I put my opened case in the window to see what kind of overclocking I could do. Someone beat my #1 Palomino core score on the Futuremark ORB, so I had to dig out one of my old Palominos (an AROIA stepping I had never OC'd). I threw it in my 8RDA and gave it 1GB of my Winbond RAM. Then I slapped my Thermaltake Smartfan II on the SK-7 heatsink I had on the cpu. To top it off, I have a 120mm fan blowing directly on my 9800 Pro. Once I let it run for about 20mins and let everything get settled into a final temp, both my CPU and System temps were reporting 0c in the BIOS! I've never gotten down this low with aircooling before. I was able to get my AROIA to ~1970MHz with 1.9v. My old AGOIA could only do about 1940MHz and very unstably.
The winter 3DMark thing has become a ritual for me since late 2001. This is the first year I've gotten below zero on my temps, and considering the increase in cpu speed I've gotten since 2001, that's pretty amazing. But I set out to do what I needed to do and recplaimed my crown. I couldn't stand someone beating my most cherished #1. Now I'll go back into 3DMark retirement... No one will be beating this score with aircooling.
And I've got an even higher score ready to be published in case anyone decides to have a go for the Palomino crown.
I forgot to mention my vid card overclock which is the reason I posted in this forum! I was able to get my 9800 Pro up to 472/398 with the default hsf and no vmods lol. I could've pushed higher with a better cooler, but there just wasn't any need to. I'm betting I may have been able to hit 500 on the core with better cooling, but the extra 28MHz wasn't worth upping the vgpu and slapping on something beefier. The vid card clocks in my sig reflect when I had my Giant II and Thermaltake Smartfan II attached- vgpu was at 1.8v. It was too damn hot and noisy to justify the meager performance gain.