CPUs play a central role in gaming. While they are not as important as the GPU, they still affect your FPS in a few different ways. An underpowered CPU will limit your GPU’s power and cause micro stutters, lags, spikes, and loading issues. So, does overclocking CPU increase FPS?
In most cases, overclocking has a positive impact on in-game performance. If your CPU is already more powerful than your GPU, then you should not expect too much of a performance gain, if any at all. There are bottlenecks calculator that you can use to check whether your CPU or GPU is the weaker part. In situations where the system is well-balanced, overclocking can still provide a decent performance boost.
But when does overclocking CPU increase FPS a lot? In situations where the CPU is ancient or low-end and the GPU is much newer or better. This is where overclocking makes a huge difference. You can expect performance gains of up to 50% in some rare cases. Most of the time, it will be around 20-30% more FPS. Note that some titles do not depend on the CPU nearly as much as they do on the GPU, like in esports titles.
For more details about overclocking and the answer to “Does overclocking CPU increase FPS?“, continue reading to find out.
Does Overclocking CPU Increase FPS
Overclocking is a great way to get more performance for free. If you have an older system and your CPU temps under a full load are under 80°C on the stock clock speed, then overclocking is a no brainer. You also want to make sure that your motherboard supports overclocking.
Overclocking your CPU is not difficult. You just need to go into the BIOS and change the frequency in small increments and stress testing to make sure that it is stable. But do you need to overclock in the first place?
If you are happy with the FPS you get in the games you play already, then there is no reason to overclock. But if you have an old CPU paired with a newer GPU and have an aftermarket cooler, overclocking is a great way to boost your performance. All games will reap the benefits of your overclock. Some game genres will benefit much more than others, such as RPGs, strategy games, and open-world sandbox games.
You might think that a 0.2 GHz overclock is not significant but think again. If your CPU has 4 cores, then that is an additional 0.8 GHz for free. Depending on the CPU and title, a 10% CPU clock speed increase can net up to 20-30 FPS. Anyone who has played an AAA game will agree that the difference between 30-40 and 50-60 FPS is enormous.
This does not mean that your situation will be the same, though. If your CPU is already decent (let’s say, a Ryzen 5 3600x) and you have a mid-end GPU, like the RX 580, then overclocking the CPU will not increase the FPS much. In cases like these, a 0.2 GHz increase will only give you about 5-10 FPS, depending on the title.
Overclocking very old, obsolete hardware can make it useful again. Let’s say you have an ancient computer that is at your parent’s house. When you go over for the holidays, you want to play League of Legends, but you are getting only 40 FPS on average. Anyone who has played League of Legends at that framerate knows that it is challenging. You get the idea of overclocking the CPU and GPU. You increase the clock speed of both as much as you can without increasing the voltage too much.
After doing that, the game runs at 70 FPS. Now you can get those Katarina pentakills and climb the ladder with your mates. Sure, the computer runs pretty hot, but it is winter so you do not mind it at all. This is just one example of how overclocking can transform your gaming sessions.
So, does overclocking CPU increase FPS? Yes, it does. Or in most cases, at the very least. You might not see much of an improvement if you already have a decent CPU, but on something ancient, it can make something unplayable into an enjoyable experience. Overclocking is a great way of turning cheap obsolete CPUs into something that can be used even in modern titles.