Articles: CPU

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So, our Phenom II X4 920 revealed almost the same overclocking potential as the Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition we tested before. Luckily, the locked clock frequency multiplier of the junior model didn’t become a serious problem during our overclocking experiment. We managed to uncover the hidden Phenom II X4 920 potential by raising the clock generator frequency. As a result, we could speed up this processor 33% over the nominal value, which is a very good achievement.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to adequately estimate the thermal mode of a CPU overclocked that far. All diagnostic utilities report evidently lower temperatures of Phenom II X4 cores. Nevertheless, we are going to offer you a chart showing temperatures of one of the processor cores during OCCT 3.0 stability test.

Click to enlarge

According to the results on this diagram, the core temperature under load doesn’t exceed 45-50°C. However, the results obtained in idle mode suggest that we need to add another 5-10°C to these numbers. Until we get some explanation from AMD, we can’t really offer you a more specific picture, unfortunately.

Another peculiarity of Phenom II X4 overclocking is connected with Advanced Clock Calibration (ACC) technology. Some data suggest that it allows reaching higher overclocking results with previous-generation Phenom processors on mainboards featuring ATI SB750 South Bridge. Although it is formally supported by the new Phenom II CPUs, too, we don’t see any improvement with ACC activated anymore.  Not only our own tests, but also the comments from AMD engineers confirm this finding. So, when you attempt to overclock the Phenom II processors, you can disable ACC technology in the mainboard BIOS without any hesitation.

In conclusion to our discussion of Phenom II X4 920 CPU overclocking I would like to remind you that there is AMD Overdrive utility that allows overclocking these processors not only through the mainboard BIOS Setup, but also from Windows. AMD was going to prepare a new version of this utility taking into account the peculiarities of the new processors by Phenom II launch. For some reason the new version was never released. Luckily, the previous version 2.15 of AMD Overdrive worked just fine with Phenom II X4 and can be used to change the settings and find the most optimal parameter values.

However, AMD Overdrive 2.15 does in fact have some problems with the new Phenom II CPUs. For example, this utility couldn’t correctly identify processor Vcore and didn’t report the correct core temperatures, just like a bunch of other utilities.

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