correct settings for my setup

Gigabyte Ga-7n400 pro2 motherboard
September 27, 2010 at 18:54:08
Specs: WIn XP Pro
I have a Gigabyte ga-7n400 pro2 (rev2), and Athlon 3200+ and 768mb of pc2100 ram. I plan to try and over-clock it a little, but first I want to just get everything setup right. Since I have pc2100 ram, I take it I need to set my FSB to 266mhz, right? Now, my question is, can you speed the CPU up via clock multipliers without speeding up (and overheating) the memory? What I think I can do is set the FSB to 266, then set the "CLK_RATIO" dip switches on my board to like 8.5x which is 2261mhz. My other question is, what is the actual speed of my CPU? says its 3200 (rated) and 2200 (real). So I assume I should set it to 2261mhz (8.5x) to start with, and then creep it up slowly making sure everything's stable, right?

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September 28, 2010 at 07:02:12
"Since I have pc2100 ram, I take it I need to set my FSB to 266mhz, right?"

Don't confuse frequency (actual speed) & data rate (effective speed). You need to deal with the real, not the imagined. PC2100 (DDR266) RAM runs at 133MHz frequency, NOT 266MHz. 266MHz is the "effective" speed.

With a socket A system, it's extrememly important that the CPU & RAM run at the same frequency. This is known as having a 1:1 ratio. In other words, if the CPU frequency is 133MHz, RAM should be 133MHz...if the CPU is 166MHz, RAM should be 166MHz...if the CPU is 200MHz, RAM should be 200MHz. Anything other than 1:1 will hamper performance.

The AXP 3200+ is supposed to be clocked at 2.2GHz (11 x 200MHz) & will be severely bottlenecked by PC2100. If you run the CPU freq at 200MHz & RAM freq at 133MHz, the ratio will be 3:2. You need to get PC3200 (DDR400).

There's no point overclocking as long as you have wrong RAM.

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September 28, 2010 at 09:01:06
Thanks for the reply Jam! This box is for my kids; I just threw together a bunch of extra parts laying around. I'd like to get it to run as fast as possible with what's there. I have the FSB in the bios set to 133mhz, and I set the clock ratio dip-switches to 16x. I tried 16.5x at first, but the box shut-down while booting windows. 16x seems stable, at least so far. So does this mean the CPU is running at 2128mhz (133x16)? Neither windows nor CPUz sees it at that speed. Am I doing this right?

Since the memory is so slow, and I'm not too concerned about toasting it, how do I go about overclocking it to get a little closer to the speed the other components are capable of? Would I adjust the "Memory Frequency" setting in the BIOS? It goes from 50% to 200%. What's a good starting point?

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September 28, 2010 at 09:39:53
I'm not sure you're understanding how things work.

PC2100 is designed to run at 133MHz. You *may* be able to get it to run a little faster by playing with the settings & increasing the RAM voltage, but you will NOT get it to run at 200MHz or even 166MHz for that matter. Just run the CPU at it's default clock speed of 2.2GHz at 11 x 200MHz & run the RAM at it's default speed of 133MHz. Sure, performance will suffer, but you really don't have any other choice - you have the wrong RAM!

On the motherboard, set both the CLK_SW & CLK_RATIO to AUTO.

Here's your BIOS settings:

System Performance = Manual
FSB Frequency = 200MHz
Memory Frequency = By SPD
AGP Frequency = 67MHz

That's it! There's no point in doing it any differently as long as you have PC2100 RAM.

BTW, here's your motherboard manual:

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September 28, 2010 at 12:55:01
Thanks again Jam. You're right: I don't understand how things work! I mistakenly thought FSB frequency is the effective frequency for both memory and CPU.

By setting CLK_RATIO to AUTO, it will use 11x since that's the CPU's default, right?

Let's say I buy some PC3200 Ram. Would I keep the FSB frequency at 200mhz since that's what the CPU requires? The SPD would choose 200mhz (400mhz effective since it's DDR)? What would be my first overclocking step? Increase the memory frequency to like 120% or so?

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September 28, 2010 at 13:09:16
"Increase the memory frequency to like 120% or so?"

No. If you get DDR400, set the memory frequency to 100%, then it will always run in step with the CPU frequency. Then if you want to overclock, simply increase the CPU frequency a little at a time.

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