Disclaimer: Game and Tech Reviews is NOT responsible for any damage that occurs to your system while performing overclocking.

Download links:

CPU-Z: http://www.cpuid.com/cpuz.php

Speedfan: http://www.almico.com/sfdownload.php

CoreTemp: http://www.download-free.programas-gratis.net/php/software.php?id_programa=13734&download-CoreTemp-0.95

Prime95: http://files.extremeoverclocking.com/file.php?f=103

Glossary:

Overclocking – Running a CPU at a higher frequency than it’s supposed to run at

BIOS – Basic Input Output System- This preps all of your system components and runs tests to make sure everything is functioning properly.

CPU (Central Processing Unit) or Processor – If you don’t know what this is you probably shouldn’t be over clocking in the first place. But, if you want to continue, the CPU handles all the data. Literally every shred of information is passed through this chip. Basically it just does a whole bunch of math very fast

FSB (Front Side Bus) – This relays information from the CPU and the north bridge. The faster this is the higher the performance.

Clock Multiplier– Basically this allows the CPU to run at a higher speed/frequency than the North Bridge and FSB. The CPU speed is found my multiplying the FSB with the clock multiplier. For example: 9 x 333= 2.997

Megahertz – A hertz is a standard unit of frequency. It basically refers to the cycles per second. 5 MHz means 5 cycles per second. A kilohertz is 10^3. A megahertz is 10^6. A gigahertz is 10^9

vCore – Is the amount of voltage that the CPU is receiving from the power supply.

TJunction – Refers to the thermal sensors (Digital Thermal Sensors) placed in each core.

TJunction Max– Shutdown

TCase – Refers to the thermal sensor (Case Thermal Diode) placed on the CPU die.

Ambient Temperature – Room temperature

Load – Refers to CPU under full stress, 100% usage in each core. These are the only temperatures that really matter

Idle Refers to the CPU under little to no stress. These temperatures mean little to nothing.

Throttling – A safety feature included with modern processors to save components from damage. This occurs at about 5C below TJunction Max. It is said to “throttle back.” If heating continues, the system will shut down.

Stepping – Means the revision on the processor.

 

Secrets of overclocking 😉 :

The first unwritten secret of overclocking is quite simple: buy a motherboard conducive to overclocking. It’s that simple. If you don’t have a motherboard that lets you easily access the key settings involved in overclocking, you’re in for hell of a hard time overclocking. I recommend purchasing enthusiast friendly motherboards such as EVGA, Asus, or sometimes Gigabyte. You should really research both your processor and motherboard to check to see if they are suitable for your overclocking desires.

The second secret to overclocking is picking a processor that overclocks well. Now, each processor overclocks differently, but some processors handle higher bus speeds and heat better than others. For example, the G0 revision of the Intel Q6600 overclocks much higher than the initial B3 processor. This is because it is a revision and Intel has made modification to the architecture and refined it to handle heat better. Also, the extreme series that Intel offers will overclock better because of their unlocked multipliers. But, believe me you will pay for that. The extreme series will run you an average of 500 USD more than a Core 2 Duo. To they joy of enthusiasts everywhere, Intel has recently embraced overclocking and has even showed a Qx9650 clocked somewhere over 5GHz at their annual press conference. AMD is lacking behind and has been for sometime. Long gone are the days when almost every enthusiast was sporting an AMD processor. AMD is now barely getting by as a budget processor company, and they failed to keep up with Intel with the release of their 65nm Phenom chip. So, what does this all mean? Do your research!

The third secret to overclocking is proper cooling. Bottom line stock cooling will simply NOT cut it. There is a reason that extreme overclockers use water cooling, dry ice, and liquid nitrogen when they overclock. Heat is the number one enemy of overclocking. While processors are made to run at sub-zero temperatures, they do not handle higher temperatures as well. Different processors have different points at which they will fail. Most, if not all, modern CPU’s and motherboards will shot off before permanent damage is done. I recommend investing in water cooling if you really want to push your CPU up there. Or at least investing in some nice There are some terms you must know before you begin messing with settings. There are some inherent risks with overclocking one should be aware of. First, it will reduce the life of the component. This is because it is running outside of the recommended zone. Second, if proper cooling is not used the ambient temperature in the case could rise to dangerous levels potentially damaging other components. Third, overclocking can and probably will void the warranty on your CPU.

Rules:

1. Do not exceed 1.5 volts under the vCore setting.

2. All temperatures should be taken into consider when under load.

3. Always have some sort of active cooling.

4. Crashing is normal and part of the overclocking process. If your computer crashes and it doesn’t turn on right away, don’t panic. Turn it off at the power supply, wait 10-30 seconds, and try again.

5. Under no circumstances should you exceed the TJunction or TCase maximums.

So, you’ve bought a nice, shiny new processor, and you want to overclock the hell out of it? Who can blame you? Here’s a general guide on how to overclock your processor; and, more importantly, do it as safely as possible. Must have software: CPU-Z, Speedfan or CoreTemp, and Prime95. CPU-Z is necessary for viewing what kind of processor you have, the multiplier, the FSB, operating frequency, and other crucial data. Speedfan and CoreTemp allow you to see the temperature of the processor. Prime95 is a stress test program that allows you to test the stability of your overclock.  Boot your computer and load your operating system.  Download and install the necessary programs.  Open CPU-Z and look on the left side to determine what stepping processor you have.  Newer revisions overclock better.  So, it’s better to have a newer stepping.  Open CoreTemp and take a look at your TJunction Max.  This is the temperature at which shutdown will occur, and throttling will occur at ~5C bellow the TJunction Max.  However, for 24/7 overclocks it is advised to stay at ~20C-30C below the TJunction Max. 

Note: Only trust CPU-Z for accurate clock speeds.  And only use Core Temp to monitor core temperatures if you have a quad core.  

 

 

1.  Restart your computer and enter your BIOS.  Each motherboard manufacturer has a different way of accessing the BIOS; so, take a look at the opening screen for the correct key to hit.  The most common key/key combinations are: Delete, F1, F2, F3, F5, F10, Escape, Insert, Control + Escape, Alt + Escape, Control + Alt + Escape, Control + Alt + Enter.  If none of that work, you either aren’t pressing them fast enough or your motherboard manufacturer has a different way of accessing the BIOS.  Find the manufacturer’s website and it should be listed there.

2.  Disable any type of Speedstep or power saving features your motherboard may have.  This is a power saving feature, but it can lead to system instability during higher clock speeds.  Stress test with out it enabled to find a stable overclock, and then enable it and stress test again to see if the system remains stable.  Intel uses speed step and is usually listed under EIST, C1E, and Speedstep.  AMD uses Cool’n’Quiet and PowerNow! 

3.  Raise the FSB is large increments until failure occurs.  It is normal for the computer to not boot right away.  Relax.  Just unplug it or turn it off at the PSU and wait 15-20 seconds.  It should boot up again.   Lower the FSB until you can boot again.  You can and probably will need to increase voltage to the vCore and the north bridge.  Up it in the lowest increments your motherboard will allow.  Raising this will increase heat.  Do not go over 1.5v to the core.

4.  Begin stress testing with Prime95.  Run small TFF’s for a minimum of 6 hours.  I recommend running it overnight to truly test system stability.  If a crash occurs, lower the FSB or raise the voltages until it becomes stable.  Watch temperatures using either CoreTemp or Speed Fan.  24/7 temperatures should not exceed TJunction Max – 25C.  So, if your TJunction Max is 100C, temperatures (under load) should not exceed 75C. 

5.  Enjoy the performance boost an overclocked CPU can bring to you! 

 

Feel free to leave comments and questions here.  I will answer them promptly.

 

 

 

 

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