This is Intel's overclocking tool for Windows PCs, mainly for use with its own CPUs. Intel XTU allows you to overclock your CPU, monitor the temperature, and stress test your computer, with a few other special features for Intel CPUs and Intel motherboards.
In case of a bad CPU overclock, your computer may freeze and eventually shut down. To fix this, all you have to do is start your computer again, open the Intel XTU app, and reset your overclock settings back to normal.
It's a fairly advanced piece of software, which is why we suggest you avoid this program if you've never overclocked your CPU before. But, if you have experience with overclocking CPUs, Intel XTU is one of the best CPU overclocking software on the market.
One downside to CPU Tweaker is that it is a bit hard to wrap your head around, as the user interface is not so beginner-friendly. However, if you're an experienced overclocker, you're going to love this tool.
MSI Afterburner is free software that lets you overclock both NVIDIA and AMD GPUs. Along with a detailed overview of your hardware, MSI Afterburner lets you control your computer's fan speed with customized fan profiles, benchmarking, and video recording.
EVGA Precision X is another great, free-to-use software for gamers who want to push their laptops or gaming PCs to the next level. EVGA Precision X lets you create up to 10 custom user profiles for overclocking your NVIDIA GPUs with ease.
EVGA Precision X comes with multiple useful settings. For example, you can adjust the GPU voltage slider for finer control, use it for one-click overclocking with its linear mode, and find the optimal voltage/frequency curve for your graphics card with its scan mode.
While MSI Afterburner and EVGA Precision X offer finer control over your overclock with fancy sliders, ASUS GPU Tweak gives you the option to overclock your GPU with a single click, provided you choose the Simple Mode during installation. You can choose between OC mode for the highest overclocks, Gaming mode for a slight boost, and Silent mode when you need a quiet operation.
And, of course, if you want the extra control, you can switch to the Advanced mode at any time and play around with the sliders. You can even add custom profiles like the other overclocking tools above and switch between them depending on your task.
Both CPU and GPU overclocking are much safer than they used to be a few years ago when cooling systems weren't as efficient as they are today. Regardless, you should always watch your CPU temperature while overclocking to ensure heat doesn't throttle its performance.
In most cases, overclocking is easily reversible. All the CPU and GPU overclocking software we covered here lets you reset your overclock settings at the press of a button. However, if your CPU fails to boot, you can reset your BIOS settings to get things back to factory defaults.
Overclocking is not as dangerous as it once was. Processors and graphics cards are now much more capable of handling heat because cooling systems have improved over the years. Furthermore, CPU and motherboard manufacturers often build with overclocking in mind, producing special hardware that suits overclocking.
Technically, yes, it does void the warranty of your CPU and GPU since you're exceeding the processor's default specs. However, there is absolutely no way for the vendor to know unless you willingly tell them you overclocked it.
Yes, the warranty should be restored if you've reversed your CPU or GPU overclock and all the settings are now back to their default values. This is assuming you haven't damaged the CPU, of course. The hardware vendor could well figure out what happened to the hardware if you attempt to return a damaged unit.
It depends on your hardware. There are very capable and powerful processors in the market these days, like the AMD Ryzen 5000 series and Intel's 12th-Gen Alder Lake processors. Modern graphics cards, such as the RTX 3000 series GPUs, are also insanely powerful and do not require overclocking.
You don't really need to overclock your CPU or GPU with all this power, as they're already competent and provide incredible performance. This is especially true when comparing today's processors with older models from just a few years ago.
These are some of the best overclocking programs on the market right now, covering Intel, AMD, and NVIDIA processors. If you have older hardware, we don't blame you for wanting to squeeze the last bit of performance out of your CPUs and GPUs. Those few extra frames you get in games due to overclocking may be worth it.
Overclocking a monitor for gaming isn't the same as overclocking other aspects of your PC setup because it doesn't have its own processing unit. It will require additional software and the steps can vary depending on whether you have an AMD® or NVIDIA® graphics card.
Before you go out and invest in a new display panel, read up on overclocking a monitor to see whether it might be a viable option for you. Also, keep in mind that overclocking can void your manufacturer's warranty, so doing some research before you get started is a good idea.
An overclocked (OC) monitor with a higher refresh rate can display graphics faster and more smoothly as long as the overall PC system can handle the change. For example, overclocking a monitor with a refresh rate of 60 Hz to 120 Hz means that twice as many distinct images can appear within one second.
Note: If you are putting a lot of pressure on the graphics card at a higher refresh rate, you may experience a bandwidth problem which leads to issues like lag and frame skipping. Again, this depends on your particular setup. Not all monitors are compatible with overclocking.
Warning: Before we get started with instructions on how to overclock a monitor for gaming, you should be aware that tweaking your system to run at settings other than it was built to at stock may void your warranty.
First, you should make sure your PC is optimized from the ground up, and ready to run its best. Read on to learn more about what you need to overclock your GPU, or jump straight to our step-by-step instructions.
Power level: The power slider lets your card draw more power from your power supply unit (PSU). For example, if your card is limited by default to 200 watts, you can increase this to 240 watts by setting it to 120 (20% higher). You may need to do this if you want to overclock your card further (but this will increase the temperature).
After gently testing the core clock and memory clock rate, continue fine-tuning by increasing your GPU overclock by 10 MHz. Each time, test for stability and performance, and then repeat. Run a benchmark, stress test, or a game for a few hours and check for issues and monitor improvements.
After unlocking even more power, increase your GPU overclock again by 10 MHz and test each time. Your card will probably soar past its previous crash point. On our gaming PC, we achieved a GPU overclock of +170 MHz to +450 MHz. Finding the sweet spot took us a lot of fine-tuning, so be patient to get the best results.
Yes, overclocking your GPU will usually improve the performance of your games and media apps. More powerful systems may see less of a benefit from overclocking the graphics card, but if your games typically run at 40 or 50 FPS, an overclock will result in visible improvements.
Yes, one of the main benefits of overclocking your GPU is that it increases FPS for smoother, sharper graphics. The added computing power from a GPU overclock helps your graphics card crank out more FPS at higher resolutions.
To safely overclock your GPU, go slowly in increments of 10 MHz, and test your system for stability and performance after each adjustment. If your system fails or struggles to deliver smooth performance, lower your overclock by 10 or 20 MHz, then test again. Once you know your maximum GPU overclock frequency, repeat the process with the GPU memory.
Depending on the strength of your graphics card and how powerful a computer you need, overclocking may not be worth the effort. But because GPU overclocking boosts FPS and helps improve the performance of games, it usually offers strong benefits for gamers and even multimedia editors.
Yes, you can overclock a laptop. Mobile GPUs are limited in performance, and overclocking is a great way to improve performance. We increased the FPS of our Microsoft Surface Book, which uses a GeForce 965 GTX card, by 25%.
Also, other equipment in your PC can significantly affect your overclock potential. A customized gaming PC with a full water-cooling system can easily support a higher overclock than another machine with only default factory components.
Many of AMD's newest chips, like the Ryzen 5 3600X and Ryzen 7 3700X are great processors but don't have a ton of overclocking headroom, so there's probably little benefit to pushing them further. AMD's Precision Boost will make sure you aren't leaving any performance on the table. The non-X chips, like the AMD Ryzen 5 3600, have a bit more, but still have diminishing returns compared to some of the older Ryzen chips, like the 1000 and 2000 series. If you want to see how far you can push your processor, though, it just takes a few tweaks in your computer's BIOS. Here's how to do it.
A good CPU cooler: While AMD's included Wraith Spire cooler can handle a little overclocking, it'll likely get hot pretty fast. I recommend buying a larger heatsink, like the Cryorig R1 Ultimate CR-R1A(Opens in a new window) (pictured), or a liquid cooling loop to eke the most possible performance out of your CPU.
OCCT(Opens in a new window): Ask five overclockers what tools they use, and you'll get five different answers. I prefer OCCT, since it contains multiple stress tests within one program, as well as a host of monitoring features to help keep an eye on those CPU temperatures.
There are no guarantees with overclocking. You're pushing the chip beyond its rated limits, and every single chip is different. Even if someone on the internet achieved a certain overclock doesn't mean you will. Even with the exact same model CPU, every motherboard has a slightly different selection of overclocking features. 2b1af7f3a8