Intel Has an Alternative For Overclocking: No Need to Buy ‘K’ or ‘X’ Series CPU?

    A photo released Oct. 8, 2018, shows a 9th Gen Intel Core processor packages. The processor family is optimized for gaming. (Source: Intel Corporation)

    Overclocking has always been a great option to see the real capabilities of the components. Pushing the processors can yield very good results if done with care. However, it is not safe to overclock as it can shorten life or might permanently damage the hardware too. It also voids the warranty. Till now, for overclocking Intel processors we had to buy the ‘K’ and ‘X’ series. As an instance, for overclocking the latest 10th gen processor we have to buy the i9-10900K processor. The model designated by a K at the end of the processor is the unlocked model for overclocking. It seems now the motherboard makers have come up with a new way of overclocking. The makers are working on overcoming the limitations. They are willing to give other novel ways of overclocking with their new products. found in the process of reviewing the Asus TUF Gaming B460 Plus motherboard, found that there is a feature named Asus Performance Enhancement (APE). The feature tricks the processor to run at much higher clock speed. It allows a 65W CPU to run at 125W or higher. The feature seems promising for customers who usually overclock their CPUs.


    The other motherboard maker company ASRock also has a similar feature named Base Frequency Boost. The feature can be applied on selected ASRock 300 & 400 series motherboards. With the feature, Asus is also in the game. The Gigabyte Aorus B460 series motherboard’s owner posted some images on the CoolPC forums in which they are using sing a locked Intel Core i7 10700 Comet Lake-S processor. With this, PC Gamer pointed out that Gigabyte is also giving the same kind of feature. The CPU has a decent score of 3,637 points in the Cinebench R20 benchmarks when running 3.8 GHz. By overclocking, the processor manages a peak of 4.5 GHz then slowly dropped to 4.33 GHz and scores 4,679 points. The performance boost-up of the locked processor is noticeable. However, if someone is willing to try this out, he must have a good cooling system.

    Intel on Alternative Overclocking

    The customers who usually overclock their PC are happy with the alternative as they do not have to buy the ‘K’ series processors. They do not have to pay an extra amount for the unlocked processors. But the question is: Is Intel ready for the change?

    Although, the company has not commented on this topic. Overclocking is an element of risk and can harm the hardware components. We must wait for the company to officially announce the feature.

    Coming to the ‘K’ series processors, they have locked multipliers which means we cannot increase the clock multiplier of a CPU. Traditionally, it increases the frequency on which the CPU runs. Right now for overclocking the Intel Core i9 10900 processor still, we have to buy the Core i9 10900K processor instead. However, the features of the new motherboard enable the buyers to tweak the Power Level 1 (PL1) setting of the processor. And, It seems an effective way to deal with the lock.

    Overclocking looks promising but it does have many side effects. It must be done with care. One must have the best power supply, cooling system to achieve the results that he wants. With, the new feature Intel is going to make it easy for the customers who prefer to overclock their processor. However, we still have to wait for the announcement by the company.

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