Overclocking Your Video Card

Edited by Leomar Umpad, Charmed, Eng, Graeme

If you are experiencing delays on your gaming experience and you have a fast internet connection, the problem could be caused by the performance of your video card. The game may be "too heavy" for the video card. You can opt to buy a new and more powerful video card or you can overclock your video card to enhance your gaming experience. This VisiHow article will discuss on the steps on overclocking your video card depending on the brand of video card you are using.

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Overclocking ATI Video Card

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ATI have their own overclocking software for their video card. They call it ATI Overdrive. However, please be forewarned that even if they are providing their own software for overclocking, this does not necessarily mean that they will take any responsibility for any damages during or after the overclocking procedure. Still, overclocking voids the warranty. To overclock ATI video cards just follow the steps below:

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Launch ATI Overdrive

  1. 1
    Download Catalyst Control Center at their official support site -support.amd.com/us/gpudownload/Pages/index.aspx
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  2. 2
    Install the application and put it anywhere on your PC.
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  3. 3
    Once installation is done, right click on your desktop and then click on the Catalyst Control Center.
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  4. 4
    It may take a few seconds to a few minutes for Catalyst Control Center to load
    .
    This is normal if it is the first time that you will be loading it.
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  5. 5
    After loading, click on the Graphics menu option at the upper right portion of the screen.
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  6. 6
    A menu of options will be displayed.
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  7. 7
    Choose the last option on the list, ATI Overdrive.
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ATI Overdrive Options

You may want to know the options on your ATI card and what do these options do. An understanding of their functions will make you more knowledgeable in overclocking your video card.

  1. 1
    High Performance GPU Clock Settings
    .
    This slider will allow you to adjust your graphic processor unit's clock speed.
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  2. 2
    High Performance Memory Clock Settings
    .
    This slider will allow you to adjust your memory clock's speed
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  3. 3
    Manual Fan Control
    .
    This slider allows you to adjust your system fan's speed. It is already configured to spin faster when more heat is detected from the video card so you may want to leave it as it is.
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  4. 4
    Temperature Gauge
    .
    This gauge shows you the current temperature of your video card's GPU
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  5. 5
    Activity Gauge
    .
    This gauge shows you the utilization, in percentage, of your GPU.
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  6. 6
    Fan Speed Gauge
    .
    This gauge will show you how fast is your fan compared to its maximum speed.
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Overclocking ATI Video Card Proper

  1. 1
    Tick on the Enable ATI Overdrive checkbox.
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  2. 2
    Adjust both sliders (High Performance GPU Clock & High Performance Memory Clock) by small increments of 10 MHZ.
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  3. 3
    Click on Test Custom Clocks Button.
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  4. 4
    Wait for the test to finish
    .
    This test is done to make sure that your GPU can handle the new adjusted settings.
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  5. 5
    If the test passes, adjust both sliders again by 10 Mhz (or any increment that you want).
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  6. 6
    Repeat steps 2 to 4 until you get to an error.
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  7. 7
    When an error shows, lower the increment by one, do this until there is no more error.
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  8. 8
    After reaching the maximum overclock that passes your GPU, do some test to check its stability.
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  9. 9
    You can use FurMark to perform rigorous tests on your GPU
    .
    Make sure that it passes FurMark, if it does not, lower down your Overclocking sliders by 1 until it passes Furmark.
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  • You can use the Auto-Tune feature of ATI Overdrive to automatically adjust overclock sliders.
  • Auto-Tune works faster but does not maximizes GPU overclocking performance.

Overclocking Nvidia Video Card

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Nvidia has drivers that allows you to overclock your Nvidia graphics card. This is application for medium to high end GPU models and requires installation of Forceware drivers.

  1. 1
    Download the required software and driver at www.nvidia.com
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  2. 2
    Install Nvidia System Tools
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  3. 3
    Run the .exe file downloaded in step 1
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  4. 4
    During the installation process, you will be asked what modules you want to install.
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  5. 5
    Tick on the desired module and continue with the installation.
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  6. 6
    Make sure that you include Nvidia nTune Performance System.
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  7. 7
    After installation, look for the shortcut file named Performance and open it.
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  8. 8
    Go to Overclock mode, it is on the menu in the Explorer to the left then selecting Setup Devices.
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  9. 9
    Tick on Custom
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  10. 10
    Adjust sliders for GPU and memory by increments of 10MHZ
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  11. 11
    Check if it is verified by the application.
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  12. 12
    Once verified, adjust another increments of 5MHZ until it crashes.
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  13. 13
    When it crashes, adjust lower by 1 MHZ until you get to the maximum allowable overclock speed.
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  14. 14
    After reaching the maximum overclock that passes your GPU, do some test to check its stability.
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  15. 15
    You can use FurMark to perform rigorous tests on your GPU
    .
    Make sure that it passes FurMark, if it does not, lower down your Overclocking sliders by 1 until it passes FurMark.
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  • Do not touch Shader frequencies as it may cause crashes on your system.

Tips, Tricks and Warnings

  • Overclocking voids your GPU's warranty, do this at your own risk.
  • You may not notice the difference right away but try playing a game which had a mediocre to bad graphics before and you can see and feel the difference.
  • Make sure that enough ventilation and cooling system is installed on your PC to prevent GPU overheat.
  • Overheating of GPU may cause damage on the hardware as well as the other parts of your PC.

If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please post in the comments section below.

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Categories : Noindexed pages | Hardware

Recent edits by: Eng, Charmed, Leomar Umpad

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