When we talk about overclocking a PC, we’re generally referring to the graphics card or CPU. After all, those are the two main hardware components that overclockers usually overclock.
People focus on overclocking their graphics card and CPU because they have the biggest impact on performance – specifically gaming performance.
But what about that part of your computer that you stare at every day? What about that part that you’re staring at right now? Have you ever thought about overclocking your monitor? Well, maybe you should.
A few years ago, the prospect of overclocking a monitor was as outlandish as landing on Jupiter. Today, most people still don’t think overclocking a monitor is a real thing. But it is. And here’s why:
120 Hz monitors are noticeably better than 60Hz monitors
120Hz monitors are generally used to process 3D images. In order to do that, they need to feed alternate images to multiple screens at a rate faster than a normal screen. That means they need a higher refresh rate – 120Hz.
But here’s the thing: some of today’s monitors can support this higher refresh rate – even though they’re automatically set to 60Hz.
120Hz is noticeably better. Your eyes can totally tell the difference even when you’re just moving windows around the homescreen. And since your games probably don’t support a 120Hz refresh rate, it’s not going to make a huge difference on your gaming experience or movie viewing.
But still, for those who want to squeeze every ounce of performance out of your PC, overclocking your monitor is a good way to make your computer look its best.
Nvidia has released a tool that can overclock the refresh rate of your monitors. Unfortunately, that tool isn’t being freely distributed yet. Instead, it’s being distributed by Nvidia’s graphics card partners – like Evga and Gigabyte.
So far, Evga is the first company to release their overclocking tool. And it can be used on just about any Nvidia GeForce card – even older ones.
Step 1) Download the Evga tool here
Step 2) Click the .exe file and run the program
Step 3) Accept the risks
Step 4) Choose which monitor you want to overclock and then increase the refresh rate by, say 10Hz
Step 5) Hit Apply and see if it works
Step 6) If your monitor shows no signs of problems (like flickering, weird noises, or a fire), then keep edging up the refresh rate
Step 7) Stop when you’re satisfied – or when your monitor explodes
At this point, many of you are worried about bricking your monitors. And you’re not alone. Although Nvidia claims that its pixel clocking tool won’t damage your monitor or turn it into a ‘brick’, the EVGA tool doesn’t make the same promises.
When I ran the EVGA Pixel Overclocking tool on my PC, I get this very frightening message:
Once I hesitantly hit Accept, the warnings didn’t get any less ominous.
I wouldn’t recommend proceeding past this point if you’re using an expensive monitor – like a $2000 30” HD monitor or something of the sort. But if you’re using an old monitor and testing its limits, don’t be afraid – what’s the worst that could happen?
The good news is that after using a 120Hz monitor it’s basically impossible to go back to a 60Hz monitor. The smoothness and clarity is unbelievable, and even if your monitor can only overclock to, say 85Hz, you will notice the difference.
In fact, you’ll notice the difference by just adding 10Hz or 20Hz. Consider this: today’s feature films are generally filmed at 24 frames per second (equal to 24Hz). The Hobbit, with all its cinematographical controversy, was filmed at 48 frames per second (48Hz). Your computer runs at 60Hz. Think of how awesome 120Hz will look.
Get started today by downloading Evga’s monitor overclocking tool here.