How to Overclock a CPU
In today’s era of technology and advanced gear, it is important to be ahead of the game and know how to achieve maximum efficiency. Gaming and Personal Computers have come a long way and evolved together over the past decades.
Necessarily, you have to stay up-to-date with what’s happening around you so that you too may benefit from it, as technology so often has been doing.
When it comes to computers, a lot of people out there don’t mind tweaking around with the components and seeing what goes best. Of course, not everyone can do this since it does require insight and experience into how computers work and how all the components come together.
The few main purposes of testing things is to see how good your machine really is, how much better performance you can achieve, and increasing speed. But at the end, while testing and playing around with hardware, you must ask yourself if it’s worth it?
Messing around too much might damage the hardware or fry a component, or worse damage the entire case. It’s always important to make sure that the right precautions are taken in order to avoid hazardous consequences.
This article in particular talks about Overlocking your CPU. For easier understanding, we will break down each part and explain it in detail for clarification.
Overclocking is a term used for describing in basic words the process of setting your CPU or memory to run at speeds that are higher than their official speed benchmarks.
This basically in other words, increases the component’s clock rate and makes it run on a rate higher than it was designed to run on. The outcome of pushing it?
It can perform more operations per second and can increase speed and performance. Overclocking however can also generate heat and may damage a component if it’s abused too much and not carefully tested.
Now that you have a generally idea of what overclocking is and what it does, there are a set of basic rules and guidelines of sorts to follow to see whether you can overclock at all or not. Not every processor overclocks or supports it. But the ones that do have “unlocked multiplier”.
Any CPU can be overclocked by raising what’s called the base clock, the clock speed of your motherboard and entire machine including RAM and CPU. But that’s in theory, not every processor or system can handle being overclocked which means if you take it too far, then you might experience CPU stability issues sooner or later.
How to check
An easy way to figure out if your processor can be overclocked is by examining the name. Intel, for example, adds the letter “K” to processors that can be overclocked such as the Intel Core i7 9700K. Another example is, all processors from the Intel “X” series, primarily used professionally, can be overclocked. But on the other hand, we have AMD.
On the AMD side, there’s not a lot to worry about since all modern AMD Ryzen CPUs are “unlocked” and can be overclocked. However, if you have an older model, make sure to check online whether it can be overclocked or not.
CPU’s Core Temperature
Check the standard temperature at which your CPU since so you can measure the change after you overclock it. More heat will be generated so the temperature is likely to increase but excessive heat may damage components so make sure to keep an eye on it.
Perform Stress Test
A good way to be sure about your machine is by putting it through a stress test for a couple of hours to make sure the system is stable under the current base rate clock speed. Check the performance and speed of how things run before you get started so you know where you’re starting from. Be sure to measure the change after the overclocking.
How to Begin
The securest way is to change the settings in the computer’s BIOS which contains the PC’s main feature settings. To access the BIOS, turn on the computer, and while it’s restarting, press the DELETE, F2 or F10 key repeatedly.
This will give you access to the BIOS controls. The combination of keys may differ from model to brand. After it shows you the BIOS screen, you need to be looking for something like Advanced CPU Core Settings or OC/Overclocking.
Depending on the motherboard, the BIOS may provide an Automatic Overclocking or OC Level function. This will give you safer levels but don’t usually result in much change. Manually, you can adjust the multiplier clock.
To increase the clock speed, you need to increase the multiplier. For example, a multiplier of 26 (x100 MHz) gets you 2.6 GHz. Gradually increase the multiplier by using the “+” on the keyboard. Add it slowly, since it will speed up the computer. If all is well, increase it a little more. You can increase one core at a time, and then go towards other cores. The more cores you overclock, the hotter the system will get.
Save and Reboot
Save your settings and reboot the system. Stress test like before and benchmark to estimate the CPU stability and performance. Check the changes in temperature, performance, speed and other critical measurements.
To increase overclocking, the system requires more voltage. If you think the machine can handle it and you have a proper cooling system in place, you can increase the voltage a little to give a little bit more space for overclocking. You can change the CPU voltage from the BIOS settings from 1.25 (the standard) to 1.4 or 1.5.
The computer will get hotter the more you overclock so make sure your components are getting air and aren’t becoming unstable which may damage the entire computer.
If your computer doesn’t start or you get a black screen after the overclock settings, you can reset the BIOS settings to default by clicking a button on the motherboard that usually says “Clear CMOS” or “Reset CMOS”.