Travel back in time... i7-960 upgrade to i7-990X, possible? Worthwhile? - Page 2 - Overclock.net - An Overclocking Community
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Travel back in time... i7-960 upgrade to i7-990X, possible? Worthwhile?

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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-01-2020, 07:20 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Annihilannic View Post
Hi Overclockers,

I have an aging but still well loved system with:

  • Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R motherboard
  • Intel Core i7-960 3.2GHz 4 core 8MB CPU
  • 24 GB G.SKILL Ripjaws RAM (6 x 4GB DDR3 PC3-12800 1600MHz (9-9-9-24) F3-12800CL9T-12GBRL)
  • EVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti hybrid

I'm thinking of upgrading the CPU to the best available for that motherboard, which appears to be the Core i7-990X 3.46GHz 6 core 12MB. Should I bother?

Is it even possible with my RAM? According to the specs here the i980X/i990X only support DDR3-1066 RAM, and I'm not sure my PC3-12800 qualifies for that - it appears to be running at 800MHz in CPU-Z. I only recently upgraded the RAM, so if it doesn't match, I definitely won't bother with the CPU upgrade until I move to a new chipset completely.

https://ark.intel.com/content/www/us...33,47932,52585

Also, bonus question... does this also mean my tri-channel RAM is useless in future chipsets (i.e. I would be happy to stick with 4 x 4GB with a faster CPU/motherboard combination) or is it too slow/incompatible anyway?

Thanks for reading,

Annihilannic

Regarding the RAM, the i7's are officially rated for 1066 Mhz DDR3 and the 32nm hexacore Xeons for 1333 Mhz, but both of them will do 1600 Mhz just fine. As to the kit's usability in future chipsets, only if you move to X79, that's the only newer HEDT chipset that works with DDR3, newer ones like X99 and X299 work with DDR4 and next year we'll probably have DDR5 motherboards.

As to your RAM being reported as working at 800 Mhz by CPU-Z (under Memory -> Timings -> DRAM Frequency), that would be correct, "DDR" stands for "double data rate", and your memory does run internally at 800 Mhz, but you get double the throughput, that's why it's called DDR3 1600 Mhz for simplicity's sake, even though it's not very accurate; purists will refer to the transfer rate (1600 MT/s) or bandwidth numbers (PC3-12800 for 12.8 GB/s bandwidth for each channel of DDR3 1600 Mhz).

Also, depending on what you do with the system, you may find better performance in gaming by running only 16 GB in dual channel (especially minimum fps), you'll get less latency. If however you do professional stuff, the amount of memory at your disposal may be of higher interest.



Last edited by tpi2007; 04-01-2020 at 07:53 PM.
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-01-2020, 07:37 PM
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The X5680 doesn't have an unlocked multiplier like the w3680 does. So get the W3680/w3690. Those are the only 2 with unlocked multipliers. W3670 and lower have locked multipliers like the x56XX chips.

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Last edited by ozlay; 04-01-2020 at 07:58 PM.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-01-2020, 07:46 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by ozlay View Post
The X5680 doesn't have an unlocked multiplier like the w3680 does.
If you plan to overclock, this is not a deal-breaker on the X58 platform. Both will overclock just fine - but for simplicity sake, w3680 is probably the way to go as all you need is increase the multiplier and CPU voltage. Don't overthink it - buy the cheapest specimen from a reliable source.
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-01-2020, 08:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks all! I'll go with the W3680 and post the results here...

Quote: Originally Posted by tpi2007 View Post
Also, depending on what you do with the system, you may find better performance in gaming by running only 16 GB in dual channel (especially minimum fps), you'll get less latency. If however you do professional stuff, the amount of memory at your disposal may be of higher interest.
Thanks for addressing that part of my question tpi2007. Are you referring to my existing system here or a future incarnation? I presume I can only run multiples of 3 with this tri-channel chipset? At a glance it seems like X79 is quad channel, so I presume I could only run that with 4 DIMMs anyway?

Main system
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EVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti hybrid
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G.SKILL RipJaws F3-12800CL9T-12GBRL
Power Supply
Antec
Cooling
Intel stock cooler
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-02-2020, 03:06 PM
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Some boards support tri-channel with 4 dimms. And some x79 can do quad channel with 6 dimms. And you can do dual-channel with 3 dimms on some 115X boards. Intel flex memory mode i believe its called?

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Last edited by ozlay; 04-02-2020 at 03:13 PM.
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post #16 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-06-2020, 01:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Here it is finally, let's see how it goes...
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Main system
(11 items)
CPU
Intel Xeon W3680
Motherboard
Gigabyte UD3R-X58A
GPU
EVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti hybrid
RAM
G.SKILL RipJaws F3-12800CL9T-12GBRL
Power Supply
Antec
Cooling
Intel stock cooler
Case
Antec Three Hundred
Operating System
Windows 10 Pro
Monitor
Dell P2714H
Monitor
Samsung 730BF 17"
Mouse
Logitech G502
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post #17 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-06-2020, 04:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Running perfectly so far! :-) ... and 17° cooler than the i960, I think the thermal paste on that one wasn't making good contact on a large section of the IHS. Thanks for the useful info!
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Main system
(11 items)
CPU
Intel Xeon W3680
Motherboard
Gigabyte UD3R-X58A
GPU
EVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti hybrid
RAM
G.SKILL RipJaws F3-12800CL9T-12GBRL
Power Supply
Antec
Cooling
Intel stock cooler
Case
Antec Three Hundred
Operating System
Windows 10 Pro
Monitor
Dell P2714H
Monitor
Samsung 730BF 17"
Mouse
Logitech G502
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post #18 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-09-2020, 05:27 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Annihilannic View Post
Running perfectly so far! :-) ... and 17° cooler than the i960, I think the thermal paste on that one wasn't making good contact on a large section of the IHS. Thanks for the useful info!
Awesome! This was a great upgrade. My X58 EVGA board has been running since January of 2009. I had bought it from Microcenter with i7 920 and 6GB RAM kit. After doubling the RAM, installing X5670, an SSD and a new PS a few years ago, it has been running as well as any modern machine. I hope your new setup gives you many years of trouble-free service!
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post #19 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-22-2020, 09:05 PM - Thread Starter
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My fairly low-end air cooling tower arrived yesterday and jumped straight on to the CPU... for a reduction of 30°C (80° -> 50°) at 100% load, much more than I anticipated. Those stock Intel coolers really are junk! I suspect largely due to poor contact due to the crappy plastic mounting clips - one reason I went for a cooler that has a mounting backplate.

Clocked up to 4GHz (haven't touched BCLK yet, and not sure I want or need to go there) and a few extra mV and I'm very happy with the result.
Attached Images
 

Main system
(11 items)
CPU
Intel Xeon W3680
Motherboard
Gigabyte UD3R-X58A
GPU
EVGA NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti hybrid
RAM
G.SKILL RipJaws F3-12800CL9T-12GBRL
Power Supply
Antec
Cooling
Intel stock cooler
Case
Antec Three Hundred
Operating System
Windows 10 Pro
Monitor
Dell P2714H
Monitor
Samsung 730BF 17"
Mouse
Logitech G502
▲ hide details ▲
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post #20 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-26-2020, 11:06 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Annihilannic View Post
My fairly low-end air cooling tower arrived yesterday and jumped straight on to the CPU... for a reduction of 30°C (80° -> 50°) at 100% load, much more than I anticipated. Those stock Intel coolers really are junk! I suspect largely due to poor contact due to the crappy plastic mounting clips - one reason I went for a cooler that has a mounting backplate.

Clocked up to 4GHz (haven't touched BCLK yet, and not sure I want or need to go there) and a few extra mV and I'm very happy with the result.
Nice results! Keep pushing it since you should still have a bit of headroom left.

Also, just a heads up, I noticed you have HT disabled (running on 6c/6t).

Skylake Devil
(16 items)
CPU
i7 6700k @4.5ghz
Motherboard
ASUS Maximus VIII Hero
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Powercolor RX 5700XT Red Devil 8GB
RAM
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Hard Drive
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Crucial MX500
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