Overclocking q9400

MY specs: Intel C2Q Q9400,gigabyte EP43-DS3L motherboard,2Gb corsair dominator PC-8500,gainward HD4870.I want to overclock my cpu but i don’t know what settings to set in BIOS,so if someone who has overclocked q9400,could tell me how he set it up it would be great.Thanks.

Moved to [I]General Hardware,[/I] as this isn’t really a Newbie question… :wink:

Welcome to the forum, nixa333 :slight_smile:

Step 1: flash to latest BIOS.
I reccomend you download the bios file HERE
And use the ‘@BIOS’ program in the ‘offline’ mode. Get @bios HERE
When flashing you should disable your internet connection, firewall, and antivirus.

OK.Done that.Now what?

Programs to DL: Prime95, Memtest86+, CpuZ, CoreTemp.

In the bios, set your memory to DDR2-800 (instead of DDR2-1066) if it has that option. Set your RAM timmings to 5-5-5-15. Under voltage controls, turn the cpu auto voltage to manuel, it should pick a voltage around 1.2 or so. For the RAM the voltage should also be set to manuel, it should be between 1.8-1.9V or so, somtimes its listed as +0.1V or something like that, that means the base voltage is 1.8V and they are adding 0.1V which gives you a total of 1.9V. Disable: EIST, and C1E, both are power saving modes that should be off until your done making sure the system is stable. If you have the stock intel fan you need it to run full speed, so disable ‘fan speed control’, its still very quiet.

Get the Memtest image file burnt to a CD, this already bootable. this program will tell you if your memory makes errors (under the error column). When you raise the cpu FSB above 400 you should start running memtest prior to booting into windows and let it run one pass to make sure the memory does not make errors, otherwise your windows isntall can become corrupted.

When you start to OC the fsb, the memory is what you have to keep an eye on, there is no need to get big DRAM speeds because that is not where the performance comes from in C2D cpu’s, its all about getting the FSB up. Don’t push it at first, move in steps of 20 for the FSB, you can probably start it at 400, so long as the memory settings are correct and your using a 1:1 ratio for the DRAM:FSB.

Please do google searches before asking every single question here, there are already people who have posts on the net about OC"ing your MB. The problem is your BIOS supposedly has more features added to it and I couldn’t find screen shots of it to see what settings are availble.

When you get into windows, you want to test stability. Don’t run any important files or surf the net while doing this because if the system is not stable you can corrupt files. So run Coretemp, cpuz, prime95. Watch that the temps don’t go too high, 65C is a high enough ceiling. In cpuz you can check that your memory is set correctly and that under “Bus Speed” should be around 400 to start. In prime95, choose torture test “small ffts”, and when you run that watch the temps go up in Coretemp.

After you do the initial setting, make a screen shot of cpuz, so that we can see if you were able to get the system at 1:1. There may have been another setting in the bios to set that.

Dude thank you so much.I’m gona try this and post the results as soon as I can.

Ok.This works.I got fsb to 400Mhz,multiplier 8,and memory at ddr800mhz,with divider 2.00b,an timings 5-5-5-15 at 1.9 volts.
Now, my memory is rated 5-5-5-15 2.2 volts 1066 mhz.How can i get them to that and to maintain or even raise speed of cpu?An i’ll try to post some screenshots of my bios.

Here is BIOS:
http://img84.imageshack.us/img84/803/84425321pv0.jpg
http://img510.imageshack.us/img510/647/81624417xf8.jpg
http://img407.imageshack.us/img407/6695/28177465ke8.jpg
That’s after overclocking.

What if I use multiplier 7 533 FSB,and DDR1066 an everything else the same.would that be good.

Do you have Everest UltimateV4.60? Tell me what how many Watts your CPU is pulling? I never Ocd the Q9400 but I have the Q9550 OCd to 3.4 GHz. I had to lower the voltage to about 15W after my first OC.


nixa, please post a screen shot of cpuz. Looking at your bios I don’t know if its 800 or 1066.

Honestly, you don’t need to aim for 1066 DRAM speeds because that is not where the performance lies, its in cpu speed.

[QUOTE=nixa333;2205749]What if I use multiplier 7 533 FSB,and DDR1066 an everything else the same.would that be good.[/QUOTE]

nope :slight_smile:

The low multiplier of 8 is one of the main limiting OC factors for your cpu, so lowering it to 7 would not make things better. With a multi of 7 you would have to push the fsb even higher, and you will already be fsb limited with a multi of 8! (because its a quad core, and you don’t have a badass MB).

One word of warning, do not use S3 suspend with this motherboard when above 333MHz FSB (disable all windows suspend options, using Hibernate is fine though). It has a bug where it will not reset the FSB settings correctly on resume leading to a BSOD crash followed by 8-10 attempts to start up from the BIOS and finally it copies the backup BIOS to the main BIOS which usually puts you back at the F03 revision.

I have got this board and use it in my HTPC where I did try and hit 400MHz FSB but I use S3 to sleep the PC so it can wake up to record, this is the only thing I found wrong with it so far.

Ok.But can you tell me how can I get even more performance from it.What could i do to make it even faster.Before overclocking my superpi 32M result was 18:30 min,now it’s 15:30.But i know it can be better,It’s just that i don’t know how.Cooling is not problem i have 200 dollars cooling solution so i’m cool all the time.Tested yesterday at full load and cpu stayed below 45 degrease celsius.

[QUOTE=nixa333;2206439]Ok.But can you tell me how can I get even more performance from it.What could i do to make it even faster.Before overclocking my superpi 32M result was 18:30 min,now it’s 15:30.But i know it can be better,It’s just that i don’t know how.Cooling is not problem i have 200 dollars cooling solution so i’m cool all the time.Tested yesterday at full load and cpu stayed below 45 degrease celsius.[/QUOTE]Once you start to go above 400Mhz. In my experience you have to start increasing the North bridge voltages quite a lot to get it stable. So it’s not a matter if the CPU can take more, can your other components take it? Overcook the North bridge and it will fail.

[QUOTE=nixa333;2206439]Ok.But can you tell me how can I get even more performance from it.What could i do to make it even faster.Before overclocking my superpi 32M result was 18:30 min,now it’s 15:30.But i know it can be better,It’s just that i don’t know how.Cooling is not problem i have 200 dollars cooling solution so i’m cool all the time.Tested yesterday at full load and cpu stayed below 45 degrease celsius.[/QUOTE]

Please first post a screen shot of cpuz!

You won’t have to add voltage to the northbridge till you need to, which is when prime95 finds an error or the system does not boot. But before adding northbridge voltage you should add cpu voltage and check for stability. Follow the instructions above, incrementally increase the fsb (10Mhz increments is good), use memtest86+ to make sure there are no memory errors, then booot into windows testing with prime95.

CPUZ: http://img294.imageshack.us/img294/4100/10370057bi6.png
Everest Ultimate: http://img292.imageshack.us/img292/3816/73915406ac0.png

[quote=nixa333;2206655]CPUZ: http://img294.imageshack.us/img294/4100/10370057bi6.png
Everest Ultimate: http://img292.imageshack.us/img292/3816/73915406ac0.png[/quote]
Something is wrong, your CPU power value is over 60W, is that under full load or at idle?

nixa, things look good. What language is your OS in?

So have you pushed the FSB higher? What is the temp reading in Coretemp when Prime95 is running?

Alan, he doesn’t have any of the energy saving features enabled! He can turn them on later on when he confirms the system is stable and he’s done OC’ing.

My OS is english.60W under full load,and temps with prime 95 running never past 47 degrease.And that is with cpu fan at min rpm.I am now at 419 fsb,raised ram voltage at 2.0 and cpu at 1.26.