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I bought the motherboard mentioned in the question and a 2133 MHz RAM that does figure in the memory compatibility sheet of the board.

After assembling it runs on 1333 Mhz so to get my money's worth I have to overclock it. I think I know how but I need to know for sure that I'm doing the right thing.

The BIOS is a pretty fancy 3D mouse-enabled thing and looks very similar to this (NOT ACTUAL PHOTO OF MY BIOS):

enter image description here

I can increase System Memory Muliplier and hit 2133 MHz. I haven't done it just because I wanted to ask you this question:

Is this safe, and is this enough to unlock the full speed of my RAM?

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2  
Just for your knowledge, it's probably not BIOS but UEFI - a new standard that's replacing BIOSes. –  gronostaj Apr 4 '13 at 14:47
1  
You purchased RAM which was rated to run at 2133 MHz, with 11-12-11 timings running at 1.65V. It is safe to use the XMP profiles or set the values manually to the settings indicated on the linked datasheet, as this is what you paid for in the first place! So long as your motherboard is capable of those frequencies, everything should be fine. –  Breakthrough Apr 9 '13 at 19:38

3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Am I doing the right thing to overclock this?

That title asks for an opinion. Everyone will have their own.

If you are asking: I am going to OC it. Is this a correct way to do it?

Then you have the following options:


1) Optimal usage:

Read memory timing explanations on OC sites and HW sites such these: link, link, link, link, link and link.

Read and reread until you understand it. This is very much not trivial. You want to understand the meaning of half a dozen variables and the difference between latency and frequency. You want to know what all the values are in the screenshot below:

BIOS screenshot on DRAM timing

Or, you can you for a reasonable OC.

In that case start with enabling XMP. The results of that depend on the RAM (and the XMP profile stored in it) and the motherboard, but generally it will set it to a stable max speed configuration.

This will not be the fastest it can go, but it is the fastest the manufacturer will guarantee that it works. If you want more speed than that, go back to the HW sites.

Note that is is possible you copy the XMP timing and increase them slightly, but that is not guaranteed to work. You will have to test after each change, and proper testing is more than just running prime95 for a few hours.

Then again, if you do not mind a crash per month or per week in exchange for a few % more speed, do try. Just keep a good backup of all important data on your computer and then go have some fun.

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Overclocking always comes with some risks even when using components rated that are rated up to the speed you are specifying. You have to insure that the case has enough cooling to handle the additional heat. You have to be sure what settings you are changing so you don't inadvertently change the wrong thing. You also want to make sure you have a good power supply that can supply the needed power. Having said all that, overclocking is lot safer than it used to be and usually you will just get errors and not fry equipment.

If you are aware of the risks and have done your homework then proceed. I would suggest having a burn-in period after making the changes. Download MemTest, Prime95 and/or other tools that will fully exercise the overclocked memory. Be on the lookout for system lockups or strange crashes that may indicate memory issues.

Good luck.

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BEFORE YOU START OVERCLOCKING IT.

Don't. Yet.
No, overclocking it is not the right thing to do, just yet.

Overclocking it, while perhaps desirable, is not what you should start with.
For some reason, Gigabyte motherboards (or at least that one) disables X.M.P. by default.

Go to M.I.T. -> Advanced Frequency Settings - > select whichever profile is available in XMP.
That will automatically read the proper base settings from your modules - base clock, multiplier, latencies, etc.

Much cleaner, safer, etc.

THEN you can overclock it, starting from there. :-)


To clarify, XMP can be considered a form of automatic overclocking. I meant "don't overclock" manually.

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@Breakthrough I'm pretty sure he didn't, as he said that screenshot is not HIS bios (sic). The 1333 is the default on this board, turning on XMP should pop the speed right up. (If he says I am wrong, I will gladly delete my answer...) –  AviD Apr 9 '13 at 19:39
    
my apologies, I did not see that in the original post. –  Breakthrough Apr 9 '13 at 19:40

protected by Breakthrough Apr 9 '13 at 19:39

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