The more intense PC geeks out there know all about overclocking. For those of you who don’t, overclocking is running your computer at a higher clock rate, giving it more cycles per second, than it was designed for or specified for by the manufacturer. Most people who overclock their computers are looking to increase performance of their machines without upgrading their parts. A lot of PC gamers tend to overclock in order to run some of the more graphics intense games on maxed out settings with no lag.
For the most part, PC enthusiasts have been able to overclock their computers with little to no problem but it seems that some companies out there don’t fancy the idea of overclocking. Now you may be asking yourself, “How can they stop me from overclocking my own computer?” Well to that, Intel has an answer. Intel is looking to stunt overclocking with their upcoming Sandy Bridge CPUs, which doesn’t sound like it will go over well with some of those hardcore PC users out there.
A number of slides were shown by Hong Kong-based HKEPC’s channel on YouTube featuring the new Sandy Bridge CPUs. According to the slides, Sandy Bridge will have only a single internal clock generator issuing the 100MHz base clock. This clock will control a number a features including the computer’s USB, SATA, PCI, PCI-E, CPU cores, Uncore and RAM. The clock generator will be a part of the P67 chipset and will transmit through a DMI bus to the CPU.
What that all means is that you, the user, will not be able to tweak the CPU speed without affecting the whole entire system. Some leaked sources have stated that even upping the base clock by a small 5MHz causes the USB to fail and SATA bus to corrupt. This is probably going to make a lot of Intel CPU fans who love to overclock very upset. But fans of Intel CPUs won’t be the only ones affected. Motherboard manufacturers will probably be a little peeved at Intel as well.
While this whole overclock block seems pretty bad, motherboard companies out there are definitely going to be doing whatever they can to bypass this system. Doing so could make a very large competitive point that could aim straight for hardcore enthusiasts out there. If motherboard companies don’t find a way around this then I am sure one of you hardcore overclockers out there will devise a way around it.