Overclock? Manufacturers of computer processors often use this term frequently, but if you do not know what overclock is and what it is for, do not worry. First of all, you should know that all processors work at a speed preset by the manufacturer, according to a special configuration in combination with the main board or motherboard of your computer. In most models it was locked and could not be modified … at least on paper.
A little history
The overclock It has been around for a long time. In fact, in the first main cards you must configure the speed of the processor through switches, selecting the frequency and the multiplier, to reach the one that had been assigned by the manufacturer. It was done almost illegally, because occasionally the processors were damaged and you lost the warranty. With the rise of computer gamers it has become almost mandatory and even manufacturers promote it.
For more advanced users, the overclocking It is a common way to increase the performance of a computer. However, it has its share of risks, especially for non-experts.
The overclock It usually involves the primary processor, although you can also increase the performance of a discrete graphics card. There is no rule about how quickly you can accelerate a processor, but each project produces different results. That makes your decision more difficult. So it's worth the overclocking? Yes and no.
You need the overclocking?
The overclocking It can take a long time and be expensive, especially if you have little experience playing with computer components. In addition to changing your multiplier, you may need to change the voltage settings, fan rotation speeds and other important and fragile fundamentals.
The processors with overclock They are often associated with computers for gamers, but here is a reality check: speeding up your processor may not do much to improve your gaming experience. It helps particularly demanding programs run faster, but you probably won't notice the same effect on the games. Why? Because the GPU is the one that does most of the work.
In games, the processor generally deals with player inputs, artificial intelligence, calculations, essentially everything that is not visual. However, processors can withstand a larger and more stressful burden on MMORPG titles (massively multiplayer online role, for its acronym in English), as it handles additional players, their actions and their conversations.
That said, increasing the speed of your processor leads to better performance in advanced 3D image programs, professional video editing applications and similar software for complex work projects. For better graphics and more fluid action, the overclocking Your dedicated graphics card is a more reliable solution. Even so, if your computer is new enough to run the latest games, your processor and GPU may be sufficient without the need for overclocking.
How many people do overclock Why do they really need it? Relatively few. Most do it simply because they can. Later, they boast of their glorious achievement of "man on the machine." It is a way to play with your computer and get more from it using some simple tools. That attracts people who like the "do it yourself?, Who prefer to start with a lower cost and lower speed processor and modify it on their own.
However, this also brings another problem: excessive use. You cannot give steroids to your computer without suffering the consequences. A processor with overclock It consumes more energy, produces more heat and wears more quickly. And in the long run, it will cost you more money than buying a faster processor at the time. Even a overclocking poorly done void any warranty on your processor
How much faster are we talking?
How fast do you want? The multipliers are easy to configure, but the processors are also easy to burn: there is a give and take.
A little overclock 10 percent is not difficult to implement. Do not exert great pressure on your processor, but the effects can be disappointing. On the contrary, adding several hundred MHz to your system is common and avoids the danger zone for most computers.
Increasing the speed of your processor by 1 GHz is a more complex issue, requiring additional cooling and perhaps new power units. It is possible, but not advisable, especially if you do not have enough experience.
What do i need?
The tools you are going to need will depend on the type of overclocking you want to do and how deep you are willing to arrive. Here are some important elements so you can judge on your own.
The right computer or processor: You must invest in a processor, such as the Intel K series, that supports overclocking. A motherboard compatible with the overclock It is also important. The latest processors and main cards are friendlier and often come with software that replaces the tools we will detail. Finally, if you are buying an assembled computer, check the specifications before assuming it supports overclocking.
Second computer: You want to have another computer during the stress test in case something goes wrong.
Data visualization software: Programs such as CPU-Z allow you to observe the clock speed, see the use of voltage and other important factors. Downloading one of these tools will make the project easier.
Stress test software: You must perform a stress test to ensure that your processor with overclock Be stable and safe. Prime95, LinX and AIDA64 can help, although some overclockers They prefer to run more than one application and compare the results. Programs such as RealTemp are also useful for monitoring processor temperatures.
A heat sink / coolant unit: For a overclocking importantly, you will need a better cooling system on your computer. That can be a larger thermal processor heatsink and additional case fans.
How long to take
The process of overclocking It depends on how much time you are willing to invest to do it correctly. You can perform a procedure of overclock Fast, but poor, if you only download the correct software and change some settings. However, this can cause many more problems.
An adequate and safe overclock requires prior investigation. You may even need to order additional parts, such as a larger cooler.
After preparation, you must implement the basic tests, download the correct stress test and make modifications to the processor. These are all relatively quick steps, which can take an hour. The execution of the stress test, which you must do after each change, takes a few hours, since it controls the temperature and the activity in search of stability. That means a very busy afternoon, assuming everything goes smoothly and you know what you are doing.
If your computer overheats, fails or does not work as expected, you must make adjustments and run the stress test again. If you need to install a refrigerant system or a heat sink, you should take additional time.
The process can often take several days of touch-ups to do well, which may be too long for you to get a real increase in processor speed. On the other hand, if you are an amateur, spend a couple of weekends on a project overclocking It may sound fun.
Final word: Overclock or not?
While overclocking is easier than ever and is no longer particularly risky, it requires good knowledge and patience. But it is not an exact science. Each result is a bit different depending on the materials, the skill and the available hardware.
If you can handle the element of uncertainty, the necessary tests for stabilization and adjustments with the basic parts of your computer, the overclocking It is within your reach. If you cannot afford to accidentally burn your processor, the right tools or the desire to deepen your hardware management, avoid overclocking at all costs.
In any case, you should not expect the overclocks Transform your computing experience. In addition to bragging rights, the main reason for doing so is to improve the performance of applications that rely heavily on computer speed. You don't see the greatest benefit if you never use this type of software.