Subject: Processors | September 13, 2011 - 09:03 AM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: video, overclocking, FX, bulldozer, amd
There is a sub-culture in the computing world that is more or less analogous to the world of NHRA drag racing: liquid nitrogen overclocking. And if you are really serious, liquid helium. During a press event in Austin, TX in August to discuss the upcoming Bulldozer processor, a team of overclockers pushed the new architecture to frequencies well beyond safety and well beyond where they should be. Without giving away the whole story yet, AMD was able to set a new frequency world record...
Sami Mäkinen and his team hit 8.429GHz on liquid nitrogen and liquid helium with a near-production FX processor sample. This bests the reigning record of 8.308 GHz that was hit on a Celeron processor with LN2.
On August 31, an AMD FX processor achieved a frequency of 8.429GHz, a stunning result for a modern, multi-core processor. The record was achieved with several days of preparation and an amazing and inspired run in front of world renowned technology press in Austin, Texas. This frequency bests the prior record of 8.309GHz, and completely blows away any modern desktop processor. Based on our overclocking tests, the AMD FX CPU is a clock eating monster, temporarily able to withstand extreme conditions to achieve amazing speed. Even with more conservative methods, the AMD FX processors, with multiplier unlocked throughout the range, appear to scale with cold. We achieved clock frequencies well above 5GHz using only air or sub-$100 water cooling solutions.
I was in attendance for the event and have to say that group put on a spectacular show and anytime you can play with liquid helium running at near absolute zero temperature, it's worth paying attention! In fact, I put together a video of the event that you can see below and if you haven't participated or seen something of this nature, it is worth checking out!!
Now I need to temper some dreams right now - the chances of you or I reaching these types of clock speeds on the Bulldozer CPUs upon release are pretty close to nil. What was more interesting was the casual overclocking we saw pushing upwards of 4.8+ GHz without breaking a sweat and that is what we will be investigating with our review of the processor later this year.
Update: Here is the screenshot from the official HWBot frequency rankings as well as a different video created by AMD themselves summarizing the event.
Subject: Processors | August 30, 2011 - 12:50 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: a8-3850, amd, llano, overclocking, APU
Legit Reviews decide that they really wanted to be able to show the overclocking results you can expect from the AMD A8-3850, so they picked up eight of the chips to test each for overclocking ability. There have been examples in the past of chips with a wide variety of overclocking limits which was often decided by the chip revision but not in all cases. The test results show that all but two of the chips hit a stability issue when being pushed beyond 3679.5MHz, so you can take that as the most likely result that your chip will provide. The two outlying chips will be exceptional, in one case in a bad way which you can see in the full review.
"When AMD released the 'Lynx' desktop platform back in June 2011, our motherboard reviewer ran into some bad luck when overclocking the processor. When you get a new platform setup for the very first time you really don't know what to expect and it does take some time to learn all the quirks and nuances of a new processor and motherboard. We recently ordered in six more processors and then overclocked all seven of them to see what the best one would be for our test system!"
Here are some more Processor articles from around the web:
- AMD A6-3650, A8-3850 APUs @ iXBT Labs
- Desktop CPU Comparison Guide @ TechARP
- AMD A8 3850 A-series ALU @ Metku.net
- Energy-Efficient Processors from Intel Reviewed: Core i5-2500T, Core i5-2390T, Core i3-2100T and Pentium G620T @ X-bit Labs
- All Core i7 Models @ Hardware Secrets
- The Sandy Bridge Pentium Review: G850, G840, G620 & G620T Tested @ AnandTech
- All Core i5 Models @ Hardware Secrets
Subject: General Tech | August 26, 2011 - 10:31 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: DIY, overclocking
One of the favourite features on the high powered graphics cards that Ryan has been reviewing this week is the ability to manually overclock the card while running it. Instead of having to use the built in software tools of the driver to first modify the speed and then running a test cycle it is possible to raise the frequency manually using controls on the card. The changes occur on the fly, without the software first testing to ensure stability which necessitates the presence of a reset button to take you back to stock frequencies. Thanks to Hack a Day you can now see how it is now possible to build your own paddle switch to do the same thing as the high end cards without having to spend the money or reach inside your case. Check out this project which will give you a paddle that not only upclocks your cards memory and GPU separately, it can also reset you back to default speeds if you go too far.
"[Fred] likes to squeeze every cycle possible out of his graphics card. But sometimes pushing the clock speed too high causes corruption. He figured out a way to turn a knob to adjust the clock speed while your applications are still running.
The actuator seen above is a Griffin Powermate 3.0. It’s a USB peripheral which is meant to be used for anything you can imagine. [Fred] uses an AutoHotKey script that he wrote to capture the input from the spinner, process that information, then adjust GPU clock speed in the background. Since the clock on his ATi Radeon 5800 can be adjusted using the AMD GPU clock tool, it’s an easy choice for this application. Now better graphics are at the tips of his fingers. See for yourself in the video after the break."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- March of the Penguin: Ars looks back at 20 years of Linux @ Ars Technica
- Insulin pump maker ignores diabetic's hack warnings @ The Register
- General Electric X500 Review @ TechReviewSource
- Monitor Aspect Ratios - Beyond 16:9, iPad to the rescue @ VR-Zone
- TTesports Battle Dragon Gamer Bag Review @ XSReviews
Subject: Processors | July 18, 2011 - 11:15 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: superpi, overclocking, LN2, llano, APU, amd, a8-3850
In a feat of overclocking prowess, the crew over at Akiba have managed to push the AMD Llano A8-3850 to its limits to achieve a Super PI 32M score of 14 minutes and 17.5 seconds at an impressive 4.75GHz. Using a retail A8-3850 APU, a Gigabyte GA-A75-UD4H motherboard, and a spine chilling amount of Liquid Nitrogen, the Japanese overclocking team came very close to breaking the 5GHz barrier.
Just how close did they come? 4.906.1GHz with a base clock of 169.2MHz to be exact, which is mighty impressive. Unfortunately, the APU had to undergo some sever electroshock therapy at 1.792 Volts! Further, the 4.9GHz clock speed was not stable enough for a valid Super PI 32M result; therefore, the necessity to run the benchmark at 4.75GHz.
The extreme cooling ended up causing issues with the motherboard once the team tried to switch out the A8-3850 for the A6-3650; therefore, they swapped in an Asus F1A75-V PRO motherboard. With the A6-3650, they achieved an overclock of 4.186GHz with a base clock of 161MHz and a voltage of 1.428V. The overclockers stated that they regretted having to swap out the Asus board as they believed the Gigabyte board would have allowed them to overclock the A6-3650 APU higher due to that particular motherboard’s ability to adjust voltage higher.
Although they did not break the 5GHz barrier, they were still able to achieve an impressive 69% overclock on the A8-3850 and a 61% overclock on the A6-3650 APU. For comparison, here are PC Perspective’s not-APU-frying overclocking results. At a default clock speed of 2.9 and 2.6 respectively, the A8-3850 and A6-3650 seem to have a good deal of headroom when it comes to bumping up the CPU performance. If you have a good aftermarket cooler, Llano starts to make a bit more sense as 3.2GHz on air and 3.6GHz on water are within reach. How do you feel about Llano?
Subject: Graphics Cards | July 15, 2011 - 02:20 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: overclocking, N580GTX Lightning XE 3GB, msi, LN2
CITY OF INDUSTRY, CA – July 15, 2010 – Since releasing its Lightning series graphics cards, world-renowned mainboard and graphics card manufacturer MSI has received universal praise from media and gamers alike for their outstanding design, rich use of components, powerful performance, and infinite overclocking potential. With the release of the N580GTX Lightning that follows in the footsteps of previous generation Lightnings, graphics card world records were sure to fall. Overclocking enthusiasts from all over have been running the N580 GTX Lightning with LN2 for some extreme overclocking and once again broke 3DMark 11, 3DMark Vantage, and Unigine Heaven (DX11) single-card, single-core world record scores. These considerable achievements demonstrate once again that only a Lightning can outshine a Lightning!
The triple world record king－N580GTX Lightning
At the beginning of June, US overclocker Splave put the N580GTX Lightning under LN2 cooling and effortlessly set a Unigine Heaven (DX11) single-card, single-core world record with a high score of 2501.6. Then, he topped that score this week with a new world record score of 2562.51! Russia's overclocking ace Smoke also paired a N580GTX Lightning with LN2 for some extreme overclocking as well. In the past few days, with scores of 11,390 and 46,546 respectively, he broke both 3DMark 11 and 3DMark Vantage single card single core world records! This proves the superlative performance of the Lightning series is its best spokesman.
Most advanced design and Military Class II components create a king amongst record-breakers
The N580GTX Lightning, whether in terms of specifications or design, belongs in the highest class of products. The exclusive Power4 power supply architecture and triple overvoltage function strengthens overclocking stability and potential. Additionally, the Extreme OC Function, specifically designed for overclocking, ensures the graphics card can still function normally under extreme overclocking conditions. Adoption of materials has also undergone careful consideration. High quality, second generation Military Class components provide the most stable user experience and optimum durability. In all aspects, MSI Lightning graphics cards demonstrate design and development capability and infinite overclocking potential.
Subject: Graphics Cards, Motherboards, Processors | July 6, 2011 - 08:15 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: amd, llano, APU, a-series, a8, a8-3850, overclocking
We have spent quite a bit of time with AMD's latest processor, the A-series of APUs previously known as Llano, but something we didn't cover in the initial review was how overclocking the A8-3850 APU affected gaming performance for the budget-minded gamer. Wonder no more!
In this short video we took the A8-3850 and pushed the base clock frequency from 100 MHz to 133 MHz and overclocked the CPU clock rate from 2.9 GHz to 3.6 GHz while also pushing the GPU frequency from 600 MHz up to 798 MHz. All of the clock rates (including CPU, GPU, memory and north bridge) are based on that base frequency so overclocking on the AMD A-series can be pretty simple provided the motherboard vendors provide the multiplier options to go with it. We tested a system based on a Gigabyte and an ASRock motherboard both with very good results to say the least.
We tested 3DMark11, Bad Company 2, Lost Planet 2, Left 4 Dead 2 and Dirt 3 to give us a quick overall view of performance increases. We ran the games at 1680x1050 resolutions and "Medium"-ish quality settings to find a base frame rate on the APU of about 30 FPS. Then we applied our overclocked settings to see what gains we got. Honestly, I was surprised by the results.
While overclocking a Llano-based gaming rig won't make it compete against $200 graphics cards, getting a nice 30% boost in performance for a budget minded gamer is basically a no-brainer if you are any kind of self respecting PC enthusiast.
Subject: General Tech | June 23, 2011 - 12:14 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ROG, Republic of Gamers, overclocking, gaming, Formula X
This weekend Asus is holding an event open to the public for all computer enthusiasts interested in overclocking, gaming, case modding, and benchmarking. Sponsored by Asus, Intel, NVIDIA, and NVIDIA, Antec, Kingston, Patriot,CoolerMaster, CPU Magazine, Corsair, and Razer, 20 of North America’s top overclockers have been invited to push the latest Asus Republic of Gamers motherboards and graphics cards to the limit with the help of some LN2. In addition to the prize of respect, during the competition the participants will be awarded with over $50,000 USD worth of hardware from the sponsors.
Asus is gearing up for Formula X with lots of awesome ROG hardware
In addition to the overclocking and case modding showcases, various new Republic of Gamers hardware will be making its North American debut including the z68 Maximus IV Extreme-Z and Maximus IV Gene-Z motherboards, Matrix GTX 580 Platinum GPU, and the ROG G74SX gaming laptop.
According to Asus, the two day event is open to the public and no admission fee is required. With 2300 liters of liquid nitrogen on hand, Asus is confident that the overclocking event will be a great experience for everyone involved. The Formula X event will take place this weekend on the 25th and 26th of June 2011 from 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM on Saturday and 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM on Sunday, and is located at Fry’s Electronics 1077 E. Arques Ave, Sunnyvale, CA 94085. A phone number is also provided at (408)-617-1300.
If you are local or are going to be in the area this weekend, we encourage you to stop by and check out the enthusiast event. For those who can not make it stay tune to PC Perspective for the latest happenings on Formula X.
Subject: Motherboards, Shows and Expos | June 2, 2011 - 05:13 AM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: X58, overclocking, gigabyte, computex
Releasing a motherboard based on the X58 chipset at this point might seem odd, but when you can offer a unique take on the overclocking market you might just find a niche. Gigabyte is hoping that is the case with the new X58A-OC model that is going to be priced very competively thanks in large part to the removal of many features.
The orange and black color scheme on the board is actually pretty unique while the layout is setup in a way for quad-GPUs - you are going to need that to break those overclocking records.
In the top right hand corner there are a host of overclocking specific features. The "4G" button will automatically overclock basically any Nehalem processor to something above 4.0 GHz while the Gear button will decrease the size of the increments available to the user on voltage to the processor. The ratio and frequency +/- buttons are going to be of great use for overclocking a system on the fly without having to go through the trouble of entering a BIOS. Don't forget you have your power and reset buttons and voltage monitoring leads here too.
Where Gigabyte saves a bit of money is with the non-overclocking features; things like eSATA and high-end audio are left out so that the even the classic external connection space is pretty bare.
You will also notice near the SATA data connections some SATA-style power connectors as well. These are used to supply extra voltage to the PCI Express connections for overclocking and pushing quad graphics cards.
Subject: Graphics Cards, Shows and Expos | June 1, 2011 - 08:58 AM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: computex, asus, gputweak, overclocking, oc
While perusing the ASUS booth for notebooks and graphics cards and motherboards, we also spotted some new overclocking software that looked kind of interesting.
ASUS GPUTweak will ship with ASUS graphics cards starting later this year but they did indicate that it will be available as free download for users of ANY brand of graphics card; which is a nice way to gain some street cred. The software combines a monitoring application, overclocking application and custom version of GPU-Z in a single interface to allow users to really push their GPUs beyond stock settings.
Besides the semi-standard options of frequency (both GPU and memory), voltages and fan speeds, ASUS GPUTweak software will allow users of ASUS Matrix / ROG graphics cards to modify the timings on their GPU memory as well, something that is unique to its offerings.
The software will also allow you "burn" settings into your Matrix cards BIOS so that they will boot at the overclocked settings regardless of the any installed software or operating system. There is a Safety button on all Matrix cards to revert back to the original settings in case of an emergency...
It is nice to see ASUS jumping into the ring here with some competent software and I am curious to see how it will be welcomed after we have seen MSI's Afterburner application become such a hit with gamers.
Subject: Memory | May 13, 2011 - 11:55 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: msi, MOA, overclocking, master overclocking event, kingston, ddr3, ddr3 2250, PC3 18000
PC Perspective was at MSI's Master Overclocking Event in Los Vegas during CES2011, but that was simply one stop along a long road for MSI and the overclockers. At one MSI MOA event, the Benelux qualifier, Madshrimps spoted an interesting set of DIMMs from Kingston, a triplet of 2250MHz 2GB sticks at 9-11-9-27. They quickly proved that anyone using an older Bloomfield CPU will never see the full speed of these DIMMs thought they will be able to tighten the timings nicely, you need a Gulftown before your CPUs uncore will be able to keep up with these DIMMs.
"At the latest MSI MOA Benelux qualifier we were allowed to play with MSI's Xpower board, some 980X ES CPUs and some pretty high specced Kingston rams. The 2250Mhz CL9 triple channel kit seemed very interesting for a spin in the Madshrimps Lab. Could these blue beauties come close to the almighty Corsair Hyper IC based GTX2s ? What's the use for such a high MHz kit for a daily user ? Is this kit Bloomfield friendly ? A lot of questions warped through my brain. Time to open the box and find some answers."
Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:
- G.Skill RipjawX F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL Memory Kit @ Bjorn3D
- Crucial Ballistix Sport PC3-12800 8GB @ Tweaktown
- Kingston HyperX Genesis PC3-12800 4GB @ Tweaktown
- Kingston HyperX 4GB DDR3-2133 @ Techware Labs
- Finding the Best Memory for Sandy Bridge @ hardCOREware
- Patriot Viper Xtreme Division 2 DDR3-1600MHz (2 x 2GBs) Kit Review @ The SSD Review
- G.Skill Sniper Series PC3-12800 8GB @ Tweaktown
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