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Thread: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4




  1. #1

    Default Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Good evening everyone,

    I currently put together a second system for backup (always prepare for the worst!) and also to have another gaming machine in my LAN. I'm having a really tough time OC'ing this C2D E6420 using the GA-EP35-DS4. Below my specs are the settings I am trying to OC with.

    System specs are -

    Core 2 Duo E6420 B2
    GA-EP35-DS4 Rev. 2.1 w/ F6 BIOS (latest)
    Xigmatek HDT-SD964
    2x1GB Corsair XMS DDR2 800 (rated 4-4-4-12 @ 2.1 v)
    XFX HD 4770 w/ AC L2 Pro
    Realtek ALC889A Audio
    Seagate 250GB 16MB Cache
    Antec Earthwatts 430

    Code:
    Robust Graphics Booster___________ [Auto]
    CPU Clock Ratio ____________ [8]  
    CPU Host Clock Control_ [Enabled]
    CPU Host Frequency (MHz)__________ [333] 
    PCI Express Frequency (Mhz)_______ [100]
    C.I.A. 2__________________________ [Disabled]
    System Memory Multiplier (SPD)____ [2.40]
    DRAM Timing Selectable_______ SPD __ [Manual]
    
    Performance Enhance = [Standard]
    
    CAS Latency Time________4________ 
    Dram RAS# to CAS# Delay____4_____ 
    Dram RAS# Precharge Delay____4___
    Precharge Delay (tRAS)_____12_____ 
    
    ACT to ACT Delay (tRRD)___AUTO______ 
    Rank Write to READ Delay______AUTO__ 
    Write to Precharge Delay___AUTO______ 
    Refresh to ACT Delay_______AUTO_______ 
    Read to Precharge Delay___AUTO_______
    Static tRead Value______AUTO_________
    Static tRead Phase Adjust___AUTO_____ [Auto]
    
    CPU/PCIEX Clock Driving Control [800mV]
    CPU Clock Skew Control [normal]
    GMCH Clock Skew Control [Normal]
    
    System Voltage Control____ [Manual]
    DDR2 OverVoltage Control__ [+0.300V] 
    PCI-E OverVoltage Control_ [Normal] 
    FSB OverVoltage Control___ [Normal] 
    (G)MCH OverVoltage Control [Normal] 
    CPU Voltage Control_______ [1.35000V] - More on this in a minute.
    
    Limit CPUID Max. to 3.....................: [Disabled]
    No-Execute Memory Protect............: [Enabled]
    CPU Enhanced Halt (C1E)................: [Disabled]
    C2/C2E State Support....................: [Disabled]
    x C4/C4E State Support..................: [Disabled]
    CPU Thermal Monitor 2(TM2) ...........: [Enabled]
    CPU EIST Function.........................: [Disabled]
    Virtualization Technology................: [Enabled] Enabled if you use Vmware/Virtual PC
    
    Integrated Peripherals
    Legacy USB Storage Detect___________________[Enabled] *Note* Must be enabled to flash from USB
    The E6420 runs stock at 266*8 = 2128 Mhz. The VID on this E6420 is 1.35v - I tried all the way up to 1.4v CPU vcore for 333*8 = 2664 Mhz. I'm pretty sure the vcore is not what is preventing me from being able to POST @ 333*8.

    I tried 333 * 6 = 2000 Mhz with the vcore set to 1.35v and it still won't POST. I have tried upping the (G) MCH OverVoltage control after lowering the multiplier to 6, and still no POST. I did try changing the Static tRead value from AUTO to 7 & 8 while trying to boot 333*8, this didn't help.

    Right now I'm currently running stock and doing an overnight Prime95 blend run to see if this system is stable. I honestly didn't stress test this system after I put it together (my friends and I been having too much fun playing Bad Company 2 together on the same LAN). I've only had this rig together for a few days, and it's been stable through long gaming sessions. If this system passes Prime95 blend tonight for ~ 12 hours, should I run Large FFT's also?

    Any input or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    When overclocking, you want to only increase one setting while keeping everything else very lax so you can rule it out as a problem. So you should basically always set the system memory multiplier to 2.0 and use relaxed RAM timings. After you get the CPU stable at a good overclock you can start tuning the RAM.

    If you're trying to tune all the settings at once, you won't know which one is the one that's causing problems.

    If Prime blend passed for 12h you can rule out a hardware failure that's causing POST issues at OC settings.


  3. #3
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Are you starting from Fail safe or Optimized defaults? Just checking

    Can you give me the exact model of your corsairs? Do you have any other memory to test with to be sure this is not part of the problem?

    When trying 333 FSB, did you also try using Auto memory multi, or ones from the A Strap?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Quote Originally Posted by Nickel020 View Post
    When overclocking, you want to only increase one setting while keeping everything else very lax so you can rule it out as a problem. So you should basically always set the system memory multiplier to 2.0 and use relaxed RAM timings. After you get the CPU stable at a good overclock you can start tuning the RAM.

    If you're trying to tune all the settings at once, you won't know which one is the one that's causing problems.

    If Prime blend passed for 12h you can rule out a hardware failure that's causing POST issues at OC settings.
    My Corsair RAM - 2x1GB Corsair XMS DDR2 800 (rated 4-4-4-12 @ 2.1 v) is rated 4-4-4-12 @ 2.1v - I noticed when I check the SPD tab under CPU-Z and memset that there is a JDEC #2 that is 5-5-5-18 @ 1.8v profile. Whenever I tried the 333*8 I tried my RAM both @ 4-4-4-12 @ 2.1v and also @ 5-5-5-18 @ 1.8v

    The good news is that this system just passed a 12 hour Prime95 Blend with no errors (rounding error option checked).

    Quote Originally Posted by Lsdmeasap View Post
    Are you starting from Fail safe or Optimized defaults? Just checking

    Can you give me the exact model of your corsairs? Do you have any other memory to test with to be sure this is not part of the problem?

    When trying 333 FSB, did you also try using Auto memory multi, or ones from the A Strap?
    Lsdmeasap, really glad to see you back. I loaded optimized defaults after flashing this GA-EP35-DS4 to the newest BIOS. Here is my exact RAM - TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX. I only tried memory multipliers 2.00 & 2.40 - I actually tried 400*6 using 2.00 just to see what would happen, but it didn't POST.

    Supposedly this C2D E6420 is a decent overclocker (I got it from a guy on hardforum). Of course, he was using a different mobo and I know YMMV depending on a lot of factors. But, this C2D shouldn't have an FSB wall until almost 450 FSB.

  5. #5
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Well let me have it I will tell you what the FSB wall is on GA-P35... J/K

    Ya, you are right I would expect it to get above 400 as well, you sure you are using enough Vcore? It may need more than you are expecting.

    Thanks for the ram model info, I do not recall any issues with those particular sticks.

    Are you setting your own tRD (Static tRead Value), it looks like you are using Auto from the above settings. This could be the issue, try setting that manually to 8-9 for now until you get sorted, if this is/was the issue you will know right away and be able to boot above 400 for sure.

    Sometimes auto sets this way to low, sorry I missed it before, I would go test that now.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    When you ask if I'm using enough Vcore do you mean on the CPU? I tried a little bit past 1.4v to the CPU for 2.66 ghz. (333*8) - I have tried manually setting a higher tRD, 8 and 9 - should I try higher?\

    How much MCH voltage should I need to reach 333 FSB, or even 400 FSB?

  7. #7
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Yes, Vcore is only for the CPU. 1.4 may only be 1.36-1.38 in windows, you may need more so try up to 1.45 and see if that helps, if not let me get your full settings again that you are now trying with

    tRD of 9 should be plenty high enough

    You may not need any extra MCH with only 2x1GB, but you can safely try 1.2-1.24 and not worry if you like.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Lsdmeasap, I've tried everything! I've tried pumping 1.45v into the CPU, tried +0.2v to the MCH, adjusted total read delay, & tried EVERY strap possible on 333 & 400 FSB (LOL). I even tried a few Mhz above and below 333 & 400. I loaded optimized defaults, booted into Windows 7, got every single one of my RAM's timings through memset - I tried manually entering the timings memset reported into the BIOS when I went for 333*8 - no POST.

    I apologize that I am an R TARD. This system is definitely stable - its had many long sessions of Bad Company 2 on it. It has passed 12 hours prime95 blend with no errors, and also memtest86+. I did a search on TweakTown for this particular board model, and found a thread with a post by you stating that you own this particular board. You mentioned that you had also used this RAM on this GA-EP35-DS4 before, and had no issues. Do you happen to remember what BIOS you were using no your GA-EP35-DS4?

    I was really hoping to get some good clocks using this board. I zippy tied a fan on the northbridge, just to find out I can only run stock ;-(

    Here are the full settings I am trying -

    Code:
    Robust Graphics Booster___________ [Auto]
    CPU Clock Ratio ____________ [8] 
    Fine Clock Ratio ____________[0] (I don't have this option for some reason...)
    CPU Host Clock Control_ [Enabled]
    CPU Host Frequency (MHz)__________ [333] 
    PCI Express Frequency (Mhz)_______ [100]
    C.I.A. 2__________________________ [Disabled]
    System Memory Multiplier (SPD)____ [2.40]
    DRAM Timing Selectable_______ SPD __ [Manual]
    
    Performance Enhance = [Standard]
    
    CAS Latency Time________5________ 
    Dram RAS# to CAS# Delay_____5____ 
    Dram RAS# Precharge Delay___5____
    Precharge Delay (tRAS)_____18_____ 
    
    ACT to ACT Delay (tRRD)____AUTO_____  (I have tried manually entering the vales shown to the left)
    Rank Write to READ Delay___AUTO_____  (I have also tried entering what memset lists)
    Write to Precharge Delay___AUTO______ 
    Refresh to ACT Delay_____AUTO_________ 
    Read to Precharge Delay__AUTO________
    Static tRead Value_______AUTO________
    Static tRead Phase Adjust___8_____ (I have tried 6-10 - no POST)
    
    CPU/PCIEX Clock Driving Control [800mV] (I don't have this option anywhere, even did CTRL+F1 to reveal advanced BIOS settings)
    CPU Clock Skew Control [normal]
    GMCH Clock Skew Control [Normal]
    
    System Voltage Control____ [Manual]
    DDR2 OverVoltage Control__ [Normal] 
    PCI-E OverVoltage Control_ [Normal] 
    FSB OverVoltage Control___ [Normal] 
    (G)MCH OverVoltage Control [Normal] 
    CPU Voltage Control_______ [1.45]
    
    Limit CPUID Max. to 3.....................: [Disabled]
    No-Execute Memory Protect............: [Enabled]
    CPU Enhanced Halt (C1E)................: [Disabled]
    C2/C2E State Support....................: [Disabled]
    x C4/C4E State Support..................: [Disabled]
    CPU Thermal Monitor 2(TM2) ...........: [Enabled]
    CPU EIST Function.........................: [Disabled]
    Virtualization Technology................: [Enabled] (Have tried disabled/enabled - no POST) 
    
    Integrated Peripherals
    Legacy USB Storage Detect___________________[Enabled] (tried both enabled/disabled - no POST)
    Here is what memset reports to me -



    Thank you for your help. Maybe I should try an older BIOS? I really don't want to have to pull my OCZ RAM from my primary rig :-0

  9. #9
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Sorry, I do not remember what BIOS I was using at that time.

    It could be the memory, even though I had used the same before, our ram could have been made with different IC Chips. So the ones in your memory could have some incompatibility possibly.

    tRD is still the issue looks like, well I mean in your screenshot I see tRD of 4 right now.

    Try these settings
    Code:
    Robust Graphics Booster___________ [Auto or Fast]
    CPU Clock Ratio ____________ [8] 
    Fine Clock Ratio ____________[0] (I don't have this option for some reason...)  << Only applies to newer CPU's
    CPU Host Clock Control_ [Enabled]
    CPU Host Frequency (MHz)__________ [333] 
    PCI Express Frequency (Mhz)_______ [100]
    C.I.A. 2__________________________ [Disabled]
    System Memory Multiplier (SPD)____ [2.40]  If these settings all fail to post try 2.50A here, but I doubt you will need to
    DRAM Timing Selectable_______ SPD __ [Manual]
    
    Performance Enhance = [Standard]
    
    CAS Latency Time________5________ 
    Dram RAS# to CAS# Delay_____5____ 
    Dram RAS# Precharge Delay___5____
    Precharge Delay (tRAS)_____18_____ 
    
    We will leave this as is above for now, later you will be able to use 444-12 unless this memory proves to have some compatibility issue
    
    ACT to ACT Delay (tRRD)____AUTO_____  set 3 for now
    Rank Write to READ Delay___AUTO_____  set 4 for now
    Write to Precharge Delay___AUTO______ set 8 for now
    Refresh to ACT Delay_____AUTO_________ set 42 for now
    Read to Precharge Delay__AUTO________ set 3 for now
    Static tRead Value_______AUTO________ Set 9 for now
    Static tRead Phase Adjust___8_____ (I have tried 6-10 - no POST)  << Always Auto, the above tRead Value is what you want to set (tRD)
    
    CPU/PCIEX Clock Driving Control [800mV] (I don't have this option anywhere, even did CTRL+F1 to reveal advanced BIOS settings)  << Sorry, these three are only in the top end boards
    CPU Clock Skew Control [normal]
    GMCH Clock Skew Control [Normal]
    
    System Voltage Control____ [Manual]
    DDR2 OverVoltage Control__ [Normal] << Set +0.3 for now
    PCI-E OverVoltage Control_ [Normal] +0.1 for stability
    FSB OverVoltage Control___ [Normal]  +0.1 for stability, may need +0.2 but I doubt it
    (G)MCH OverVoltage Control [Normal]  +0.1 for stability
    CPU Voltage Control_______ [1.35-1.45]  This should be plenty, what do you get when you set this amount in windows at idle?
    
    Limit CPUID Max. to 3.....................: [Disabled]
    No-Execute Memory Protect............: [Enabled]
    CPU Enhanced Halt (C1E)................: [Disabled]
    C2/C2E State Support....................: [Disabled]
    x C4/C4E State Support..................: [Disabled]
    CPU Thermal Monitor 2(TM2) ...........: [Enabled]
    CPU EIST Function.........................: [Disabled]
    Virtualization Technology................: [Enabled] (Have tried disabled/enabled - no POST) << Disabled if you do not use
    
    Integrated Peripherals
    Legacy USB Storage Detect___________________[Enabled] (tried both enabled/disabled - no POST)  << Disabled for now

  10. #10

    Default Re: Need Help OC'ing E6420 + GA-EP35-DS4

    Lsdmeasap, thank you so much for the help.

    For some reason I put the wrong info down for Static tRead Phase Adjust. I am leaving that at AUTO. What I meant to say is that I have tried 6-10 for Static tRead Value.

    Instead of -
    Static tRead Phase Adjust___8_____ (I have tried 6-10 - no POST)

    I meant to say -
    Static tRead Value_______AUTO________ (I have tried 6-10 - no POST)

    Sorry about that. I will check what vcore the C2D E6420 gets inside Windows 7 using CPU-Z (CPU-Z reports actual vcore with v droop right?). I'm also going to check what the VID is using Core Temp. When I fire on my second rig later I'll check and post back. I'll also try using the suggested template and let you know what happens.

    I guess if it doesn't post using your suggested template I'm going to try out my OCZ RAM from my primary rig. Once again, thanks for the help.

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