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Just built the system a week ago, and now that I know it's stable at stock speeds, I'm ready to overclock. Despite being as much a tech nerd, as anyone overclocking scares me because I have no experience with it. As much as it pangs my nerd sensibilities to ask for very specific instructions, I also think it's the safest way to go.

So, I have an intel q6600 with a Xigmatek HDT-S1283 cooler and Asus P5Q-E motherboard. I want to overclock it as high as it can safely go. A nice, 'This is exactly what you need to do' guide would be helpful. I mean, I'm not an idiot, it doesn't have to be like describing something to a child, just someone with lots of technical knowledge who is new to overclocking. Thanks a lot in advance for your help. If anyone feels the need to IM me or anything my MSN is big.mofo.dill AT gmail
 

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Basically you want to raise the FSB to a higher speed. If your rig boots up, then you want to test for stability. Run a program called Prime95, run the small FFT test. If it errors, then you need to bump up the Vcore a notch or 2. Then test again. You also want to run a program called CoreTemp to monitor your temps. You don't want your core temps higher than 72c on a full load.

For a little encouragement boost. Raise your FSB to 3.0GHz and see if it boots with stock settings(it should). If it does boot up, try running prime for 15 minutes. If you don't get any errors, then you could try bumping up the FSB some more. If you do error, you need to bump up the Vcore a notch or 2, then try Prime95 again.

The highest you want your Vcore is 1.5v. You shouldn't need that much voltage until you get to 3.4GHz-3.6GHz.

Try this out, then post back with your results.
 

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There are millions of guides on here anyway, so I guess I'll list the main things to do and then, simply because I don't have your exact BIOS in front of me, you need to play around a bit and achieve the objectives. I think I am failry safe in saying the general consensous is as follows:

Find max FSB (That your MOBO can handle)
  • stick the multi (CPU cmultiplier) as low as it will go within reason (6 or so is a decent number for a 2.4ghz 1066mhz FSB cpu)
  • Make sure the RAM is on a ratio so that it is ALWAYS underclocked.
  • Up the FSB by small increments (i'd do 40 max until it becomes a bit unstable, then use steps of 20, then 10) adding vcore if you need to (up to safe vcore for a 65nm Q6600 - which I'm sure can be found on this site in a sticky, probably in this very subforum) KEEP TESTING FOR STABILITY (occt is usually the most recommended program, again advice on how regularly and how long to run it for can be found on here easily)
Find Max CPU speed
  • You now have a max FSB (beyond which MOBO/CPU is unstable) and a max Vcore.
  • put it back to the stock multi (9) and up FSB, first to 333 (this should be very safe) and then maybe 360, 380, up to your max FSB OR to where it becomes unstable even with your max safe Vcore. repeatedly stress testing every time the CPU increases by a substantial (200 - 400mhz) amount.
  • Now for some maths. Your CPU may be stable with a low multi and high FSB (if you've a very good MOBO) say 500 * 7.5 = 3.75ghz or it may get the highest clocks by using a high multi and lower than your "max safe FSB."

Find Max RAM speed


Simply play around with a very low multi and moderate to high FSB to get the max stable RAM speed. As with the CPU you can up the voltage and fiddle with various other things, like the timings to achieve stability.

Now for some more maths:

You know your:

Max CPU
Max FSB
Max RAM

FIND THE BEST COMBO THAT WORKS FOR YOU. THEN STRESS TEST ON OCCT FOR LITERALLY 8 OR SO HOURS. It is highly unlikely your max RAM and max CPU speed will happen at the same FSB, so fiddle aroudn to achieve a comprimise. If you game a lot then FSB & clockspeed yield higher FSB, faster RAM will yield much faster loading times for large applications.

EDIT: There are lots of small things that can be tweaked to achieve stability at higher clock speeds, such as north bridge voltage, ram timings etc that can all be read up in huge detail on this forum, most notably in stickies.

Also, I forgot (OCN may kill me for this) to say a really big WATCH YOUR TEMPERATURES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Temperatures are 95% of the time the limiting factor when OC'ing. most people draw the line at Temp < 60 during benchmarks that will only be run very very occasionally and max of 55 (celcius) during "normal" stressful activities such as modern games. Ideally you want temps as low as possible obviously...
 
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