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What is overclocking? How to do it?

The so-called overclocking is basically a technique that offers us the possibility for our computer to increase its performance a little beyond the original factory values, but we must be very careful, and be very cautious with what we propose to do, since we can leave the components of our PC completely useless.

Overclocking is used by many users to improve the speed of their computers in order to get a little more performance, generally to have that extra bit of power so necessary when playing very heavy games. In this article we will know all the details, myths and truths about this procedure.

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What is overclocking?

As we mentioned, the overclocking procedure allows to accelerate the performance of the most important PC components such as the CPU, RAM and video card beyond the limits provided by their manufacturers, with which, in simple terms, we would improve the final speed of the computer.

It should be noted that the purpose of this article is not to teach this technique, but to know some general guidelines that will allow us to establish the need to do so and understand what is true and what is false in the implementation of overclocking, in addition to the observations we have to take into account before undertaking the modifications.

Myths and Truths of Overclocking

At present, the big manufacturers of processors such as AMD and Intel do not usually put so many qualms when it comes to overclocking, indeed, many times they even equip their products with tools that allow us to do it easily, not because they are good people or because they are They worry about our economy, but have seen that there is an important market of people who are attracted to this technique.

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Even so, we must know that  Overclocking will void the CPU warranty , plus there is a possibility of completely damaging essential PC components if we overdo the transformation. But as long as the overclocking is moderate, we will get a successful result .

Although we may come to think that with the purchase of a PC with limited resources and with a few touches of this overclocking technique we will obtain the performance of a high-end equipment,  the truth is that not even in our best dreams we will be able to obtain the performance of a computer that costs four times what we pay for ours.

To know if overclocking is valid, it is necessary to understand that this need depends to a great extent on the tasks we perform on our computer,  in the event that we only use programs such as Microsoft’s Office suite, Firefox, Chrome, Windows Media Player, Ares or other productivity apps, overclocking is not worth it , as all the hard work done on the CPU, motherboard, and so on will practically go unnoticed in the performance of these programs.

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However, if we make use of applications that use many system resources such as modern games and editing or rendering programs, which affect all the components of the PC such as the hard disk, video card, RAM memory and CPU, the overclocking is justified and we would get a notable improvement.

The most notable examples of applications that benefit from this procedure  are heavily multithreaded programs such as  image editing or professional video encoders.

Now  do not expect too much from the overclocking technique , if you want more performance, only a more powerful equipment can offer it. In summary we can say then that this procedure is not magical, it can only grease the mechanism a little.

How to overclock?

First of all, we must always keep in mind that the purpose of Overclocking  is to improve the performance of a computer , and that is why security and stability must prevail over speed. If we do not respect this point, the extra speed that we can obtain will not help us  if the PC hangs every 5 minutes.

Some of the most widespread myths among neophytes on the subject of overclocking say that in order to implement it, a large investment of money is necessary in RAM memories, power supplies, motherboards and special cooling coolers. But fortunately this is far from the truth if we stick to  a moderate and simple overclocking .

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However, we  may require a high investment in the event that we try to perform aggressive overclocking , which takes the components of the computer to an extreme level of performance, a fact that in itself raises the need to buy accessories and components with special features that support these much higher speeds.

So, if what we want is to increase the PC’s performance just a little,  with the tools provided by the manufacturer or external developers it is enough for us, since as we mentioned, CPU manufacturers such as AMD and Intel have included a series of facilities to that the user can develop the technique without complications.

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What’s more,  today we can find motherboards with the ability to overclock  manually or automatically. In this sense, if we are the owners of one of these motherboards,  we should avoid the use of automatic overclocking , since it will set the  processor clock speed and the memory speed at the level that the system considers stable, however. , this can bring many problems when running Windows or other applications.

To be able to enjoy an overclocking without complications,  the best thing in these cases will be to adjust the parameters manually, always documenting ourselves to avoid errors or PC instability .

Also another of the myths that revolve around overclocking is that a computer to which this technique has been performed is usually extremely noisy due to the cooling necessary to keep the components cold.

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As in the previous case, it all depends on the level of overclocking that has been applied to a PC, in most of the times a moderate overclocking does not require special coolers or fans,  nor does it complement the cooling with liquid-based gadgets or gases.

However, better cooling can extend the useful life of the components of our PC, as we can see by clicking on this link.

conclusion

Overclocking is a technique that requires a lot of patience and dedication, and as we can see, in some cases also a lot of money. If we consider that we need a little more performance, overclocking could give us that extra speed that we need , as long as we respect not to force the equipment or its components too much, without complying with this premise, we will obtain a stable and faster system than when we buy and use it for the first time.

How to overclock a PC?

One of the first things we must know before undertaking any type of overclocking is the working frequencies of some of the PC components such as the processor, RAM, chipset and GPU.

This frequency is measured in Hertz (Hz) , and each one of the Hertz corresponds to a process cycle per second that our microprocessor achieves. For this reason,  the measurements of Megahertz (Mhz) and Gigahertz (Ghz) ​​are usually used,  depending on the device we use.

In principle, it  is important to define that the frequency of a microprocessor basically tells us how fast  the element works when processing the data.

It should be noted that  the frequency of the microprocessor is obtained by the frequency of the front bus, commonly called according to the micro: FSB,  acronyms that come from its name in English “Front Side Bus”, Intel QuickPath Interconnect and HyperTransport, and a multiplier value.

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For example,  the FSB in the Intel signature processors is used as the main bus, and it is the one who will communicate with the motherboard chipset. For its part, the multiplier value is assigned to the factory component.

In other words,  the real frequency of the microprocessor results from the multiplication of both factors,  that is, the FSB by the multiplier value.

Techniques for Overclocking

To perform overclocking, different techniques can be implemented , depending on the type, model and brand of the microprocessor, thus achieving a higher speed in the component, and a notable increase in the performance of the equipment.

There are two basic ways to carry out the Overclocking technique: 

  • Increase the frequency of the FSB or front end bus, or increase the multiplier value. 
  • Perform an increase of both factors at the same time.

In order to carry out the modification of the parameters of our microprocessor, we must access the BIOS of the system , which is responsible for controlling the primary boot of our entire computer.

As we mentioned, the method used will depend on the type of microprocessor to which we will apply the technique,  since in the case of AMD processors it is possible to increase the FSB and the multiplier in parallel, while in the case of the old Intel Pentium microphones this is not possible. it is possible,  because the multiplier value has been factory locked.

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In general, for most microprocessors,  mainly for Intel, the FSB frequency is usually increased, a  technique that must be carried out with great care, since it also implies increasing the Bus frequencies, so that if the overclocking is erroneously performed may lead to system instability.

On the contrary,  in the practice of overclocking through the increase of the multiplier this does not cause inconveniences in the rest of the buses of our PC , but it can only be done in some models of AMD microphones.

It should be noted that when the Overclocking technique is carried out, it is necessary to bear in mind another important parameter:  the value of the voltage of the microprocessor core. 

On the other hand, it  is best to make small increases, both in the FSB and the multiplier,  and carry out different stability tests of the equipment and its components.

It is not advisable to noticeably increase the frequencies at once, without carrying out different verifications,  since poorly implemented overclocking can end the life of the components of our computer.

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How to disable Overclocking?

In some cases it may happen that  for different reasons when overclocking a PC the results were not as expected . And this is how we find ourselves in front of an overclocked computer that does not really show differences in its speed and performance, or what is worse, that after overclocking the PC works badly.

Of course, in this case our desire will be to try to return everything to normal. Therefore, here we explain  what is the procedure that must be carried out to disable overclocking .

It has happened to many of us that after  reading and rereading about the advantages that overclocking offers , we have finally decided and began to implement this process on the PC, in order to achieve  greater speed in all the processes carried out by the computer. , and therefore offer us a performance superior to what it offered us up to now.

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But sometimes things do not turn out as well as we thought, and shortly after overclocking the computer we find that  the instability caused by the overclocking process in the components causes the equipment to perform poorly.

Actually, before doing this technique on any computer, we should always bear in mind the risks involved in carrying out the overclocking process. For this we invite you to read until the end of this post, where we will find information on this important topic.

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It is extremely important to  be aware of the dangers of  overclocking, as failure to take the necessary precautions can end the experience with dire consequences , ranging from severe system problems to even CPU fire.

In any case,  overclocking is a process that can be reversed , that is, overclocking can be disabled  and then we can return to the normal and default configuration that the system had. In this sense, it is important to note that  no hardware component is overclocked by default , so we can always return to normal.

Process

To  disable overclocking on a PC , the first thing we must do is enter  CMOS  and modify the BIOS settings, reversing the motherboard voltage values ​​to return them to normal. To do this, it is best to select the option  “Restore Fail Safe Defaults”.

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Before starting the  process of disabling overclocking , it is important to check the processor and motherboard manufacturer’s website for the specifications regarding the amount of electrical voltage and the frequency settings that these components support. In this way, we can make the changes accordingly.

It should be noted that there are some computers that have special systems, such as Alienware computers, which include a function in the BIOS from which you can  easily select to enable or disable overclocking .

Now, if we have to do it manually, after making the aforementioned modification, we must deactivate all the basic CPU control options in the BIOS, as well as change the FSB frequency setting to its base value . In summary, we must reverse all the settings that we have changed to do Overclocking and return to the previous configuration.

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Then, we  will save the changes made and exit the BIOS setup screen .

Before starting the equipment again, if we have installed special cooling systems inside it, such as liquid nitrogen , it will be necessary to  remove all the cooling equipment.

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Once we’ve done all these steps, we’ll boot up the PC, and notice that everything is back to normal, as long as  no severe damage to hardware components has occurred during overclocking .

Alert: Before overclocking, know its dangers

Many users tend to choose to perform the overclocking process on their computers  , very common these days among gamers, since through this they try to  make their computers reach incredible speeds .

But the truth is that many are not aware about  the risks that are run when enabling overclocking , so here we bring you closer to what are  the dangers that your PC can run with overclocking.

In principle, it is important to clarify that  the primary objective of overclocking is to achieve a better performance of the equipment , that is to say that from the enablement of this process, the PC begins to work faster and more efficiently, compared to the operation that has brought from the factory

The truth is that overclocking has a large number of benefits  for the user, especially for the most demanding.

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However, the overclocking  can get to  arise a variety of disadvantages in PC performance , especially if the process is carried out by a person who has no experience in this field.

Let us bear in mind that  when overclocking  great changes occur  in certain fundamental components of the PC , such as the processor, RAM memory, the motherboard and even in some input or output peripherals, so it is logical that consequences arise when carrying it finished.

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In this sense, it should be noted that  moderate overclocking is a process that almost all computers can support , except those that are old or have a lot of use. However,  when a deep overclocking is carried out , which takes the PC to the limit, it will find itself facing severe threats that will directly affect its correct operation, and even put your life at risk.

Dangers of overclocking

One of the biggest  risks that a PC that has been overclocked can suffer is  the dreaded hardware overheating. This occurs because  the components have been designed to operate at a certain speed cycle , so by increasing that capacity, taking it beyond the limit specified by its manufacturer,  the hardware in question  will tend to significantly increase its temperature.

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Therefore, users who perform overclocking are always recommended to also pay great attention to the cooling of the equipment, not only placing the PC in a room with low temperature, but also including ventilation and cooling systems in the computer , such as the case of the nitrogen system.

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Another danger that overclocked PCs are exposed to is power, as overclocked hardware components  significantly increase their power consumption requirements.

By consuming a greater amount of energy,  serious damage to the circuits can occur , because in this case also  the components have been designed to withstand  a certain amount of voltage, so exceeding  it runs the risk of causing a short circuit irreparable.

Is that  overclocking causes the CPU to become unstable due to power consumption , which can even cause  the motherboard to fire .

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Another danger to consider before  overclocking  is related to  file corruption and total data loss ,  caused by the instability  to which the computer is subjected.

Although at present the manufacturers of hardware components design their products taking into account the overclocking modality, in order to safeguard possible irreparable effects when carrying out the process, the truth is that this operation always involves risks, especially of fire.

For this reason,  overclocking must not only be carried out by an experienced person , but must also  include the incorporation of a suitable cooling system into the equipment , as is the case with  materials such as liquid nitrogen.

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