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 Post subject: Undervolting Biostar Tforce?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 7:05 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:07 am
Posts: 35
Location: Eugene, OR USA
I'm looking into building a HTPC using either a Turion or an undervolted Sempron 64, and the Biostar Tforce Socket 754 board is the best choice I can find for the general features I want. I've read elsewhere that it won't work with the Turion, but does anyone have experience running it with a Sempron at less than stock voltage? Any info would be appreciated...


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 Post subject: Re: Undervolting Biostar Tforce?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 8:05 am 
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 1:08 pm
Posts: 1407
Location: Michigan
blandoon wrote:
I'm looking into building a HTPC using either a Turion or an undervolted Sempron 64, and the Biostar Tforce Socket 754 board is the best choice I can find for the general features I want. I've read elsewhere that it won't work with the Turion, but does anyone have experience running it with a Sempron at less than stock voltage? Any info would be appreciated...


I wouldn't discount the Turion support just yet. BIOSTAR released a BIOS in December that isn't on their USA site yet. If support isn't there it might come in the next release. Yes, voltages go down to 0.8V. I did get a 130nm A64 2800+ to run off 0.85V core--I can't remember at what speed. I haven't played around with undervolting my (old) Sempron 2800+. It runs plenty cool at 1.5V @ 2.4GHz using a Scythe Ninja. I could play around with it tonight for you. The Ninja is going to throw off the results if you want to use some lesser heatsink, but this old core is probably not as good as the new 64bit Sempron either.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 10:11 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:07 am
Posts: 35
Location: Eugene, OR USA
That would be good news, if the board does indeed support the Turion.

I had originally planned to use a fanless tower heatsink but it looks like most of the ones out there are too tall for the enclosure I had in mind, so I was hoping to be able to use a large heatsink such as an XP-120 and cool it semi-passively or with a very slow-turning fan (quietness is important for a machine that goes in with the home theater equipment, so the goal is to use the fewest fans I can possibly get away with).

Either way I'll wait for the Turion support and other issues to shake out before I actually start building the machine.


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 Post subject: Sempron 2800+ undervolting on TForce 6100
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2006 5:18 am 
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 1:08 pm
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Location: Michigan
I did some undervolting testing with the Sempron last night. The TForce doesn't have HT speed settings below 200MHz or multiplier settings in the BIOS, and I didn't use the BIOSTAR windows software which gives you more options (at least it allows more memory dividers I know).

These are all run using the Scythe Ninja with the S-flex 1600rpm at full. The Sempron would POST at 0.99, but won't boot into windows. I did a quick run of the Sandra multimedia burn in for testing, so I'll also give Sandra power estimates.

Sempron 2800+ S754 Default 1.6GHz at 1.4V

1.6GHz @ 1.06V (25W) 28*C idle, 32*C load
1.92Ghz @ 1.17V (38W) 31*C idle, 34*C load
2.0GHz @ 1.18V (40W) 31*C idle, 35*C load
2.2GHz @ 1.25V (49W) 33*C idle, 37*C load
2.4GHz @ 1.47V (74W) 41*C idle, 43*C load

I have been able to get this Sempron to work up to 2.48GHz.

Something I was thinking about for a slim case: I wonder if anyone has done a fan mounted on the bottom side of a SI-120. While the SI-120 is taller than the XP-120, putting the fan in the middle of it blowing out (and ducted out) a ventilated slim case top might work very well. It wouldn't have to be a bulky 120mm fan either. I imagine a nice slim 92mm fan could slip in there easily.

FWIW: I was using a Zalman 7000Cu in a Antec Minuet II. While it worked okay, I think it needed a different fan. I had a SLK-947 which was more efficient than the Zalman with the right fan and some cardboard ducting. If I did another small system I would probably just go for a XP-90 (lighter, smaller, but mainly cheaper).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2006 1:53 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 1:08 pm
Posts: 1407
Location: Michigan
blandoon wrote:
I had originally planned to use a fanless tower heatsink but it looks like most of the ones out there are too tall for the enclosure I had in mind, so I was hoping to be able to use a large heatsink such as an XP-120 and cool it semi-passively or with a very slow-turning fan (quietness is important for a machine that goes in with the home theater equipment, so the goal is to use the fewest fans I can possibly get away with).

I did some more testing today with the Sempron. The thing will run forever at the default 1.6GHz speed at the 1.075V setting, and I don't think it requires a big heatsink to do so. I unplugged all the fans except the power supply. Very stable, even with a fiery hot video card trying to roast it from below. No need for a Turion.

I'll have to do some testing with the retail AMD heatsink or a generic (cheap) heatsink.

I'm sure a passive XP-90 or maybe even better some cheap copper heatsink with good fin spacing would work.


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