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Overclocking i7 7700k

drferrell

3 months ago

So for the past two years now I have been using an i7 7700k as my main CPU. For cooling I have a be quiet! Dark Rock 3 (the one that is more infuriating to mount). For the past couple of years, I have always been wanting to get into overclocking, but I have been too nervous to build up the courage to overclock my CPU because a) I don't have the most effective CPU cooler for overclocking, compared to AIO and dual towered air coolers like the Dark Rock Pro. And b) I don't want my whole system to fry because of my incompetence from my lack of knowledge of overclocking. I know next to nothing when it comes to overclocking. I don't even have much benefit to overclock my CPU since I play mostly basic games at 60 fps, but it is still something that I wish to get experienced with.

So tl:dr what is a comfortable set of steps for a newbie, such as myself, to overclocking an i7 7700k with an air cooler, to take when it comes to overclocking without having to worry about killing his CPU?

Comments

  • 3 months ago
  • 2 points

I would start by setting the frequency to 4.7 GHz which is reasonable for that CPU and cooler. It will be unstable at first but slowly increase voltage on the CPU by like 0.01v at a time. I would avoid going over 1.35v if you want to be careful but starting at 1.2v is a good place to start.

To test it just get the trial version of AIDA64 and run the system stability test. From there you can monitor temps and force a 100% load on the CPU. For this test to count as a stable and good overclock it must be able to run for several hours without crashing and for comfortable temps on the CPU to not go over 80c. If it has a temp spike over 80 that isn't much of a worry but as long as it is stable at or below 80c.

If the CPU is still unstable you need more voltage. If you are at your voltage cap or thermal limit then you need to lower the overclock. If you get a stable 4.7GHz and have lots of voltage/thermal room try 4.8GHz and so on. With enough cooling most i7-7700k cps could hit 4.9-5.0 GHz depending on silicon lotto. You do want to run at the lowest possible voltage that is stable for your desired overclock target.

The Dark Rock 3 is not a terrible air cooler, it is actually quite good. It would be a cooler I would trust some overclocking to. If you are lucky on the silicon lotto you may achieve 5.0 GHz with that cooler but I would suspect at least 4.7 should be achievable.

Just remember the 2 things that kills CPUs is voltage and heat. CPUs will self throttle and even shut itself off if heat is too high so that is harder to instantly fry your CPU with. Voltage if too high can instantly cook a CPU so as long as you stay under a voltage cap then you won't have to worry about frying your CPU.

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