Thursday, July 7th 2011

A8-3850 Has Ineffective BClk Multiplier

"Empty Overclocking" is a term we just made up, to describe unreal overclocking headroom that does not translate into any performance improvements, with AMD's A8-3850 APU. This chip can be set to run at base clock multiplier value above 29x on some motherboards, that will increase clock speed being reported to you, but that "increased" clock speed will not translate to any performance improvements at all.

This means that the multiplier is ineffective in driving the clock above its maximum default value. So the next time you see screenshots screaming something like "6.00 GHz" on air with the base clock at its default 100 MHz, don't be fooled, trust only those overclocking feats in which the multiplier is set at the maximum default (29.0x) or lesser, and in which the overclocker has increased the base clock among other things.



Update: It seems like AMD is aware of the issue, and forewarned reviewers about it. Apparently a glitch in the BIOS code allows the users to "set" higher multiplier values than the chip can respond to, even as the chip doesn't run at those values. Utilities like CPU-Z read those BIOS-set values and display the effective clock speed, even as the actual clock speed doesn't budge. AMD recommends only the base clock increase method for overclocking. As always, AMD warned that overclocked chips are not covered by product warranties. Perhaps future BIOS updates by motherboard vendors will fix this bug.Source: OCWorkbench, Image Courtesy Newegg.com
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59 Comments on A8-3850 Has Ineffective BClk Multiplier

#1
RejZoR
Ok, is it just me or is this a bit erm, dumb? Why don't they just hard lock it if there is no point in increasing it anyway?
Posted on Reply
#2
jmcslob
Negative attention is still Attention.
Posted on Reply
#3
Chevalr1c
Well, AFAIK it is not a BE/FX/what shall I call it. So people won't buy it b/c of the unlocked MP, I guess. So the few fools who will "OC" this CPU via the MP will be easy to spot and ID as idiots (one should not trust OC reports without BClk/MP details anyway).
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#4
arterius2
well, what is the maximum default?
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#5
PHaS3
"to describe tests confirm to be unreal overclocking headroom that does not translate into any performance improvements at all"

What does not translate is that sentence... Maximum English confusion... is maximum

:roll:
Posted on Reply
#6
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: arterius2
well, what is the maximum default?
29.0x
Posted on Reply
#7
Maban
Llano/Lynx isn't even supposed to have an unlocked multiplier as far as I'm aware.
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#8
Enmity
by: Chevalr1c
Well, AFAIK it is not a BE/FX/what shall I call it. So people won't buy it b/c of the unlocked MP, I guess. So the few fools who will "OC" this CPU via the MP will be easy to spot and ID as idiots (one should not trust OC reports without BClk/MP details anyway).
This, most enthusiasts should know what to look for if they want to overclock - in the case of Bulldozer this will be the black edition/ FX models. Much like intels K series being monster overclockers and non k's suckin worse than a Maori hooker.
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#9
xaira
i read somewhere that this dued was saying that all bulldozer ES suffer from the same thing so any clock for clock comparsons with sandy at 4.0ghz where sandy is like crushing BD by like 25% that thats good news for amd because all current overclocks on new models is empty until the bug is fixed so that 4ghz sandy is actually going against the stock BD
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#10
Trackr
So I could take it up to 500x and it would show up as 50.0Ghz?

That's worth the money just to see.
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#11
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: Trackr
So I could take it up to 500x and it would show up as 50.0Ghz?

That's worth the money just to see.
That's about as useful as using photoshop to make a 50 GHz screenshot.
Posted on Reply
#12
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
Added an update.
Posted on Reply
#13
erixx
Kudos for bringing more 'conflictive' news to the frontpage, and not only post P.R. letters of many times boring products like usb sticks!!!

BIG CHEERS!
Posted on Reply
#14
HalfAHertz
Um pretty sure this was known since review day. I think Xbit labs were the first to report the glitch and they got a confirmation from Asrock as well...Not really news worthy.
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#15
Haytch
I find this all rather interesting.

I personally wouldn't get one, but that doesn't mean it's going to fail.
99% of my clients dont O.C.

If a BIOS level update resolves this glitch, then . . . It's all good.
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#16
spynoodle
Oh, AMD..... when will you finally catch up to Intel?
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#17
63jax
PcPer just made an article about overclocking on Llano A8 and IT does make a difference, up to 30 percent performance win.
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#18
Dent1
by: spynoodle
Oh, AMD..... when will you finally catch up to Intel?
Catch up in what respect? Explain yourself!
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#19
JATownes
by: 63jax
PcPer just made an article about overclocking on Llano A8 and IT does make a difference, up to 30 percent performance win.
Source Link?
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#20
caleb
PentiumII behaved the same way. Even if you OC'd with jumpers above the multi it was still locked at its stock. Apparently its locked.
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#21
nINJAkECIL
by: spynoodle
Oh, AMD..... when will you finally catch up to Intel?
I thought AMD had already past Intel.
oh wait.....
that's GPU. Sorry. :rolleyes:
Posted on Reply
#22
DigitalUK
just a bios glitch, the last bios "glitch" amd had gave many users extra cores for free.
Posted on Reply
#24
TheLaughingMan
I thought this was NOT a BE chip and there where no addition multipliers above the 29x? I remember reading somewhere quote, "...with the multiplier, you can go down, not up."
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