How to Overclock Your CPU


By overclocking your CPU, you may squeeze additional efficiency out of your PC with out spending any cash. Most processors have somewhat additional headroom, and if you know the way to overclock your CPU, you may benefit from it for increased body charges in video games, sooner renders in Adobe Professional, and every little thing in between.

Though overclocking could appear scary, the fact is that it’s not too troublesome and it doesn’t pose a lot of a danger if what you’re doing. On this information, we’ll run you thru the fundamentals for tips on how to overclock your Intel and AMD CPU. Bear in mind although, CPU overclocking is barely half the battle for maximizing your PC’s efficiency; you may also overclock reminiscence, too. And in the event you aren’t certain which processor to get, try our information on AMD Vs. Intel desktop and laptop computer processors.

A phrase of warning

While you overclock a processor, a few issues occur. The chip runs hotter and makes use of extra energy. Each components can result in issues in the event you’re utilizing the inventory cooler equipped with the CPU. That doesn’t essentially imply you may’t overclock, however your potential overclocking headroom is far decrease than utilizing a extra superior air or liquid cooling system in your PC.

You’re working exterior of the boundaries of your CPU when overclocking, which might decrease its lifespan. In any case, elevated energy and warmth will degrade most PC parts sooner. That stated, most reasonable overclocks gained’t impression the lifespan in your processor in any significant approach.

If you wish to overclock a laptop computer CPU, you’re in all probability out of luck. Few permit it, and fewer nonetheless possess the thermal headroom to make it viable. However even in the event you can, we warning towards it in your first overclocking enterprise.

Lastly, overclocking your CPU can void its guarantee. AMD and Intel usually don’t cowl overclocking, although they might be hard-pressed to show overclocking killed your CPU — until you pushed approach an excessive amount of voltage by means of the chip.

Motherboard producers might or might not cowl overclocking. When you’re involved, verify the guarantee earlier than attempting.

Determine your CPU

Comet Lake S 10400

Earlier than you begin overclocking the CPU, work out what you have got — the chip might not even assist overclocking within the first place. If it does, decide its theoretical maximums with some research.

Which processors you may overclock is an space the place AMD and Intel differ considerably. You may overclock the newest Ryzen CPUs from AMD. Usually, you may solely overclock the Intel Ok and X collection CPUs.

Beneath are a number of current unlocked Intel processors primed for overclocking. In case your CPU isn’t on the checklist and doesn’t have a Ok or X suffix in its title, overclocking might not be potential. Double-check in the event you’re not sure.

SKU Base clock Turbo clock
Core i9-11900Ok 3.5GHz 5.3GHz
Core i7-11700Ok 3.6GHz 5.0GHz
Core i5-11600Ok 3.9GHz 4.9GHz
Core i9-10900Ok 3.7GHz 5.3GHz
Core i7-10700Ok 3.8GHz 5.1GHz
Core i5-10600Ok 4.1GHz 4.8GHz

AMD processors have remained fully unlocked and overclockable for generations. The final a number of generations of Ryzen CPUs assist overclocking, together with the current Ryzen 5000 chips. Many FX-series processors assist overclocking, too, in the event you’re nonetheless holding onto one.

When you’re unsure, don’t fret. The worst factor that may occur in the event you can’t overclock your CPU is that you just attempt, and it doesn’t work. The software program we advocate will let you know as such, so at worst, you’ll face some disappointment.


Since overclocking will increase your system’s working temperature, it forces each your CPU and system cooling to work more durable than regular. If that is your first overclocking try, give your PC a spring cleansing. You may clear the mud filters in your entrance consumption followers or take away all {hardware} and wipe down each floor inside.

In the end, you wish to be certain clumps of mud aren’t blocking air flowing out and in of your PC. Additionally, be certain mud doesn’t gather in your CPU cooler. That’s the place nearly all of the extra warmth accumulates.

Earlier than cleansing, flip off the PC and put on an anti-static wristband. We additionally don’t advocate utilizing a vacuum cleaner to take away mud as a result of potential for static buildup. If mud is difficult to achieve, use a can of compressed air.

While you’re lastly prepared, skip forward to the part for the model of CPU you have got, and comply with the directions there.

Intel CPU: Excessive Tuning Utility

You may overclock Intel CPUs utilizing the BIOS. Since it is a newbie’s information to overclocking, we advocate Intel’s Home windows-based Excessive Tuning Utility (XTU), which you’ll be able to obtain right here. It’s a free software program suite explicitly designed to overclock your Intel CPU.

In contrast to some third-party software program, the Intel XTU is steady, dependable, and unlikely to trigger issues independently. It provides you an in depth take a look at your CPU’s present state. Even in the event you’re not overclocking, it’s an amazing little utility offering a great deal of details about your system.

Intel XTU Main

Intel XTU might look somewhat intimidating at first, given its many highly-granular choices. However when you develop accustomed to the device, every little thing is sensible. The reams of data turn out to be extremely helpful.

Step 1: Baseline temperatures and efficiency

The primary time you begin XTU, take just a few baseline readings to verify your CPU is able to overclock. Begin by operating Stress Check situated on the left-hand menu. Run this check for at the least an hour.

Intel XTU Stress Test

You may sit and watch the check or do one thing else. When you go away, return towards the top of the hour and take a look at the system data within the window’s base.

Pay attention to the Package deal Temperature. In case your CPU is hotter than 80 levels, you don’t have the thermal headroom to overclock. We advocate bettering your cooling earlier than persevering with any additional.

Intel XTU Package Temp

In case your temperature is beneath that — ideally properly beneath it — you have got some thermal wiggle room to push your chip at a better frequency (with relative security).

Step 2: Multipliers

Though you may overclock your CPU utilizing the Primary tab, studying in regards to the totally different parts of an overclock will enable you to higher perceive what’s taking place with the chip. It additionally makes it simpler to realize a steady overclock. Choose the Superior Tuning tab from the left-hand menu after which look to the part headed Multipliers.

Multipliers (or CPU ratios) correspond to the velocity you’re getting out of the CPU. It’s a multiplication of the BCLK frequency or reference clock. A x32 multiplier would usually imply a turbo frequency of three.2GHz.

Increase your multiplier by one quantity (x33 in our instance) throughout all cores. Though you may regulate frequencies individually on totally different cores, we’ll push for an all-core overclock to maintain issues easy.

Intel XTU Overclock

Now check the overclock’s stability. Choose Stress Check from the left-hand menu and rerun the check. On this case, you solely must run the check for 10 minutes. If it completes and not using a drawback, enhance the multiplier by one other step. Rinse and repeat. Finally, the check will report a fail consequence, or it’ll trigger your laptop to crash. When that occurs, step again to the earlier multiplier setting.

When you’re pleased with the ultimate overclock, run extra prolonged stress checks and play just a few video games for a number of hours to the overclock stays steady. If not, scale back the multiplier one other step and start the stress testing course of once more. While you attain a degree the place you may fortunately use your PC as regular at a better frequency, pat your self on the again for a profitable overclock!

When you run into issue attempting to stabilize your overclock or wish to see in the event you can push the system additional, attempt adjusting its voltage.

Step 3: Core voltage

Many voltage parameters can have an effect on a CPU’s operation, however arguably an important and impactful is core voltage (VCore). You may regulate the voltage utilizing Intel’s XTU, much like the way you modified the multipliers. This course of can differentiate between unstable and steady overclocks, and even the distinction between modest and far increased overclocks.

However be warned: It’s worthwhile to take extra care when adjusting the CPU voltage than you do with multipliers. When you push the CPU to run at a ridiculously excessive multiplier, it’ll simply crash and restart your system. When you attempt to power an excessive amount of voltage by means of your CPU, it will possibly kill it, so proceed with warning.

Use Google to see what settings different individuals use in your particular CPU, particularly for VCore settings, given its potential to wreck the chip. Reddit’s r/Overclocking is a superb useful resource to see what different individuals generated from the identical CPU configurations.

A normal rule of thumb is that something over 1.Four volts is harmful. Nevertheless, it is vitally a lot depending on the actual chip in your PC, so further analysis is value contemplating.

When prepared, choose the Superior Tuning tab within the left-hand menu of the XTU and enhance your core voltage by about .025. For instance, When you’re beginning at 1.250, transfer to 1.275. Choose Apply. If the system doesn’t crash, you may rerun the stress check to you’re nonetheless inside a protected temperature vary.

You may as well attempt growing the multiplier to see if the extra voltage improves your CPU’s overclocking means.

Step 4: Tweak, check, repeat

At this level, you have got all of the instruments for locating your CPU’s steady overclock. Take it regular. Change settings solely in small increments. Run at the least one quick stress check after every change. Be sure that your CPU temperatures don’t exceed 80 levels after a prolonged stress check. Lastly, don’t set your voltages too excessive.

In case your system crashes or restarts, that’s a telltale signal you’ve pushed one thing too far. Return and make some changes. A very powerful final result is that you just discover a protected and steady frequency in your CPU. It’s enjoyable to push it to run at a a lot increased frequency, but when it’s not sturdy sufficient to run functions or play video games with out crashing, it’s not a lot use exterior of bragging rights.

When you’re pleased with a steady frequency, pay attention to your settings so that you could reapply them in a while if wanted.

AMD: Ryzen Grasp

Ryzen Master

In case you have a current era of AMD Ryzen CPU and wish to overclock it with the least effort, you should use the ClockTuner computerized overclocking device from 1usmus. If you wish to learn to do it manually, to assist higher perceive what AMD overclocking is all about, comply with the steps beneath.

AMD CPU overclocking could be very a lot the identical as Intel chips, however the software program is totally different. In case you have an AMD Ryzen processor from 2017 onward, the software program we advocate for newcomers is Ryzen Grasp. You may obtain the utility from AMD right here.

For older AMD processors, we advocate AMD Overdrive as an alternative. The next directions nonetheless apply, however the software program structure differs barely. Be sure that to double-check what you’re doing earlier than making any adjustments.

Step 1: Stress check

Earlier than you start overclocking the CPU, guarantee that it gained’t exceed protected temperatures. Though Ryzen Grasp has its built-in stress check, it doesn’t final very lengthy. As a substitute, we advocate the AIDA64 Excessive device and its stability check (free trial). When you like this device, a full license prices $40, overlaying as much as three PCs.

Open it and choose Instruments from the highest menu, adopted by Stability Check. Press Begin when prepared and go away your PC for round an hour. Make it possible for at no level throughout testing do the temperatures exceed 80 levels. In the event that they do, enhance your CPU cooling earlier than attempting to overclock. In case you have some temperature headroom, transfer on to overclocking your system.

Step 2: Frequencies

The most recent Ryzen Grasp software program is filled with choices, nearly all of which you don’t want for a fundamental overclock. To maintain issues easy, ensure you’re within the Primary View. In case your software program matches the screenshot above, you’re all set. If not, choose Primary View from the underside left nook of the expanded interface.

First, change the Management Mode from Default to Guide. This can help you manually regulate clock velocity and voltages, which you’ll want for the overclock.

In contrast to the Intel software program, you may regulate the clock velocity immediately as an alternative of utilizing a multiplier. Enhance the CPU Clock Velocity by 50MHz, then choose Apply & Check. Ryzen Grasp will increase your processor’s frequency and check it. In case your laptop is steady and the temperatures aren’t too sizzling — once more, the purpose is to remain beneath 80 levels — you may undergo the identical course of once more. Enhance the clock velocity by 50MHz, run a stress check, and confirm that every little thing is cool and purposeful.

Ryzen Grasp’s built-in stress-testing utility is first rate, however we advocate operating a check by means of AIDA64 after you’ve reached the velocity you need. Once more, run the check for about an hour and pay shut consideration to your temperature.

Proceed this course of till you’ve reached the velocity you need otherwise you expertise a crash. After that time, dial it again to the final steady setting and use your laptop for a number of hours (or possibly even a day or two). If it crashes once more, step it again once more and check once more. When it’s in a position to run all day whereas harassed, that is your base overclock, which you might be able to fine-tune for somewhat additional velocity utilizing voltage management.

Step 3: Voltage management

Rising the CPU’s voltage can enhance the soundness of an overclock. It additionally means that you can overclock even additional. The downside is that it will possibly dramatically enhance temperatures. Pushing the voltage too excessive can injury your processor as properly, so proceed with warning. Solely make small changes at a time.

A protected voltage for many AMD CPUs shouldn’t exceed 1.Four volts, however we advocate researching your particular CPU to ensure you don’t set the voltage too excessive.

When you’re completely happy to take the danger, utilizing the CPU Voltage part to push up your voltage by a .025 increment. After that, hit Apply & Check to verify the system is steady, then return and repeat the method. Regulate your temperature right here and ensure you don’t exceed 1.Four volts.

After you’ve reached a steady voltage, run an AIDA64 stress check for at the least an hour, keeping track of temperatures.

Step 4: Rinse and repeat

When you discover a steady frequency and voltage, give your self a pat on the again. Now you may enhance frequencies additional, supplied you have got further headroom for voltage and temperature. Save your profile to lock in all these settings so you should use them in future periods.

When Ryzen Grasp hundreds with Home windows, it’ll immediate you to offer your admin approval to use the overclock. You can begin the app and manually apply the overclock if it doesn’t ask in your permission.

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