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You can overclock the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, but it’s still risky

Despite AMD’s warning that the Ryzen 7 5800X3D cannot be overclocked, the CPU has just been spotted running far above its maximum boost frequency.

The processor managed to hit a clock speed of 4.8GHz. Does that mean that everyone should overclock the upcoming 3D V-Cache CPU? Not necessarily.

Where there's a will, there's a way

— SkatterBencher (@skatterbencher) April 13, 2022

AMD’s innovative 3D V-Cache chip has a lot to offer. It may not have the highest number of cores (eight cores and 16 threads), but it has a massive, stacked L3 cache of 96MB. It also comes with clock speeds of 3.4GHz base and 4.5GHz boost. As the release date draws closer, new information about the chip keeps cropping up, and so far, it’s good news all around for the Ryzen 7 5800X3D — but that wasn’t always the case.

Considering that this is a gaming processor, one that can rival Intel’s best CPU, the Core i9-12900K, there will certainly be users who might want to overclock it to get even more performance out of the chip. Unfortunately, according to AMD’s Robert Hallock, overclocking is hard-locked on the new Ryzen 7 5800X3D — at least in its traditional form. Memory and FLCK overclocking are still going to be possible.

The reason why AMD chose not to allow overclocking on the Ryzen 7 5800X3D is due to voltages and thermals. As Hallock explained, the reason behind this is that the processor, with its gargantuan cache, can only reach up to 1.35V versus the maximum 1.6V that other Zen 3 chips can reach. As the Ryzen 7 5800X3D is already running at its maximum voltage of 1.35V, overvolting it could cause damage to the chip, so AMD chose to disable it.

Enter: Pieter of SkatterBencher. In a daring, potentially hardware-breaking move, the overclocker tested whether what AMD says is true. As he said in his tweet, “where there’s a will, there’s a way” — and indeed, he managed to prove AMD wrong. He posted a screenshot of CPU-Z with the new AMD chip running at a whopping 4.82GHz frequency, a voltage of 1.306V, a 45.5 multiplier, and a base clock (BCLK) of 105.99MHz. As such, it’s worth noting that he squeezed an extra 300MHz out of the chip while staying well within the voltage limit.

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D chip.

The processor was paired with an Asus ROG Crosshair VIII Extreme motherboard, and to achieve this result, SkatterBencher used Asus’ Voltage Suspension tech. It’s possible that this trick won’t work on every motherboard. The overclocker promised that he would soon release a video explaining the whole process, so we might learn more shortly.

AMD promised that the Ryzen 7 5800X3D will have an up to 15% gaming performance increase over its predecessor. Although in synthetic benchmarks, the CPU didn’t impress, in early gaming tests it seems to be on par with the Core i9-12900K — at a lower price.

The lack of overclocking was a shame, but it seems that for the willing, there’s a workaround. Keep in mind that although SkatterBencher pulled it off, it’s best to trust AMD and believe that overclocking that particular chip is still a risky business. Don’t try this at home, folks — at least not unless you’ve done your fair share of overclocking in the past.

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Monica J. White
Monica is a UK-based freelance writer and self-proclaimed geek. A firm believer in the "PC building is just like expensive…
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