At CES 2016, I had the opportunity to interview and overclock with the legend and GIGABYTE in-house overclocker himself, Hicookie. Before you ask, no, Hicookie is not his real name, but even in real life, he uses the name Hicookie with friends, family, and co-workers. The humble 38-year old professional overclocker has been overclocking for over a decade, and I took some time to interview the living legend.
Hicookie was overclocking at GIGABYTE's CES 2016 Ballroom for three days. Even with GIGABYTE's late arrival with non-K overclocking BIOSes (only about two weeks ago), Hicookie and Boris_sdk took four Global 1st WRs on only the first day, and on the third day, Boris_SDK took another. Everything was live streamed on Twitch GIGABYTEUSATwitchArchive.
On the second day (the 7th), I brought in my 6700K I use in all my motherboard reviews along with my 4GHz memory kit from Corsair to see what we could do with them. You can check out the GIGABYTEUSATwitchArchive for videos on the 7th, as we overclock my 6700K to 6.5GHz and the 4GHz memory to 4.6GHz. There is some valuable information we talked about at the beginning on the 7th, so the archived video acts like an overclocking guide for those looking to go extreme with Intel Skylake and Z170.
Hicookie Interview: Overclocking Past
Steve: So, where were you born?
Hicookie: Zhanghua, Taiwan.
Steve: What is your educational background?
Hicookie: I studied Graphic Design in University.
Steve: If you weren't overclocking, what would be your dream job?
Hicookie: Race car driver, but [it's] difficult in Taiwan, there are no tracks.
Steve: What was the first platform you overclocked on?
Hicookie: Back in 1998. Pentium 2, I had to use jumpers to overclock and changed core speed from 133MHz to 200MHz.
Steve: How did you learn to overclock with LN2, did someone teach you? And what was the first platform you overclocked with LN2?
Hicookie: I did myself. I ordered LN2 and bought a small tank [dewar]. First time I was very scared, I had no knowledge of LN2, and LN2 was not very popular outside of Team Japan. I think it was the P35 platform, just one year before I joined GIGABYTE. [Laugh] My first pot was my Mickey Mouse pot.
Steve: I heard from the GIGABYTE employee whose job it was to find you, that it looked like you lived in a PC store, and that you would only eat, sleep, and overclock. Is that true?
Hicookie: Yes [laughing], but now I have a wife! I met her around the same time I have been working at GBT. We have been married five years. I worked with top Taiwanese website, doing media stuff like you and overclocking. I would also join competitions and hold competitions.
Steve: So you had the ability to work at many companies, why did you choose GIGABYTE?
Hicookie: When I started, GIGABYTE was number two, I wanted to make them number one. I like challenges.
Steve: Do you still love what you do after it turned from hobby into your career?
Hicookie: Yes I love it, it's still challenging, and every new platform is new challenge. I love to see what is different in new platforms. I also love to see the effects of new technologies on performance, such as memory timings affect with DDR4.
Steve: What was your favorite platform to overclock?
Hicookie: The P45 chipset. It was a challenge overclocking the CPU, Memory, and FSB.
Steve: What was your worst LN2 OC experience?
Hicookie: Normally I do not kill parts, but with Nehalem, I killed many CPUs [laughing]. The CPU is very easy to kill, many times you will just lose memory channels, so it's a very frustrating platform. Maybe back to AMD 939, maybe it is worse since it is very easy to kill with too much voltage. I killed many Bartons.
Steve: What is your favorite benchmark?
Hicookie:SuperPI 32M, because it is easier to check out the memory and CPU efficiency.
Steve: So if someone was starting out and wanted to get into SuperPi 32M, what do you recommend they research?
Hicookie: Research Wazza, some OS registers, and read up on guides because others are secret [laugh]. I did not say it was an easy benchmark; it's very hard benchmark, perhaps one of the hardest.
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