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Pentium 4 Overclocking Adventure

By: Tio Chaharbaghi | Intel CPUs in CPUs, Chipsets & SoCs | Posted: Feb 17, 2003 5:00 am

Overclocked Test Results


Before sticking the pedal to the metal, we decided to do a stock run to see what our base score is. With default settings set in the BIOS, CPU at stock as well as the DDR memory running at 333MHz, we achieved the following scores.


- 2.4GHz (stock) Test Results



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We achieved 14,095 3DMarks on our stock run, definitely a respectable score. Not too far away from our goal, already.


- 2.52GHz (overclocked) Test Results


CPU Speed: 2520MHz




Vcore: 1.5 V


DDR Ratio: 2.66 X


DDR Speed : 372MHz


DDR Voltage: 2.8 V


We decided to raise the FSB by 5MHz after our first jump to 140MHz FSB for every overclock run we do. You will see a list of the settings we used for each run we do in case you want to emulate our steps, as listed above.


On our first try, we raised the FSB to 140MHz while keeping the AGP/PCI locked. The DDR ratio was also adjusted to 2.66 X to give us a bit of an extra "oomph". Unfortunately, the RAM sitting at 372MHz needed a little more voltage to operate. We then raised it to 2.8V and booted into Windows - 3DMark 2001 SE ran fine.



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We achieved 14,470 3DMarks after our first overclock. For only a 5MHz FSB increment increase, we gained around 300 points. Not bad, eh?


- 2.61GHz (overclocked) Test Results


CPU Speed: 2610MHz




Vcore: 1.5 V


DDR Ratio: 2.66 X


DDR Speed : 386MHz


DDR Voltage: 2.8 V


Next we cranked it up another 5MHz FSB to 145MHz FSB. Booted up and it showed a clock speed of 2.61GHz. The RAM was cruising near DDR 400 speeds with no problem. We fired up 3DMark 2001 SE again and here is what we got.



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Once again, our overclock did not disappoint. We achieved close to a 15k score with just a mere 210MHz overclock. I am definitely feeling some nice headroom for a much higher overclock.


- 2.7GHz (overclocked) Test Results


CPU Speed: 2700MHz




Vcore: 1.5 V


DDR Ratio: 2.66 X


DDR Speed : 400MHz


DDR Voltage: 2.8 V


We pressed DEL, got into the BIOS. Then we adjusted the FSB to 150MHz giving us a clock speed of 2700MHz using default core voltage. With the RAM running at DDR 400 finally, we were definitely pushing this system close to its maximum. I really thought we would need a voltage boost, but the system made it to Windows, 100% stable. We ran 3DMark 2001 SE once again and here is what we got.



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This time we only achieved about a 200 point jump, lower then I expected. But still, after breaking 15,000 3DMark points, I was starting to cheer up and really feeling good about this little adventure of mine.


- 2.79GHz (overclocked) Test Results


CPU Speed: 2790MHz




Vcore: 1.6 V


DDR Ratio: 2.66 X


DDR Speed : 412MHz


DDR Voltage: 2.8 V


Our next step was to push the work horse Pentium 4 processor to 2790MHz. Unfortunately our stock voltage could not hold up and our system rebooted after successfully booting into Windows. So, to remedy this problem we bumped the voltage up to 1.6V and that successfully fixed the problem. We were now running at 2.79GHz, with the vcore at 1.6 V and our DDR running at a blazing 412MHz - We popped open 3DMark 2001 SE and here is what we got.



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We got around another 280 point jump. We are getting closer and closer to our goal of 16,000 points in 3DMark 2001 SE.


Next we tried for 160MHz FSB and even with a Vcore of 1.85 V we were not able to get the system stable and running. So our highest overclock we could get was…


- 2.88GHz (overclocked) Test Results


CPU Speed: 2880MHz




Vcore: 1.775 V


DDR Ratio: 2.66 X


DDR Speed : 423MHz


DDR Voltage: 2.8 V


2.88GHz was the highest overclock for the CPU we could achieve with this setup. Then, we lowered the Vcore as low as we could from 1.85 to keep our CPU as cool as possible. We ran 3DMark 2001 SE for the final time and here is what we got.



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I expected to hit 16,000 points but unfortunately that did not happen. Currently, we are at 15,669 with our system running at 2.88GHz. If we could of hit 3GHz, I'm sure we would of hit our goal.


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