltage)
but to a point.
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post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoke12291 View Post
- raise your frequency (or front side bus, FSB) slowly until your machine becomes unstable
It's called BCLK with i7, no more FSB..
..a
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post #8 of 11
Also, the base clock (reference clock) is something entirely different than the FSB. The FSB is the frequency of the system bus (front-side bus) which is then quad-pumped to get the system bus frequency (which is also the path to memory), and then multiplied by x to get the CPU frequency. Matching it to memory frequency by some sort is beneficiary because memory traffic passes over the FSB.

'BCLK' is the reference clock for the Nehalem, 133MHz, a reference clock for all the various components. The system bus (QPI link), the uncore (L3 and integrated memory controller) and each CPU core all have their own multipliers of this 133MHz figure. 'Matching' the 133MHz number or the QPI link to memory is pointless because they are now decoupled. Memory traffic goes over the dedicated integrated memory controller, not via the system bus from the chipset.

Where to start.. Well, if you want a guide you could just find an AMD guide, preferably Phenom as it is most similar and replace the terms with Intel terms. (HyperTransport link -> QPI link, HTT/FSB/reference clock -> base clock/BCLK, 200MHz -> 133MHz, etc etc) No, really.

But, very quickly...

1: Set the QPI, memory and uncore at their lowest possible setting.
2: Set all the voltages at their standard, but fixed setting rather than Auto. Auto may cause the motherboard to give your CPU some unnecessarily high voltages.
3: Start by increasing the base clock by a modest figure, if you're patient 10MHz at a time, if you're not (like me) more.
4: Stress test a few minutes for each increment until you get a failure. Note your highest possible clock at that voltage setting, then ramp up the voltage (CPU voltage) a notch or two. Continue testing until it fails again, make notes, rinse, repeat until you're either happy with the OC or your temperatures or voltage get too high for comfort. Temps and volts are all very personal things, some people are uncomfortable with more than 60C and more than 1.35V, others are happy if they're below 90C and below 1.5V. You'll just have to search, read and decide for yourself but obviously if it's your first its best to be careful.
5: You can also try the various voodoo settings they have, load line calibration, spread spectrum, clock skew and whatnot. I know my ASUS has five, six, seven, not sure what settings below everything else and I have no idea what they are but they work for me at least!

Also, could you add your machine to your profile so we can help more specifically?
Edited by bowman - 12/27/08 at 5:26am
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post #9 of 11
Was there something wrong with this thread?

By the way bowman, excellent info!
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post #10 of 11
As Bowman stated, the AMD guide is a good reference. Replace BCLK with Bus speed, and QPI with HT.
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