In House Abit BX6-2.0 Review - Part 5

Overclocking
I already resigned to the fact that my CPU can only run at a maximum 412mhz (4.0 x 103mhz) on the P2B. Without an option to tweak voltage, I was unable to prove anything beyond that. But now with the BX6-2.0, the possibility emerged and my interest to push that limit was revived. So how successful was my attempt?

Fortunately, my SL2QF PII-333mhz (purchased June 98) was not multiplier locked, FSB speeds like 100mhz, 112mhz, 117mhz and 124mhz laid within the limits I could toy with. The Abit BX6-2.0 supports overclocking friendly PCI bus dividers like 1/2, 1/3 and 1/4, allowing for much more flexibility in my tweakings. Below is a summary of my successes and failures with different settings.

Intel Pentium II 333Mhz - SL2QF Malay

No.

FSB (Mhz)

Multiplier

Clock Speed (Mhz)

Voltage (V)

PCI Bus Divider

 

PCI Bus Speed (Mhz)

AGP Bus Speed (Mhz)

Remarks

1.

66

5.0

333

2.0

1/2

33

66

OK

2.

100

4.0

400

2.0

1/3

33

66

OK

3.

103

4.0

412

2.0

1/3

34

69

OK

4.

100

4.5

450

2.3

1/3

33

66

Hung after POST

5.

112

3.5

392

2.0

1/3

37

74

OK

6.

112

4.0

448

2.3

1/3

37

74

Hung after POST

7.

117

3.5

410

2.0

1/4

29

58

OK

8.

117

3.5

410

2.0

1/3

39

78

OK

9.

124

3.0

372

2.0

1/4

31

62

Hung when Booting

Looking at the table, we can actually deduce the ‘tolerance level’ of the system components and which were the limiting factors to overclocking.

Clearly from test No.8, my AGP Savage3D and my PCI cards could take the high bus speeds of 78Mhz and 39Mhz respectively. As for my LGS PC100 DIMMs, it appears that 117Mhz was about the maximum limit I could push them. Windows would not boot through successfully without a whole load of VXD errors and Fatal Exceptions if I went higher.

The saddest part of my story is the limitation of the CPU itself. Like many others, 450Mhz is not attainable on the SL2QF PII-333Mhz - not unless I disabled L2 cache. That however, is too big a sacrifice for a 12% increase in CPU clockspeed.

I conceded that no amount of tweaking I made was going to coerce the old PII-333mhz run above 412Mhz. I also did not have PC133 SDRAM to use fanciful 3.0x133Mhz or 3.0x138Mhz settings.

So of all the ‘success’ cases, what is the best speed to run my PII-333Mhz now? Am I going back to square one and use 412Mhz, like on my Asus P2B, as my preferred clockspeed? The toss is between the settings in tests No.3 or No.8….

Benchmarks
Using WinBench 99 as a guide, I booted up the system at 410Mhz using the significantly higher 117Mhz clockspeed as opposed to 100Mhz or 103Mhz on the first tests. The results were as follows:

  400Mhz
4.0 x 100 (1/3)
412Mhz
4.0 x 103 (1/3)
410Mhz
3.5 x 117 (1/4)
410Mhz
3.5 x 117 (1/3)
Business Graphics
WinMark 99
46.3 47.0 47.9 48.0
Business Disk WinMark 99 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 2370 2390 2370 2600
High-End Graphics
WinMark 99
257 263 265 266
High-End Disk WinMark 99 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 7980 8030 8010 8510
CPUMark 99 32.8 33.7 33.6 33.6
FPUMark 99 2070 2120 2110 2110

The BX6-2.0 turned in very impressive Disk WinMarks as compared to my P2B (not published here). The CPU at 412Mhz marginally edged out the 410Mhz CPUMark but the Disk WinMark scores at 410Mhz (1/3 divider) more than substantially made up for the 0.1 difference. The score of 2600Kbytes/s can be attributed to the higher bus speed used.

This concludes my benchmarking and one thing for sure - I'm keeping my system at 410Mhz using 3.5x117(1/3).

 

< Previous

Next >

 

Content