Apparently due to the general shift to self-isolation – I have recently received several questions and emails about overclocking graphics cards and increasing FPS in games
In general, I am not a big supporter of overclocking, because it usually entails additional problems: temperature increase, errors, freezes, etc. However, if you don’t “go overboard” with it, you can get an extra 5-10% of performance quite safely (on most hardware)!
And in general, I strongly advise to do everything as a package, i.e. to increase productivity by different methods:
- 5-10% due to video card overclocking (about this below);
- 5-10% due to fine-tuning of the video card driver settings;
- 5-10-40% due to the settings of a particular game (e.g., you can turn off shadows, effects, range of vision/horizon, etc.).
- total: in total there will be a significant figure, you can increase FPS by 30-100% (and more) to the current figures, if you use all the tools and methods!
- Anything you do in the article below is at your own risk!
- Remember that greed will kill you, know the sense of proportion (if you managed to painlessly “squeeze out” 10% from the top – then maybe there is no point in pressing the video card further?)
Example of AMD RX 570 graphics card overclocking
And so, the first thing we need to do is install two utilities:
- MSI Afterburner – in this program we will increase memory and chip frequencies (i.e. overclocking itself). This program is universal and compatible with the vast majority of video cards;
- FurMark – this utility is needed to recheck the stability of the video card after overclocking (it will show both FPS and temperature).
The installation of these utilities is standard, so I am not giving it here…
Then we run both utilities simultaneously. After that you need to click the button “GPU Stress test” in FurMark (in MSI Afterburner don’t change anything yet).
The video card test should start (a “bagel” will start spinning on the screen, and all basic information will be displayed at the top of the window),
In general, this stress test before overclocking will allow us to assess the stability of the video card, its temperature, and the FPS it produces. In any case, you should make sure that everything is OK with the card – if it overheats and hangs even before overclocking, overclocking won’t do any good!
If the video card was stable in the stress test, there were no errors and overheating – you can move on to overclocking. 👌
First, pay attention to MSI Afterburner – there are two key parameters:
- Core Clock (MHz) – the frequency of the graphics processing unit (GPU);
- Memory Clock (MHz) – the frequency of memory operation.
It is necessary to increase these initial values by about 4-5% (i.e. the frequency, for example, 1200 MHz multiplied by 1.05 – it will be 1260 MHz, which should be substituted…). After increasing the values – click on the button with the “tick” (i.e. save and apply the settings).
Next you need to run FurMark again to test the stability of the video card (and the system as a whole). See the screenshot below 👇.
As you can see in my example below – the amount of FPS increased by 7.7%. At the same time video card temperature also began to grow (not by much, but still…).
If during 9-10 min test in FurMark the video card behaved steadily, did not overheat and had no errors – you can close the test and in MSI Afterburner move the sliders to the right another 1%. Then run the test again.
Thus, step by step, you will find the frequency limit that your card can tolerate (as soon as FurMark crashes, hangs, and displays artifacts – stop the test and lower the frequencies!)
If we talk about what gives overclocking in games – it’s a bit more complicated… In most games the amount of FPS will of course increase (in my example in CS-GO about the same 7-8% 👇)!
However, in some games the gain can be more (or less) significant (depends on the specifics of the game – everything is tested in practice).
By the way, overclocking will “work” as long as MSI Afterburner utility is active. Naturally, after restarting the computer the frequencies will be reset…
To “force” the video card to always work at higher frequencies, you need to do the following:
- save the settings (which were successful at overclocking) into one of the 5 profiles;
- activate the “Startup” parameter – i.e. so that when the program starts, the parameters we have selected will be automatically activated;
- and in the settings of the utility specify that it should be “Run with Windows” (see example in the screenshot below 👇).
Now the overclocking will be done automatically at each OS boot (without manual “additional work”). Convenient?!!! 👌