Even with the power of the AMD Athlon X2 and Intel Extreme Edition processors, we still find ourselves hitting a CPU limitation in a lot of our benchmarks. That is, the graphics cards have more performance to give but the processor is letting the team down.
By overclocking the processor we can see what kind of a performance increase we get. When something isn't CPU limited the performance increase isn't all that major but when we do have a CPU bottleneck, every MHz extra we can get can show us an excellent jump in performance.
The Athlon X2 3800+ was increased from 2GHz to 2.35GHz with a slight increase in the front side bus utilizing the stock X2 HSF.
3DMark03 doesn't see much of a performance increase when it comes to overclocking the processor as we can see that both cards score very similar to each other.
3DMark05 also sees very little performance gains when overclocking the processor with the only noticeable difference being the X1800XT at the lower resolution.
Far Cry as always sees the greatest performance gains thanks to it being so CPU limited. Both cards gain almost a 10FPS increase when the CPU is overclocked.