How to Overclock your Computer | Everything You Need to Know.

This is the image of a processor. The image is the featured image for How to Over Clock Your Computer.

Overclocking is the best way to get a significant boost in the speed of your system at no cost at all. Wondering how to overclock your computer? Read the guide!

But what is this thing known as ‘overclocking’?

It is the process of forcing the processor to run at a higher clock rate than its specification. The processor is made to run at certain frequencies (clock rates). The higher this frequency, the more calculations it can compute. Instead of buying a 3GHz processor, you can now make a 2GHz processor runs at 3GHz. In this case, you can save the time, effort and money to upgrade your system.

A lot of people don’t know what overclocking is but should have heard about it. Most computer geeks and gaming people would be familiar with this the term. In simple terms, it is taking a computer component like a processor to run at a higher specification rated by the manufacturer.

For gaming purpose, overclocking the video card usually shows a better result than overclocking a processor. The largest performance boost usually came from overclocking the video card memory chips, so if you’re trying to keep the heat down and only want to overclock the essentials, this is what you’ll want to look at.

One application you can use to overclock the video card is PowerStrip. After installation, you can select ‘Performance Profiles’ and then ‘Configure’ from the menu. This is where you can see the Engine clock and Memory clock. Slowly increase the Engine clock in 5MHz increments and run the benchmark application. When you start to see a peculiar shape, this is its fastest possible speed. Move the slider back to its previous successful overclock and that is the core frequency. Repeat the same step with the memory clock. When this is done, your video card will be overclocked to its maximum. 

Before you run the application, remember to provide enough cooling agent to the video card as the overclocking process will bring up its temperature a few notches. With the extra speed boosts, surely you can do much more things with your system.

By overclocking your computer components you can boost the performance of your PC. Intel and AMD are the two largest manufacturers of computer chips. On some chips both Intel and AMD allow users to overclock components of a computer but on some, it is restricted. As they have tested the capabilities of the components and certified it for that given speed. 

Overclocking is just a process of gaining additional performance from components like CPU (central processing unit) and GPU (graphical processing unit). As AMD and Intel are the largest manufacturers of computer chips and they allow users to safely overclock computers. 

Nowadays it is easy to overclock a computer. We can overclock our computers by using some software. In the old days, we had to overclock a computer by changing CPU frequencies in BIOS but now we don’t have to go into BIOS. Just install software for overclocking and get additional performance from the components. 

Why Overclock your Computer

When you want to get additional performance from your computer and you don’t want to spend money on modifying your computer then most people overclock their computers. As most people overclock their desktop PC to get improved performance and much faster experience in day to day life. Most people do that because they have a tighter budget and cannot spend a lot of dollars to get improved performance. 

By overclocking your computer, let’s say you can get 25% or more boost in the performance of your computer. For example, a person buys a desktop system which is AMD 2500+ and by successfully overclocking AMD 2500+ that person can get the equivalent processing power of AMD 3000+. That person will get better performance at a reduced cost. , but at a greatly reduced cost.

Risks of Overclocking your Computer

Most of the manufacturers under rate different components of PC so it does not mean that component will perform only at the number stated by the manufacturer. You can increase the performance of that component with some tweaks. However, there are some risks involved in overclocking your computer. Some risks are listed below:

  • Generating more heat: Overclocking CPU will increase the amount of heat it generates. When you increase CPU clock speed and voltage, it generates more heat so to keep your computer cool is a must. To keep your computer cool, you must have a decent cooling system like liquid cooler which will keep your PC cooler when you overclock it.
  • No Warranty Claims: Increased performance of your computer sometimes comes at a price. Suppose you overclock your computer and manufacturer has advised you to not overclock your computer to its maximum level but you still do that. After a few days, you damaged your CPU because of excessive heat. You would not be able to make a warranty claim to the manufacturer because the manufacturer has advised against it. Manufacturers test all components and know about that component potential so overclocking your computer might be a risky thing to do. 

Manufactures place restriction on such processes because of safety measures. As chips are a delicate bit of tech so we need to keep these things from getting hotter. Yes, components like processors and GPU can run at a much faster clock speed as compared to the one which comes out of the factory. 

When any component works at its full capacity then they tend to get quite hot. In some gaming computers, we get built-in overclocking features so it is not that we should not overclock our computers. However, we should proceed with care while doing this process.

As CPU is the brain of a computer so first, we will discuss how we can overclock a CPU (central processing unit). The speed of the processor is computed with the help of two factors bus speed and multiplier. So you need to understand both these factors if you want to overclock your computer.

Bus Speed

One of the important factors in this overclocking process is understanding bus speed and how it works. As bus speed is the core clock cycle rate which processor communicates with components like memory and the chipset. The bus speed is rated in MHz rating scale. 

It refers to the number of cycles per second that it runs at. It is quite a common term for users. Take an example of some processors like AMD XP 3200+ processor uses a 400 MHz DDR memory. On the other hand, the processor is using a 200MHz front-side bus which is clock doubled to use 400 MHz DDR memory. 


The next important factor in the overclocking process is the multiplier. In simple terms, the multiplier is the multiple which the processor will run at, related to the bus speed. Multiplier gives us the actual number about processing cycles it will run at in a single clock cycle of the bus speed. Suppose you have a computer that has a Pentium 4, 2.4GHz processor then your processor speed will be based on the following:

133 MHz x 18 multiplier = 2394MHz or 2.4 GHz

When you want to overclock your computer CPU, these two factors can easily influence the performance of your computer. If you increase the bus speed of your computer, it will increase memory speed as well as the processor speed. 

When you compare the impact of multiplier with bus speed, you will see that multiplier has quite a low impact as compared to bus speed and also to make changes in the multiplier is not that easy. There are other factors as well that we have to consider while overclocking our computer. Some users were facing some problems in their PC hardware as some dealers were overclocking some cheap processors and selling them at a much higher price. 

Manufacturers acted on it and started applying a hardware lock which made this overclocking process quite difficult for users. Also, manufacturers started to ship cheaper chips with no overclocking feature. This way dealers were unable to overclock cheaper chips. 

Some of the things you should keep in mind before overclocking your computer are listed below:

  • Voltages

When manufacturers make different computer components, they set voltages for all the components to operate on. When you overclock a computer, sometimes during its process we can get a weak electrical signal as the signal pass through the circuit. If the electrical signal is quite weak then your system may become unstable. We get some interference when we tweak some changes in bus speed and multiplier. To deal with this issue, we have to increase the voltage to the CPU or memory.

As mentioned earlier, manufacturers set voltages for different components and if we apply voltage more than the limit of that component then there is a strong chance of damaging that component. Take an example of a processor, when we apply more voltage to the processor than its limit, there is a chance that the processor will be damaged. Nowadays most motherboards have restricted change in voltage settings so we don’t have to worry about that. Now the bigger issue in the overclocking process is the heat issue.  


Overheating is one of the most common and big issues which people face when they overclock their computers. In today’s world technology is changing in no time and computers of today are doing processes in quite less time when we compare it with older computers. As speeds of computers are getting high, the number of heat computers are generating are also quite high. So to deal with overheating issue in the overclocking process, it is necessary to have a computer system with latest and high tech cooling system. 

As stated earlier people should be aware of the risks involved in the overclocking process. People who want to overclock their computers must have a high-performance cooling system. There are different cooling solutions which are available in the market. 

Air Cooling

One of the most commonly used cooling solution used in a computer is air cooling. Air cooling comes in the form of CPU heat sinks and fans, heat spreaders on memory, fans on video cards and case fans. With the help of proper airflow, we can get good performance from our PC. These fans and copper heat sinks are likely to perform better and give better performance. It is cheaper as well when we compare it with liquid cooling.

Liquid Cooling and Phase-change Cooling

This is the image of liquid cooling and phase change cooling.

If you want to use a better cooling solution for your computer then you should go for liquid cooling and phase change cooling. Both these cooling solutions are far better as compared to air cooling but these systems are quite expensive when compared with standard PC cooling solutions. Yes, these systems are much better in heat dissipation and they have lower noise as well. As overclocking can push the components of a computer to its limit so it is better to have these advanced cooling solutions. Latest computers like gaming computers have liquid cooling but this type of cooling system generally take the cost of a computer quite high so choose components for your system wisely.  

Take Overclocking process slowly

People who are willing to do overclocking of their computer, they should take it slowly. You should not take things to the maximum level in one go. Just do some minor changes and check the effects of those changes that the computer is stable and you are experiencing better performance then you are on the right track. Sometimes people overclock their CPU to the maximum level which can damage your CPU.

As CPU is the main component so damage to it would be costly to you. So slow and steady approach is the right way to do overclocking. As overclocking is the process of trial and errors so to push components to its limit does not make senses at all. Test your computer performance over the period of time and check that your PC is stable at that speed. 

It is better to follow all the steps of overclocking and also it is better to proceed with caution while doing this process. As mentioned earlier we have two large manufacturers of computer chips one is Intel and the other is AMD. As discussed earlier we can use software’s to overclock computers. 

· Intel CPU: Extreme Tuning Utility – How to Overclock Your Computer with it.

this is the image of the Intel CPU

Intel CPUs can overclock using the BIOS. For a beginner’s guide to overclocking, it is recommended to use the Extreme Tuning Utility (XTU). A Window-based software suite, it is free and is designed specifically to overclock any Intel CPU system.

Unlike most of the third-party software suite, the Intel XTU is reliable, solid and it is very unlikely to create any sort of problem on its own. The XTU gives the user a detailed look at their CPU’s current state. Even if you’re not overclocking, it’s a very good little utility that provides loads of information data about your system. You can easily monitor your CPU’s load, the temperature as well as run benchmarks.

Here are a few steps to help you understand how Extreme Tuning Utility works.

1. Baseline temperatures and performance

The first time using the XTU tool takes a few baseline readings to make sure that your CPU is ready to overclock. It starts by running a Stress Test that is located on the left-hand menu. Make sure to run this test for at least an hour or more.

Users can sit back and watch the test, or can go out and do something else, while the test is happening. If you have to leave, make sure to return towards the end of the hour and look at the system information in the base of the window. Always take note of the temperature. If your CPU is hotter than 80-degrees that means you should not proceed with the overclocking process.

2. Multipliers

Multipliers (or CPU ratios) correspond to the speed you are getting out of the CPU. It is a multiplication of the BCLK frequency, or also called a reference clock. Raise your multiplier by one number (x33 in our example) across all cores. Although you can adjust frequencies individually on different cores, we’ll push for an all-core overclock to keep things simple.

Now test the overclocks stability. Select Stress Test from the left-hand menu and run the test again. In this case, you only need to run the test for 10 minutes. If it completes without a problem, increase the multiplier by another step. Rinse and repeat. Eventually, the test will report a Fail result, or it will cause your computer to crash. When that happens, step back to the previous multiplier setting.

If you’re happy with the final overclock, run longer stress tests and play a few games for several hours to make sure the overclock remains stable. If not, reduce the multiplier another step and begin the stress testing process again. When you reach a point where you can happily use your PC as normal at a higher frequency, pat yourself on the back for a successful overclock.

3. Core Voltage

Many voltage parameters can affect a CPU’s operation, but arguably the most important and impactful is Core voltage (VCore). You can adjust the voltage using Intel’s XTU similar to how you adjusted the multipliers. This can make the difference between unstable and stable overclocks, or even the difference between modest and much higher overclocks. You need to take more care when adjusting the CPU voltage than you do with multipliers. If you push the CPU to run at a ridiculously high multiplier, it will just crash and restart your system. If you try and push too much voltage through your CPU, it can kill it, so proceed with restraint. 

· AMD: Ryzen Master – How to Overclock Your Computer With it.

This is the image of AMD Ryzen CPU. You can overclock it.

To overclock computer equipped with AMD Ryzen processor from 2017 onwards then the software you need is Ryzen Master. The process of overclocking can be done by going into BIOS but through software, it is easy and can be done quickly as well. If you have older AMD CPU then you can use AMD overdrive. Both these software’s are available at AMD website. 

First thing you should do is to check the temperature before overclocking your CPU. For that do a stress test.

1. Stress test

As Ryzen Master has built-in stress test but it is better to use AIDA64 Extreme tool. You can use a free trial version of it for the stress test. However, after the trial, you have to pay for the license of this software. First, open software and then go and click on tools from the top menu. After clicking on start and leave your PC on so it can complete the process. If at any point in stress test your PC crosses temperature of 80 degrees then don’t proceed with the overclocking procedure. First, improve your cooling system and then again do the stress test.  

2. Set Frequencies

In Ryzen Master we have some restrictions and it doesn’t allow you manual control over CPU multipliers. There are clock speeds for each physical core which you can adjust individually or across the board. To do that you need to select profile 1 or 2 from the bottom menu. After that, you have to set control mode to manual. You must check that all Cores setting is selected and green in the left-hand menu. If you do not see any green in the left-hand menu then change its status by clicking it. Now you can easily adjust all the frequencies of all cores at the same time. 

Next step is to click on “+” symbol on any core to raise core frequencies by 25MHz. After adjusting all these frequencies, click on apply. After clicking on applying, run Ryzen Master built-in stability test tool. This test tool will tell that you have stable overclock or not. Check temperatures and if the temperature is not rising then one more time raise frequencies by 25MHz. 

If your test fails or temperature level exceeds 80 degrees then change the frequency back to one it was on. You can raise in any way you possible but it is better to do it in small steps. This way your system will not crash.

3. Voltage Control

When we increase CPU voltage it improves the stability of an overclocks. This allows us to overclock the processor more. However, if you are overclocking it more and pushing it more then you will see an increase in temperature of your PC. If the voltage is too high it will certainly damage your computer processor. So better to check all the things and making small adjustments one by one.

It’s better to search about your CPU and checking limit of your AMD CPU. If it is not high then you can proceed to the next step. Now you have to choose the profile and check if the green circle resides next to Voltage control. If you don’t see it then do it manually. On the right of settings, you will see arrows and you can increase the voltage from there. After that click on apply and check if overclock works perfectly or not.  

Written by Salman