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Old 12-19-2013, 06:31 AM   #36
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GTA4 really like fast multicore CPU's, I assume GTA5 will too. What are the specs on your current system?
I'm currently running the motherboard and processor that I posted above along with a 450 watt power supply,4gigs of ddr3, 500gb HD, and windows 7. All with sata connections
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Old 12-19-2013, 07:08 AM   #37
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I'm currently running the motherboard and processor that I posted above along with a 450 watt power supply,4gigs of ddr3, 500gb HD, and windows 7. All with sata connections
I learned the hard way not to skimp on the power supply. Nothing like chugging along and POP and smoke and you hope your board isn't fried.

I'm not in the same league as ISH416 is with PC building but I have been building my own computers since 2003 and generally buy a cheap base laptop where the only good feature is a decent GPU and upgrae it myself from there.

What I would do before anything if I were you:

-Higher end PSU, at least 600w, preferably more. I love Corsair.
-At LEAST 8 gigs of RAM
-Get an SSD if you do nothing else.

If you are on a budget for gaming I highly recommend a card like the one I got, I can run any game out right now at max or high settings. Skyrim with ENB and all the "aftermarket" graphics mods looks like I am playing a CGI movie. Although Skyrim is HEAVILY CPU dependent and was pushing my 6 core to the brink until I bumped it up from 2.8GHZ.
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Old 12-19-2013, 08:56 AM   #38
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I'm currently running the motherboard and processor that I posted above along with a 450 watt power supply,4gigs of ddr3, 500gb HD, and windows 7. All with sata connections
As long as your power supply is 80+ certified you shouldn't have any issues. If it is, it should state it on the power supply box or on the power supply itself.

For your system, I would recommend either an AMD 7770/7790 or 7850 or from Nvidia the GTX650 Ti or 650 Ti Boost.

For the money, these two cards will be hard to beat.

$125 before $20 rebate - Gigabyte 7790 1GB - Newegg.com - GIGABYTE GV-R779OC-1GD Radeon HD 7790 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card

$100 before $15 rebate - Sapphire 7770 1GB - SAPPHIRE 100358L Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 CrossFireX Support Video Card - Newegg.com
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Old 12-19-2013, 10:42 AM   #39
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One last question before I talk myself into just buying the other 7850... how much increase will I really see from a second card in the x4 slot crossifired into the first one running at x16? Have 8 gigs of ram (can go to 16) DDR 1333 (can go higher if need be), and the Phenom II 6 core @ whatever I clock it to. Can get to 4.0ghz on air but would rather leave it in the mid 3ghz range for longevity/reliability.

Maybe I should just wait till next CM to get a 9 series card at under $200?
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Old 12-19-2013, 11:47 AM   #40
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Here is a review with scores showing both a single 7850 2GB and that card in crossfire - HIS Radeon HD 7850 2GB IceQ Turbo Video Cards in CrossFire - Benchmarks - 3DMark 11 | TweakTown

Pretty significant jump 80%+ gains.

As for the PCIE X4 slot bottlenecking a second 7850 - HARDOCP - GTX 480 SLI x16/x16 vs. x4/x4 - GTX 480 SLI PCIe Bandwidth Perf. - x16/x16 vs. x4/x4

The GTX 480 performance wise is at the same level as your 7850. So this test done at PCIE 2.0 4x/4x shows that there is enough bandwidth available for the system to function without a performance loss at 2560 x 1600. So, when adding a second card, you shouldn't worry about it not performing.

If you can pick one up at a decent price, I'd say go for it. Just remember to get a crossfire connector if you don't already have one.
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Old 12-19-2013, 12:12 PM   #41
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They come with crossfire connectors and I have one anyway from the one I just got. I may jump on it... really considering it. AFIAK the cards crossifre right through the catalyst control center. My laptop has an APU and GPU crossfired through the motherboard via the CCC.

I still consider myself just smart enough to mess something up royally with computer builds lol. So I try to be careful.
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Old 12-19-2013, 05:21 PM   #42
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As long as your power supply is 80+ certified you shouldn't have any issues. If it is, it should state it on the power supply box or on the power supply itself. For your system, I would recommend either an AMD 7770/7790 or 7850 or from Nvidia the GTX650 Ti or 650 Ti Boost. For the money, these two cards will be hard to beat. $125 before $20 rebate - Gigabyte 7790 1GB - Newegg.com - GIGABYTE GV-R779OC-1GD Radeon HD 7790 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card $100 before $15 rebate - Sapphire 7770 1GB - SAPPHIRE 100358L Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 CrossFireX Support Video Card - Newegg.com
I'll take a look at those thanks!
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Old 12-20-2013, 09:38 PM   #43
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In other news, the wife spilled a decent amount of wine INTO her laptop tonight right through the keyboard. I was able to grab it from her as she protested she still had stuff to save and rip the battery out before it blue screened/shorted something out. Once I had it in a big pile of parts down to the mobo with a fan/rubbing alchohol/compressed air and some paper towels turned purple from soaking it all up she was like "oh...". I swear to god why is it that only like 5% of ppl know wtf they are doing when it comes to things like cars and computers? You know, the things that WE REQUIRE TO LIVE!

At any rate I made sure I had got the entire damn thing dry and taken the opportunity to once again blast all the hair/dust/crud out of the case and fan and slapped it all back together. After a few reboots for it to un-**** itself its fine again. Ugh, her new 5S iCrap she is getting for Xmas is getting an Otterbox...

edit: I've told her many times that if it ever comes to the human race winding up in some mad max dystopian post-apoaclyptic situation my *** is long gone lol. Honestly I think if that situation happened well over 50% of the human race would be dead in 6 months...
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Old 12-21-2013, 12:27 AM   #44
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In other news, the wife spilled a decent amount of wine INTO her laptop tonight right through the keyboard. I was able to grab it from her as she protested she still had stuff to save and rip the battery out before it blue screened/shorted something out. Once I had it in a big pile of parts down to the mobo with a fan/rubbing alchohol/compressed air and some paper towels turned purple from soaking it all up she was like "oh...". I swear to god why is it that only like 5% of ppl know wtf they are doing when it comes to things like cars and computers? You know, the things that WE REQUIRE TO LIVE!

At any rate I made sure I had got the entire damn thing dry and taken the opportunity to once again blast all the hair/dust/crud out of the case and fan and slapped it all back together. After a few reboots for it to un-**** itself its fine again. Ugh, her new 5S iCrap she is getting for Xmas is getting an Otterbox...

edit: I've told her many times that if it ever comes to the human race winding up in some mad max dystopian post-apoaclyptic situation my *** is long gone lol. Honestly I think if that situation happened well over 50% of the human race would be dead in 6 months...
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Old 12-21-2013, 05:13 AM   #45
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In other news, the wife spilled a decent amount of wine INTO her laptop tonight right through the keyboard. I was able to grab it from her as she protested she still had stuff to save and rip the battery out before it blue screened/shorted something out. Once I had it in a big pile of parts down to the mobo with a fan/rubbing alchohol/compressed air and some paper towels turned purple from soaking it all up she was like "oh...". I swear to god why is it that only like 5% of ppl know wtf they are doing when it comes to things like cars and computers? You know, the things that WE REQUIRE TO LIVE!

At any rate I made sure I had got the entire damn thing dry and taken the opportunity to once again blast all the hair/dust/crud out of the case and fan and slapped it all back together. After a few reboots for it to un-**** itself its fine again. Ugh, her new 5S iCrap she is getting for Xmas is getting an Otterbox...

edit: I've told her many times that if it ever comes to the human race winding up in some mad max dystopian post-apoaclyptic situation my *** is long gone lol. Honestly I think if that situation happened well over 50% of the human race would be dead in 6 months...
Good save on killing the power to it as quickly as possible.

My little computer shop is in a county of less than 20,000 people. You would be absolutely amazed by how many of them have brought in laptops with liquid still pouring out of them while the computer is on. This isn't just average or below average intelligence people. I am talking doctors, surgeons, vets, lawyers, CPAs, engineers, elected officials, etc ... It truly is scary to think about how little common sense people actually have anymore.

I would say that it would be more like 85% of the human race would be dead in less than 6 months.
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Old 12-21-2013, 10:08 AM   #46
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Computron upgrade time!

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Originally Posted by scottydsntknow View Post
In other news, the wife spilled a decent amount of wine INTO her laptop tonight right through the keyboard. I was able to grab it from her as she protested she still had stuff to save and rip the battery out before it blue screened/shorted something out. Once I had it in a big pile of parts down to the mobo with a fan/rubbing alchohol/compressed air and some paper towels turned purple from soaking it all up she was like "oh...". I swear to god why is it that only like 5% of ppl know wtf they are doing when it comes to things like cars and computers? You know, the things that WE REQUIRE TO LIVE!

At any rate I made sure I had got the entire damn thing dry and taken the opportunity to once again blast all the hair/dust/crud out of the case and fan and slapped it all back together. After a few reboots for it to un-**** itself its fine again. Ugh, her new 5S iCrap she is getting for Xmas is getting an Otterbox...

edit: I've told her many times that if it ever comes to the human race winding up in some mad max dystopian post-apoaclyptic situation my *** is long gone lol. Honestly I think if that situation happened well over 50% of the human race would be dead in 6 months...



Hahahah good save man, for her phone I would also look into the life proof cases they are supposed to be really good and water/wine proof lol
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Old 12-21-2013, 10:57 AM   #47
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Well this morning half the keys are stuck because of the wine drying and goobering them up and the mousepad probably needs replaced too. Honestly... its only $25 for those parts shipped and easy enough to replace but I think she is getting a free S3 or S4 instead of an iCrap because 1 - they are made of glass and break easy and 2 - A free S4 vs a $200 5S... that is kind of a no brainier. Even if the free phone winds up being a S3 its still worth it. I have 2 more upgrades dropping in February anyway. I'm getting a Z30 most likely (going to the darkside) and the other upgrade will stay in my back pocket in case some cray cray phone comes out in the meantime. Have 3 lines for the ghost line-transfer/upgrade/transfer back trick to keep unlimited VZW data.
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Old 12-21-2013, 11:05 AM   #48
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^^ there you go man sounds like a good plan. I have the Iphone5 and I like it, it has never given me any problem so I just stick with it. But if they dont put out a new one with some serious upgrades then I would switch to windows maybe.
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Old 12-21-2013, 11:10 AM   #49
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Its not so much that fact that the iphone isn't any good. I personally like Android better and after testing BB10 I'm COMPLETELY hooked on that. I just don't want to spend $200 on a phone and $50 on an otterbox and I guarantee she'll still find a way to crack the screen. She treats electronics like they are made out of steel... like... no get that fcuking full glass of water off the top of your closed laptop it is not a coaster! Her mom is the same way...
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Old 12-21-2013, 11:16 AM   #50
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Anyway getting back on topic, played my first full multi hour session of a video game since I stopped flying on the desktop and... I just cannot fathom how I played so long on this laptop. I mean to its credit it did run all my games at a pretty decent fps most of the time. Was fine for stuff like Starcraft II but... wow...

What's even more impressive in a way is the aftermarket mod community out there now. You play a game like Skyrim stock out of the box and it looks kinda bad. It was designed for the Xbox/PS3 so graphics are meh. After around 50 graphical improvement mods, ENB and another 100+ other modifications to the game it literally is like the highest end CGI graphics.
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Old 12-22-2013, 03:22 PM   #51
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Ok so need a second video card for crossfire. Went into a really busy area of skyrim and it hangs at like 20 fps... Would probably not if I didn't have max graphic craziness but a second card should kick it up to a pretty good FPS in the busiest areas at least I hope...
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Old 12-23-2013, 11:52 AM   #52
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Hey Ish if you are still reading this, from what I've researched I don't need anymore than 8 gigs of DDR1333 ram right? I still need to learn about RAM overclocking anyway as IIRC the ram I have can clock up to around the 1500 mark.

Also I did order a second card because Powercolor has discontinued them and I really don't want a used one. This is the last thing I will be doing with this setup unless I do need to upgrade the RAM when the 64 bit games start becoming commonplace. I was able to get 6700 in 3dMark 11 with this card @ 1050/1450 and 1.216 volts and the CPU at around 3.4ghz. If I can get a little more out of it and have another card in the x4 slot running around 80% capacity (because of the x4) I'm hoping for a 12k+ 3D score or is that not how it works?
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Old 12-24-2013, 10:53 AM   #53
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8GB or ram should be enough for the next few years.

As for overclocking the ram, it can get a bit complicated. Especially if you start messing with the CAS timings and things like that. Most of time, just overclocking the FSB (front side bus) is easiest and provides the most benefit. Just remember that overclocking ram is very sensitive.

Example, say your CPU has a multiplier of 20 and a FSB of 200, so, in this case, your CPU would run at 4Ghz. 20 x 200 = 4000. If you bump up the FSB to 205, you would then have your system running at 4.1Ghz. 20 x 205 =4100. Multiplier times FSB = CPU speed.

Also, on most AMD motherboards you can change the ram frequency. This can dramatically speed up your system. If you have DDR3 1333 memory, you can change it to run at DDR3 1600 speeds. However, when overclocking, this can easily push your memory past it's stability point. So, say you run your FSB at 250 Mhz, with DDR3 1333, that ram is actually operating at DDR3 1666. For stability, you will likely need to increase the voltage on your memory and FSB or change the memory frequency to something lower. Dropping the memory frequency to DDR3 1066 would actually result in your memory running at DDR3 1333.

On AMD systems, the CPU/NB and HT Link are both worth messing around with too. On the Phenom/Athlon series it can help a lot.

As for adding the second card, assuming the bottleneck doesn't shift from your GPU(s) to your CPU, you should see something like 85%+ scaling. However, I think your CPU may become a slight bottleneck in certain games/situations. I would guess your 3DMark 11 score should jump to something around 10,500. With a faster CPU (I5 or overclocked 8350) you would likely see something around 12,000+. Don't take the 3DMark scores seriously. I have seen several systems that have lower scores yet provide a more consistent framerate than systems that score higher.
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Old 12-24-2013, 10:59 AM   #54
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Hmmm well if I set the volts to 1.5 on the CPU, bump the NB voltage and set it at a x10 multiplier (gets it near 2900mhz), keep the HT at around 2000mhz and run up the CPU FSB to the 285 range I can hit 4.0ghz on air cooling and it seems stable but I'm not sure I want to take it that far over. I suppose I could just spring for a new CPU but I can't see needing it if I can get the Phenom stable at 4.0... we'll see.
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Old 12-24-2013, 12:44 PM   #55
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To make sure it's stable, run Intel Burn Test on maximum stress level and set it to run 30 times.

If it fails/crashes or temps go over 68C per core (72C or higher can cause damage), you don't have a stable overclock.

You can use HWinfo or CPUID HW Monitor to watch the temps.

IBT - Download IntelBurnTest - MajorGeeks

HW Info - HWiNFO, HWiNFO32/64 - Download

HW Monitor - HWMonitor CPUID - System & hardware benchmark, monitoring, reporting
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Old 12-24-2013, 11:56 PM   #56
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Ok cool beans, I'll look into them. I was doing the stress tests in Furmark but that's more for a video card anyway.

I'm also starting to think I should just ditch ENB in Skyrim and go with something like the "I can't believe its not ENB" mod instead as I'm seeing ppl having issues even with 4GB graphics cards in some areas. I know I'm being stupid about one game but honestly I'm kind of also using it as a way to make sure my system is going to be good to go for the more intensive games that release in the next 2 years before I do a "from scratch" build. Although I can't imagine anything that's going to be as intensive as a full blown ENB Skyrim with ultra high res texture packs, volumetric fog, full weather effects etc...
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Old 12-26-2013, 05:58 PM   #57
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Yay...



Need to run some 3DMark tests and see whatup but they both work as far as detecting and the new Catalyst beta drivers crossfired them automatically.
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Old 12-26-2013, 07:26 PM   #58
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Use the newest non beta drivers, as they are newer than the beta (13.12).
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Old 12-26-2013, 08:00 PM   #59
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Hmmmm I have the beta drivers installed... I suppose I can just download the stable drivers and install those over.

At any rate it scored 9100 right out of the box in 3dMark11 with the CPU running at the stock 2.8x6 ghz. This is up from 6100 and that was with the CPU running at 3.6ghz... I'm thinking with the CPU back up at 3.6+ and the cards overclocked a little more I'm going to get it up past 10k no problem. And regardless of the benchmark the actual scenes were MUCH smoother in the tests to the point me getting excited when I saw the FPS up at 80 in the submarine scenes right at the start.

And thank you so much for all the help and letting me know that x4 slot would not be an issue. You are honestly the first person who has not been "second slot is only x4 lol pwned". Even if it winds up being close to only a 50% bump that's still worth it to me. I've got under $300 invested in the video setup in this machine and this was the final upgrade save maybe a bigger 2-3TB storage drive for the next 2-3 years unless something breaks.
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Old 12-26-2013, 08:46 PM   #60
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And thank you so much for all the help and letting me know that x4 slot would not be an issue. You are honestly the first person who has not been "second slot is only x4 lol pwned". Even if it winds up being close to only a 50% bump that's still worth it to me. I've got under $300 invested in the video setup in this machine and this was the final upgrade save maybe a bigger 2-3TB storage drive for the next 2-3 years unless something breaks.
No worries man. Glad I could help.

I have enough hardware in various setups go through my shop that I can test basically any setup and have actual real world knowledge of the stuff to know what works and what doesn't.
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Old 12-29-2013, 10:45 AM   #61
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Hey! Just wondering if you guys think these are good parts for a computer that you build yourself. Not really looking to play...super hd games like skyrim...just to use for the internet, music, and "videos". The computer I have right now is from 2002 so yea haha. Also is there a certain os yall recommend? I use Windows xp now but its kind of outdated...

http://pcpartpicker.com/user/alanhenry/saved/1x7t
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:34 AM   #62
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I love computers, not much knowledge though. after reading all this all I have to say is


Attachment 142120

I concur.
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Old 12-29-2013, 12:27 PM   #63
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Hey! Just wondering if you guys think these are good parts for a computer that you build yourself. Not really looking to play...super hd games like skyrim...just to use for the internet, music, and "videos". The computer I have right now is from 2002 so yea haha. Also is there a certain os yall recommend? I use Windows xp now but its kind of outdated...

AMD A4-3300, Rosewill FBM-01 - LHBuildGuides-300 - alanhenry's Saved Part List - PCPartPicker
Intel Pentium G3420, Rosewill FBM-01 - System Build - PCPartPicker

This costs $72 more than that build but is twice as fast -

AMD A4-3300 vs Intel Pentium G3420

That AMD A4 3300 was slow when it originally came out, it has been discontinued for over a year.

You will not be able to use XP on most newer systems because the hardware does not support it.

I would recommend going with either Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64 bit or Windows 8.1.

Both are around $100, or you could download Windows 7 X64 from a torrent for free dollars.

Whatever floats your boat.
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Old 12-29-2013, 01:39 PM   #64
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I have an... "appropriated" copy of 7 Ultimate Black x86 and x64.

At any rate I'm having a hell of a time overclocking this computer to get it stable. I was able to get it to 4.0ghz once but it blue screened and does not want to go back. I've been able to get it semi-stable at 3.5 and some change but not really sure if its even worth it to overclock. It is a 2.8ghz x6 and it has a turbo core setting which takes it up to 3.3ghz automatically when it needs to.

Beginning to think this mobo might no be liking the overclock very much or its the processor itself. Its ok because at 3.3ghzx6 I can still run anything with ease and the two video cards are scoring a consistent 9100+ in 3DMark which is up from 6000 like I said. Need to play with it more. Its probably just something I'm doing because I know this mobo/processor combo can overclock up to 3.8-4.0 on air and be stable. Blah.

Suppose I could always start looking at a new mobo/processor combo after tax season but I really don't want to spend the money knowing that these Thubans can hit near 4.0ghz. Am I just stressing out for no reason over 700mhz since CPU-Z shows it holding steady at 3.3ghz on stress tests?
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Old 12-29-2013, 03:42 PM   #65
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What settings are you using?

What is FSB, Multiplier and Vcore set to?

Unless you have a CPU bottleneck then it honestly won't make much of a difference. The easiest way to check for CPU bottlenecks is by looking at your graphics score in 3dmark. If you can downclock your cpu and your graphics score is affected by more than a hundred points, then you likely have a bottleneck, same thing if you overclock.

So for example, if you run the test and have a graphics score of 11,000 at stock speeds. Run the test again, but this time downclock your CPU 500 Mhz. So instead of letting it turbo up to 3.3 Ghz, disable turbo so it will run at 2.8 Ghz. If your graphics score is then 9,500 or so, you have a CPU bottleneck and it is holding back your system. If in doing this, your graphics score barely changes, then overclocking won't really provide a noticeable difference.
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Old 12-29-2013, 03:45 PM   #66
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What settings are you using?

What is FSB, Multiplier and Vcore set to?

Unless you have a CPU bottleneck then it honestly won't make much of a difference. The easiest way to check for CPU bottlenecks is by looking at your graphics score in 3dmark. If you can downclock your cpu and your graphics score is affected by more than a hundred points, then you likely have a bottleneck, same thing if you overclock.

So for example, if you run the test and have a graphics score of 11,000 at stock speeds. Run the test again, but this time downclock your CPU 500 Mhz. So instead of letting it turbo up to 3.3 Ghz, disable turbo so it will run at 2.8 Ghz. If your graphics score is then 9,500 or so, you have a CPU bottleneck and it is holding back your system. If in doing this, your graphics score barely changes, then overclocking won't really provide a noticeable difference.
I'll crank it up to 3.5 and see what the score does. If 3dmark stays the same you are saying my crossfired GPU setup is maxing out at 9100 at the current GPU settings? I'm thinking maybe upping the northbridge clock will help out the RAM but not sure. I'll do the tests and see what it does. I know my stupid 1.5ghz (clocked to 2.2 via AMD overdrive) laptop with an AMD mobility 7850 crossfired with a 6x series APU was running Skyrim at High settings with a pretty damn good framerate so I can't imagine this Thuban at 3.3 will be a problem...
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Old 12-29-2013, 04:06 PM   #67
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When you run 3dmark, it will give you a performance score (Pscore), Graphics score, physics (Cpu) score and combined score.

Here is a link to one of my 3d mark 11 runs - AMD Radeon R9 290 video card benchmark result - AMD FX-8350,ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC. SABERTOOTH 990FX R2.0

You notice the Pscore is 11230, underneath that, it lists the other scores.
On this run, my graphics score was 14493, physics (Cpu) score was 6938, and combined was 6380.

So you would basically only be interested in the graphics score.
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Old 12-29-2013, 09:09 PM   #68
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Edited because I wrote a damn disseration...

Anyway..

1- Having issues clocking much past the turbo boost speed and yes I disable it when I overclock. FSB is 200x14 and I can't go any higher with the multiplier. Going to even 245 and leaving the HT/NB at stock speeds with the ram at stock speeds/timings causes problems. No idea... played with voltages and it wouldn't even post, had to jumper CMOS.

2- Computer has NEVER ran properly since built. I've tested the RAM multiple times in MEMTEST and Super Pi, no errors... Changed the GPU obviously so that's out, seems its more of a Mobo issue at this point honestly... I mean now with this SSD it seems like its flying along at least but the WD drive I had has passed multiple tests with no bad sectors... no idea there either. SSD might be covering up some other mobo issues?

3- This biostar board actually is all over the place from $50-$60 shipped, has four PCIE 2.0 slots (16/16/4/1) which rocks and apparently is a beast and the one I SHOULD have bought... If I can't get a good stable 3.6-4.0 with this Gigabyte I very well might order that one. Heck, with the PCIE slots it has it might be a solid upgrade to keep me going for another 3 years.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:50 PM   #69
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Hmm .. sounds like it could be a VRM or chipset issue. VRM (voltage regulator module) is basically what controls and regulates the power going to the CPU and parts of the chipset.

On some of the cheaper boards, they will start to fail and cause weird issues with voltage drops (V-droop) and spikes. This typically happens when you have a higher end CPU in a lower end board and overclock it, thus requiring more voltage, which produces more heat, eventually leading to failure.

Many times when this happens, most suspect memory issues, run memtest/super pi or something like that and pass with no issues. Both of those tests are older and don't really stress the other hardware like they should. They are still good tests, just not for this type of issue. I mainly use IBT (Intel Burn Test) for thermal issues/voltage issues/CPU stability (refered to this in a different post) and OCCT (OverClock Checking Tool - Home ) for system wide stability/random issues, then furmark at full screen, native resolution for GPU testing (typically only tests a single card, so does not work in SLI/Crossfire without a bit of work).

I would suggest running OCCT and selecting the infinite test under CPU at default/stock settings for an hour and see what happens. If it fails and doesn't freeze, it should tell you what caused the failure. If it fails to the point of requiring a restart, I would suggest trying to stabilize the voltage to the CPU to see if that is what's going on.

Your motherboard may have an option for LLC (Load Line Calibration, not limited liability company). If it does, turn it on and set it to 100%, or extreme. What this will do is try to maintain as close to what your Vcore is set to regardless of load. When doing this, you should disable cool n quiet and turbo mode on the CPU. If you have this option and the system still fails, I would say that your issue is likely with the VRM on the motherboard not being able to supply the CPU with the voltage it needs and it's likely suffering from Voltage drop (V-droop) or it could be from a bad power supply. You have a pretty nice PSU so I wouldn't suspect that but it is a remote possibility.

If you decide to replace your motherboard, go for something that supports the current FX series CPUs. That Biostar board does not, according to their CPU support list. Just better to spend a little more now, and have a future upgrade path later.

The Asrock 970 Extreme3, Extreme4 and the Asus M5A97 R2.0 are outstanding boards for the money. I have had several builds with the FX4300/6300/8300 series CPU's overclocking to over 5.0 Ghz (with great cooling) on these boards with little to no effort. These boards new are all under $100, support everything from your current system (CPU, Ram, HDD/SSD and GPUs) and offer the chance to step up to an 8 core FX CPU whenever you feel like upgrading.
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Old 12-30-2013, 08:04 AM   #70
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Ok I'll go home and run those tests tonight. I actually did run FurMark for the GPU when I started having issues overclocking last week and before I got the second GPU. Had it going for a long time and temps never got very high on the GPU and no crashes.

Any good way to test the PSU? I got one of the better ones specifically to avoid a problem with it... adding the extra GPU does not seem to have made a damn bit of difference honestly...

I will look into those boards you mentioned. I would pay probably $60 shipped for the Biostar board refurbed and I know it would work great, however if I can get a new one for a little more $$ and then have the ability to upgrade in a year or two I probably should... I think I saw a review on the 970 on Newegg where they were saying the Northbridge is not the greatest for OC'ing but that might have been another one... Had great luck with an Asus on my first build which was an A7N8X board paired with a Barton 2500 (clocked to 3200), 2 gigs of ram, a Radeon 9600 Pro and a 80 gig drive. That thing was the shiznits back in 2003... Even ran Half Life 2 at pretty high settings in 2005. I beat the living S out of that rig.

Edit: Did some research, all of those boards are X16/X4 except I think the Extreme 4 and they're all discontinued I believe. I can still get the ASUS on Tiger tho. Will look into it more. Also looking at that Biostar... my video cards would be even closer than they are now. Not good... need to play with my mobo a little more, its probably something I'm doing. If I keep it I also need to pull the whole thing apart and re-seat all the heatsinks since I think the NB heatsink is a little loose. Should not cause an instant blue screen from overheating though, it never gets hot enough at idle where it has blue screened on me.
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