Link / Unlinked?

GeekyGuy

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Well, after lots and lots of reading and watching of various videos, not least of all the information over on Extremetech, I think I'm ready to take the plunge into overclocking. Nothing "extreme," however. I don't want to upgrade my cooling or anything, and I really don't want to have to up the voltage more than one or two increments at most, if at all. But there's one thing I'm still a bit unsure about, and it's the Linked / Unlinked options in the BIOS. Now, from what I could glean, selecting Linked links the changes made to the FSB frequency to the memory, so that when the FBS frequency is changed, the memory speed changes to match it. Am I on the right track so far? If so, what is the safest, best way to go about overclocking? Using Linked or Unlinked and why?

Thanks

EDIT: Oops. It seems I posted in the wrong forum. If a mod takes notice and would be so kind as to move this over to the computer forum.
 

FAST6191

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Back when the ram and the CPU ran off the same clock so if you increased the input clock to the CPU 10% (remember CPUs have a multiplier which on most CPUs is set in silicon stone) the ram also went up 10% in speed (linked mode).
With ram more likely to crap out before CPUs this posed an odd limit and for various reasons the ability to overclock the ram and CPU separately (unlinked mode) this limit is dodges.

Problems: as you may have seen ram has timings as well as a clock speed which correspond to various things ( http://www.overclock.net/intel-memory/9981...-explained.html ). By changing the clock speed you can "unbalance" the timings (say a 5% ram and a 7% CPU) which has no real effect on stability but it can cost some time penalties (it may have to wait for the next cycle to start reading); not a problem for most games and if you are at the point where you missed the cache on a video encode or render the damage is already done).
 

GeekyGuy

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In less technical terms, that might translate to...?
shy.gif
 

FAST6191

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Linked: ram and CPU overclocked together. Makes things fairly simple, this is what is seen in most older boards (not sure what year it changed in but still fairly recent).
Unlinked: ram and CPU overclocked separately. Can be used to account for slower (cheap) ram but means you have two options to fiddle with instead of one.

Unlinked is generally better and disadvantages are minimal/non existent.

Might I suggest you spend some serious time reading though, while you can overclock (quite safely) by twiddling a few settings the safest and/or best overclocks are done by people who know everything that goes on.
 
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