Q6600/Asus Rampage Formula - overclocking temperature issue

dknight

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Ok, first off I'm very new to overclocking. I started reading a couple of days ago and have since been fiddling with my rig with moderate success; I'd be greatly appreciative of any help and advice on my post below. I've had my q6600 and Asus Rampage Formula since October in a machine I built myself, specs below.

Q6600 G0 SLACR 2.4 GHz
TRUE 120 cooler
Antec 900
Asus Rampage Formula (X48)
2 x 2 GB OCZ Reaper 1066 MHz RAM
Corsair 650W PSU
BFG GTX260-216 896mb

Using a TJ Max of 100 degrees (more on this later) I've got idle core temps of 34 30 27 28 ('cpu' temp is 21). As I write this, the system is completely unmodified at 2.4ghz. When I run Prime95 Small FFT my temperatures go up to 65 60 50 47 across the four cores. To me, this seems far too high to start overclocking, which I did last night to 3 GHz and got 72 degrees on core 0.

First questions:
1. Is the gap in temperatures meant to be this big? 65 to 47 seems huge compared to looking at other people's Q6600s.
2. I've got 4 different temperature monitoring programs, and the arguments between which one is more accurate are now bunk I assume, because you can change the TJ Max manually; I'm now using RealTemp. My TJ Max is currently set at 100, which is giving the temperatures above, and in my opinion are too high for me to start overclocking.

Although Intel has released the TJ Max supposedly to be 90 degrees (see http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/intel-dts-specs,news-29460.html), I don't believe this as it would make my idle lowest temp 18 degrees, which is impossible considering I'm on air and my uni room was warm at the time.
Therefore third question;
3. Is it correct to set TJ max to 100? I'd love it to be 90 but I know this isn't the case. According to Uncleweb, it should be 100.

When I set the board to 333x9 and ran Prime95, core 0 hit 72 degrees, which I don't want to be anywhere near, as the thermal specs say 71 is the max. This was with all voltages set to auto.

I've been experimenting this morning with minimising the vcore, and at the moment its set to 1.3v. Other things such as FSB Term, NV core are set to the minimum, and Prime is giving me an error after about 30 seconds, sometimes sooner. I cannot get it stable at the moment, and I'm sure that I should be able to run it at less than 1.3v, as just about every other person running at 9x333 is too. I know all chips are different, but it seems there’s something I'm doing wrong.

Supposedly this board and CPU are meant to be great overclockers, so I wasn't expecting many issues after I'd got the hang of all the terminology. Fourth question,
4. Surely I should be able to run it at 3 GHz without getting anywhere near 70 degrees? Especially considering how low my idle temps are
 

Fruity

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Hi dknight,
just to clarify a couple of points in your post;

Tjunc is the temperature of each of the processor cores
Tcase or CPU Temp is the temperature measured at a point in between all the processor cores and hence is always lower.

With this in mind....

Intel spec for Tjunc Max is 100°C
Intel spec for Tcase Max is 73°C

1. There is always some difference between Tjunc temps between the processor cores, but you're right - an 18° delta is quite high. It's worth checking to see if your HSF (processor cooler) is mounted properly. If it is then check that your TIM (thermal paste) is applied properly.

2. The Tjunc Max temp can't be set by yourself, manually or otherwise, but the Asus RF mobo bios allows you to set a max Tcase, where if Tcase exceeds the temp it will shut the PC down. Keep this at around the 70°C to 80°C mark. Short excursion over 73°C Tcase are unlikely to cause permanent damage. My PC tends to blue screen when I get to 73°C ish anyway and Prime95 start to kick up errors at around 70°C.

3. Tjunc Max is 100°C but stay as far away from it as you can!

4. Does seem a bit high, but i'll bet that yopu can reduce you Vcore to a far lower level. Start by setting it to the processors VID and go up a couple of notches from there. That should reduce your temps. If your HSF isn't mounted properly fixing it will also help.


I'll post my BIOS settings later. Feel free to use them as a reference guide.

Good luck and let us know how you get on!!
 

Fruity

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System:

Asus Rampage Formula
BIOS Version 0701
Q6600 G0
Arctic Freezer 7 Pro HSF with AS5 TIM
CPU & HSF both lapped. See http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/page-251522_11_0.html
4 x 1Gb DDR2-800 (not ideal!); 4-4-4-12 native timings
Windows XP 32BIT & Windows 7 64 BIT os

24 hours+ stable on Prime 95 Blend.

Idle Tcase: 32°C
Load Tcase: 55°C. The room was quite cold when I took these readings though.
Load Tjunc: 57°C-61°C


There is no guarantee that these settings will work for you - use as a reference only!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Overclock to 3.4GHz - Under the Extreme Tweaker Menu in BIOS


AI Overclock Tuner: Manual
OC from CPU level Up: Auto
CPU Ratio Setting: 8
FSB Strap to Northbridge: 333MHz
FSB Freq: 425
PCIe Freq: 100

DRAM Freq: DDR2-851MHz
DRAM Command Rate: Auto

All DRAM Skews set to Auto

DRAM Timing Control: Manual

CAS: 5 (set to +1 from your RAMs native timing)
RAS to CAS Delay: 5 (set to +1 from your RAMs native timing)
RAS Pre Time: 5 (set to +1 from your RAMs native timing)
RAS Act Time: 15 (addition of previous 3 values)

All other DRAM settings: Auto

AI Clock Twister: Auto
AI Transaction Booster: Auto


CPU Voltage: 1.33125V (shows 1.32 in Everest)
CPU PLL Voltage: 1.50V (NEVER leave this on Auto)
Northbridge Voltage: 1.37V (NEVER leave this on Auto) (shows 1.36V in Everest)
DRAM Voltage: 2.00V (set as per you RAM manufacturer' spec) (Shows 2.02V in Everest)
FSB Termination Voltage: 1.28V (shwos 1.31V in Everest)
Southbridge Voltage: 1.150V (shows 1.17V in Everest)
SB 1.5V: 1.5V

Loadline Calibration: Enabled (a must for overclocking!)
CPU GTL Voltage Ref: 0.67x
NB GTL Voltage Ref: 0.63x

DRAM Controller Voltage Ref: DDR2_Ref
DRAM Channel A Voltage Ref: +10mV (my RAM is overclocked and seems to needs this for stability. If in dout, leave as DDR2_REF)
DRAM Channel B Voltage Ref: +10mV (my RAM is overclocked and seems to needs this for stability. If in dout, leave as DDR2_REF)

CPU Spread Spectrum: Auto
PCIe Spread Spectrum: Auto


Hope this helps!!
 
If you have not, definitely read this thread by CompuTronix:

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/221745-29-core-core-temperature-guide

There's also a very good guide for calibrating your temp readings as well. Apparently not every chip is balanced really well in the way it's temp sensors actually read temps. So it's possible they may need calibrated (though this is done through software, not through the chip itself).

There's a couple other things could be happening here. Either your heatsink isn't quite seated right, or the thermal paste isn't spread very evenly.

I run my Q6600 @ 3.2Ghz with Vcore of 1.425 with my Xigmatek S1283, and have room to OC more temperature wise. I want to say my idle temps run around 35C? I'm at work right now so I can't check. :)
 

dknight

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Thanks all for the great replies;

@Fruity - good advice, thank you. I'll jot down your settings and give it a go with my case and let you know how I get on. I'm starting to understand the differences between the tj, tcase etc a bit better now. However you said you can't set it with software - in RealTemp in settings, there is an option to "Set TJ Max" and change it from 100, whats that?

I have suspected that my high temps are due to high vcore but to be honest, people are getting much lower temps than me with 1.3v. I'm back home for easter in 3 days so when I get home I'll lap my hardware and see what happens.

4. Does seem a bit high, but i'll bet that yopu can reduce you Vcore to a far lower level. Start by setting it to the processors VID and go up a couple of notches from there. That should reduce your temps. If your HSF isn't mounted properly fixing it will also help.

My CPU VID is 1.3250v - could this be why its so bad at this so far? 1.325 is even higher than what I had it set to before, that won't be reducing temps any time soon!



@jerreece - Thanks for the help. I have read the temperature guide; I had a quick browse over it while I was reading one of the overclocking guides on here but have read it properly now. I've also been reading last night that thread about RealTemp; but with 190 pages its kinda hard to find the useful bits. Let me know if you find the specific one you were after :)

Oh forgot - I am using AS5 TIM already, but when I lap the cooler in a few days time I'll be reseating it anyway, so 2 birds with one stone
 

Fruity

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I didn't really explain what I meant by 'not being able to set Tjunc temps yourself' properly; all i was trying to say is that the 100°C Tjunc Max Temp is the processors maximum design operating temperature as specified by Interl, and therefore cannot be changed.

I don't use Realtemp (although I probably should!) so can't say what the settings are in that.

I don't think your temps are being caused by excess voltage. 1.3V should be more than sufficient for a 3GHz OC and not bring your temps anywhere near the levels you are seeing. Just as an after-thought, have you got your fans speeds set properly?????

Good luck with the lapping. Take some pics!!
 

Fruity

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Just re-read your last post; are you absolutely sure that your VID is 1.3250V??????????????????????? That's, errrrrr. High. Very high. That's the highest I've ever seen and by no small margin! Where are you getting your VID from?
 

dknight

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I suspected my VID was high. I'm getting it from CoreTemp 0.99.1, see below.

coretemp_vid.jpg
cpuz1.jpg


I tried your settings from the post above and it wouldn't even reach the BIOS. I tried the same thing again by increasing the vcore by quite a bit and still didnt get much further. Eventually I turned it down to 8x400mhz (ram at 800) and I'm typing from those settings now (hence the high idle temp in picture above) However, this is NOT stable, and my first core failed after about 10 seconds in Prime (running at 74-75 degrees...)

a, is reading that VID value from coretemp reliable
b, is that VID score why my overclock seems to be getting nowhere at the moment?

Repeat, this build is not stable.

Cheers

EDIT: My VID is confirmed to be the highest there is on these chips.

pcformat-1.jpg


However I know someone else with this VID and they said "I have the same vid chip as you and I had no probs reaching 3.6Ghz on air with the AC Freezer 7 Pro." So I know it is at least possible, it looks like its an issue with my seating, so I'll get onto that right away and let you know how it goes.

It also just occurs to me that I know 2 other people with a G0 q6600 and they'll never be overclocking so i might see what their VIDs are and see if I can swap them hehe.
EDIT: Nope, exactly the same VID as me. Shame.
 
I got a Q6600 On rampage formula with a low quality thermaltake wateblock and on stock in full load i reach 48C MAX,

This beeing said i reached 70C when i first installed all and was due to wrong mounting of the block. Make sure your Pasive heatsinks at northbridge aint blocking your CPU cooler, check that thermal paste as ppl said above and get a good one if possible.

Also, your TRUE has Fans on it? Your Case has a good air flow? have you tried with the case opened?
Also when your CPU is on load, see if the CPU cooler is actually hot (should be, if not something is wrong there).

On the other hand, Fruity, can you tell me if u have changed any of your MOBO cooling? I want to OC my q6600 on rampage formula but on PC probe i get quite high temps (45 Mobo/48 NB/51 SB IDLE) and i even installed a custom fan over both NB/SB.

I dont know the max safe temps for those and im worried that if i OC my life expectancy of the MOBO might be significantly lowered.

Anything about this? And also 1 last thing, do you know anything about if u can remove the heatpipe and heatsinks of just some of those or you have to remove from all the MOBO (Planing to watecool NB SB, but wouldent like to have to Watercool the Mosfet/Vrams since i dont even exactly know what they are :D).



 

dknight

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It's been ages since I posted here - I've been waiting for my sandpaper, glass etc to arrive. I'm going to start on this today and I know it's going to make a difference as my heatsink doesn't even get warm when my processor's showing really high temps!

Its hot here today, idle temps currently showing 42 36 34 33, load at 67 62 51 48. Stock voltages.

I'll check back later today and tell you how it went!
 

Fruity

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I'm using a lapped Arctic Freezer 7 Pro on my CPU. Bit of a budget HSF, but better than stock cooling.

If you have already used your mobo, removing the heatpipes & chipset coolers could end up destroying your mobo. The TIM that Asus use sets like a rock once its been heated a few times.

Your temps don't look to bad to me. NB is good to 90°C, not sure on SB but 51°C isn;t hot by any means (SB temps don;t seem too badly affected by normal overclocking anyway). 45°C for the mobo is also ok.
 

Fruity

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Good luck. Takes some pictures!!
 

dknight

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Well I'm back, and the pc has booted! (I'm always massively paranoid about my pc blowing up after fiddling about with it... first PC I built blew up). I have to say, I'm absolutely amazed.

Temps I posted earlier today:
Idle 42 36 34 33
100% Load 67 62 51 48

Just spent the last 5 hours lapping the HSF and the CPU - temperatures now (exactly the same temp monitoring software - RealTemp with tmax set at 100 as usual)

Idle 28 24 24 25
100% Load 40 37 36 36

So as usual, idle temps aren't affected that much, but it looks like i 've knocked 27 degrees off my load temps! Even bearing in mind that its cooler in here than it was at lunch time, this is still huge. I have taken pictures of the process, but for some reason the only camera in the house I could find was my 2mp phone camera, so they're awful. I'll upload them later.

One thing I did notice is that both my HSF and my CPU were massively convex, so i guess they were hardly touching at all. I never did manage to get the base of my heatsink completely down to the copper, so eventually I gave up and just carried on with higher grits.

Let me know what you think! And thanks for all your help.
 

dknight

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Hi guys,

Quick update; now that I've got some time again, I've started overclocking again following a beginners guide. Basically it says to increase the fsb by 5mhz and run small FFTs to test it for 15 minutes or so, and increase the vcore whenever prime starts crashing. Following this, I only got it to 2.8ghz before I had to increase the vcore, and I'm currently at 3.285ghz at 50 degrees. I'm going to keep pushing it as temps are only 50 degrees but I wondered when you guys would recommend I stop increasing the voltage?

Prime only ever fails on core 1 at the moment which is how I can tell its the vcore thats causing it, when (if?) should i start increasing the north bridge voltages at all?

Edit: Stable 8 hours at 3.4ghz 1.46875v
 

dknight

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Ok well after trying to take it up to 3.6ghz just to see if I could do it, I went from 1.46v at 3.4ghz and it took me all the way up to 1.59v at 400x9 and prime wasn't crashing, the whole system was BSOD crashing. I got a CPU voltage error on boot when I tried 1.6v so I've taken it back to 3.4 now.

Any ideas if its possible to get it to 3.6ghz? Am I only meant to be increasing voltage or could something else be causing it? (low north bridge or whatever?)
 

dknight

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Just wanted to say thanks for the help guys and close off the thread. I've decided to keep it at either 3.2 or 3.4, overclocking it without significantly reducing the lifespan :)

Its a great chip, thanks for all the advice