The story to this overclocking session is in fact a very amusing one as I wasn't intended to break any world record with the card. When the sane review
was posted on the front page, MSI called and asked where the LN2 overclocking results were as the Lightning series are designed to be used for extreme overclocking. Although the card was going to be tested on LN2 somewhere this month, having a vendor request LN2 tests is something extraordinary, especially for reviewing websites. So, instead of postponing the session, my colleague Leeghoofd and I decided to do it last Friday.
As agreed, the card landed on my desk a few days early to prepare it for the LN2 session. As we could use software to increase the voltage of the GPU, I only performed the voltage modification for the memory, which you can find on the next page. Afterwards insulating the card was all I had left to do.
The day of the overclocking session, we first did a couple of runs for the HWBOT Country Cup
. For those who don't know this competition, it's a country-based challenge hosted by overclocking database HWBOT
. Basically, spread over 7 weeks, there are 7 stages, each of which having different hardware limitations (hw you can use to post score) and is using a different benchmark. An average score determines the ranking of the countries and whatever country has the most points in the end, wins the competition. It's a fairly simple concept but quite cool to participate in as it motivates you to ask other countrymen to participate in the competition. This Friday we tried to come up with scores for Stage 7, which is 3DMark01. Afterwards, we were going to do the GTX 275 test session.
After dismantling the Core 2 Duo setup for 3DMark01, my colleague suggested to offer his Core i7 950 to be used in combination with the GTX275 in order to maximize the scores. In fact, he had to insist on using this processor as I was going to settle for a lower performing LGA1156-based platform. In any case, I'm quite happy he did insist, because this is what we scored when completing our second
full run of Vantage:
1210MHz on the core and 1400MHz on the memory are already impressive achievements. However, note that in the end, these were my “safety” clocks.