Yet Another... Precision 390 CPU Upgrade Question

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Yet Another... Precision 390 CPU Upgrade Question

  • I just purchased an new Dell Precision 390 with the Intel Core®2 Duo E4400 (2.00GHz/800MHz/2MB L2/Dual-core) CPU

    Down the road, can I up grade to any of the CPUs I have listed below?

    Intel Core 2 Duo E6420 (2.13GHz/1066MHz/4MB L2/Dual-core) [add $259]
    Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 (2.66GHz/1066MHz/4MB L2/Dual-core/VT) [add $489]
    Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 (2.40GHz/1066MHz/2X4MB L2/Quad-core/VT) [add $499]
    Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800 (2.93/1066MHz/4MB L2/Dual-core/VT) [add $1,209]
    Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6700 (2.66/1066MHz/8MB L2/Quad-core/VT) [add $1,219]

    I guess the underlying question...Is the PWS 390 main-board (MoBo) the same for all available CPU configurations?

    Barry


    Dell Precision 390/Intel Core 2 Duo E4400/2 x 73GB 15K RPM HD/2 GM DDR2 RAM/nVidia Quadro NVS 285
  • All the 1066MHz FSB CPU's are fine with the 390. Dells sells most of the ones you listed.
  • You will probably need to upgrade the BIOS to the latest 2.4.0.
     
    I'm running the Q6600 in my 390, w/o any problems.
     

    Alienware X51 R1, Intel i7-3770 CPU, 16 GB DDR3, 160 GB Intel SSD, GeForce GTX 670, Windows 7 Ultimate x64.

     

  • I have a Precision Workstation 390 with the Core 2 Duo 6300 processor. I'm looking to upgrade the processor and I have a few questions:

    1. Is the Core 2 Duo 6750 compatible with my system? I know the 6750 has a 1333 FSB, and my computer only runs at 1066, but will the 6750 at least run at 1066, or is it in fact completely incompatible with my system?

    2. Will the Core 2 Quad Q6600 be compatible with my system? Would I have to reinstall Win XP Pro in order for all 4 cores to be recognized? In your opinion, would the Q6600 be a better upgrade than the 6750? (I do a lot of HD video editing with Sony Vegas).

    3. Does changing the proc myself void the warranty?


    Thanks in advance!

    Message Edited by metrolens on 09-09-2007 09:49 AM
  • Quote:
     
    I have a Precision Workstation 390 with the Core 2 Duo 6300 processor. I'm looking to upgrade the processor and I have a few questions:

    1. Is the Core 2 Duo 6750 compatible with my system? I know the 6750 has a 1333 FSB, and my computer only runs at 1066, but will the 6750 at least run at 1066, or is it in fact completely incompatible with my system?

    2. Will the Core 2 Quad Q6600 be compatible with my system? Would I have to reinstall Win XP Pro in order for all 4 cores to be recognized? In your opinion, would the Q6600 be a better upgrade than the 6750? (I do a lot of HD video editing with Sony Vegas).

    3. Does changing the proc myself void the warranty?
     

     
     
     
     
    1. It should run, but only w/an FSB of 1066 MHz, but I certainly can't guarantee it.
     
    Why would you even want to? Running at 1066 MHz, it'll be running at 2.13 GHz, which is what the E6420 runs at.
     
     
    2. Yes the 390 supports the Q6600. Check the Dell Precision 390 web site. You should update the BIOS to the very latest release, 2.4.0.
     
    The following changes were made in 2.3.0 to 2.4.0

    1. Added support for new processors.
    2. Some PCI devices were displaying error messages even though there were no errors. The messages are no longer displayed.
    3. In certain situations more memory is available for the OS.
     
     
    I just bought my 390 bone stock, w/a single cpu, as a pre-order from Dell's Outlet, for $495.00. I then added the Q6600, as well as 4 gb memory, an ATI X1950 XTX video card, and 2x, 74 gb Raptor HD's, set up as RAID 0, running w/Windows XP Pro, and yes all four cores are seen.
     
    I've got a basic Dell, all aluminum, heatsink w/my system. With all four cores fully loaded, the cpu runs a little high, temperature wise, which is still within Intel's specs. I just ordered a better Dell heatsink, a P8016, designed for hotter running cpu's, that comes w/copper, as well as has heat tubes, which I hope helps to resolve it.
     
    If you fo get a Q6600, get a G0 Stepping one. It runs cooler than the B3 Stepping.
     
    As for effecting the warranty, that I don't know.
     
     


    Message Edited by GoHack on 09-09-2007 10:03 PM

    Message Edited by GoHack on 09-09-2007 10:39 PM

    Alienware X51 R1, Intel i7-3770 CPU, 16 GB DDR3, 160 GB Intel SSD, GeForce GTX 670, Windows 7 Ultimate x64.

     

  • Great, thanks for the help. This pretty much clinches it - I will probably end up getting a q6600 with G0 stepping.
  • I went ahead and bought the q6600. I've never installed a CPU and have a few more questions:

    -Is there any reason the stock Precision 390 heatsink won't be good enough? My current system has the Core 2 Duo e6300, and I was planning to continue using the same heatsink with the q6600. Would this be a mistake? (I don't play video games, but do work with HD video).

    -Do I need to use thermal paste to install the q6600? Any other considerations to keep in mind for the installation? (I know to be static free, not to touch the cpu pins or socket, and keep everything clean).

    -How exactly do people find out how hot their processors are running?
  • 1. I run my Q6600, w/all four cores fully loaded, so obviously, my cpu gets hot. With what you are doing, I wouldn't worry.
     
    My system came w/a basic, all aluminum heatsink, because of the single core processor that came w/it. With yours, you may of gotten a better one, w/a copper base and heat tubes.
     
    2. You need thermo compound. I recommend ArcticSilver. It's the best. Go to their website for directions on applying it. 
     
    3. You download and run, Core Temp 0.95 temperature monitoring program, and keep an eye on your temperatures, w/the applications your plan to use, are running. 

    Alienware X51 R1, Intel i7-3770 CPU, 16 GB DDR3, 160 GB Intel SSD, GeForce GTX 670, Windows 7 Ultimate x64.

     

  • Excellent, thanks for the advice GoHack. I do not plan on overclocking the chip at all (which may be obvious with the Dell BIOS). So hopefully the current heatsink will suffice. A few more questions:

    -I will pick up some Arctic Silver. Do I also need to get Arctic Clean (their cleaning fluid)? The instructions recommend cleaning the CPU surface with Arctic Clean before applying Arctic Silver - is this step necessary?

    -Is there any possibility that my heatsink isn't designed to accept thermal paste (this may be a dumb question, apologies in advance)?

    -In the Arctic Silver instructions it says: "If your heatsink has a thermal pad mounted on it, this pad must be removed before using Arctic Silver 5. If your heatsink has thermal interface material applied to it, it must be removed first. After the pad or thermal interface material is removed, ONLY Arctic Silver 5 will be between the CPU heatspreader and the heatsink." Will my heatsink have one of these? If it does, should I just leave it alone and not use Arctic Silver at all? I'm getting a little nervous.

    -I downloaded and installed Core 0.95, my computer with the e6300 is currently running at 41 and 42 degrees C, with only a browser and a text editing program open. Is this ok?
  • 1. Isopropyl alcohol, 90+%, will suffice. That's what I use.
     
    2. The heatsink comes w/a pad. Remove it first, using the alcohol. Be sure not to scatch the heatsink surface. I use tissue and my finger nail.
     
    3. It'll use thermal compound, after removing the thermal pad. Without having to go through the process of applying it, go to the ArcticSilver web site for the directions on applying it. In fact they specifically cover the Q6600. You don't want too much on.
     
    4.  According to the Intel Specs: http://processorfinder.intel.com/List.aspx?ProcFam=2558&sSpec=&OrdCode  The maximum allowable temperature for the E6300, both Stepping releases, is 61.4 degrees C.  Of course the warmer your ambien room temperature is, the warmer the cpu will be too.


    Message Edited by GoHack on 09-11-2007 04:59 PM

    Alienware X51 R1, Intel i7-3770 CPU, 16 GB DDR3, 160 GB Intel SSD, GeForce GTX 670, Windows 7 Ultimate x64.

     

  • Thanks again GoHack, you are extremely helpful. More please!

    -I just bought some Arctic Silver 5 from Radio Shack. So you think with the stock heatsink, the Arctic Silver 5 will give better cooling than just leaving the thermal pad in place?

    -When you install the q6600, are there any jumpers or anything else that needs to be modified?

    -Did you use a q-tip and some isopropyl 90% to gently clean off the surface of the cpu, then wait for it to dry, and then apply the Arctic Silver?

    -I'm very interested to know what happens with your p8016 heatsink, as I may be following in your footsteps on that! Is it difficult to install a heatsink, or does it just basically snap right in?

    -My ambient room temperature is always around 75-80 F. It's pretty hot in here. So on my B2 e6300 I'm seeing temps of 40-42 C at idle (or with a few light programs running). When the cpu is loaded, the temps spike almost immediately to a 47-49 degree range. Does this sound like normal behavior?

    -I haven't measured my 6300 temps when rendering video (which is really the most intensive thing my cpu will be doing). I am a bit concerned that video editing or rendering on the q6600, which may indeed load all 4 cores simultaneously for hours at a time (in a program like Sony Vegas), could pose a problem. Am I right, and should I actually think about getting the p8016 heatsink?
  • 1. The silver in the Arctic Silver is a better conductor of heat that the silicon used in the thermal pad. The pad also has a measurable thickness, which also hurts in the transfer of heat.
     
    With the thermal compound, you want the very minimum of compound. Again follow the Arctic Silver website directions.
     
    2. There are no jumpers. I would again recommend updating your BIOS w/the latest one, using your present setup, before installing the Q6600.
     
    3. Q-Tips are fine. Make sure the surface is clean, and of course, dry, before applying the ArcticSilver. Also run a Q-Tip, w/some alcohol on it, shake it so that it isn't too wet, and clean the cpu metal surface. Use a dry Q-Tip to dry it.
     
    4. Do you see what appears to be tubes on your heatsink, w/a copper base, or is it all aluminum? You should be able to see, w/o removing the heatsink.
     
    Again, my heatsink is all aluminum.
     
    The P8016 mounts exactly like the stock heatsink. My P8016 was suppose to arrive today, but didn't. :(
     
    5. As long as you stay within the recommended Intel limit, I wouldn't worry about it. As soon as the processor starts doing anything, it will generate heat.
     
    6. Does your software utilize multi-processing? In other words, is it designed to run on all available processors? If not, it's only going to run on just one of the cores.
     
    What graphics card do you have? If the software is designed to utilize that video card, that will take a load off the processors.

    Alienware X51 R1, Intel i7-3770 CPU, 16 GB DDR3, 160 GB Intel SSD, GeForce GTX 670, Windows 7 Ultimate x64.

     

  • Great, thanks so much yet again! My responses to your responses below...

    1. "The silver in the Arctic Silver is a better conductor of heat that the silicon used in the thermal pad. The pad also has a measurable thickness, which also hurts in the transfer of heat.

    With the thermal compound, you want the very minimum of compound. Again follow the Arctic Silver website directions."
    -------Gotcha. I downloaded the PDF from Arctic, and see how it's done.-------


    2. "There are no jumpers. I would again recommend updating your BIOS w/the latest one, using your present setup, before installing the Q6600."
    -------Great. And I already updated the BIOS. Currently running 2.4.0.-------


    4. "Do you see what appears to be tubes on your heatsink, w/a copper base, or is it all aluminum? You should be able to see, w/o removing the heatsink. Again, my heatsink is all aluminum.

    The P8016 mounts exactly like the stock heatsink. My P8016 was suppose to arrive today, but didn't. "
    -------Checked my heatsink, it's all aluminum. No trace of tubes or copper. So we're in the same boat. And I can't wait to hear your p8016 results either!-------


    6. "Does your software utilize multi-processing? In other words, is it designed to run on all available processors? If not, it's only going to run on just one of the cores. What graphics card do you have? If the software is designed to utilize that video card, that will take a load off the processors."

    -------I have an nVidia Quadro NVS 285 video card, 128 MB Ram. But AFAIK the video editing program I use (Sony Vegas 7) actually doesn't use the Video RAM at all. (I think After Effects does make use of it, but I don't use AE much).

    I'm running Windows XP Pro, which will use all 4 cores. I know Sony Vegas 7 is multithreaded, and I think it takes advantage of as many cores as you have (that is to say, at least two cores and possibly even 4).

    I wanted to get the q6600 because editing in HD and authoring HD-DVDs and BluRays requires lots of rendering, and involves large files (footage) that you want to be able to manipulate effortlessly. The e6300 was actually sufficient even with its measly 2mb L2, but I'm hoping the q6600 will blow it away, along with every task I throw at it.-------
  • The best way to see if your software is utilizing all the core is w/the Windows Task Manager, under Performance.  The CPU Usage History shows what Core(s) are being fully used.
     
    You may want to get a much better video card than that NVS 285, due to the work you plan to do w/the system. Here are some PNY recommended video cards for Broadcast and Production, on their web site.
     
     
     


    Message Edited by GoHack on 09-12-2007 08:53 AM

    Alienware X51 R1, Intel i7-3770 CPU, 16 GB DDR3, 160 GB Intel SSD, GeForce GTX 670, Windows 7 Ultimate x64.

     

  • Thanks again GoHack.

    For the moment the 285 is fine for my purposes. But I may want to upgrade at some point in the future and those cards look like worthy candidates.

    I think my processor is arriving today. I can just install the q6600 and use it with the current stock heatsink for the moment, correct? And then switch to the p8016 if that turns out to be necessary/beneficial?

    Could I even just leave the thermal pad in place, or do I really need to make the switch to Arctic Silver from now on? How often do you need to reapply Arctic Silver?