Upgrading From Intel P55 w/ Lynnfield to Intel Z68 w/ Sandy Bridge

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Overclocking the i7 870 Lynnfield

Normally we test systems using only air so the majority of enthusiasts can see what to expect with a decent aftermarket cooling solution.  But this is not one of our normal reviews and we have already shown what each individual hardware component can do if you push them on air.

Individual component overclocking links:

P55 Water Cooled
Since we have the luxury of a water cooled case we wanted to see what we could do with the CPU on water.  The i7 870 was known as being a great overclocking CPU and could even out perform the extreme editions for certain applications that did not leverage all the cores of the high end CPU.

i7 870 Lynnfield Overclock
CPU-z i7 870 stock
The i7 870 stock speed was 2.93 GHz with a 22x multiplier and 133 bus speed.  Using our water cooling setup we pushed this chip hard and were able to get the following results.

i7 870 overclocked
We pushed a whopping 4.5 GHz on water which is really good but the heat was getting crazy hitting 82c under a 15 minute Prime 95 run.  Pushing the voltage to 1.46v on the core is .06v over the spec from Intel of 1.4v and would degrade the CPU over time. The system was stable running at 4.5 Ghz but we actually kept this rig at a more reasonable 4.2 GHz to give us more thermal headroom, get the vCore under 1.4v,  and we found that last .3 MHz really did nothing for performance improvement. 

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