Dancop Shows How He Benches Full Pot with Skylake (Pro-tip: Lots of Thermal Paste)

The German overclocker going by the nickname Dancop is the current leader of both the HWBOT Overclockers League and the OC-ESPORTS Official World Overclocking Ranking Season 2016. He thanks his top spot to the countless hours of pre-testing and tuning on air cooling, as well as a thorough methodology of extreme cooling and of course top notch hardware. In a post on the forum, Dancop explains how he benches "full pot" with Skylake CPUs.

One of the key tricks in achieving good "full pot" sessions is using sufficient thermal paste. That's right! No more carefully filling the micro-gaps of the CPU die, but basically using thermal paste on top of and around the die. The vast amount of paste ensures that the contact between the CPU die and the IHS (which has been removed) is good. This prevents the CPU from "cracking" under cold - this is a situation where the contact between the CPU die and the IHS is broken.

Check out the thread on the forums here. There is a lot of useful information, so definitely a recommended read!


Germany Dancop says:

Hi overclockers!

I wanted to share some of my experiences with Skylake.

I have to say, that this might only work for Asus boards, although I’ve tried full pot also on GBT, which seemed to work as well!
Many of us know the Ice-Ball crack. Therefore, I’ve tested a hell lot of pastes, whereas FRESH Grizzly turned out to be the best!
Read it here (in the meanwhile I’ve tested around 15 more pastes!):

After I knew, that grizzly is the best, I’ve tried some things and found one preparation/setting combo, that works on more 60 chips on cold! None of these chips had any CB nor a crack within the first hour of benching.

This is what I want to share… You’ll notify three parts

1. Preparation
2. Bios
3. Handling

Boards I used:
Maximus VIII Extreme, Hero, Gene and Impact (You’ll see the differences in the BIOS section)
Let’s start…

1. Preparation

Everybody knows, a delidded CPU is obviously a must for Skylake-LN2 overclocking. Changing the original Intel TIM to the TIM you want to use – again, Grizzly seems to be the best in terms of cracking and temperature behavior! This is just my personal experience.
When you look at the original Intel TIM after you delidded the chip, you’ll recognize a very thin layer of TIM. This is what you have to change now!
Furthermore - after delidding, DO NOT EAREASE THE GLUE!!!
Here you can see one of my chips cleaned after the last session (for me it is A MUST TO CLEAN IT EACH SESSION!) :

After the cleaning part, you should use at least as much TIM as I’ve used here:

Now you have to apply the TIM on the die, but now you’ll see an example how you shouldn’t do it – THIS CAUSES CRACKS! :

The following foto shows HOW TO APPLY THE TIM! Try to “enlarge� the die to each direction about 2-3mm. The TIM besides the die should almost have the same height like the die itself:

Now put the chip into the socket:

Use the little PCB frame from Asus to fix the chip in the socket:

When you dissemble everything, the core should look like this for 4-core:
And here 2-core:

This is the most important part, as the bios settings might differ a bit from chip to chip, although the BIOS settings I’ll show you, work for 98% of the chips. Except the very golden ones, they don’t like pll termination – more now…

2. Bios settings

The most important thing here are not the voltages – it is the PCIe setting in the advanced menu! DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING HERE!!!! Leave everything on auto! Even with a bclk of 164, I can run PCIe 3.0 with the settings on auto. If you change them to 1.1, you should probably get a freeze at around -170 degrees.

Let’s move on with the voltages. One thing before the important settings – If I don’t see a certain setting, it is not touched, so still on AUTO.
Always disable SVID support.
Furthermore, set everything to the max in DIGI+ control – EXCEPT THE FREQUENCIES – I always leave them on auto.
In Tweakers Paradise you find some more voltages. But I only adjust these three voltages:

DMI: 1.5V
Core PLL: 2.4V
PLL-Bandwidth: Level 6

I’ve tried several Bandwidths and 6 turned out to be the most useful.
Core PLL obviously helps a lot for the cold bug. But you can try to lower it at fullpot in the OS! Then boot with this setting afterwards…but be careful – sometimes the core pll needs to be adjusted after 2 hours, that’s why I always use 2.4V.

Now DMI on M8E for 2d (option1 – in handling part needed) – just keep it at 1.5V and use the GPU in the last slot.

DMI on M8I for 2D/3D and M8E 3D (option 2) – boot with 1.5V and pour your pot down to -160 degrees. Now adjust 1.85V- 1.9V. You need to figure out, how strong the combination between CPU and board is.
My gem chip for example needs 1.88V on extreme and 1.9V on impact.
WHILE ADJUSTING….POOOOOUUUUURRRRRR! up to fullpot. You can get a blackscreen very shortly, but screen comes back for 99%!

Besides the tweakers paradise, we have the normal voltages.

CPU: What U need
DRAM: What U need
Pll Termination: 1.65V
Standby: 1.35V /1.65V on hero, cause there's no pll termination, they are linked.

You miss VCCIO and VCSSA? See the first sentence in this part ;) Sometimes for heavy 3D benchmarks and very high clocked GPUs, a VCCiO around 1,45V helps stabilizing the GPU.

Regarding CBB, you can test the original CBB of the cpu at stock settings. Leave all at default and try the lowest CBB. Cause if you adjust 1.65V pll termination, your CBB might be much worse than before. If you normal CBB is around 140 and you try to boot with 1.65V pll termination and your CBB changed to -100, then try to boot with 1.5V pll termination and raise it in the OS afterwards.

3. Handling

Here are some important things for the handling, while fullpot benching.
There’s a reset CBB on those chips – not all have it, but let’s say 80% of them. That means, when you are at fullpot, and press reset, you’ll see 25 postcode. Same with crashes for sure.
So, if you have a BSOD, then torch the pot up to -173 and you can reset it very easy.
Now let’s talk about the ultimate handling.

When you have prepared the CPU properly and found your bios settings, then you can boot at around minus 80. I always boot with the above settings and 5G on core and cache and 1.5V on the cpu. Once you are in the OS, you can go fullpot. Then set Vcore, pll termination multipliers and have fun! The most important thing for option 2 has already been explained. Here again – on Impact, ALWAYS OPTION 2 IS A MUST!

Once you hit fullpot, you can play until it crashes for sure – try to keep the temperature ALWAYS BELOW -135. If you’ve reached -100 once, some CPU love to crack then! So…NEVER EVER GO HIGHER THAN -135.

Don’t try to boot with 1.8V DMI – you’ll always get 25 postcode.
Don’t try to boot with 1.75 pll termination – you’ll sometimes loose you SATA
Last but not least –

If you have any question, fell free to ask! BTW - I'm not responsible for any dead chips! Do it on your own risk!

Many thanks to Seasonic, Asus, T-Grizzly, Der8auer - you guys made this possible ;)

Keep pushing guys!

Poland Xtreme Addict says:

Yap, it's working. I confirm this :) Thumbs up for posting it in public Daniel! :)

Germany der8auer says:

Great guide! I can also confirm it :D

United States Splave says:

Looks spot on!

Germany Bullshooter says:

Nice Guide

Romania Bruno says:

Great read! Thanks for sharing!

France DrTanK says:

Thanks man :)

United Kingdom topdog says:

Thanks for sharing

Iran Morteza.p says:

Thanks Daniel ;)

Germany minicoopers says:

Thanks for sharing Daniel

France Wizerty says:

Thanks Daniel ;)

United States xxbassplayerxx says:

I've never done the big glob of paste but I do still have the glue on mine like you do. I think that's the key :celebration:

Germany Dancop says:

Thanks for the advice...I knew, I forgot something!

Poland phobosq says:

Good info, thanks for sharing!

South Africa Vivi says:

thanks man!!

Belgium leeghoofd says:

Great one Daniel

Netherlands Oldscarface says:

Great read and thank for sharing Daniel

United States Splave says:


Germany Dancop says:

funniest thing ever....wtf are gifs? - welcome to the video-QUOTEs :P

France loul says:

thank's for sharing experience daniel ;)

United States xxbassplayerxx says:

lol Splave that's never been more relevant.

Australia zeropluszero says:

Almost considering buying Asus.

Germany Dancop says:

Nobody needs to, but at least some things out of this guide should help with cracks... Benching skylake at fullpot, makes everything so easy...3d05 is like...filling the beast, have a coffee or beer, and do the screenshot ;)

FlanK3r says:

This advice is appreciated. New life for my 6700K :D
Thx Dan

Iran Mr. DB! says:

Amazing guidance Dani! :)

Germany BenchBros says:

No competitors around and feeling lonely on top? Create new opponents with a guide :D

Germany Dancop says:

Something like sharing is caring andi ;)

Australia zeropluszero says:

Who wants to 3d model the cpu installation tool?

Greece FireKillerGR says:

Ch€ap@$$ guy here. What happens if u use thermal grizzly/gelid on die and ceramique (which should handle the pressure easier than others) on pcb (around the die) ? :D

Germany Dancop says:

Doesn't work! Did all the tests already...also played with a mixture of LM and grizzly...works for 30 minutes, then it started to get worse

Greece FireKillerGR says:

Dancop said: Doesn't work! Did all the tests already...also played with a mixture of LM and grizzly...works for 30 minutes, then it started to get worse

oh okay, thanks. :)

Germany Dancop says:

I sadly have no idea, maybe some other people might help with other brands....I'm really sorry...

Germany BenchBros says:

I think Asus is the only one who can adjust DMI voltage? On MSI PLL voltages are clalled CPU ST / CPU ST V6...

Argentina TRES2 says:


Germany Dancop says:

Explanation it a bit more please...

Argentina TRES2 says:

Yes, for sure. I have a problem with a mother board asus maximus viii hero and can not find solution. I can't put the clocks without energy savings. I put the multi x 54 for example, but always come back to 35 (i5 6600k), ALWAYS.
I tried these bios and all the same: 0040/0014/0039 etc.
Sorry for the inconvenience, I hope you can help me.

Germany Dancop says:

Disable all c states and set high performance in windows

Argentina TRES2 says:

Thank Dan, Now i will go for full pot benching!!! I hope best results! Thank you very much!! TRES2.

Romania Volken says:

Thanks for sharing Dancop! You rock!

Indonesia fahmi_thebull says:

many thanks Dancop!

United States Strong Island says:

this thread helped me a lot with my ocf and 6320/6700k.

Full pot benching on 6320 last night with not a single crack all night after hours of benching. My first real full pot session on skylake where I could really just fill to top and let run.

The most important things for me were the extending of the die with the thermal paste.

Also I think most important for me was not playing around at lower temperatures which I used to always do just to slowly walk up and see what cpu could do. Now straight to -160 and fine tune from there.

Thanks so much for the thread, I feel so happy. I was so frustrated, I even took a break for awhile because I wasnt having fun with all the cracks.

Germany Dancop says:

You're welcome! I'm glad I could help

France nvidiaforever2 says:

Thanks Dancop for your help at the Gamer assembly .

United States Strong Island says:

I was thinking of trying to design something. A little square that would go around the die a couple mm in each direction. The same height as die. And then we fill up the square with paste so when we put the lid back it will keep the tim in place in a nice square with nice contact.

I dont know, just thinking of different ideas, would love to try it.

I have been having great full pot sessions. I wanted to see if it was possible to not change tim everytime. I had 2 sessions without cracks at full pot with same time, but third sessions cracked right away.

So I finally have to realize the paste has to change everytime like dancop said. Been going thru so much paste.

Germany Dancop says:

I've been going through at least 500g of pastes! So...just follow exactly what I did...even I have cracks sometimes. Especially when I went above -130!

United States GtiJason says:

Dancop said: I've been going through at least 500g of pastes! So...just follow exactly what I did...even I have cracks sometimes. Especially when I went above -130!

That is over $800 US of T.Grizz if using Splave-sized tubes, wowza !

Sweden Rauf says:

Strong Island said: I was thinking of trying to design something. A little square that would go around the die a couple mm in each direction. The same height as die. And then we fill up the square with paste so when we put the lid back it will keep the tim in place in a nice square with nice contact.

No need for the square, just put a really big blob of paste on the die and press down the ihs carefully. Make sure it is level while pressing down.

United States Strong Island says:

Rauf said: No need for the square, just put a really big blob of paste on the die and press down the ihs carefully. Make sure it is level while pressing down.

ya I know there is no need, I have been benching full pot without cracks every night, I just thought it would be cool because it would stop the paste at a certain point and make like a nice wall.

Romania Alex@ro says:

Guide is good and answers a lot of questions.

Anyway,i was benching today my last dips of Ln2 on my gem cpu ,all set and went to OS to get hwbotprime,tried 6500,6600 ,when i pushed 6650 at almost end of run i heard a crack so loud i tought someone threw a stone at my window. Quickly shut down,dropped the temps,power on everything ok,went to OS and check the temps,realtemp showed no weakness and clocks were the same,no need to heaten up or remount....

For guys that benched full pot can you please chime in what are your load temperature with full pot under hwbot prime for example together with POT model ?

I have -190 idle full pot and -185 middle of hwbot prime, grizzly everywhere,1.89 Vcore,1.72 termination....

Germany Dancop says:

Don't go that high on termination! Produces too much heat...

Romania Alex@ro says:

Well at 1.67 it freezed full pot .... A rebench is needed...

Hungary subaruwrc says:

I can confirm this method to be working on Z170X SOC Force + 6700k. same setup since 3-4 months,last sessions were fullpot. Remaining stock glue under ihs,or electrical tape is a must for leveling,using lots of paste too. Cleaning the surfaces with alcohol helps too.And use springs on pot!

United States Strong Island says:

I found a great cpu but it's so frustrating because it seems to have like a reset cold bug. So it can bench full pot and can even restart at around -175 but if I crash or hit the retry button it wont boot again until -125.

Which is horrible because it's right around the point where it might start to crack. It's so annoying to have a full pot and then have to get down to -125.

I guess this chip I need to find max and then not really mess with it after that, but finding max is painful.

Then I test 2 more chips after this one and both can go full pot and have no reset cb, and cbb at -175, they both do the same thing but both cant do more than like 6.2ghz hwbot prime. So frustrating.

Is there anything that helps a reset cb, I dont even know if that the right word.

Germany Dancop says:

Yes...boot with lower pll termination. Try to boot at 1.4

France nvidiaforever2 says:

hi does pll termination voltage help with frequency ?
I can bench fullpot with 1.4v .
Thanks .

Argentina nacho_arroyo says:

U can try, sometimes yes, sometimes nop. u must try on your chip.

France nvidiaforever2 says:

Thanks i ll try

United States jiccman1965 says:

Nice guide, I was wondering where I could find the PCB frame from ASUS?

Germany Dancop says:

In every retail board box ;) Gesendet von meinem HUAWEI NXT-L29 mit Tapatalk

United States sunset1 says:

older post but thank you just the same.. im slow ;> and that gap between the glue is there for a reason. I hate to guess but think its related to the old hole in the top of the die. hot air expansion? either way thanks!!!!!

South Africa Oj0 says:

I had an interesting experience with a 6700K recently.

Firstly, CB at -140'c unless I drop the temperature while Heaven is running, then I can pull it down to just above -172'c and keep it there forever. If I crash, CBB is at -135'c so I'd have to warm up to that. After that, CB is back at -140'c unless I pull down further while Heaven is running. Odd.

Anyway, the next interesting part is that I had another session with the chip (fresh thermal paste using the method outlined in the OP - maybe more in fact) and this time I used a VCCIO of 1.415v instead of 1.350v. I was in a major rush and not watching temperatures and ended up with a full pot - Absolutely NO CB or CBB. I could even unplug the PSU and drain the caps, plug back in and boot with a still-full pot. I even video'd it booting with a full pot.

I've since checked and the mount was good. Interesting but odd. Pity that even with a full pot the chip is only good for a bit under 6 GHz :/

Romania Alex@ro says:

I am not sure if there is any cpu with no CBB at all,most likely you had a little crack causing you the lower clocks and also no CBB behaviour.Even with 0 temps in realtemp,for example my best cpu that could do 6750+ 32M with a proper mounting and no crack, had this half-crack phenomen sometimes causing it to do around 6300-6400 .

South Africa Oj0 says:

Clock speeds were no worse, at -130'c I could bench a hair below 6 GHz as usual. 60x multi does not work for me even with a lower Bclk, it's a pretty garbage chip with a VID of almost 1.3v. Heck, at -60'c and 1.700v I can suicide 102x59 but even at -130'c with a known good mount and 1.885v I can't suicide 60x anything or 103x59.

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