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What Advantages does Overclocking the CPU have for the Graphics Card?

GPU vs. CPU Upgrade: Extensive Tests

The first table shows the gain in the overall results when an E2160 CPU is overclocked from 1.8 GHz to 2.41 GHz. The FSB is overclocked by 33%, pushing it from 200 to 267 MHz, which should be achievable using the stock cooler. The minimal increase in temperature is confirmed by the values for power consumption: the overall system with the overclocked E2160 requires between 6 and 10 watts (3D mode) more from the power supply.

Important! When attempting to overclock, you should always monitor temperatures carefully.

Performance increase of GPU by overclocking the E2160@1.8 to 2.41 GHz Percent
Geforce 9800 GTX (512 MB) E2160@2.41 120.1
Geforce 9600 GT OC (1024 MB) E2160@2.41 116.3
Geforce 8800 GTS OC (512 MB) E2160@2.41 120.7
Geforce 8800 GT OC (512 MB) E2160@2.41 116.5
Geforce 7950 GT (512 MB) E2160@2.41 107.3
Geforce 6800 GT (256 MB) E2160@2.41 100.6

With the new graphics chips, in particular, you can feel the effects of the higher clock rate more clearly: the 20% increased performance makes this obvious. Graphics cards with the G92 graphics chip need a basic performance level of at least 2.6 GHz.

When using the Q6600 things are a little more difficult: it is no longer a good idea to recommend a boxed standard cooler at 3200 MHz. The maximum power consumption or achievable clock rate varies from model to model: 3200 MHz was selected in order to leave some space to the X6800EE at 2.94 GHz, so that you can see from the comparison tables whether increasing the clock rate further will bring any more benefits. The FSB overclocking is 34%, and the base clock level 266 MHz is increased to 356 MHz.

Performance increase of GPU by overclocking the Q6600@2.4 to3.2 GHz Percent
Geforce 9800 GTX (512 MB) Q6600@3.2 107.6
Geforce 9600 GT OC (1024 MB) Q6600@3.2 105.8
Geforce 8800 GTS OC (512 MB) Q6600@3.2 107.5
Geforce 8800 GT OC (512 MB) Q6600@3.2 106.3
Geforce 7950 GT (512 MB) Q6600@3.2 100.7
Geforce 6800 GT (256 MB) Q6600@3.2 101.4

The performance increase due to an overclocked Q6600 is not as high in percentage terms as for the E2160. With a stock speed of 2400 MHz, the Q6600 achieved excellent results in the test games. In order for the quad core processor to keep up with the E6750, its clocking rate should be at least the same, lying between 2600 and 2800 MHz.

It’s important to remember that overclocking components will void your warranty, but that using adequate cooling and BIOS settings will help to assure component longevity. A Zalman 9700 LED has been used for this test: Questions about the appropriate BIOS settings can be answered in Toms Hardware Forums.

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