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Minimum utilization required to use Turbo Boost?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Seeing as the only way to OC the new Sandy Bridge CPU's is to bump up the Turbo Boost multiplier, that means that you won't take advantage of your overclock at all until the CPU is used.

So I was curious if anyone knows approximately at what point (as a percentage of total CPU utilization) that the turbo mode will kick in? Or if the CPU utilization doesn't determine when the turbo mode starts, what does?

I just want to know because if you need 100% load on the CPU to get the turbo mode to work, most games don't peg the CPU at full load so basically unless you were running Prime or a similar application you would never see your overclock active.

If I had a 1366 or 1156 platform I bet I would understand all this Turbo Mode stuff already but right now, and for the past 4 years, I have been on the old 775 Conroe platform so I am still acquainted with the FSB way of overclocking, and would always disable those Speedstep and EIST functions.
post #2 of 7
I can guarantee you dont need 100% cpu usage because if you did you would be running at like 1.5ghz or less or whatever the cpu drops to for everything you do.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hheemmpp View Post
I can guarantee you dont need 100% cpu usage because if you did you would be running at like 1.5ghz or less or whatever the cpu drops to for everything you do.
Well thats with SpeedStep enabled, it drops it down to like 1.6GHz, but you can turn SpeedStep off and it won't drop below the stock clock of 3.3GHz (100Hz x 33 multi).

Or at least I think thats how it works...
post #4 of 7
Well with 1156 you can "force" the turbo mutli and disable speed step so you are always running at the turbo frequency. thb though I havn't been keeping that up to date with how overclocking the non K versions of SB works exactly.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeforceGTS View Post
Well with 1156 you can "force" the turbo mutli and disable speed step so you are always running at the turbo frequency. thb though I havn't been keeping that up to date with how overclocking the non K versions of SB works exactly.
From what I watched in some video reviews you no longer can do that, and you can't modify the base x33 multiplier either so all you are left to do is modify the turbo multiplier and wait for the turbo to kick in.

My problem though is if the turbo doesn't kick in until 90-100% CPU utilization it is useless to me because I want my higher clock speed when I am playing a game or doing something in Photoshop, not when I am running a benchmark or stress testing application.
post #6 of 7
It is not directly about utilization percentage.

Turbo for Sandy Bridge is engaged as long as two conditions are met:
1. The processor is in the P0 P-State.
2. The chip's TDP is within limits.

As for (1), the P-State is something that is set by the operating system, and assuming that you are not running on a laptop, you will probably be put into P0 mode any time your processor is not idle. If you don't trust your OS to do it, you can always disable SpeedStep in the BIOS. With SpeedStep disabled, your processor will permanently be in P0 mode.

As for (2), you can increase the TDP limits in the BIOS.

So if you are someone who absolutely must waste power and heat your CPU needlessly by having your processor run at full frequency even when it's not doing any work, you just need to go into your BIOS, disable SpeedStep, and set your Turbo mode power limits to some very high value. Personally I will leave SpeedStep on.
post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Semper Fidelis View Post
My problem though is if the turbo doesn't kick in until 90-100% CPU utilization it is useless to me because I want my higher clock speed when I am playing a game or doing something in Photoshop, not when I am running a benchmark or stress testing application.
If you're playing a game or doing something in Photoshop, you are stressing your CPU and provided you're within temps and TDP, the CPU will Turbo if it needs to. Another thing, even if you have EIST (Enhanced Intel Speedstep Technology) enabled in the BIOS, it seems you can circumvent it via Windows power profiles (use the High Performance power profile or manually change advanced settings (Processor power management: Minimum processor state & Maximum processor state). At least that's the way it was with my i5-760 and i7-860. Personally, I use Min: 30% and Max: 100%. There's only 1~2W difference idle between Min: 5% and Min: 30% and I've noticed if I had it on 5%, I get some occasional stutters in PCSX2 as there seems to be a little bit of delay when changing processor states. Hmm, the Maximum processor state, I'd have to double-check when I get home. I'm not sure if it can go above 100%.

I suggest using TMonitor to monitor your processor's actual clockrate. I think there might be a widget that does this, too.
Edited by rui-no-onna - 1/5/11 at 8:47am
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Garnet
(11 items)
 
Lucifiel
(13 items)
 
Metatron
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3450S Intel DQ77KB Corsair 16GB DDR3 1600 SO-DIMM Samsung 830 256GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Crucial m4 256 mSATA Samsung 840 500GB Intel BXHTS1155LP Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
KeyboardCaseMouse
Logitech K800 Lian Li PC-Q05B Logitech M570 
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Core i7-860 Gigabyte GA-H55N-USB3 EVGA GTX 460 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x4GB DDR3 1333 
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G.SKILL Phoenix Pro 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Silverstone ST45SF 450W Silverstone Sugo SG05B 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Biostar TH55B HD MSI GT 240 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
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