Basics Of Overclocking & Undervolting
Based on Wikipedia Overclocking is “The practice of increasing the clock rate of a computer to exceed that certified by the manufacturer. Commonly operating voltage is also increased to maintain a component’s operational stability at accelerated speeds.”. That will give you a bit of an overview as of what is overclocking, but for Miners we look at it differently.
We don’t just try to maximize our performance, but we also make sure to reduce our power usage and find the perfect spot for more power efficiency per watt. In this article we will go over the basics of overlocking and guide you to overclock your cards.
When overclocking there are always barriers not to cross, definitely don’t be foolish and think that numbers on your screen can’t possibly damage your hardware.
Conduct your research – follow our overclocking tutorials that we will post often for all the GPUs that we can get our hands so we can test different settings.
When we overclock for Mining we usually play around with the voltage control more often since it is the most effective way to reduce power usage, we will be explaining all the terminology in the next section.
Let’s go over all the main settings and what they change in your graphic card configuration so you can have a rough idea of what everything does.
Core Voltage is the amount of current that will travel to the cards, it makes the card run in a higher frequency if it is increased, and vice-versa. It plays a huge factor in the amount of heat the card produces, the voltage the less heat the card will produce, but if you lower it too much the card won’t operate.
Power Limit will dictate if the card can get more than the watts that it is originally set to get or less. So if a card takes in at max power 150 watts, if you put the slider up 10%, the card will be able to use up to 165 watts if the overclocks are pushed higher than stock settings.
Temperature limit will basically throttle your card (reducing the power it’s using to lower the heat) if it reaches the temperature limit.
Core clock is the speed and power of the card, it increases your rendering speed and performance. NVIDIA cards usually have higher Core Clock, which makes them very good in mining most algorithms.
Memory Clock is the frequency of your card, it will save all the ‘need to be rendered’ files in the memory while the Core will keep processing them. AMD Cards usually have better memory frequency.
For fan speed it is self-explanatory, it can go from 0% – 100%. Some cards can’t go to 0% like the GTX 1660 TI, so they would usually have a limit of only 30% and above. My personal mining fan configuration is either a curve of whenever the card is above 40 Degrees then go at fan speed of 70% -100%, or continuously 80% fan speed.
Now that you have the basics of overclocking down, let’s get started with tuning up your cards for the desired purpose.
For Gaming you want higher fps, therefore you want to overclock your card, and not undervolt it.
Set the core clock higher by 25 increments and run some different benchmarks on it, You can find a lot of great tools over the internet my favourite being Heaven Benchmark. So increase your core clock and run the benchmark, if it crashes then you bypassed the amount your card can support, if it does not, then you might have room to go up more.
Eventually, you will understand what is the threshold of the GPU and you wont need to go up with increments instead you will be able to go up by +100 and be able to eyeball the perfect settings.
For Mining it would be quite the difference. Our goal will be to achieve the most hashrate with the least amount of power consumption, so a good start is undervolting your card.
Undervolting will be accessible through the ‘Core Voltage’ slider, make research about your card make and model before you alter the settings, find your base voltage and only go down with small increments (5).
Set the memory clock higher if your mining a Memory intensive algorithm, and same goes with the Core Clock.
This will be the launch of a new overclocking series, we will create a category of every GPU we can get our hands on, and run tests on them then we will publish them in the Crypto Library.
Edit: We have published some articles already so feel free to head on over to the Crypto Library.
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