X5470 Xeon 771 Overclocking

Got dragged into the temptation of extending my current rigs life some, whilst having some fun doing it.
Managed to get a hold of one of these 771 Xeon CPUs dirt cheap off Ebay, cut the motherboard socket plastic pin thingies to fit it, injected cpu microcode into the bios, flashed, booted flawlessly at 4ghz stable at first try.

So far pleasantly surprised by it, performance seems decent, thought I cannot really push it further without making it unstable as I keep getting these "Memory managment" bsods more or less at random regardless of how I load the CPU, and it doesn't seem to be the ram either as I keep it way within the stock 1600mhz area.

Tried to mess with several settings, couldn't get it to work properly, though I did manage to get a firestorm run at 4.25ghz after pushing it for a while.

These xeon 771s are high binned core2quad/duo family chips, so I guess they overclock the same way.

Specs as of now are.

CPU: X5470
MOBO: Striker II NSE
RAM: 4x2gb (8gb) corsair xms3 1600 9-9-9-24 1.65v OR 2x2gb patriot 7-7-7-20 1.9v sticks
GPU, GTX 580 x 2
and so on.

Wondering if I could get some tips about how I can push this chip even further, seeing its not unlikely that several users here likely have experience overclocking on the 790I series chip sets.
I feel like pushing Vcore past 1.35 to get above 4.25 seems risky, as the temps go up to 67c under full load.

Anything I can do to lower the amount of vcore needed? PLL? VTT? CPU GTL ref?
Seeing it as I can push the motherboard fast 1800mhz fsb on other chips, why would the xeon be different?

4.25 bench~ http://www.3dmark.com/fs/4244243

you shouldn't oc those xeons they are not made for it.

But, but... overclock...
Until it megahurtz.


Are you using those two RAM kits at the same time?

No, I use the 1.9 patriot for the tighter timings in bencmarks.
Otherwise I use the 8gb kit.

Haha, just checking!

Up the northbridge voltage slightly and manually enter timings.

Doesn't seem to matter if I bump the north bridge, even with .2 extra (1.5v) it doesn't seem to make a difference.
One odd thing though is that the corsair memory runs more stable at 1.65 than 1.7.

Do the BSODs happen when you've got the Corsair kit installed, or has it also happened with the Patriot kit?

Looking at the Newegg reviews for the motherboard, some people were having trouble running 4 DIMMs.

Yeah, happens regardless of what memory is used, 2 or 4 sticks, or even 1.

Whilst writing this I got another bsod, went into the bios, disabled speed state etc and rebooted, went back into the bios and found a setting I had never seen before, "Enable hyperthreading"
As this isn't a HT CPU, I disabled it, booted into windows, now I only have 2 cores.
What? :D

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Small update.
Seems to run a lot more stable when I bump the cpu gtl ref and nv ref voltage by 20-40mv.
Now rock solid at 4.25ghz at 1.35, and some more tweaking I can probably lower that by a fair margin.
I'm pretty impressed by this chip.

That's actually really good. If your temps are good and it's not having BSODs, I wouldn't even touch it. Maybe if you want to go for a suicide run you can blast into 1.5v territory and attempt some benches at 4.5GHz!

Mind uploading some screenshots of any further benchmark results? I'm interested to see how this performs/scales.

Getting about 62-3c on full load with prime 95 at 4.25 with 1.35 volts.

I don't want to push it past 1.4v though, and anything above 1.36 tends to degrade the chips over time, or so I have read.

Yeah 63C is where Intel says the limit of the X5470 should be, so maybe best to just leave it.

I only suggest anything over 1.4v for maybe one or two attempts, nothing long term. I like to do it just to find the absolute limit of the chip, but you've found a really good number for an older CPU.

I think that's Tcase.
I'm talking about the hottest core :)

And its seems to run stable 4.25 with 1.325v now as well.

I have found it best to not push past Tcase for Intel CPUs. They just don't behave.

Try testing with small FFTs in OCCT, it tends to provide much nicer testing and will even give you heat/activity graphs for each core that is tested.

Tried it, I don't think it shows the correct temperature.
In speedfan it shows the cores rest at 30c or so, but when OCCT the second I started the test it stopped with a quacking sound that scared the living shit out of me.
OCCT showed the cpu cores instantly jump to 90c before it shut down the benchmark.

I don't think OCCT has proper support for the X5470.

OCCT doesn't care what CPU you have, it reads all logical/physical cores and tests them with the same algorithm. When it receives an incorrect response to the algorithm it flags the error and stops the test. I can assure you that it found an error in your overclock, hence the halt.

Now the temperature monitor may not have been a direct reading of the CPU, and may have been VRM temps. I've seen it read both, and it won't tell you which it is reading so you usually have to cross reference with another program or two.

Optimized the 4.0 clock more, as it seems to be a very good sweet spot as 4.2 seems to require almost a whole .1 volt extra to keep it stable with small FTTs.
Managed to squeeze a better latency out of my corsair sticks too, 8 8 8 instead of 9 9 9.
That alone gave me the same CPU bench results as I had when I ran the cpu at 4.2.

Sitting at a happy 1.26 at 4ghz, a voltage which is hardly over stock voltage.

That is still a very good overclock for a 7 year old platform that you forced together. I think if you teased it toward 4.1GHz you could get it stable below 1.3v and keep your timings. Depends on how that chip behaves I guess, I'm not the one behind the keyboard. :P

Still, I love seeing people pushing Core 2 architecture CPUs. The 45nm node was a very fruitful one for both AMD and Intel, and seeing them live on this far past their commercial demise is awesome. Working on piecing together an E8400 machine to mess around with. Might even break and get a Q9650 for kicks (but not at the $100 people want on ebay for them).

An important side note, the Q9650 is the exact same die as the X5470, and it has a VID range of 0.85 to 1.3625. I feel your chip will most definitely take the higher voltage, especially considering the X5470 is rated as a 120W chip.

Aida64 says I'm using about 90 watts at full load with small FFTs, I don't think its accurate but regardless.
My aim is to keep using this until 2018, as running modern games at high settings isn't a issue for it.

And yeah, X5470 is pretty much a Q9650 with a 10 multi stock.

Currently playing battlefield 4 campaign, 1080 at the high preset, and the two 580s churn along well at 60 fps whilst the cpu sits at 80-100% load,(wow they really optimized it for multi core well) and none of the cores go above 45c.

Another thing I love about the core 2s is how cool they run compared to new intel parts, probably because they stopped soldering the IHS to the chips and use thermal grease instead.

Got a pretty good laugh when I showed my friend my firestrike cpu score, hes running a bulldozer at 4.5, and he only got a 15% better score.