Every tech enthusiast is passionate about benchmarking and getting the best results, the best score. This need to tweak every aspect of a computer has urged many to go far beyond the component’s specs and transform their PC’s in ultimate machines. Overclocking is the way to get more horsepower for your computer and benchmarking is the way to show others your results.
What is benchmarking?
Benchmarking is a process that puts stress on your components to determine if they work properly and if the configuration and overclock is stable. Also, with benchmarking you get a score that you can compare with others to see who’s done the best job overclocking their computer. As a fan of overclocking and overvoltage, I know a few applications that can put your machine through its paces and tell you how good your computer is. Using these apps, you will be able to iron out every kink in your computer’s configuration and end up with the best possible machine that gives you all it’s got.
A very important note
Remember that some of these apps put enormous stress on your machine. The possibility to damage your components is high, so do this at your own expense. Although computer components have safety measures implemented into them, in a serious overclocking you will turn off the majority of these settings, ending up with the bear essential. If not done correctly, the benchmarking process can damage your computer.
I’ll give you a list of such apps, dedicated for each component so you can find out everything to know about each part of your PC and test it out. Also, before we go any further, make sure to have some informational apps on hand, like CPU-Z, GPU-Z, RealTemp, CoreTemp, SpeedFan, HWMonitor or Aida64. These will give you all the information you need on your components.
Benchmarking tools for your CPU
OCCT is one of the most powerful benchmarking tools you can unleash on your computer. This hard core CPU tester will give your computer’s CPU a run for its money and at the end of the gruelling test, it will give you very precise information in the form of multiple graphs displaying everything from voltages to temperatures and frequencies. Also, OCCT has a few other test, for DDR Memory and for your Video Card (GPU), so it would be a great tool for testing your computer from top to bottom.
SuperPi is a benchmarking tool that enthusiasts love very much. It’s become soft of a sport nowadays to let people see how fast your CPU can calculate the number pi (3.14…) win an outstanding number of decimals. Although it might not give you scores and such, you can still get an estimate on the speed that your CPU runs at by comparing your results with other that have done this test, and believe me, there are lots!
Third, but not least, Prime95 is the benchmarking tool that makes or breaks a good overclock. This tool keeps your CPU at 100% on all cores and with 80%+ memory use for an indefinite time period. A tool much loved by overclockers around the world, Prime95, as like OCCT is one of the most powerful tools you can use. After a 5-10 hour marathon of constant pushing your CPU, you will definitely know that your overclock is stable!
Benchmarking tools for your GPU
If you are overclocking your video card, then you really need to know if it can handle complex graphics and not get overheated. FurMark allows you to push your GPU to the limit and see if it can cope. Remember that this tool can damage your video card and make unusable, so be very careful when you use it. Because GPUs get really hot in use, when you push it to the limit, it might break.
Actually these are two separate tools built into one great benchmarking tool. One allows you to tweak the settings of your video card (MSI Afterburner), giving it more or less memory, voltage and so on, and the other, MSI Kombustor, allows you to test out your settings with a burn test that ranks your video card with a score, determined by its performance
3DMark is probably the world’s best known GPU and CPU benchmark tool. It has a series of animated tests for your computer, and after them it gives you a score that you can submit to see just how good is your computer. Comparing scores in 3DMark has become a passion for most, and try time and time again to beat the records. Although not as tough as the other tools features here, it does give you lots of useful information on your computer and it can help you determine if your computer is running at its max, or if it’s dragging its feet.
Benchmarking tools for your DDR Memory
If you ever set out to overclock/overvoltage or tweak your DDR Memory, you know how hard it is to get the timings right, to get the right frequency and so on. The task is daunting, but when you do succeed, you will need to test them out. And what better way to do this if not with one of the best tools for testing DDR Memory? MaxxMem is an awesome tool that gives you great information on your memory’s status, such as timing, reading and writing times and latency. Give it a try and see how your memory handles!
With these tools at your disposal you will be able to see just how much your computer can score and how far you can push it, for that bigger score. Keep in mind that these tests can damage your computer, so proceed with caution! But, then again, a little OC never hurt anyone. It might not work for your slow laptop, but it might give you a speed bump in your computer!