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Hardware Guides

Athlon XP Overclocking Guide - Page 5

By Ryan "Speedy" Wissman April 15, 2002

The Importance of Diagnostic Programs

Data on CPU and system temperatures, as well as AGP and PCI speeds, may be available in your System BIOS, but diagnostic programs like SiSoft SANDRA or Motherboard Monitor are also very useful. In fact, a Windows diagnostic utility is almost required for serious overclocking, as you don't want to reboot to the BIOS each time to check how the numbers have changed. Here's a screenshot from SiSoft SANDRA 2002, with the important temperature, voltage and AGP/PCI speed outlined.

 

 

Before attempting any sort of overclock, get out the motherboard manual and write down the procedure for resetting an unbootable system. Many times, your overclock will be unsuccessful and most name brand boards offer a quick keystroke to boot your system using its default settings. This is valuable information to keep handy.

FSB Overclocking Results

In our testing, the MSI KT266A Pro2 has FSB settings all the way up to 164 MHz (328 MHz DDR). Unfortunately using this setting would propel our PCI bus all the way up to 41 MHz, which is way too high for some of our hardware to handle. The highest stable setting we were able to achieve was 145 MHz, which translates into 290 MHz DDR memory and CPU bus speed, and an overall CPU speed of 1.45 GHz. The 72.5 MHz AGP and 36 MHz PCI speeds were also within reason for our own particular reference platform, but as we stated above, your mileage may vary.

This 1.45 GHz overclock was in the expected range, and there are few gamers who couldn't find a use for an extra 200 MHz of raw CPU power. We will be including a few benchmarks later on to identify exactly how the higher FSB and memory speeds of this particular overclock translate into increased performance.


Page 1 Athlon XP Overclocking Guide
Page 2 An Athlon XP Primer
Page 3 Two Methods of Athlon XP Overclocking
Page 4 AGP/PCI Speeds and CPU Core Voltage
  • Page 5 Diagnostic Programs and Overclocking Results
    Page 6 Athlon XP Multiplier Unlocking
    Page 7 CPU Unlocking, Step-by-Step
    Page 8 Testing the CPU Unlock
    Page 9 Overclocking Results and 3DMark200 SE Performance
    Page 10 Detailed 3DMark2001 SE Scores and Final Comments

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