Tweaking Part 5 - Overclocking
Now that we have prepared the card for abuse, it's time to increase the clock speeds and see what we can gain. As a general rule, increase clock speed in small increments of around 5MHz at a time. Test thoroughly after each increase, and if any unusual effects occur like missing pixels or textures then the card has been pushed too far, a reset is required if this occurs. If that happens back the clock speeds off slightly until you get the best performance without visual distortion.
To modify the core and memory frequency, you need to use either the "coolbits" registry key to show the NVIDIA tool, or use the utility that came with your card. Reputable manufacturers like MSI, Leadtek and Hercules to name a few all bundle their drivers with overclocking tools that will also do the job nicely.
- AMD Athlon XP 1800+
- Thermaltake Volcano 7
- MSI K7T Turbo Limited Edition
- 512Mb SDRAM
- MSI StarForce GeForce3 Ti 200 64Mb DDR
- 40Gb IBM 60GXP
- Windows XP Professional
Benchmarks and Conclusion
Now to fire up Madonion's 3Dmark2001 SE, a widely accepted synthetic benchmark for DirectX 8.
In this case, our overclocking and tweaking has netted a 10.6% increase in score on 3DMark2001 SE. The final core and memory speeds of 236/487 put this card very close to the GeForce3 Ti 500 (250/500) as far as specifications go. Seeing as the Ti200 has the same features as the Ti500 apart from clock speed, tweaking a Ti200 presents itself as a cost effective solution for the avid gamer. Not all video cards out there are going to achieve the same sort of results we see here. But there are performance gains to be had using almost any card, as long as you know where to look.
Please direct any questions or comments to the Video Card section of our forums, see you there!