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quick question for PC owners


Smoov_Operator

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I was wondering if you can answer how voltage effects processor life span. This is for non overclockers, at stock clocks for any processor.

Does having a stock clock with too many volts (ie auto setting in bios) effect performance and add heat?

Does it shorten life span?

Does adjusting the voltage at stock speeds help at all?

What is the purpose of adjusting voltage?

and lastly,

If overclocking shortens life span by adding voltage, wouldn't having too much voltage on a non overclocked rig do the same?

example: non oc 6700k defaults to around 1.4v during stress testing, full loads with the 'auto' settings in BIOS. Temps range from 30 idle, to almost 80 under prime95 tests. When overclocking, after adjusting voltage, those temps are about the same at the minimum stable voltage.

So would you want to adjust your voltage at stock speeds to get lower temps? And how does all of this effect performance, especially at stock speeds when no adjustments are made and auto is chosen in BIOS.

Edited by Smoov_Operator
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Voltage itself doesn't cause issues, as long as it's within the tolerances of the components. The primary cause of problems is the heat generated from excessive voltage, which in turn accelerates electromigration.

 

1.4v is high for a Skylake at stock speeds. It's probably not particularly harmful in the long run but does seem rather excessive though sadly not unusual in the context of what most motherboards will do when voltage management it set do default.

 

For a stock clocks 6700K when benching you should really be at or below 1.2v peak. 1.3v for sustained, 24/7 overclocked and 1.4v for benchmarking on higher overclocks temporarily. To be honest the lower the better. I would start by setting a BIOS limited vcore of 1.2v then incrementally decrease it until you reach a point where the system is not stable under prolonged maximum load. Then you simply bump it a few millivolts higher than that point.

 

For instance, at 4.2GHz the auto voltage function on my motherboard was supplying 1.315v vcore to my 5820k. I managed to drop that down to about 1.12v and retain complete stability. I've upped it a little now for additional headroom but that's a fairly huge drop. I have been lucky with my silicon though.

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Does having a stock clock with too many volts (ie auto setting in bios) effect performance and add heat?

Yes, the CPU will produce more heat. No, this will not affect performance - that's assuming the voltage isn't too low (instability) or too high (overheating). Stock voltages are often much higher than necessary.

 

Does it shorten life span?

Theoretically yes, but as long as the voltage is in a sensible range, it's negligible. CPUs are arguably the most reliable PC components, you can't kill them that easily. I'll also add that many of the OC guides say it's important to avoid too big difference between CPU voltage and IMC voltage, because it also can shorten the CPU's life. Whether it's really crucial or blown out of proportion, I can't tell.

 

Does adjusting the voltage at stock speeds help at all?

The PC will run cooler, quieter and it'll consume less power - I'd say it's worth taking a look. I have a Xeon X3440, which has a stock clock of 2.53GHz and stock voltage of way over 1.3V. After some tweaking, I've lowered the voltage to 1.1V, and the temps dropped quite dramatically, about 20C (!) difference at full load with stock cooler. What's even funnier, 1.1V was enough to push the CPU to ~3.1GHz, and the OC didn't affect the temps that much. Edited by yojc
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Well, I know I can get 4.6 @ around 1.36 for my 6700k. I am just trying to figure out if it's worth it or not. I am currently on 4.4 @ 1.25, and temps never get above 55 while gaming. They actually rarely get above 50. But during some other tasks outside of gaming, I noticed they can get to anywhere from 50-60. Stress tests with p95 is obviously another story... If I remember correctly on my current setting of 4.4, stress test temps get around 75. I know they can go to 80 or so safely while stressing. Been a while since I did it, but I figured if I could push for more, why not. I just really would rather have lower temps and enjoy the power saving during things like browsing or watching movies. Typically in those scenario's the temps are below 30c. Right now, with browsing and a movie playing, like usual, temps are very low around 24c and can get lower especially at night. At a higher clock, those temps increase as well obviously. I enjoy the low temps of a lower setting, but would sacrifice for better gaming.

My biggest concern though is will going from 4.4, the moderate oc, to a max oc of say 4.6 (anything above that has to go past 1.4v and I am not comfortable with that for daily use) is will it improve gaming experience to a noticeable amount? And would it be safe to run it this way, daily? Or should I just stick with what I have now?

Sorry in advance if this is confusing at all. I am still new to PC building but have had it for about half a year and just want the best gaming I can get mixed with the power savings for everything else as well. I feel like I am being overly moderate here in an attempt to get lower temps and ensure life span.

Edited by Smoov_Operator
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My biggest concern though is will going from 4.4, the moderate oc, to a max oc of say 4.6 (anything above that has to go past 1.4v and I am not comfortable with that for daily use) is will it improve gaming experience to a noticeable amount?

You would definitely not even notice a difference.
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