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AMD

Asus A7V Overclocking Confirmed 116

NoWhere Man writes: "It seems that a few Asus A7V Socket A motherboards have reached the market despite AMD destroying the hopes and dreams of overclockers everywhere. A&I Computer has a few boards and has been able to reach 857Mhz. Buyoverclocked.com also got a few, and overclocked to 900Mhz, a picture of the switches is here. For those interested in overclocking the Thunderbird, Tweak Town seems to have found a way to remove the cpu mulitiplier lock"
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Asus A7V Overclocking Confirmed

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  • They happen to be talking about the Socket A ASUS Thunderbird/Duron mobo, which is called the A7V. The K7V is their older, Slot A based mobo.
  • Is there some reason why you can't just fit those switches to later versions of the motherboard ? Have Abit just fitted links, or removed the holes altogether ?


  • Say the average life of your processor is 10 years.
    Say then that overclocking cuts your processor's life in half.
    You still have a chip that will last 5 years. Who has a 5 year old computer? I mean they exist, but we're talking a 486/33 as a top-of-the-line kick-ass computer from 5 years ago. Besides, most people that overclock buy cheap chips so that if they do fry them, they can afford to replace them.
    Example: The 333 Celeron, the most overclockable chip in the world - I have a friend who is running a dual celery board with 333's at 500 - a gigahertz clock rating at 1/3 the price! These chips are only about $40 bucks. And 500 mhz isn't bad, not even today.


    insert clever line here
  • From Tweaktown:

    "AMD have announced to us that they will be introducing a special Fab of Athlon with performance enhancing cache that will be multiplier unlocked. Award and AMI have also told us that they will be helping with a new BIOS code that will prevent remarking of the unlocked Athlon with performance enhancing cache. Also we have heard that Award and Ami will be introducing a scheme to prevent resellers relabelling the CPU. According to the information received, Award will introduce a feature that will read the AMD Athlon CPUID code and will display the actual CPU's designated Speed and the overclocked speed. Eg. If you have a Athlon 2 700Mhz and have it clocked at 900Mhz on boot up the motherboard will bios will show up as: AMD Athlon 700 at 900MHz. This will prevent resellers from relabelling the 700Mhz CPU as a 900MHz for example."

    I didn't think it was possible to love AMD any more than I already do. Then AMD comes out with a way to solve their problems (reseller fraud) AND keep the fringe users happy. All it took was a little extra effort by AMD, and it WILL pay off for them when it comes to PR. Kudos AMD.

    -GS
  • First of all, you use of the phrase "some of them" is hittin' the head on the nail. It's important to understand that the majority of overclockers are -not- able to spend more $$ on faster chips, and certainly don't have the money to spend on expensive cooling systems.

    That said, i think that those who do have the time/$$ to throw on peltiers (that fluorinert experiment was insane even for overclockers ;)) and other such things do it for other reasons than simply price/performance:

    Simply put, overclocking is a hack. hacks have value (to some)...it's not a matter of -why- do it, it's -can- it be done...can -I- do it.

    it's all in the spirit ;)
  • Your argument is pointless. Office systems should never be overclocked (it isn't yours to screw up). For those who don't need it, it's pointless. And not everyone can afford a U2W SCSI system with multiple parallel disks, not to mention that SS disks are insanely expensive.
  • While I do not currently overclock my CPU (PII350), I plan to soon buy a Thunderbird and overclock it to some degree. Here's why I think its ok:

    1)I will enjoy aving the higher MHz for games. while I know it won't matter that much, I'll enjoy it.

    2)I do do video encoding (I'm not kidding! its REALLY SLOW right now!). Haveing those extra MHz matters.

    3)It doesn't really affect stability. Here's why: AMD realizes that they make the most profit by making two different CPUs, Thunderbird and Duron. The Thunderbirds are all THE SAME, but by selling some as "faster" they can make a lot more money. Now, some really aren't quite as well made, so mine might not work at 900MHz, but I think it will. Also, if I don't increase the voltage, thenn I can overclock all I want without permanent damage, provided I keep the chip cool. At some point, it just stops working right though. Its unstable, so I bring it back down a bit.

    4)I really would rather spend the extra money I save by buying a 700MHz over a 900MHz on a new graphics card, more RAM, a better disk, whatever. While I don't NEED the extra speed, and hence won't pay for it, I would use, and hence will try to get it.

  • by xtal ( 49134 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @07:12AM (#915706)

    Electromigration is the only thing that can cause physical damage to the chips besides frying it due to overvoltage. But they both end up doing about the same thing to your chips.

    You don't know what you're talking about. I have a running 6 and 7 year experiment with electromigration, and guess what? This hasn't been a problem, period. I have a 486/66 and a Pentium 100, bother overclocked, that have been running overclocked the respective times, 24/7, barring power outages. The motherboards are about the only thing in them that hasn't failed. The fans went, the drive (in the P100) failed, the CDROMs long since died, the floppies died, but the CPU's keep on mackin'. The power consumption is to the point where it almost equaled the cost of the machine, but, it's an experiment to see if the CPU (will ever) fail. That and they make nice servers.

    Electromigration is something that while well documented in theory, I have yet to see cause a problem. One of my electrical engineering professors has a old transistor collection, and you can see a decay in Beta (B) of these devices, so the gain characteristics have changed a fair bit. This is _much_ more of a problem in a analog transistor, where the preformance is supposed to be linear. In a CPU, the transistors are acting as switches - and as long as they switch, everything is fine.

    Heat failure is completely different. Heat goes up, resistance goes up, circuit goes to hell, and the magic smoke comes out. This is what happens when the chips fail due to overvoltage - you physically burned out the circuit. THIS IS NOT ELECTROMIGRATION!

    Anyway, that is an explanation of what happens when overclocking goes bad. There's a few white lies in there, but without spending weeks explaining electrical theory and physics to you, it's the best way to explain it. :)

    You don't need weeks of physics and theory. If you overclock, you up the clock rate of a CMOS process. Power consumption goes up correspondingly. More clocks, more power, more heat. Too much heat, you burn it out. Better chips can handle more current, thusly running cooler, and therefore be able to run faster. Your watch is CMOS too; It can run for years because it's clock rate is 1Hz.

    The problem is that you now have less energy available to generate those higher frequencies.. the clock signals are weaker. Of course, this results in instability and other problems (retransmits, blah blah blah). The solution is that if you want it to run at that higher frequency, you gotta increase the voltage to boost the signal... and take the chance of frying your chip.

    This doesn't make any sense. See above comments. Right now, I mildly overclock my athlon. There's nothing that even comes close to making it run slow, so I'll overclock it heavily when games catch up. I suspect this is what most people do.

  • >I'm not the kind of person who would pay thousands of dollars to trick out a lousy car with a stereo system and 18 racing stripes...

    Ah yes... the <A HREF="http://www.riceboypage.com/">Riceboy</A>
    phenomenon...

    (currently running two Celeron 300a s @450/464, a PMMX 200 @ 250/266 and a K6-2 500 @ 500 ;-p)
  • Hi there!
    Overclockers usualy are 2 type of peoples:
    -one do not have enough money,...:(
    -the other want to be on the top of the world with the hot-new-fast-and-overclocked CPU at that time ...
    CPU premature aging is not an issue because new processors are coming out very fast and the overclocked ones behave very well after years too... But if you want mission-critical-stability then don't overclock it.

    Till now I haven't managed to "fry" my overclocked CPU-s ;)

    Just my < 0.02$
    Cheers,

  • the K6-2 500's are not :)

    at least, not AFAIK.. but maybe they were, i never really got into them.

    anyway, some chips /do/ deserve the clock rating they're given and overclocking them yields no good results, maybe that is the case here. but i never heard any great success stories about OCing K6's
    ...dave
  • Actually, no... except for the memory, you are not overclocking the PCI and AGP, or the rest of the board. 100 MHz is a standard speed, and the whole system should be very happy with that. Speeds like 75 and 83 would be a problem, since the standard divisors don't work there, but 100 is the way things "should be now". 4.5 * 66 = 300 4.5 * 100 = 450. That's why the Celeron 300a was/is one of the easiest overclocking chips. You can hit a nice speed point without overclocking anything but the CPU (unless you use PC-66 memory.... but that's just dumb).

    300 => 450 = stable motherboard speeds.
  • Tweak Town seems to have found a way to remove the cpu mulitiplier lock

    C'mon, this is OLD NEWS [tomshardware.com]. I have posted this link numerous times in the past. Get a clue, Slashdot.

  • I bought a Duron here in the Netherlands which is indeed locked (I believe one of the first actually sighted). We've also figured out a way to remove the lock [tweakers.net], so after doing that you can use the thing on an A7V with dipswitches again. We didn't have an A7V, so we modified our Gigabyte micro-ATX to be able to set the multiplier. A full account can be found here [tweakers.net]. Removing the lock in this way will almost certainly make you unable to turn it in for warranty servicing, so you anti-overclocking zealots can rest easy as well. Jasper Janssen
  • So I can have dual 550's running for under $300. I simply can't fathom what would programs would require more processing power than that!

    Yes, except that just about every game is NOT multi-threaded (with the notable exception of Quake III Arena), and therefore can't take advantage of more than one processor. And don't even get me started on trying SMP with Windows 98. Also, it would cost you more than $300 for a dual 550 setup, because SMP motherboards cost much more than single processor motherboards.

    Just remember, 2 * 550Mhz processors != 1.1Ghz of processing power for most games and other common applications. Although many people on eBay would like to tell you different.

  • They overclock for the same reason people tweak cars. It's fun, it's enjoyable, and it's something to boast about. It's the geek equivalent of hot-rodding.

    When people modify their cars to extract that extra 10hp, same reason people put on huge watercoolers to go that extra 50MHz.

    Sure, it's mostly boasting - I mean, some of those high MHz computers don't get great uptimes, others do, etc.

    I don't know what we call people who perform 'safe overclocking' - like bringing a Celeron 533A/566 to 800/850MHz (almost always guarenteed), though. Casual tweakers?
  • About the class A current (or crossover current). I should have made it more clear why I though it might be important. I don't have any experience with the sorts of cmos geometries used in microprocessors but I have played around with push pull drivers that act a bit like a cmos output stage. The cmos output transistors are surely designed with threshold voltages to minimize overlap but the crossover current still occurs. The current pulse has a length that is dependant on operating voltage but not frequency. Therefore, as frequency increases, the crossover current pulse increases a larger portion of the clock period. This will result in a linear increase in power consumption...

    I went to the fridge and forgot what I was writing about. What the hell, I'll submit his anyway. whatever

    Ryan
  • If you scope the power supplies on your
    boards, you will invariably find that
    the cause of burnouts at elevated speeds
    is due to voltages above specs, which allows
    them to push out more wattage thru a
    given impedance without laying out the bread
    for better parts.

    First, there are thermisters on chips
    which allow for checking temps in the chip
    [get yourself a copy of 'waterfall'].
    Split up your power & filter the noise
    & pulldown, so the elements of the
    chip are all operating on your edges.
    In this fashion the voltage & drop total
    into the chip will be reduced yet
    fully operable at elevated freqs.
    A properly tuned power system ought to
    allow for a 10% increase in speed yet
    with a safety factor to the chip
    better than your average board.
    Its your big name houses that
    *OVERDRIVE* your chips so any 'weak'
    chips won't drop out. Overclocking is
    just the icing... much less dangerous
    when tuned properly *BELOW* specs
    than chips at 'standard' operational
    configurations.

    ^ ^ ^ ^ ^

    One of the more remarkable aspects
    of dental caries is that the
    trauma to the cheek tissue is
    signifigantly greater than
    the turgor elaborated about the
    damaged roots in many patients.
    Sounds like radiation damage
    caused by a MICROWAVE LASER

  • As someone who runs unattended servers year round, 3 lockups a year is not unusual. You're going to have problems with hard disk failures, CPU and case fan failures, spontaneous memory failures caused by atmospheric raditation, as well as misc. cabling and environmental-related failures. I would not consider a machine that locked up for mysterious reasons 3 times a year suspiciously unstable.

    None of those problems should be happening. Better hard disks have MTBFs well above 1 million hours, you get error statuses when they fail, and RAID is an option. Fan failure should be detected; most servers now have internal temperature monitoring, as well as multiple fans. "Spontaneous memory failures caused by atmospheric raditation" are almost unheard of, and if you have ECC memory, they're corrected. Cabling problems remain a big issue; the CEO of Inktomi reports that mounting the power cords on their servers so they can't come out fixed their biggest cause of downtime.

    Now OS uptimes need to improve to match.

  • Yeah & maybe mom&pop are really only
    selling little brown squares of plastic.
    Maybe nobody called the cops or threw a
    rock through a window or spread rumors about
    turkies like you who never changed batteries
    on a flashlight.

    Quit blowing your grits sm3lling
    breath at kids doing things that your'e too
    inept to do. Is Bill Gates paying you
    off to misinform our kids... are you one
    of those 'Spinmeisters' who get paid to
    misinform the public on the Internet?

    Most of these guys know, you don't
    know what your talking about: that most
    products are overbuilt and to get
    the best for your money only means
    knowing how to restrap the 'cripples'
    on the product to makr them work right.

    The chip companies *have* to overbuild
    their chips or throw out 90% of them.
    They do it but they don't like it...
    So they hire human garbage like you
    to bad mouth the kids so they feel like
    they're doing something bad by making
    technology live up to its full potential.

    Picking on kids, you must be real proud
    of yourself, do you get paid by the comment
    or per hour... cupcake.

    Is that grits you got splashed in your
    ear... cupcake. Do yourself a flavor,
    take a vacation or we can talk about
    your stange emotional problems... cupcake

    -30-

    You can make many new friends
    & rid yourself of strange maladies
    by shouting out in public places;
    "Damn Free Mason, female, fascist,
    freaks [O.E.S.]are burning my [insert
    correct body part here]
    with MICOWAVE LASERS"

  • But then agin why buy a car that can do 150mph when the speed limit is closer to 80????
  • Speaking of reputations, COMPUSA seems to
    have a rep but *I* wouldn't trust them.

    Had this uniboard hp package my girl
    picked up to ween me away from my c-64.
    Supposed to have a 130Mb II inside.

    6 months later,when I get interested,
    it craps out, they & hp are giving me
    this who covers what routine.

    Spent a month until these guys got
    together. [I sorta did DOS off a diskette
    setting up a Ramdisk]. So now they
    confiscate the unit for about a week
    & come back with, they can't find a new
    processor. {I guess they were waiting
    for a new one to to be left in swaddling
    cloth on their doorstep.]

    So they come back... they only got a 100Mb.
    I figured 30 Megs isn't worth fighting about
    Everytime I hit an applet i NEEDED a new
    browser.

    I got this Spark 1 gig ext, thigamajig
    so compusa buys computer city & I'm sitting
    on 12 jiga bytes I can't access & 'usa
    isn't honoring my agreement. [That's 3
    reputations that time.some one of these
    days I gotta cut the damn thing open & glue
    theplastic doodad that open the door back on.

    Trust in God... all others pay cash.

    | X |

    You have never truly been in love
    until your gonadotrophins
    have been stimulated
    by the Order of the Eastern Star,
    sometimes known as Venus,
    Sometimes knoen as Lucifer.

    You can be played like a puppet by
    stimulating your internal organs with
    the effects of a MICROWAVE LASER

  • [[...wish I had something meaningful to say.
    How about overclockers are just tryign to compensate for undersized penises]]

    Don't you worry 'bout us overclockers
    son, we at least get a little daylight on
    our bones runnin' down to the hardware store.

    We worry about people like you,who sitting
    in the midst of a world like this have 'nuttin'
    to say.

    As for our undersized thigamajigs you
    gotta be blind! Maybe I should paint stripes
    on it so you can see it better,

    The same psycho sexual forces that
    drive us to mess with the forces of nature,
    to put $500 worth a chip on the line,
    make us just swell with pride...& swell
    & swell. Son, we are steel drivin' men.

    As for you guys sittin' in the dark
    drinkin' Jolt Cola & waitin for someone
    to give you someyhing to do, here it is.

    Even tho you uninspired listless
    dudes don't measure up, You can trick
    your partner, whoever or whatever that
    may be, by //////// the generated
    lubricational /////// [assuming you can
    inspire that] from the ///// ////. this
    will increase the relative frictional
    forces of the ////// ///// simulating
    the insertion of a ////// larger //////
    than you may find available to you.

    I hope I've been of help.

    |X|

    You have never truly been in love
    until your gonadotrophins
    have been stimulated
    by the Order of the Eastern Star,
    sometimes known as Venus,
    Sometimes knoen as Lucifer.

    You can be played like a puppet by
    stimulating your internal organs with
    the effects of a MICROWAVE LASER

  • >>>>>>>>

    Not a good idea, the power drop in the
    cpu [p=ie expressed in voltage e=ir or
    i=e/r :. p=e*e/r. calories=.24*p] your heat
    is going up w/ the SQUARE of your voltage
    multiplied by 38000000 xistors.
    I would back it off now.
    You gotta' increase available amperage by
    putting more copper in you power coils to lower the impedancs.
    Some chip house just just announced
    overclocking its chips by changing operation
    voltages from ~1.67v. to ~1.36v. I would follow there lead.

    |X|

    Since Geo. Washington, the officers of
    the Armed Forces have all been
    Free Masons, which may be why
    their Russian Brothers had our
    troop movements before our men did
    in Korea.

    VA doctors have found neither
    chemical or biological
    justification for the Desert Storm
    Syndrome. Perhaps our officers
    are punishing our men for what
    they did under orders. Symptoms
    created with a MICROWAVE LASER.

    Would you believe
    an ammonium maser?
  • >>>>>>>>>>>

    This assumes that the positive values of the
    clocking square wave increases w/o the an increase
    in the area of the 'off' aspect of the wave.
    Lets see by changing the shape of the
    clocking wave the amount of wattage
    dissippated in the chip can be reduced. [After
    all its the edges,not the area of the i^2r
    that does the switching.

    |X|

    You can make many new friends
    & rid yourself of strange maladies
    by shouting out in public places;
    "Damn Free Mason, female, fascist,
    freaks [O.E.S.]are burning my [insert
    correct body part here]
    with MICOWAVE LASERS"

  • But is the performance gain really worth it?

    I'll give you a definitive "maybe". It just depends on your board, your CPU, and the phase of the moon. Stability is king here.. there's no point running at 733 instead of 700 if your Quake3 game sh*ts itself every 10 minutes. "YMMV" is the key acronym here. :)

    why are you cheaping out and then risking not only your warranty (or blowing it altogether) but the life of your CPU?

    Okay, first, you're talking about electromigration. Electromigration is the only thing that can cause physical damage to the chips besides frying it due to overvoltage. But they both end up doing about the same thing to your chips. As we shrink the die size of the CPUs down, we are moving the gates of each transistor closer and closer together. Now, silicon is just as suspeptible to expanding due to heat as any other chemical, and what happens is that as those gates expand, they start passing more current. More current = more heat. Now the more current that is passing, the more likely it is to "jump" the gate and short the adjacent gates - current is going where no current was expected. This results in (at the very least) a performance hit AND system instability. In the worst-case scenario, you blow your chip as the current spikes and the gates fuse.

    Anyway, that is an explanation of what happens when overclocking goes bad. There's a few white lies in there, but without spending weeks explaining electrical theory and physics to you, it's the best way to explain it. :)

    Now, the risks are that every time you increase the voltage, you increase current. You increase current, you increase heat. Current is what causes heat, NOT voltage.. however ohm's law dictates that if you increase voltage and keep resistance constant.. you increase current. See above. It is worth mentioning that if you can get your chip to run stable at a higher clock speed without increasing the voltage, you're not going to damage the chip any more than normal operation, practically speaking. Yes, there will be a (slight) increase in heat production due to the higher frequencies.. but really it's not a Big Deal(tm).

    The problem is that you now have less energy available to generate those higher frequencies.. the clock signals are weaker. Of course, this results in instability and other problems (retransmits, blah blah blah). The solution is that if you want it to run at that higher frequency, you gotta increase the voltage to boost the signal... and take the chance of frying your chip.

    So why the risk? Because a 550 MHz chip can sometimes be $100 less than a 600 MHz chip. It was also discovered that many chip foundries are having unusually good yields (especially the Celerons) so they had to mark the 600, or even 700 chip down to 550 to maintain their pricing structure. A glut of high quality chips would ruin their market.. so they just remarked them.

    If you get one of these chips, it is a pretty safe bet you can overclock it AND save hundreds of dollars! Good deal, huh? But it's a crap shoot.. and there are no guarantees.

    Hope this helps!


  • i asked a similar question (currently it is below this post), but not exactly the same,..

    you can't say 'RAM is the bottleneck, period.' obviously, certain things are going to want more RAM than you have, other things are dying for clock cycles, and most things (that i run into) want your HDD to be faster.

    i have 256 megs of RAM now and rarely have to make use of virtual memory. with DIMMs so cheap there's really no reason not to have it.
    ...dave
  • the simple answer to this is that the fab should embed a MHz rating into the chip, that can then be read by the BIOS. SO, remarking is no longer a problem, but enthusiasts who still want to overclock will be able to. then during POST what you see is

    CPU: Geniune AMD Athlon 900 MHz
    CPU Clock: 1000 MHz

    the idea that AMD and teh chipzilla multiplier-lock their cpus to "protect consumers" is a load of bs that they dump on us. the reason that they mulitplier-lock is so that if enthusiasts want 1000 MHz, they have to purchase the 1000 MHz part ok bye.

    loev,

  • Id stay away from locked stuff whenever possible. Why run yer processer at 500 if you can run it fine at 700, 800? Im running my old k6-2 400 at 500 for over a year and half (at 2.8 core voltage!! ;-) and it is still alive, crunching seti@home packets 24*7. All you need is proper cooling... And the cpu would rather crash than burn out, so no danger. If you can't find out your sys is overclocked, youd better not buy one at all ;-)

  • at least, not more than 0.00001% of the time.

    i worked at best buy, as a technician, for a year, and i have a lot of experience with local 'mom & pop' (so to speak) computer retailers as well.

    they are not going to bother testing every cpu that comes back.

    also, much fewer people O/C than you'd think, looking at the gazillions of sites and articles devoted to it.

    so, basically, this is not something worth worrying about (besides which you can return it too, no store will ever refuse to accept your return if you keep the receipt,.. just keep insisiting. believe me, they will cave in.)
    ...dave
  • Intel has been doing that for awhile now, with its Processor Frequency ID utility [intel.com]. It identifies the current and proper CPU speed and FSB speed, but only with newer processors [intel.com]. It just hasn't appeared in the BIOS yet.

    --
    Your friendly neighborhood mIRC scripter.
    if (ismoderator(reader)) hidemessage(this);


  • - the stores send 'returned' items back to the manufacturers (who test things thoroughly before selling them to OEMs or just trashing them. some unscrupulous OEMs like Acer sell pre-used hardware as new, but that is a separate issue.)

    - O/C rarely permanently damages a CPU, it would require a high level of stupidity to achieve this. and if it was damaged, it would show up right away, regardless.

    - the clock speed/multiplier is, of course, stored on the motherboard, not the CPU. so, they're not going to return it when it stops working at 9999999 GHz, they'll just set the clock back and all will be well (i know, i ran my 366 at 800 for a lark, and well,.. it didn't work too good, clem.) if they are dumb enough to return it at this point, that's fine, you'll buy it at a discounted price for being pre-owned/returned and have a perfectly working CPU.

    thanks :)
    ...dave
  • I just find it strange that companies like Asus, ABit, and Soyo are all putting out motherboards that can overclock everything up to and including the Hubble constant while Intel and AMD are spending their time finding new ways to prevent overclocking the CPU. That being said, anyone know any voltage combos I can use on my Apollo Pro 133/PII 400 box to get the sucker stable at about 500Mhz without having to install cryogenic equipment?

    My personal view: I'm sticking with Intel for a while until after my next CPU upgrade (PII 400 is going to a CuMine 700+, hopefully by the end of the weekend). I'm just easing myself away slowly from the Beast That Grove Built.

    Switching to the Apollo Pro 133 (from an old 440BX that was past its shelflife viz. BIOS upgrades) was a no-brainer due to the i820 fiasco (yeah, it's not that great of a chipset, but it was still US$50 cheaper than another 440BX, even though I have to jump through hoops every time driver upgrades are released to get Windog to respond to their existence; BTW: there's been some complaints about its hacked UDMA66 implementation, but it works fine once drivers are installed). And thanks to the fine people here at /., I'm sure as hell not going to touch a Willamette. So the next iteration of AMD past T-Bird will certainly end up being my next CPU.

    (NOTE: I'm a hardcore gamer that stupid bought an inexpensive generic Vortex2 soundcard that, like those asinine Winmodems, uses some proprietary hardware-based calls to Windog for various purposes. Until the sound card's upgraded and WINE will do games properly, Linux is not an option.)

    The Spie, who curses Wintel's implementation of P&P...I WANT MY JUMPERS BACK!

  • by ebbv ( 34786 )

    well first of all K6's were never a highly recommended potential OC chip,..

    OCing is most successful with Celerons (so far) especially 300A, 366, and such.

    i wouldn't even bother trying it on a K6-2 500, of course that is going to cause problems, that's a poorly designed chip running as best it can already (nothing against K7s, they're great,.. K6 is not my bag.)

    anyway, as another poster says above, with a lot of chips, especially those Celerons, the manufacturer just made a whole bunch of the top-o'-the line chip (in the case of the Celerons i believe it was a 450 or 500?), but the demand for the mid-range ones was much higher ,so they just relabled them.

    the thing that also helps Celerons is all the cache is running at core speed.

    i recommend looking up some great articles that Ars Technica has on this subject.

    (and VERY few people go through the trouble of buying those big fan arrays, let alone spending much time screwing around with it. i spend exactly 30 minutes overclocking my 366 to 453.)
    ...dave
  • I bought a Pentium 75Mhz 5 years ago and 133Mhz was on the shelf. I later upgraded the video to a Matrox Mystique 220. It came with Motoracer and I couldn't win a race to save my life. I started bumping the bus speed from 50Mhz and ended up on 66Mhz. I was now running an O/C P75 @100Mhz and the video was working great. The first game I played after bumping the bus, I blew the field out of the water after struggling for so long. I have tinkered with overclocking since then but now I run the heatsinks, grease and case fans to keep my rated clocked CPU's running cool and stable. Windows crashes are few and far between for me.

    I build a lot of systems for people and make them deals on my old CPU's some I frequently go up. "I'll make you a deal on the 500Mhz Athlon so I can buy a Thunderbird" and so on. Overclocking doesn't pull me very much when I can keep my CPU speed up there pretty good. My wife had some surgery awhile back so I haven't upgraded since the Athlon 500Mhz but it is getting to be time again.

    I used to work at a computer store testing returned equipment. You be surprised how much stuff is obviously O/Ced and messed up by ignorance.

  • by technos ( 73414 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @07:23AM (#915734) Homepage Journal
    He still blamed the Taiwan earthquake on Q3 99 stock loses

    I know Michael Dell is a little egocentric, and a lot of people seem to think the world revolves around money and profits, but..

    How the hell does Dell's stock price dictate the stability of tectonic plates?!?!?

  • good post :)

    i wish i had moderation ability in this thread :P

    ars [arstechnica.com] has some good OCing articles, as does sharky extreme, curious parties should head over there.

    (sorry i'm too tired/busy to look up the full URLs :P)
    ...dave
  • Why do people overclock? Because it's hacking, that's why. Who ever said that hacking only applied to software?

    You're not a true geek until you've successfully hacked some hardware.

    --

  • Let me rephrase that. AMD is looking out for it's non-overclocking customer base by trying o prevent this. It's good that you've had this success (I imagine most modern chips would probably yeild about 100mhz, however it's been argued that there's a reason that buffer is there, anyway grats on the OC), and I'll assume that if you had fried something trying to overclock that you'd be stand-up about it and not try returning the chip. However I've known several people who would buy quite a few of these, and then return the one's whose electrons migrated south. Likewise the unscrupulous resellers (remember the story where they went to the trouble to repackage athlons as higher rated chips). The CPU manufacturers have a serious problem with this.

    I have my own solution. They should come up with something like the slot1 and put a non-reversable hardware switch, or a punch out on the board, something that you have to physically do to OC your board, is painfully obvious that you've done it, and then let people do what they want. Hell, I might even try to build my own screamer-in-the-beer-fridge with one of those.

    Either way, I'm saying that the Hardware companies, however they may be artificially inflating prices, don't want help from a few DIYers who don't feel like eating their own losses.
  • How the hell does Dell's stock price dictate the stability of tectonic plates?!?!?

    Careful what you ask... the Men In Black may not be amused... ;-)

    --
  • Of course overclocking can damage a processor, it is part of the risk. If a mom and pop store shafts you, don't buy from there anymore. Buying from a mom and pop isn't economical anyway because their prices are normally higher, and if they aren't, something is up.

    In addition, when I referred to underclock, that meant from the overclock.

  • this is actually a really good idea. I don't think I can conceive of a way to make it technically feasible, but I'm not an engineer. If that could be done, it would be neat! The only downside is the fact that the chip manufacturers use the same die for several clock speeds, labeling the chips depending on test results post fabrication.
  • I think AMD is currently making most of it's money on the 700-800Mhz athlons, not on the 1Gz version, which at it's price premium is mostly for careless spenders anyway (at least in my application area, the extra money is better spent on SDRAMS, bless the Abit KA7).

    ... depending on the market conditions and current yield, they might even stock up on a couple more 1Ghz versions, which they will then sell later when the improved ASIC stepping and production lines peak at 1.2Ghz.

    And that's why some chips overclock better than others, and manufacturing date and location is interesting data on overclockers.com

    ...
  • > This won't work, due to how chips are
    > manufactured.

    Sure it'll work. Use laser trimming to cut traces on the die before it is packages like they do for precision analog components. Or embed a couple bits of eprom on the die and program it after packaging and testing. It's all really quite simple. 1970's technology.

    Ryan
  • Excellent but... What you describe
    is the operation of a logical array
    which is only one type of assembly.
    I was under the impression that much of
    the chip was composed of memory
    which operate in a different fashion.
    It would be a waste of time to
    bicker over what is possibly different
    on different chips. Refresh rates of memory
    would seem to play a signifigant if not
    constant power drop though.

    With regard to dumming down try looking
    up 'thevenin load' which is the consolidated
    impedance at any point in a circuit model.
    The idea of the affect of the clock wave
    form does suggest interesting possible alternatives. Reducing noise in the power &
    lowering the impedance of the power wouldn't
    hurt.

    |X|

    A MICROWAVE LASER can put
    a lump in a politically
    active chest. Aluminum foil
    can stop it.

  • had a single PII 350.
    bought a pair of PIII 550's on ebay for $290.
    have 2 break out the soldering gun to get power to the fans, though.
    Now my P5 166 linux box will be a PII 337 (LX motherboard that I had will run at 75 MHz).
  • by slashdot-me ( 40891 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @09:45AM (#915746)
    Ahem, you don't know how cmos works. Allow me to explain...

    A cmos circuit is composed of complementary pairs of mos transistors (hence the name cmos). A mos transistor works more or less like a switch. A voltage on the gate pin allows a current to flow on between the other two pins (transistors have 3 pins). The gate of a mos transistor looks like a little capacitor. You need to charge up the capacitor to turn on the transistor. The output of each cmos gate has two mos transistors, one goes to the supply (about 2 volts), and the other goes to ground (zero volts). The gate turns on one (and only one) of the transistors to select a binary output level. If both transistors were on a short circuit would occur.

    There are three sources of power consumption in a cmos circuit. (1) leakage currents (very small), (2) charging and discharging the gate capacitors, and (3) so called "class A current."

    The first item, leakage, is very very small. Several orders of magnitude smaller than the other two. It is independent of operating frequency.

    The second item on the list, charging/discharging current, is quite important. It takes a fixed amount of energy to charge the gate capacitor and force the transistor to change state. At higher clock rates you change state more often. Since power is simply energy per unit time, the power consumed from these charging currents is linear with respect to operating frequency. Double the frequency, double the power consumption. BTW, you can force the capacitor to charge more quickly if you increase the supply voltage. Sometimes this is necessary for overclocking. Higher voltages will lead to higher power dissipation (though not necessarily increased current (for a given frequency)).

    The last item, "class A current" is caused when both transistors in a cmos output are on at the same time. Since the transistorgates have small capacitors, they can't turn on and off instantaneously. Therefore, when the gate changes state, there will be a short period where both transistors are partially on. This overlapping conduction causes a sizeable current to flow; a short circuit of sorts. This is the so called "class A current." The exact magnitude of this current is dependent on the particulars of the transistor design and the clocking waveforms. It's hard to say what happens to class A current as clock rates go up except that power consumption increases.

    BTW, in the process of dumbing down something that isn't all that complicated to begin with you said some pretty silly things:

    Electromigration is the only thing that can cause physical damage to the chips besides frying it due to overvoltage.
    Heat, static, current, etc. Electromigration pales in comparison to soldering irons, drills, and other tools of the trade.

    as those gates expand, they start passing more current
    MOS has a negative tempco (unlike BJTs). They conduct LESS current when they are hot. That's why you don't need to worry about thermal runaway when playing with power mosfets.

    More current = more heat
    No. P = IV, you know that.

    Now the more current that is passing, the more likely it is to "jump" the gate
    WTF?

    without spending weeks explaining
    Doesn't take weeks. Cmos is pretty simple.

    Current is what causes heat, NOT voltage.
    No. See above.

    ...ohm's law...
    Your processor is not a resistor. It's not that simple.

    a (slight) increase in heat production due to the higher frequencies
    Large increase. Greater than linear.

  • systems aren't you starting to hit major diminishing returns for the amount of money you're putting into the system?

    When you get a system that's flying at specs that high, aren't you starting to hit framerates so fast that a noticeable jump in framerate doesn't produce a noticeable jump in performance?

    I get 20-30 fps in Tribes, at 800x600 with a 300A celeron and a TNT card.
    A friend of mine with a 550 Athlon and a TNT2 gets...30 fps at 800x600. His bonus is he can run up to 1280x1024 and get 20-30 fps still. My video card won't support that resolution, so I can't say if my system would perform comprably with a TNT2 card.

    The only difference I notice between our performance is when we both log onto a server his machine loads the game faster and he gets to play a few seconds before I do. However, that isn't impacting gameplay at all.

    Back to framerate, when you are up at 80 fps, isn't any increase above that nearly wasted? I supposed if you insist on play quake III at 1600x1200 with 80 fps, you're going to need to ramp everything up (I'm not going to go into how much I hate quake III), but how much does it affect gameplay to run the game at 1600x1200 as opposed to a lower resolution? That is assuming your monitor can support 1600x1200 at a decent refresh rate (mine doesn't even support 1600x1200), so I guess whatever money you save by overclocking you'd drop on getting a monitor that can perform at those resolutions.

    no, there's no order to the preceding thoughts, I was just rambling as I listened to a perfect circle.

    Moller
  • Yeah, the guys there hav all the pictures and the configs to sup up our Thunderbirds and Duron (all socket A cpu) ... well u gotta know how to use a southering irion....
  • I want to get an Athlon soon; is there an easy way to tell if it's a Thunderbird, or whatnot?
    ---
    pb Reply or e-mail; don't vaguely moderate [ncsu.edu].
  • When I wrote the above, I was responding to the original poster who was complaining about the situation where an overclock-damaged CPU would reduce the reliability of a server.

    I'm assuming the "server" he was talking about was an off-the-shelf or homebuilt PC, because if you're buying serious hardware for a high availity machine you're not going to be picking out the CPU in a place where you have to worry about buying an overclock-damaged CPU marked as new.

    Most "servers" in this class don't have RAID, fan sensors with built in audible alarm, hot-pluggable drives, redundant power supplies, quality motherboard, or ECC memory. You will indeed run into the problems I've mentioned, and a few that I left out- most notably power supply failures. Even big power supplies that are underused and fed clean AC from a high end UPS fail, sometimes frequently. I have a dell poweredge server that has lost 2 450Watt power supplies in 4 years. Not a stellar record.

    The stock Linux/BSD distributions don't appear to support hardware monitoring either. I bet a daemon to do this exists somewhere but I haven't run across it in either the latest redhat, mandrake, and openBSD distros.

    Also, about the stray radiation: Studies have shown that a computer that is on 24x7 will be adversely affected in such a way approximately once every 3 months. Most of the time it doesn't do any harm, but occasionally it does. I can't prove that it's been the cause of any failures I've seen, but I've seen a couple sealed boxes that are normally 100% reliable run for years and one day reboot due to a memory parity error.

    I have to keep a bunch of machines up 24x7. Most are quality boxes, but a few are normal PCs. The normal PCs do have the problems I've described, and while most of them fail less than 3 times a year occasionally one does fail that often, so I still think that 3 strange failures a year is within the range of "normal" behavior for such beasts..
  • I don't like the fact that AMD tried to use chipzilla-like tactics and render overclocking impossible.

    Though, my next chip will most likely be AMD.

    LK
  • > With regard to dumming down try looking
    > up 'thevenin load' which is the consolidated
    > impedance at any point in a circuit model.

    Try looking it up yourself. What's the thevenin equivalent of an oscillator?

    Ryan
  • With the ignorant masses, I don't know if there really is another way to prevent people from swindling maxed out processors and pretending they're running like out of the box.

    AMDs are damned reliable though, so you really can't blame them for trying to keep people honest.

  • A Thevenin load is a sequence of impedances
    to describe the value R for a specific point
    *at a specific time"

    R = I

    I = [R^2+ [[L in]^2 - [L cap]^2]]^-2

    R1, R2, R3, R4, R pi/2....R pi

    I hope I'm wasting my time on a sincere request.

    ]X[

    Panic attacks can be induced
    by stimulating the thyroid
    & a portion of the bowel
    [2 inches to the left of the navel]
    with a MICROWAVE LASER.
  • For me, it's all about getting the most out of my money-- as a college student, resources are limited, and if I can pull my 466 Celerons up to 700's (or something similarly insane) I've saved money that I really can't afford to spend.

    I think the second reason has to do with "stickin' it to the man", as with Linux. It's some people's way of telling Intel (or AMD or Cyrix or...) we don't have to take it anymore.

    Or if nothing else, it's something for nothing.

    Kit
  • by mr.ska ( 208224 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @06:14AM (#915756) Homepage Journal
    If someone would be so kind, please explain to me the reasoning behind overclocking. I realize that (on the surface) it allows you to purchase an XYZ MHz system, and then turn it into an XYZ+ABC MHz system. Faster chips cost more money, so you're saving a few bucks.

    But is the performance gain really worth it? If you need those few extra clock cycles every second, why are you cheaping out and then risking not only your warranty (or blowing it altogether) but the life of your CPU? If I really wanted some extra speed in my brand-new machine, I'd spend the extra $200 or so, not blow time, energy, and then my entire investment by overclocking.

    Please - teach me. I am but your sponge.

  • But nothing is going to stop users from overclocking their systems. After all, it's the easiest way to get extra power out of your system mostly* for free.

    * - That is, unless you fry the CPU in the process...

    --
    Your friendly neighborhood mIRC scripter.
    if (ismoderator(reader)) hidemessage(this);
  • "Thunderbird" Athlons will be labeled as "Athlon, with enhanced cache" [amd.com], and unless you get one in a pre-built system from a distributor like gateway [gateway.com] or dell [dell.com], the processor will be in socketed form rather than on a slot-A PCB.
    ---
    Where can the word be found, where can the word resound? Not here, there is not enough silence.
  • Athlon basically shouldn't be overclocked as they they usually are running at their highest stable speeds when they come in the box. I think AMD is probably looking out for its customer's best interests by discourging the often system-damaging practice of overclocking.
  • by patreides ( 210724 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @06:23AM (#915760)
    Back in the days of Pentium I's and II's many hardware vendors would overclock CPUs and sell them as the speed they overclocked them to, like a Pentium 150 becoming a Pentium 200 or 233. How was the consumer to know it was overclocked? I'm not even sure my Pentium 233 I got from Compaq a few years ago really is a 233, because there's no sticker or multiplier jumper pin location on the motherboard. How quickly we forget.

    AMD put the clock multiplier lock on their CPUs to prevent this; if you bought a Thunderbird that was supposed to be 866MHz overclocked from 800, for example, then used it in a benchmark between it and a Pentium III 866, the Pentium would win and AMD would look bad, even thoguh a genuine 866 may have beat the Intel chip (MAYBE)

    The same thing happens with modems now. A 56K modem is actually a "Mo", in that it modulates but receives data digitally over the phone line. THat's why the send speeds are less than the receive speeds. and most cheap computers come with a 56K/14.4 modem, i.e. 14.4 modem without analog converter for downstream. It's a ripoff and people don't understand that. If the CPU had the same problem, there would be chaos.

    By the way, I'm not entirely sure how a 56K modem works in terms of downstream/upstream and every detail of how it's different, but that's the basic idea.

    So maybe you could get a little more juice out of your processor, it should be your choice. But many hardware vendors are not trustworthy enough (since it yielded soooo much profit) so the clock multiplier locks should be obeyed, IMHO.
  • I have a celeron 300A in a Tyan Tiger S1832 MB. I can overclock the celeron to 450, but my system is incredibly unstable. yes, it gives me a performance increase of 50% on benchmarking programs, but everything else I run works fine with just the 300.

    I still think that more RAM speeds up a system more than a faster processor would. Aside from that, is it really necessary to have a 900 MHz chip? Or is this just some insane pissing contest? No, really, I can buy a 550 PIII for cheaper than a 450 PII (check pricewatch). So I can have dual 550's running for under $300. I simply can't fathom what would programs would require more processing power than that! Isn't the bottleneck for most games the graphics cards? Isn't the bottleneck for most desktop apps RAM? (when you have 8 windows open and you start spilling into virtual memory).

    I just really don't see the point to overclocking, it seems to be an inordinate amount of work for a small gain.

    Moller
  • So do I....
  • Or you use up 2 gallons of fluorinert (@ $500/gallon) doing it (See previous article [slashdot.org]).
    Totally silly, but it did manage to knock most other overclocked systems into a cocked hat!
  • Despite everythjing AMD has done, I still (so far) prefer their tactics to chipzilla...I am looking to upgrade soon, and will probably get an Athlon Thunderbird. But not till I can see a way to overclock it ;)
  • the simple answer to this is that the fab should embed a MHz rating into the chip

    This won't work, due to how chips are manufactured. Basically all chips of the same type are made on the same line. Then each chip is tested to see how high it will run. Due to slight imperfections in chips, identically manufactured chips will run at different top speeds.

    However, due to marketing, sometimes there is a greater demand for slower chips than actual chips that only test at that speed. Therefore the chip company takes chips that tested at higher speeds, and mark them for a lower speed.

    Basically it is impossible to tell the speed a chip will be sold at until AFTER it has been manufactured. So there is no way to embed the speed into the chip during manufacturing.

  • Yea right. It is the companies fault. If they receive a 'defective' product, they need to test it more throughly before putting it back on the floor to sell, I sure as hell would rather than sell my customer a possibly defective product.

    Even with that, nowadays, its kinda hard to screw up your processor if you are overclocking. Most people who overclock know that it produces heat. You cool it down. It works. If it doesn't, underclock it. It now works fine.

    Get off our back.

  • If it's any cpu...

    Celeron 366 overclocked to 550 at 2.0v

    On an Abit BE6, using an MSI Slotket.

    Cheapo heatsink and fan, with thermal grease.

    Too damn easy :)
  • I was initially excited about the Athlons, but honestly, who cares if they can be overclocked or not!!! Why hasn't AMD developed support for a dual or even quad board??? Until they do so, I'll keep buying Intel, and I'll pit my Dual p3 600 machine against any overclocked Athlon any day.
  • I disagree. Everyone has read the success stories and I've even bumped my 550 to 650 with 100% success. It never crashed before and it doesn't crash now and my framerates are just a tad higher.
    Just enough extra speed to crank it to 1024x768 and still play UT with no delay.
  • You can't get an Athlon from Dell. They are an Intel shop and have been rewarded as such. They also have supply problems when Intel can't keep up but Michael Dell said that he will pressure the distributors to make sure he gets his supply and screw the little guy(He still blamed the Taiwan earthquake on Q3 99 stock loses even though it happened 2 weeks before the end of the quarter). BTW this comment is being typed on a Dell Inspiron 7000 laptop.

  • by Outland Traveller ( 12138 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @07:30AM (#915771)
    Just in case the parent post was serious, I thought I'd mention a couple things:

    1. Reputable retail outlets will not resell returned, potentially defective merchandise as new. They will return the product to the original manufacturer. The bulk of the major retailers fall into this catagory (compusa, cdw, necx, pcwarehouse, etc) as do many smaller places. If you are buying from a place that is not reputable, you have a lot more problems to worry about than overclockers.

    2. Overclocking is safe and easy these days. AMD and especially Intel underclock some chips for purely nontechnical reasons. You might as well see what your CPU can really do.

    3. Your reasoning here:

    I don't want to hear about how "most" overclockers are responsible, blah blah. One person getting screwed on a machine that takes years for him to finally save up for is one screwing too many.
    is outright wrong. I'm not going to justify this statement here because it would go offtopic, but it should be obvious.

    4. As someone who runs unattended servers year round, 3 lockups a year is not unusual. You're going to have problems with hard disk failures, CPU and case fan failures, spontaneous memory failures caused by atmospheric raditation, as well as misc. cabling and environmental-related failures. I'm also assuming that you have a quality UPS. I would not consider a machine that locked up for mysterious reasons 3 times a year suspiciously unstable.

    Please help keep overclocking an option for intelligent enthusiasts.

    -OT

  • I have a celeron 300A in a Tyan Tiger S1832 MB. I can overclock the celeron to 450, but my system is incredibly unstable. yes, it gives me a performance increase of 50% on benchmarking programs, but everything else I run works fine with just the 300.

    When you overclock your Celeron, you're increasing the entire bus speed for all your devices, such as PCI cards, AGP graphics card, memory, etc., since you have to increase the Front-Side Bus (FSB) to do so.

    With the A7V coupled with an unlocked Athlon/Duron, you only change the clock multiplier of the CPU. The only thing to worry about in this case is overheating the processor. The rest of your components remain at the same bus speeds, so instability with the rest of your motherboard won't occur.

  • Hey how about this 3) Overclocking because you can ... I could have afforded a more expensive processor etc... but there is a certain mystique and thrill doing this kind of thing. It's the main reason I bought my Abit BP6 (love that board). Overclocking 2 400MHz Celerys to 500MHz.
  • $30 for a better-than-average cooling system (peltiers etc. are for people who want to stretch out an already high-end system) vs. $200 for a faster chip.

    Overclocking will give you a much better price/performance ratio, and it rarely really damages the CPU as long you don't run too fast too long without adequate cooling. With a little time you can tell what works for your CPU and what doesn't and it's easy to tell how fast is too fast.

    Worst comes to worst, you have to drop your CPU to spec, and you're out $30.

    --
  • I do... I used to overclock my systems. The biggest speed difference was with the higher memory buss speeds... makes an enormous speed difference on a Celeron going from 66MHz to even 75MHz buss.

    On the otherhand, I run my systems (Linux and Windows) 24/7 and there is a notable stability cost (for me, YMMV) to overclocking. In the end I found the machines were fast enough and the amount of tweaking (though fun) took more time than it was worth... so I stopped overclocking and I just pay for what I want now rather than play.

    If I was a college student, instead of married with a kid on the way, I might find myself with more time and less money... and the overriding desire to constantly tweak with things would certainly win out :)

    Brian Macy
  • 2 different boards though similar. Asus K7V is slota and uses KX133 chipset and A7V is socketa and uses KT133 chipset. One these boards will probably be in my next system.

  • "Current is what causes heat, NOT voltage.."

    Not true, heat is the dissipation of power. On Ohms loads (load with linear resistance), this is current multiplied by voltage (P=VI). The voltage I'm talking about here is the voltage drop on the path that the current is following, which is the supply voltage of the CPU.

    That's why heat (power) goes up squared when voltage is increased with constant resistance (P=VI & V=IR, P=(I*I*R))

    In addition to that, I can make some educated guesses: part of the current is the CMOS gate current, and part of the current is charging and discarging of capacitance.

    The CMOS gate current is quite linear with respect to the clock frequency and the voltage applied between source and drain, but the capacitance charging and discharging current increases with higher clock frequencies.

    Hence when overclocking, the heat dissipation goes up more than squared the increase of supply voltage, because the load is not Ohms, and you're increasing the charging current with your higher clock frequency.

  • by denzo ( 113290 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @07:39AM (#915778)
    There's still a large debate over whether AMD has actually locked their Socket-A CPUs yet or not. Almost everybody writing on AMD-related messageboards seem to have unlocked CPUs so far, since the L1 bridges on their CPU are all connected (indicating unlocked status). So the multiplier switch on the A7V may be more useful than most people think.

    There is even a rumor going around about an Athlon 2 in the future, which will be an unlocked Tbird (nevermind the fact that they still seem to be unlocked so far), and that AMD will be working with AMI and Award to make BIOSes that will help prevent the remarking of AMD CPUs by displaying the true original CPU speed alongside the overclocked speed (e.g., "AMD Duron 600 @ 800MHz").

  • You don't know what you're talking about. I have a running 6 and 7 year experiment with electromigration, and guess what? This hasn't been a problem, period. I have a 486/66 and a Pentium 100, bother overclocked, that have been running overclocked the respective times, 24/7, barring power outages.

    Electromigration doesn't take place until the chips reach about 170C. This is about 338 fahrenheight. Water boils at 212. Electromigration is a physical phenomenon DIRECTLY linked to heat - it CANNOT occur at low temperatures. It is also worth noting that at around those temperatures the soldering bonds of the PCB starts to break down. But you don't have to take my word for it, look it up [dictionary.com] for yourself.

    One of my electrical engineering professors has a old transistor collection, and you can see a decay in Beta (B) of these devices, so the gain characteristics have changed a fair bit.

    That's probably due more to the fact that old transistors only had a sealed metal top on them which due to vibration or over time can become loose (not loose enough for you to notice) and allow the atmosphere to leak in, oxidizing the silicon.

    This is _much_ more of a problem in a analog transistor, where the preformance is supposed to be linear.

    That's total bunk. Maybe if you had a thick enough marker you could plot it log-log, but "Real Transistors" are distinctly non-linear - see the graph half-way down the page over here [uic.edu]. You'll note that the transistor has an area which is fairly linear, but saying that the output of a transistor is linear for any given input is false.

    If you overclock, you up the clock rate of a CMOS process. Power consumption goes up correspondingly.

    It can't, because the chip's resistance hasn't changed - you didn't increase voltage or current, nor did you reduce the total impedance in the chip (it's the same circuit!) How can power thus increase? Ohm's law doesn't change simply because you increase the frequency.

    However, going from 2.2 to 2.4 volts will - assume it was consuming 50W of energy @ 2.2 volts. That means it needs 22 amps. so the chip has a total impedance of 0.1 ohms. Using Ohm's Law, we deduce that an increase to 2.4 volts will give us 24 amps of current - nearly 10% more current!

  • solid for overclocking, but getting them to run in a dual MB takes a bit of fiddling, yes?

    And right now, when PIII 550's can be had for $140, why not just grab two of them?
  • >well first of all K6's were never a highly recommended potential OC chip,..

    ??? I don't know about later ones, but at the beginning, AMD all
    but told you how fast you could take them.

    Essentially all of the 166's could go to 200, and most to 233.

    AMD also kind of coughed and pointed at the bus speed with a chipset that
    was designed for 83mhz . . .

    hawk, who got the 166 one day for a mere $99 when a retailer probably screwed up the day's price
  • that for a great deal of online FPS games the video card was more important than the processor. I'm a college student (as the e-mail should show) and I play tribes all the time. I set up my roommates computer to play tribes, and he can actually play it on his machine, which is a Pentium Pro 200 with only like 32 MB of RAM. Why can he play it? Because I slapped a Voodoo 2 in his machine. The graphics actually look better than on my Viper V550 (mainly because tribes is native glide).

    Truthfully, the main difference I have noticed in FPS games is from video cards. Save for the process of actually loading the games (my friends with 500 Athlons get onto servers much faster than my 300 celeron does), The actual gameplay itself seems to be much more video-card dependant, especially if the game is completely 3d based. This is even more true now with cards like the GEForce that do some of the processor's graphics processing work for it.

    And on a final note, why does anyone need 900 MHz? Especially for games? It seems like it would be more useful to get a top of the line video card rather than a superfast processor, but either way you eventually hit the limit at which you can perceive the game. On Tribes forums, people say they've hit 130 fps in Tribes. I mean, is the difference between 80 fps and 130 fps really worth the effort and the money it takes to get there?

    Moller
  • I have an SMP motherboard. And I'm aware that 98 doesn't support SMP, although it will still boot on a dual-processor system. (never mind that 98 sucks.) I'm running NT. It works fine. I'd like to see how much better it runs with SMP. I know that linux has much better SMP that NT, but I'm not running linux at the moment because I'm not doing any coding yet.

    I'm also aware that under NT 2*550 MHz ~ 600-650 MHz, and on Linux 2*550 ~ 900 MHz (from what I've been told).

    Still, I don't see what would require more power than even one 550 MHz processor. The machine I'm typing at right now runs Labview, Visual Studios, and a host of CAD tools very well, and it's only a PII 350. The main problem is Labview is a memory hog and eats up RAM, which slows me down.

    Moller
  • Just remember, 2 * 550Mhz processors != 1.1Ghz of processing power for most games and other common applications.

    Of course, some applications would be MUCH faster on the dual 550 MHz system than on a single 1.1 GHz. It goes both ways.

  • uhm, yes. Old Athlons come in slot-A packaging (much like Intel's Slot-1). The new Athlons (Thunderbirds) and Durons come in socket-A packaging (much like the olde socket7 and *cough* soket 370, etc.)

    ___
  • Resistance increases as semiconductors heat up - the cooler the better. Break out a solid state physics text and we can look it up. Overclocking is still harmless though.


  • with all this overclocking of chips that are starting life at 600-750 MHz,.. i wonder what kind of benefits people are getting?

    i'm still running a 366 Celeron (overclocked to 453 MHz thanks to my wonderful ABit board :), and really, it runs Unreal Tourney, of course Diablo 2 (which could run on a TI-86 :P), and anything else i've played with just dandy. when i was hitting some slowdown in UT i went up to 256 megs of RAM and all has improved.

    i spend most of my time waiting for the HDD to serve up data for the CPU to play with.

    so i wonder, how much would going to a 750 MHz machine really help? what kind of applications are you guys seeing this really make a difference in (and does then overclocking to 800-900 MHz make much difference? i honestly gained about 1-5 fps in UT and no noticable difference at all in anything else going from 366 to 453.)

    and again, this is not REALLY offtopic so don't even think about moderating it down! this is a GOOD POST! :)
    ...dave
  • It's the K7V not, A7V.

  • My next chip will be an AMD. As was my last. Overclocking is an interesting side note, but its not my primary reason for buying the proc.
    Mostly it is because it is cheap. Stability, performance, and overclock-a-bility are a nice side thought, but i'm not too concerned. I like being able to compute 2 complex and 1 simple instructions per clock-cycle, but it is COMPLETELY secondary to price.

    That said, since i've got this chip, i might as well overclock it. My AMD 450 is stable at 500 if you pump the voltage to 2.3V instead of 2.2V. It is even more stable at 475/2.3V however this isn't much speed gain.

    I'd like to start a thread and have people list Sucsessful overclocking attempts, with Voltages and Jumper settings. If you've gotten it to work, share! I'm sure there are people out there that would love to know the real world results.


    insert clever line here
  • If there's one thing I don't understand about overclockers, it's why some of them will overclock their system and spend tons of money on cooling systems (like Peltiers and Fluorinert(TM) [octools.com] :) when they could just as easily upgrade their processor for slightly more money with the advantage of much better stability...

    --
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  • by SlushDot ( 182874 ) on Friday July 21, 2000 @06:29AM (#915791)
    (1) Not all overclockers are willing to truly RISK the desctruction of their CPU to make it run faster.
    (2) Once it fails, these people may return their CPU to the store as "defective".
    (3) The store, rightfully never trusting the word of consumers, will test the CPU.
    (4) The store's test is short and in a nice cool optimal climate controlled environment. And subtle problems that show up when the CPU is warm and been running for a long time will not appear on the test.
    (5) The CPU goes back into the glass case to be resold.
    (6) You (after saving up a long time): "Hi, I want to buy that CPU right there."
    (7) You are now on a trip through hell. Your CPU may fail later that day (if you're lucky), or next week, or "lock up" only 3 times per year. You cannot now run your unattended server on your DSL/Cablemodem line. Your system is forever unstable.
    (8) By the time you realize the true cause of the problem, the warranty/exchange period is long gone.
    (9) You are screwed. And it is the fault of overclockers.

    I don't want to hear about how "most" overclockers are responsible, blah blah. One person getting screwed on a machine that takes years for him to finally save up for is one screwing too many.

    Overclocking needs to be blocked by the CPU itself, where it can't be circumvented. Just as laws are set up to occasionally let many a guilty man walk free rather than wrongfully convict so much as one innocent person.

    Overclocking must end for the good of the consumer.

  • I crank up my CPU when my machine seems to be performing sluggishly while running modern applications. For me it's a way of extending my investment a little longer before I need to plunk down some more cash for an upgrade... seeing as processors are only becoming faster and cheaper, the longer I can get away with say, a 300mhz celeron, the better and/or cheaper the upgrade will be. Frying the cpu isn't as much of a problem when you need an upgrade and are probably past the warranty anyway.

    This is my reason. For some it's a "more power!" sort of thing, and I say go for it. It's not my money. :)
    ---
    Where can the word be found, where can the word resound? Not here, there is not enough silence.
  • Well, I know that Intel puts absolutely huge margins for error in their processors (not sure about AMD, though). With the kind of tolerances they're using, there's very little chance of doing any damage (if you do it right, of course). Many people look at it as if they've been sold a 900 MHz machine that's been underclocked by the manufacturer.
  • You're not necessarily risking anything. In a given week AMD might make (say) 100000 processors. Having lots of lines producing various speeds would be expensive so the make 100000 of the best quality then can at the time (it varies from chip to chip). They test them and the top few % become, say the 1Ghz badged versions. The worst few might be sold of as 650Mhz versions. The rest they might label at different speeds depending on market needs etc (what's selling well, etc.)

    This is a greatly simplified version but you get the idea - That 900Mhz Athlon you just paid $300 for is the same basic chip as the $100 750 I just bought and I can 'overclock' my 750 to 900 and run as reliably as you do.....
  • Thanks! I did just that [slashdot.org]. Much appreciated.
  • Very good explanation. I was wondering if someone would correct the previous post... Just thought I'd add a bit.

    >>> There are three sources of power consumption in a cmos circuit. (1) leakage currents (very small), (2) charging and discharging the gate capacitors, and (3) so called "class A current."

    2) is called the "switching time". There are different times for switching ON and OFF. Voltage however does effect switching time. A higher voltage produces a higher current that will empty/fill those caps faster. This lowers the switching time. The power saved from a lower switching time is offset by the added power drawn from running at a higher voltage.

    Lots of funny things now start to happen. You raise the voltage to raise the current. The added current creates heat that increases the resistance that lowers the current. Basically, voltage and switching time aren't linear. This is why it's most efficient to run at low voltages.

    Everyone should note, the only time a cpu uses power is when it is in the process of changing states (every clock cycle). (Ok, the only _relevant_ power. Better?) If you double the frequency you double the number of switches hence doubling the power consumption. All this assumes the voltage remains constant.

    >>> The second item on the list, charging/discharging current, is quite important.

    Let me upgrade that to _most_ important. It's the switching time -- the only relevant time the cpu draws power.

    >>> Electromigration pales in comparison to soldering irons, drills, and other tools of the trade.

    Ha ha ha... Obviously spoken from experience. I'll second that notion!!

    >>>as those gates expand, they start passing more current
    >>>MOS has a negative tempco (unlike BJTs). They conduct LESS current when they are hot. That's why you don't need to worry about thermal runaway when playing with power mosfets.

    Very true. That's one of the reasons you overclock at a higher voltage -- to help push those electrons through the extra resistance. (Thus producing more heat, thus requiring more voltage, thus.... ;)

    >> More current = more heat
    >> No. P = IV, you know that.

    Look at the CPU as being a black box. You give it x volts it draws y amps and produces xy watts. Now if it draws more power (ie, more current at the same voltage) it will produce more heat.

    >> Current is what causes heat, NOT voltage.
    >> No. See above.

    Yes but the voltage is what determines the current. The current then determines the temperature that determines the resistance. The increased resistance then usually reduces the current.

    Ohhh, lets just say this... Current causes heat. Voltage determines the current. You could say that voltage causes heat but that isn't exactly right.

    Back to the main topic. If you just overclock the CPU you're very unlikely to cause any damage. Raising the voltage is what puts you in the danger zone. To avoid damage, run at the lowest possible voltage.

  • Overclocking needs to be blocked by the CPU itself, where it can't be circumvented.

    I partially agree except I wouldn't go that far.

    I propose a fusible link inside the CPU that blows when the CPU is overclocked. This allows overclocking, once done, to be forever detectable later, but still lets you overclock if you want to.

    And of course the vendor policy should be "No refunds/exchanges on overclocked CPUs."

    Everybody's happy... except the deceivers, which is as it should be.

  • With the ignorant masses, I don't know if there really is another way to prevent people from swindling maxed out processors and pretending they're running like out of the box.

    A CPUID utility would be sufficient. Intel & AMD could strike a deal with microsoft to include their CPUID programs in the next rev of windoze. Before someone jumps down my throuat about how not everyone uses windows, it was YOU who limited the scope of this to "the ignorant masses". Those ARE the people who will be using only Windows.

    When one of these people hits a stability problem, what is the first thing that they do? Re-Install Windows. A fresh install of Windows will insure that the CPUID util hasn't been tampered with.

    If you're running linux,*BSD, BeOS or whatever else you should have the ability to compile the source yourself provided that they make it freely available.

    LK

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