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CPU overclocking explained

What is overclocking?

Overclocking is the process of increasing the speed of your processor. Processors that come from the factory are set at certain maximum speeds. This speed is set by the manufacturer and the processor cannot go over that speed.

CPU Overclocking
CPU Overclocking

Increasing the processor’s speed above the maximum speed set by the processor manufacturer is overclocking. Some processors are locked and can not be overclocked while others have this option for overclocking. Which processor is locked or unlocked is always decided by the manufacturer. You can always check it by searching for details of your processor on the internet.

How does overclocking work?

For increasing the speed of the CPU, voltage and CPU frequency are tweaked. In simple words, more electricity is passed through the processor and the speed limit set by the manufacturer is increased. There is no exact speed or voltage that works for all. It depends on the processor you are working upon. Also, the hit and trial method is used and the speed and voltage at which the processor provides the maximum performance while being stable at the same time are finally fixed in the BIOS.


There are various pros of overclocking, that’s why it is done.

  • Better performance – As the speed increases so do the performance. It is always good to have increased performance.
  • Savings – If you can get better performance with your old overclocked processor, you will not need to buy a new one.


Various disadvantages need to be considered before overclocking your CPU.

  • Warranty gets void – The warranty of many of your components will get void as soon as you start overclocking them.
  • Power consumption – Power consumption is increased because of overclocking. Your processor tends to draw more power and also dissipates more heat for which you will need more cooling capacity.
  • Heat – Heat not only decreases the longevity of your processor alone, but it also decreased the longevity of your whole system.
  • Damaged components – While you try various frequencies to understand what will be stable for your processor, you might accidentally break some of your components.
  • Unstable computer – You may find success with overclocking at the start, but you might end up making your PC unstable in long run.


Overclocking looks attractive. Who does not want more speed? But you should not do it if you are not experienced in this. If you really want to do this, make sure you know all the details before starting.

Mukul Gupta

Freelancer and Content Writer.

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