The BIOS and overclocking
Note well that you should know what you are doing before you experiment with overclocking a computer.
The overclockability of a desktop or laptop PC’s processor depends on the overclocking settings provided by the BIOS or UEFI BIOS and on whether or not the processor is unlocked – does not have its clock multiplier locked so that it can’t be changed via the BIOS.
Some motherboard’s have standard BIOSes that are designed for overclocking. For example, the Asus P5E64 WS Professional Socket LGA775 motherboard (for Intel dual and quad-core processors) has intelligent overclocking settings in its BIOS that allow the user to adjust the voltages of the North Bridge chip, the FSB, the processor, and the RAM memory to achieve the most precise settings to match changes in the settings for the FSB and the clock multiplier.
A standard BIOS can have a setting that allows the processor to change its speed (frequency) automatically to match the use that is being made of the computer – top speed for high-intensity computing and a lower speed for less demanding computing.
A UEFI BIOS can provide the ability for automatic overclocking that makes the processor adjust its speed to match the demands being made on it. It can also provide manual overclocking settings. Overclocking has become very much easier with the UEFI BIOS, as you can see for yourself by watching the following rather long video that provides good information on the capabilities of an UEFI BIOS.
Newegg TV: Sandy Bridge Overclocking & UEFI Demo on ASUS P8P67 P67 1155 –
You can download the user manuals for Asus motherboards from asus.com if you want to see the BIOS settings that they provide. The the Asus P5E64 WS Professional motherboard is a good example of one that has been designed with overclocking in mind. MSI also provide good manuals for their motherboards. However, MSI motherboards usually have BIOSes that are restricted to the kind of basic settings the changing of which won’t get the user into the kind of trouble that results in high support costs. The BIOS of a non-gaming laptop is usually a very basic affair for that reason.