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Sapphire ATI 9800 Pro Ultimate 128 Mb

Posted on 2004-08-26
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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
hello
having recently bought the above card i couldnt help to stop thinking of overclocking it
as i eventually did and to my surprise the limits of this card were not as sky-high as i expected
as you know the default clock is 380/340 on core and ram respectively, which is actually 680 on ram as it is DDR
utility used was the radlinker, current driver Catalyst 4.2 - the last ones if im not mistaken
3dMark2003 on default clocks has measured a 5641 points
having overclocked the card to 420/380, which is a fairly small overclock considering the abilities of the card, well beyond that the card prodused artifacts. with the new clock the score went up to 6129 (+/- 20 points)
the card is water cooled, along with the processor using a cusomised Thermaltake Aquarius 2 Kit and WaterChill VGA water block
there is no temp probe on the card itlesf, thus i cant actually say what temps it is running at, but the temp of the processor hardly goes over the 40C mark, usually stays at 27-35C, well unless i play Far Cry all day.

having said that
it is a fast, quality card which is supposed to be overclocked by at least 100mhz on the core and i would expect 80mhz on the ram, with a decent water cooling and yet it doesnt let me tweak it as i wish
ive seen other people manage to overclock it to the amazing 500-520 mhz on the core and 420-450 on the ram
why cant i???"?"!?!?!

as well as overclocking i am very curious about modding the card, is there any mods that could increase the performance? now i know that X800 pro can be modded to X800XT by a simple connection of 2 pins on the chipset, increasing from 12 to 16 pipelines
can this be done with 9800 pro chipset too? if yes how?
or maybe there is a voltage mod available to it? if yes how to do it?

G
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Question by:Guirut
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Expert Comment

by:Wojciech Duda
ID: 11901279
Hi Guirut,

not all chips installed on cards are equal - the producer tests whether they can withstand 380/340 and if the chip can, it is sold as such. But this means some can withstand 500/420 and some do not. Seems you got a card that exceeds specifications only a bit - still not bad considering you get the extra performance for free.

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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11901458
>>
not all chips installed on cards are equal
<<

preciselly, all chips are the same and come from one ATI factory
R350 chip is used in this card and there is no difference between the 2 R350 taken from lets say Powercolor and HIS
the RAM migh be a different story

and those highly overclocked cards i mention were made by Sapphire, just as mine
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by:Wojciech Duda
ID: 11901631
Imagine you buy a colored shirt. It says you can wash it at 30° C. What does this mean? Some of those shirts can be washed at 30°, some at 40°, some at 45° without loosing color - this depends on the production process, quality of materials used etc. The same applies to chips. Some can be overclocked a lot, some do not. That's what is happening with your card.
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by:Wojciech Duda
ID: 11901643
So two chips form the ATI factory can be different when it comes to their max capabilities. Depends on their placement on the wafer, for example.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11901692
true

but are you suggesting that this is it? there is no more to it?
 i have reached the limit?
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by:buckeyes33
ID: 11902418
Along with the chips capabilities, mcwojtekk is right, every chip is different.  Plus you have to look at the manufacturer of the card you got.  Saphire, will good quality cards are not always that overclockable.  I don't know if there are any mods for that card.  I don't usually mod anything cause I don't have the money to screw it up.  There is a point where that is all you will get out of a chip.  
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by:Callandor
ID: 11902603
Some links for comparison:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Hardware/Q_20881431.html
http://www.extremeoverclocking.com/reviews/video/Sapphire_9800Pro_4.html
http://www.vr-zone.com/reviews/Hercules/R9800Pro/page8.htm

As others have said, sometimes it's the luck of the draw, and you can get a very good part or a not so good one.  You have good cooling and the right tools, so you may have reached the limit.
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Expert Comment

by:Dynamic1
ID: 11904577
Guirut First off that is not a bad score. Secong off now way you are going to get 500 on core on water cooling just cant be done well you may get a 500 pass on chilled water but it will be artifacting. Also those cats are old try the 4.8s they will give you a boost.
http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=2582717 03 7519 3DMARK 03  here is one of my scores on the 4.5 cats one of the highest air scores to date. Notice I cannot get high ram overclocks I have one of the first 9800 Pros the ram just does not cut it. Use ATI tool to see what clocks your card is capible of. Get a temp Probe a must if you are going for a top overclock put it right next to core under Waterblock. Go for core speed DO not worry about memory Overclocks even if it is 380 that is about the limit of that card. Core will bring higher scores. Also consider the 9800 Pro to XT FLASH it will give you about 300-500 points clock for clock on 03. Check your thermal paste make sure you didnt over do it. You should be able to get 470 range on core but TEMPS Make artifacts thats about it not anything else so double check your thermal compound and get a temp guage mabye one you can put in a drive slot. Let me know I have been at this a long long time we can get you up there.
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by:Dynamic1
ID: 11904616
Also not to knock it but the Aquirus 2 kind of stinks I had a kit and returned it I was very unimpressed. Actually MY Zalman did better than it mabye this helps you not knoking your cooling but I bought the same kit thought it would be great and no good.
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by:Dynamic1
ID: 11904664
BTW My 9800 Pro is Flashed to XT it is a r350Core you should heave a r360 even a better canidate for a flash.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11904932
ATI Tools says that it is a R350 chip
getting new drivers at the moment, will install now and check the performance
i have managed to push the core to 444, runs with minor artifacts on cat 4.7, lets see what 4.8 will do

i totally agree about the Aquarius - it stinks, well by modern measures it does, at the time it was a luxury (1 year ago or so)
oh well it is bareable, not too loud and does the job well (27-31C)

could you please evaluate on how to flash the bios to XT, i remember you have suggested that in my other post too
it is very much what i am after

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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11904947
and it is not a bad score, but what i want is a top banana, overclocked and tweaked to the limit :)

7000-8000 would do for me
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by:Dynamic1
ID: 11909312
http://discuss.futuremark.com/forum/showflat.pl?Cat=&Board=techdisplayadapters&Number=2712704&page=0&view=collapsed&sb=5&o=0&fpart=1
Here is the whole 9 yards make sure to use your bios sapphire. BTW Buy a Zalman 29 bucks it got me that score above. 1 More thing I just got the 6800GT not overclocked but my system runs at 3.85 now 1 to 1 divider. 11,400 on 03 stock card LOL Now I am excited 15K anyone. Thats what I will be shooting for. Hey Guirut Raise GPU voltage 1.6 it may help. With the bios flash you will get small artifacts on the 03 GT2 thats about it none in games so far. Enjoy it great card I used mine for a year and it just came out yesterday for the 6800GT Doom at 1600 x 1200 is a stytem killer on extreme.
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by:Dynamic1
ID: 11909325
BTW you gotta look through there for 9800 pro to XT. But use there guides print it before you flash very inportant it has to be followed to the T.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11912531
BTW Buy a Zalman 29 - you mean a waterblock? the one i have is supposed to be better though, is a solid piece of copper, with transparent plastic on top and 10mm fittings, but i am thinking of changing Aquarius sometime by cristmas anyway, might get Zalman Reserator

i cant find the right guide on that site, it doesnt have 9800pro to XT guide, plenty of others though
nice card you got man, my pocket is not wide enough for one of these hehe

and how do i raise the voltage on my card?
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11912675
btw new 4.8 drivers are good
at 439/379 it gave 6300 in 3dmark 2003
hopefully XT mod will push me closer to 7000

:)
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Expert Comment

by:buckeyes33
ID: 11913108
>>and how do i raise the voltage on my card?
in the bios there will be an apg voltage setting. change it from 1.5 to 1.7 or 1.8.  
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11913567
it appears that i dont have the option im my bios to change the voltage of anything
i have been trying to flash it this mornig(been planning to flash for some time now, and now is a good reason to do so)
however it is a bit tricky
i have an MSI board, and the pc manufacturer's website has instructions on how to flash their bios:

Bios update for the MD 5000 mainboard of the MD Titanium 8000


Instructions to update your system bios
--------------------------------------------------------------------

1. Unzip the downloaded file into a created folder at the partition E: of your harddisk.

2. Afterwards restart your PC with the Application-/ Support-CD.

3. At the MS Windows CD-ROM-Bootmenue choose "Boot from CD-ROM ".

4. After that select "MS-DOS Prompt" in the Application-/Support-CD Startmenue .

5. Finally execute the md5000.bat file which can now be found at Partition C:\ into your specified folder.

6. Now start the update procedure by pressing any key.

6. After the bios update please reboot your system.


Please be aware that you noticed the original bios setting before starting the update because some values may have changed afterwards.

For any errors, caused by the execution of this update, we don&#1169; t accept any responsibility for damage or lost of data.
The customer agrees with that fact by executing the update.

Kind regards,

Medion Software Support


now to the tricky part, MS DOS that boots up is in german (!)
and when i type: cd c:/  - it gives me error messages (cant recall the exact fraise but its something like Buferung Vifezing - might not even be close :), dunno german sorry )
so i cant actually get to the directory with an upgrade
i know it is a bit off the topic, but is the german DOS different or something?
if so would anyone know the command to change directory?
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Expert Comment

by:Wojciech Duda
ID: 11915401
Type

C:

then type

cd 'directory name you want to use'

and use \ instead of /

Also a quetion to all:

Why should increasing the voltage in your BIOS - this is for the AGP slot - help if the card is supplied with 12 V via it's own cable anyway?
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Expert Comment

by:buckeyes33
ID: 11915660
To my knowledge my video card uses both the APG voltage and the 12V.  I would assume that his would be the same.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11917655
when i type C: i get this:
Ungultige Laufwerkangabe

what sthat?
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Accepted Solution

by:
Dynamic1 earned 200 total points
ID: 11919557
mcwojtekk
1.6V on the AGP slot sometimes gives you a better overclock. It is not critical though to a good overclock.

Comment from mcwojtekk
Date: 08/26/2004 08:04AM EDT
 Comment  


"So two chips form the ATI factory can be different when it comes to their max capabilities. Depends on their placement on the wafer, for example. "

Not so all cores from ATI ARE the exact same EX:R350,R360,R420. The Extent they can be clocked to depends on good cooling.
For example here is my 9800 Pro its been running this way a year http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=2582717 03 7519 3DMARK 03
Stock this card gets 5500. When a Manufacturer wants to make a lower end card Example 9800 Non Pro Same core is used GPU is Underclocked and sometimes as is the case with X800 Pro and X800 XT Bridges are cut Disabling pipelines there is also a workaround for this also AGAIN GPU is Underclocked in the case of the X800Pro. Placement of the wafer has absolutely nothing to do with this. You can overclock the living crap out of almost any chip today Intel AMD Nvidia ATI. If the cooling is insufficient it is not going to happen. If it is sufficient excellent cooling the chip will not burn out prematurely However if you overvolt it to much that is another case.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11922902
right...
i have managed to flash my bios to the latest version, but i still dont get the option to change the voltage on the VGA, neither for the CPU btw
does this option only appears on some boards? mine is MSI

Dynamic1, that site has plenty of guides for other cards, but not the 9800pro to 9800XT, could you briefly explain the procedure and if you know tell me where to get the needed bits of software for it

thanks experts

G
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:buckeyes33
ID: 11923307
>>does this option only appears on some boards?
I don't think that I have ever not seen it.  Sometimes though there are few options for changing voltages.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11923478
under what selection does the voltage normally come up?
0
 
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Expert Comment

by:buckeyes33
ID: 11923629
If there is a something like advanced CMOS settings or something like that.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11924900
i got:
Standart CMOS features
Advanced BIOS features
Advanced Chipset Features
Integrated Peripherals
Power Management SetUp
PnP/PCI Config

none of these have voltage in the subotions
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Expert Comment

by:buckeyes33
ID: 11925687
maybe it is a subnotation of a subnotation.  I find it really strange and stupid that the is no CPU voltage.
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Expert Comment

by:Dynamic1
ID: 11928315
Guirut what board is it motherboard I will look the voltage up for you. Should be under AGP and should be at 1.5v 1.6 helps a little but as long as you can use ATI TOOL and get XT speeds you can do the flash. http://www.overclock.net/showthread.php?t=183
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11929229
excellent stuff :)
btw before flashing do i have to unistall drivers and then reinstall them?
or should i just keep them
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11931308
and the clock rate
do i have to put the clocks to the default speeds before flashing and then adjust them to the clock speeds of XT?
would such mod enable me to treat it as a real XT model, and thus expect higher overclockability?
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Expert Comment

by:Dynamic1
ID: 11936751
Hi Guirut you just have to reinstall drivers after flash. The Clocks will be XT clocks when flash is done enjoy. Might get a little higher Overclock but not much. Also if you mess up flash you can always use a pci card to flash again make sure to save old bios.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 11987564
hello lads
im just having a small technical difficulty since last week, my floppy drive stopped working
just waiting for the new one to ship, and as soon as i have it im flashing my card

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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12085281
hello
Dynamic, any updates bout the voltage increase?
i have finally got some time to flash my card tonight
will let you know how it went
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12089303
flash unsuccessfull
builds lots of artifacts, unstable, couple of deadlocks
flashed back to the defauls BIOS
possible reasons crap water colling lol
well i know wat to do now, as soon as i get another radiator and a better pump ill try again, but for now thanks for ur help lads

dynamic would voltage increase help?
0
 
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Expert Comment

by:Dynamic1
ID: 12090700
Hi NO Voltage increase. Artifacts 99 percent of the time indicate overheating. Try to use rivatuner see if you card runs default XT clocks before flashing this will let you know if its a bad flash or overheating.
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by:Dynamic1
ID: 12090702
Also I just noticed also deadlocks it is overheating.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12090897
yeah it most probably is overheating
let me correct myself, flash was successful but card couldnt take it
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12090899
although funny enough my card is now clocked at 413/367 and no probs
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by:Dynamic1
ID: 12094606
Weird default XT clocks are 412 365 it should flash fine.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12094729
i know
it runs doom3 alright, no artifacts or anything so these clocks are stable, but after the flash screen just went all with artifacts amd mouse left red trace when moved
i think by installing an extra radiator and a better pump i would then be able to flash it properly
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12094737
and i dont think rivatuner would work with ATI, or would it?
i use ATITool
0
 
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by:Dynamic1
ID: 12096847
Sure Rivatuner is the best there is for ATI and Nvidia. I have used it from my 9700 Pro all the way up. http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k3=2582717 This score is using just rivatuner no tweaks.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12133825
regarding the voltage, i have red that it will help the overclock capacity and boost the performance in general
now as ive said i dont have the option to manipulate the Vcore voltage from BIOS, :S
is there any kind software that will allow me to change the voltage on my card?
0
 
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Expert Comment

by:Dynamic1
ID: 12138244
The XT bois upgrade ups the voltage. But voltage only comes into play when your core is running 470 or above under that more voltage is completly useless.  Just heats up the card. In my opinion your card is running hot. At default voltage you should be able to get at least 365 on core if it is cooled properly.
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Expert Comment

by:Dynamic1
ID: 12138255
The only other way to raise voltage is with a jumper solder trick but if you are not completly comfortabe with this I do not advise it.
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Author Comment

by:Guirut
ID: 12598500
i thought i have closed the question long time ago
sorry
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