Skip to Content

Is Monitor Overclocking Safe?

As an owner of multiple computers and monitors, I’m always looking for ways to optimize my setup for the best performance possible. Recently, I’ve been looking into monitor overclocking, and I’ve been wondering if it is safe? After a lot of research and testing, I’m here to share what I’ve learned about monitor overclocking and safety.

In this blog post, I’ll explain why overclocking is a potentially useful tool, and why it’s important to take the necessary safety precautions. I’ll also discuss some of the ways you can safely overclock your monitor, as well as other solutions I’ve discovered.

Overclocking your monitor might shorten its lifespan. It might also cause damage if done too often. However, if you only do it occasionally, the effects won’t be too noticeable, and you’ll have a smoother experience overall.

Let’s take a look at the risks and benefits of overclocking your monitor so you can decide if it’ll be worth it for you. We’ll also go through the safest ways to overclock a monitor.

Benefits of Overclocking Your Monitor

Some videos and high-end games benefit from having a higher refresh rate and FPS. Having more frames per second (FPS) equates to smoother transitions as far as graphics. 

A low refresh rate can cause a lot of ghosting and tearing, where the frames aren’t refreshing fast enough to catch up to your in-game movement. 

There might also be lag from when you click the buttons to when the button-associated action happens on the screen.

Overclocking may be beneficial in this case because it allows the visuals to keep up with your actions. It’s especially useful when you’re playing online multiplayer or first-person shooter games, where quicker graphics can give you an advantage.

Most monitors can usually handle overclocking while staying stable. Even a 60 Hz monitor will probably be able to support overclocking to at least 75 Hz.

So, before going out and splurging on a higher-end monitor, you can first check if overclocking your current monitor can significantly improve its performance.

Risks of Overclocking Your Monitor

When you overclock your monitor, you’re increasing its refresh rate beyond the recommended rate. Take note that doing so may void your warranty, in case something goes wrong.

Overclocked monitors tend to heat up notably fast because overclocking requires a lot of energy.

Because of this, you’ll need to invest in a better cooling system in order to prevent overheating. Without proper cooling, your computer is prone to crashing and may even be damaged.

Make sure to do your research on your specific monitor’s overclocking capabilities so that you don’t end up overworking it. 

How to Safely Overclock Your Monitor

If you’ve decided that overclocking your monitor is worth the try, there are several ways to do it depending on your GPU. 

Here are some step-by-step instructions that you can easily follow:

NVIDIA GPU

If you have an NVIDIA GPU, you can adjust the refresh rate from its Control Panel.

  1. Right-click on your desktop and select NVIDIA Control Panel.
  2. Under Display, select the Change resolution option.
  3. Look for the Customize button and click it.
  4. Select Enable Resolutions Not Exposed by the Display and then Create Custom Resolution.
  5. You don’t need to change any settings aside from the refresh rate. Most monitors will have it set to 60 Hz by default.
  6. You can then increase the refresh rate and click the Test button. Try to go up about 5 Hz at a time.
  7. Your screen may go black during the process. Just wait for it to return after a few seconds.
  8. You’ll know if it was successful if you can click OK. A new option with your adjustments will appear and you can just press Apply.

If it’s unsuccessful and you’re using a 4K monitor, you can adjust the resolution to 1080p first then test if this will work with 75 Hz.

AMD or Intel GPU

You can use a tool called Custom Resolution Utility developed by ToastyX if you have an AMD or Intel GPU. You can also use this method with an Nvidia GPU.

  1. Download and unzip the application.
  2. Right-click on the CRU app to open it as administrator.
  3. Under the box that says Detailed resolutions, click on the Add button.
  4. Enter your monitor’s resolution.
  5. Input your desired frame rate. Again, you can try increasing by 5 Hz at a time.
  6. Press OK.
  7. Go back to the CRU folder and right-click restart64.exe to run it as administrator.
  8. Your screen may start flickering before going back to normal.
  9. If your screen blacks out for around 15 seconds, this means the overclock was too high. Just lower the refresh rate, then try again.
  10. Once it works, go to your computer’s Display Settings then click Advanced Display Settings.
  11. Click on Display Adapter Properties then choose the Monitor tab.
  12. You’ll be able to select your new refresh rate in the drop-down menu under Monitor Settings.

You can use websites like testufo.com to check if your new settings are appropriate. 

Pros of Overclocking Your Monitor

  • Smoother transitions and graphics
  • Reduced ghosting and tearing
  • Quicker response time
  • Potentially increase FPS without buying a more expensive monitor

Cons of Overclocking Your Monitor

  • May void warranty
  • Increases the risk of overheating
  • May shorten the lifespan of the monitor
  • Can cause damage if done too often

Final Words

Before tinkering with your monitor’s refresh rate, make sure to check its specifications to see if it’s capable of overclocking.

Overclocking is a useful tool that can give you quality viewing and gaming experiences without having to spend on a high-end monitor. 

Just make sure that you resort to it sparingly. Otherwise, it can damage your monitor.