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Overclocking - I don't get it

I have used in the last year an i7 3700k, i7 9700f, i9 9900kf and have watched as many vids on PC building and read as many forum posts as what I would call reguarly.

 

With turbo boost, the clocks on cores quicky react to load on the cores it needs for the task. On benchmarks, I have made sure I am always showing good results from my builds and they are stable and run cool with decent air cooling.

 

If I was to overclock, and I have dabbled - it seems you can marginally make a benchmark look a little nicer or get a few FPS but its not real world performance and who doesn't want an i9 9900k or simiar running at 62 degrees tops and still achieving 5GHz on several cores when required?

 

So I don't get it - why does anyone want all cores running full pelt, regardless of what is being asked of a machine when turbo takes the machine to around about the overclocking rate you can get from a CPU give or take a few hundred MHz?

 

Has anyone ever kept a machine being productive beyond it's useful life as a direct result of noticable speed increases gained because of overclocking?

 

I write this only because overclocking is all around the PC building/gaming comminity so it must mean something to a good proportion of us. Like RGB!

Intel i9 9900kf - Gigabyte Aorus Z390 Pro - Corsair Vengeance LPX 64GB (4x16 GB) DDR4 3200MHz C16 - Gigabyte Aorus GeForce RTX 2080 ti Xtreme 11G - Corsair 275R Airflow - Samsung 970 EVO Plus 1TB NVMe / Samsung 860 EVO 1TB SATA - Corsair RM750x 80 PLUS Gold 750W - Aorus FI27Q-P - Noctua NH-D15 (CPU) - 4 x NF-S12A PWM (3 intake, 1 exhaust) - Aorus K1 - Aorus M3 - Aorus AMP500 - Aorus H5 - Win 10 Pro

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1 minute ago, A1200 said:

I have used in the last year an i7 3700k, i7 9700f, i9 9900kf and have watched as many vids on PC building and read as many forum posts as what I would call reguarly.

 

With turbo boost, the clocks on cores quicky react to load on the cores it needs for the task. On benchmarks, I have made sure I am always showing good results fro my builds and they are stable and run cool with decent air cooling.

 

If I was to overclock, and I have dabbled - it seems you can marginally make a benchmark look a little nicer or get a few FPS but its not real world performance and who doesn't want an i9 9900k or simiar running at 62 degrees tops and still achieving 5GHz on several cores when required?

 

So I don't get it - why does anyone want all cores running full pelt, regardless of what is being asked of a machine when turbo takes the machine to around about the overclocking rate you can get from a CPU give or take a few hundred MHz?

 

Has anyone ever kept a machine being productive beyond it's useful life as a direct result of noticable speed increases gained because of overclocking?

 

I write this only because overclocking is all around the PC building/gaming comminity so it must mean something to a good proportion of us. Like RGB!

People do it to get more out of the products they spend their money on. You can increase your performance Without having to spend more for extra performance. It does help real life. A few fps can be the difference between 52 fps and 60+ fps. It matters to some also in a way as more of a hobby. Seeing how far they can push something. 

 

But ultimately.. 

Free extra performance is free extra performance right? So why would anyone not do something like so? 

PC: 
MSI B450 gaming pro carbon ac              (motherboard)      |    (Gpu)             GeForce® RTX 2070 SUPER™ GAMING OC 3X 8G

ryzen 7 3800XT                                             (cpu)                |    (Monitor)        2560x1440 144hz (lg 32gk650f)
Arctic Liquid Freezer II 240 A-RGB                  (cpu cooler)          |     (Psu)             seasonic focus plus gold 850w
Cooler Master MasterBox MB511 RGB    (PCcase)              |     (Memory)      HyperX Predator RGB 2x8 at 3200

Corsair K95 RGB Platinum                       (keyboard)            |    (mouse)         Razer Viper Ultimate

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7 minutes ago, A1200 said:

So I don't get it - why does anyone want all cores running full pelt, regardless of what is being asked of a machine when turbo takes the machine to around about the overclocking rate you can get from a CPU give or take a few hundred MHz?

Many of us use our PCs for more than benchmarks, mate. All sorts of e.g. productive tasks, like compiling large codebases and such benefit from overclocking and, like e.g. I do, I overclock all cores instead of just one, so I get more benefit in multicore-scenarios.

7 minutes ago, A1200 said:

Has anyone ever kept a machine being productive beyond it's useful life as a direct result of noticable speed increases gained because of overclocking?

Keeping the machine productive isn't the point, the point is in getting more out of it now. An Intel 486 CPU from two decades ago can still be productive, so the question of whether something is or isn't productive is kind of besides the point.

Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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5 minutes ago, hollyh88 said:

Free extra performance is free extra performance right? So why would anyone not do something like so? 

Well yes and no. It's only free up to a point. If you want to do significant overclocking you will need to invest in a better cooling solution, better power delivery (mobo, PSU) etc. 

 

Edit: For most people in this community those costs aren't there, because most of them already buy an overkill power supply, motherboard and cooling solution, simply because they can, so in that case you could argue that you must overclock to get what you paid for.

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19 minutes ago, A1200 said:

Has anyone ever kept a machine being productive beyond it's useful life as a direct result of noticable speed increases gained because of overclocking?

Not to my knowledge , overclocking is basically what it is . A dumb thing thats possible to do.... so people do it I guess.

I've never seen a stable overclock that looked like it was worth it. it was much funner back when you could literally double the cpu speed. but these days people are bragging about their terribly unimpressive 20% overclock like its amazing or something.

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31 minutes ago, A1200 said:

Has anyone ever kept a machine being productive beyond it's useful life as a direct result of noticable speed increases gained because of overclocking?

If you only start overclocking when the machine gets at the end of life you're doing it wrong. Better get the benefits right from day one.

But yeah, if I didn't have my 30% overclock on my 6 year old 5960X it would likely have been replaced a year or 2 ago. But it's given me those 30% extra for all these years.

F@H
Desktop: i7-5960X 4.4GHz, Noctua NH-D14, ASUS Rampage V, 32GB, RTX3080, 2TB SX8200Pro, 2x16TB Ironwolf RAID0, Corsair HX1200, Thermaltake Overseer RX1, Samsung 4K curved 49" TV, 23" secondary, Mountain Everest Max

Mobile SFF rig: i9-9900K, Noctua NH-L9i, Asrock Z390 Phantom ITX-AC, 32GB, GTX1070, 2x1TB SX8200Pro RAID0, 2x5TB 2.5" HDD RAID0, Athena 500W Flex (Noctua fan), Custom 4.7l 3D printed case

 

Dell XPS 2 in 1 2019, 32GB, 1TB, 4K

 

GPD Win 2

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9 minutes ago, emosun said:

I've never seen a stable overclock that looked like it was worth it.

*looks at her own PC* I have. The i7 8700K only boosts to 4.3GHz when loading all the cores, but overclocking it gives me 4.9GHz on all 6 cores -- that's 600MHz more on all the six cores. It may not seem like much as a percentage, but it definitely does give a good bump up in heavy workloads. Just as an example, a 6 hour encode is shaved down to about 5 hours with the overclock -- I, at least, don't scoff at an hour less of waiting!

Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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1.) Snappier response, you may not know it, but it is and can be measured (when keeping a static all core overclock)

2.) I don't reach 60c on my overclocks - because I have an appropriate cooling solution

3.) When competitive gaming you want the fastest response time possible - moar frames plix

4.) When using your PC for production, time is money - and every second saved is worth

5.) My R7 1700 has, since I got it, kept up with the (before it was ever released) R5 3600x in IPC - Why wouldn't I want to be beating 1800x in the same generation in all tasks?

6.) To learn

 

My reasons for overclocking

Current in process build: Project Odyssey - Build Logs - Linus Tech Tips

Workstation Laptop: Dell Precision 7540, Xeon E-2276M, 32gb DDR4, Quadro T2000 GPU, 4k display

Ryzen Rig 3: ASRock B450m Pro4, Ryzen 5 3600, ARESGAME River 5 CPU cooler in push/pull, EVGA RTX 2060 KO, 16gb (2x8) 3600mhz TeamGroup T-Force RAM, ARESGAME AGV750w PSU, 1tb WD Black SN750 NVMe Win 10 boot drive, 3tb Hitachi 7200 RPM HDD, Fractal Design Focus G Mini custom painted.  Lenovo 27" 1080p 60hz placeholder monitor, generic mouse, generic keyboard.  Still a work in progress

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 video card benchmark result - AMD Ryzen 5 3600,ASRock B450M Pro4 (3dmark.com)

Ryzen Rig 2: ASrock B450 Pro4, Ryzen 7 1700 @ 4.2ghz all core 1.4vCore, AMD R9 Fury X w/ Swiftech KOMODO waterblock, Custom Loop 2x240mm + 1x120mm radiators in push/pull 16gb (2x8) 3600mhz V-Color Skywalker (or 4x8gb DDR4 2666mhz for large tasks), Corsair HX850 PSU, 250gb Samsun 960 EVO NVMe Win 10 boot drive, 500gb Samsung 840 EVO SSD, 512GB TeamGroup MP30 M.2 SATA III SSD, SuperTalent 512gb SATA III SSD, CoolerMaster HAF XM Case.  Zalman K600S keyboard, Zalman ZM-GM1 mouse, Viotek GN24C 24" 1080p 144hz curved and Hannspree HF207 as 2nd monitor

https://www.3dmark.com/3dm/37004594?

Ryzen Rig 1: ASUS B350-PRIME ATX, Ryzen 7 1700, Sapphire R9 Fury Tri-X Nitro 4gb HBM, 16gb (2x8) 3200mhz V-Color Skywalker, ANTEC Earthwatts 750w PSU, MasterLiquid Lite 120 AIO cooler in Push/Pull config as rear exhaust, 250gb Samsung 850 Evo SSD, Patriot Burst 240gb SSD, Cougar MX330-X Case.  Zalman K600S keyboard, Zalman ZM-GM1 mouse, Acer XF270HU 2560x1440 144hz IPS monitor

https://www.3dmark.com/3dm/37628874?

Dell OptiPlex 3040 MFF: Dell 0MGK50 A02, i3-6100T, 2x4gb DDR3 1600, Team Group 120gb SSD, 500gb Seagate 7mm HDD attached storage, Windows 10 Pro, Logitech K400+, USB Wifi adapter all vesa mounted to the back of a 37" 1080p TV 

Linux Box: Toshiba Laptop, i7 620M, NVS graphics, 4gb ram tinker toy at the moment.  Running Manjaro XFCE at the moment.

Home Security: ZOSI 8 channel CCTV (4 used at this time, 1080p) DVR H.265+, 3tb HGST Enterprise HDD, ASUS monitor for display

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39 minutes ago, A1200 said:

So I don't get it

I don't get it either. Manufacturer makes CPU's and we can use them how they are meant to be used without having to worry about if it can run stable.

 

38 minutes ago, hollyh88 said:

Free extra performance is free extra performance right?

Not really. If I want to overclock I need an unlocked CPU, which is more expensive than a locked one.
In addition to that I need an overclocking capable motherboard which is also more expensive than a motherboard without this function.

So I don't understand why people pay extra money to overclock a CPU, make it less stable and run hotter, when they can just take the money and buy a better CPU from it.

 

That's why I decided to pick a i7 9700 for my build instead of an i5 K with a more expensive motherboard.

(you can see my build down below)

My build:

CPU

Intel Core i7 9700 8x 3.00GHz So.1151

 

CPU cooler

be quiet! Shadow Rock Slim

 

Motherboard

MSI B360-A PRO Intel B360 So.1151 Dual Channel DDR4 ATX

 

RAM

16GB (4x 4096MB) HyperX FURY black DDR4-2666

 

GPU

8GB Gigabyte GeForce RTX2070 WindForce 2X 3xDP/HDMI

 

SSD

500GB Samsung 970 Evo Plus M.2 2280

 

HDD

4000GB WD Red WD40EFRX Intellipower 64MB 3.5" (8.9cm) SATA 6Gb/s

 

Case

Fractal Design Define R6

 

Monitor

ASUS TUF Gaming VG27WQ

 

Headset

Sennheiser GSP670

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5 minutes ago, suedseefrucht said:

I don't get it either. Manufacturer makes CPU's and we can use them how they are meant to be used without having to worry about if it can run stable.

Apple Mac

 

 

I like OC. Nice hobby, better than collecting stamps.

I don't get the stamp thing.

... but I'm no expert.

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1 minute ago, suedseefrucht said:

If I want to overclock I need an unlocked CPU, which is more expensive than a locked one.

Ryzens are all unlocked, so that doesn't apply there.

2 minutes ago, suedseefrucht said:

In addition to that I need an overclocking capable motherboard which is also more expensive than a motherboard without this function

You're ignoring the case of if you need/want the other features offered by the mobo, then being able to overclock is just a bonus. I, for example, always buy ATX-mobos because I have use for them and most ATX-mobos are overclocking-enabled whether I have need for that or not!

5 minutes ago, suedseefrucht said:

So I don't understand why people pay extra money to overclock a CPU, make it less stable and run hotter, when they can just take the money and buy a better CPU from it

The CPU running hotter is irrelevant as long as it's not overheating, so that only matters when buying cooling. After you've bought suitable cooling, it becomes irrelevant. As for just buying a higher-end CPU...well, you still need to buy better cooling than on a cheaper CPU, so your point becomes moot.

Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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42 minutes ago, WereCatf said:

Ryzens are all unlocked, so that doesn't apply there.

You're ignoring the case of if you need/want the other features offered by the mobo, then being able to overclock is just a bonus. I, for example, always buy ATX-mobos because I have use for them and most ATX-mobos are overclocking-enabled whether I have need for that or not!

The CPU running hotter is irrelevant as long as it's not overheating, so that only matters when buying cooling. After you've bought suitable cooling, it becomes irrelevant. As for just buying a higher-end CPU...well, you still need to buy better cooling than on a cheaper CPU, so your point becomes moot.

Yes, AMD is a little more user friendly talking about overclocking. Even if I'm not a fan of CPU overclocking I'm missing the RAM overclocking capability of Intel non z boards.

 

About cooling: I usually make a cooling overkill anyway to make it run more quietly. So when going for AMD, you are absolutely right. Maybe there is a little more power consumption but that's all.

My build:

CPU

Intel Core i7 9700 8x 3.00GHz So.1151

 

CPU cooler

be quiet! Shadow Rock Slim

 

Motherboard

MSI B360-A PRO Intel B360 So.1151 Dual Channel DDR4 ATX

 

RAM

16GB (4x 4096MB) HyperX FURY black DDR4-2666

 

GPU

8GB Gigabyte GeForce RTX2070 WindForce 2X 3xDP/HDMI

 

SSD

500GB Samsung 970 Evo Plus M.2 2280

 

HDD

4000GB WD Red WD40EFRX Intellipower 64MB 3.5" (8.9cm) SATA 6Gb/s

 

Case

Fractal Design Define R6

 

Monitor

ASUS TUF Gaming VG27WQ

 

Headset

Sennheiser GSP670

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I use overclocks but sometimes don't use them at all.

 

In a game like SOTTR the all core 5ghz overclock I use usually equals 1fps. In AC:O it equals 7fps. The 7 extra frames is meaningless at 1080p and not a big deal at 1440p but at 4k it is the difference between averaging 59fps and 66fps.  With some games it is 15fps like GTA 5 but still only important at 4k.

 

I have also played simulations and modded games for decades. The CPU overclocks allow me to add more content without stutter. 

 

My main gaming computer has an i9 10900k in it that is not overclocked but the Intel power limit has been removed. It performs slightly better in games than my 6 and 8 core CPUs that have all core 5ghz overclocks. It is for my building/modded games the seem to crash or pause with any CPU overclock. 

 

When it comes to hardware, when I used GTX 1080 tis as GPUs my overclocks did not do much at all but with the RTX 2080 ti they became a big deal. In new games I am CPU bottlenecked at 1440p and blow and in old games I am bottlenecked at 4k. All my Simulations and building games are CPU bottlenecked as well so the more CPU the better. 

RIG#1 CPU: Intel i9 10900k | Motherboard: ASUS ROG Maximus XII Hero | RAM: Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 32GB DDR4 4000 | GPU: MSI  RTX 3090 Gaming X Trio | PSU: EVGA 1300 G2 | Case: Cooler Master H500M | Cooler: SilverStone PF360 | SSD#1: Crucial P1 1TB | SSD#2: Crucial MX500 2.5" 2TB | Monitor: LG 55" 4k B9 OLED TV


RIG#2 CPU: AMD, R 7 5800X| Motherboard: X570 AORUS Master  | RAM: Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 32GB DDR4 3200 | GPU: EVGA RTX 3080 ti XC3 ULTRA | PSU: EVGA 1000 GQ | Case: Cooler Master H500P Mesh White | Cooler: EK 360mm AIO | SSD#1: Corsair MP600 1TB | SSD#2: Crucial MX500 2.5" 2TB | Monitor: LG 55" 4k B9 OLED TV

 

RIG#3 CPU: Intel i9 9900k | Motherboard: AORUS Z390 Ultra | RAM: Ripjaws V Series 32GB DDR4 3200 | GPU: ASUS  RTX 3080 White OC  | PSU: EVGA 1000 GQ | Case: Cooler Master H500 | Cooler: Noctua NH-D15 | SSD: Crucial P2 1TB | Monitor: LG 49" NanoCell 85

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Thanks jones177 for the balanced reply - sounds fair enough that. I like the idea of removing the Intel power limit as opposed to pegging all cores at 5+GHz, regardless of the job. I can see if someone only did gaming or rendering etc. you might want to do overclocking but when watching YouTube or reading email, seems pointless.

Intel i9 9900kf - Gigabyte Aorus Z390 Pro - Corsair Vengeance LPX 64GB (4x16 GB) DDR4 3200MHz C16 - Gigabyte Aorus GeForce RTX 2080 ti Xtreme 11G - Corsair 275R Airflow - Samsung 970 EVO Plus 1TB NVMe / Samsung 860 EVO 1TB SATA - Corsair RM750x 80 PLUS Gold 750W - Aorus FI27Q-P - Noctua NH-D15 (CPU) - 4 x NF-S12A PWM (3 intake, 1 exhaust) - Aorus K1 - Aorus M3 - Aorus AMP500 - Aorus H5 - Win 10 Pro

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2 minutes ago, A1200 said:

Thanks jones177 for the balanced reply - sounds fair enough that. I like the idea of removing the Intel power limit as opposed to pegging all cores at 5+GHz, regardless of the job. I can see if someone only did gaming or rendering etc. you might want to do overclocking but when watching YouTube or reading email, seems pointless.

I was a freelance 3D artist(retired) and none of my rendering computers were overclocked. The reason was that if something was to go wrong it would happen overnight and no overclock would makeup for the lost time. All my work had tight deadlines and it was safer and easier for me to add another computer to a project than to overclock. 

RIG#1 CPU: Intel i9 10900k | Motherboard: ASUS ROG Maximus XII Hero | RAM: Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 32GB DDR4 4000 | GPU: MSI  RTX 3090 Gaming X Trio | PSU: EVGA 1300 G2 | Case: Cooler Master H500M | Cooler: SilverStone PF360 | SSD#1: Crucial P1 1TB | SSD#2: Crucial MX500 2.5" 2TB | Monitor: LG 55" 4k B9 OLED TV


RIG#2 CPU: AMD, R 7 5800X| Motherboard: X570 AORUS Master  | RAM: Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 32GB DDR4 3200 | GPU: EVGA RTX 3080 ti XC3 ULTRA | PSU: EVGA 1000 GQ | Case: Cooler Master H500P Mesh White | Cooler: EK 360mm AIO | SSD#1: Corsair MP600 1TB | SSD#2: Crucial MX500 2.5" 2TB | Monitor: LG 55" 4k B9 OLED TV

 

RIG#3 CPU: Intel i9 9900k | Motherboard: AORUS Z390 Ultra | RAM: Ripjaws V Series 32GB DDR4 3200 | GPU: ASUS  RTX 3080 White OC  | PSU: EVGA 1000 GQ | Case: Cooler Master H500 | Cooler: Noctua NH-D15 | SSD: Crucial P2 1TB | Monitor: LG 49" NanoCell 85

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14 minutes ago, A1200 said:

Thanks jones177 for the balanced reply - sounds fair enough that. I like the idea of removing the Intel power limit as opposed to pegging all cores at 5+GHz, regardless of the job. I can see if someone only did gaming or rendering etc. you might want to do overclocking but when watching YouTube or reading email, seems pointless.

You don't typically constantly peg everything to 5+, just unlock the power limits, n-core multipliers and maybe max multipliers and turbo boost will still do the job of idling them when they have nothing to do. Just that when they do they'll run fast and do it quicker/feel more responsive. 

F@H
Desktop: i7-5960X 4.4GHz, Noctua NH-D14, ASUS Rampage V, 32GB, RTX3080, 2TB SX8200Pro, 2x16TB Ironwolf RAID0, Corsair HX1200, Thermaltake Overseer RX1, Samsung 4K curved 49" TV, 23" secondary, Mountain Everest Max

Mobile SFF rig: i9-9900K, Noctua NH-L9i, Asrock Z390 Phantom ITX-AC, 32GB, GTX1070, 2x1TB SX8200Pro RAID0, 2x5TB 2.5" HDD RAID0, Athena 500W Flex (Noctua fan), Custom 4.7l 3D printed case

 

Dell XPS 2 in 1 2019, 32GB, 1TB, 4K

 

GPD Win 2

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