How to overclock a monitor

Enhance your viewing experience with monitor overclocking

how to overclock your monitor

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If you’re an avid tweaker of PCs you probably know by now that you’re able to overclock your internal components to give them a little more oomph, but did you know there’s some external hardware you can overclock too? Yes, the article’s title gave it away, with the right know-how, you can overclock your monitor.

You might be thinking what overclocking a monitor actually does to it, well, once the overclock has been applied, you’ll be able to increase the refresh rate, allowing you to upgrade it from something like 60Hz to 144Hz, depending on the model of monitor you own. Why’s that should a big deal? We’ll get onto that now.

What Do Monitor Refresh Rates Mean?

How To Overclock Your Monitor With Intel Graphics Control Panel

We mentioned earlier that CRU doesn’t work with integrated Intel graphics but luckily you’re able to do so with their proprietary software. To download the Intel Graphics Control Panel click here and get into overclocking your monitor.

  • Open Intel Graphics Control Panel
  • Hit the display option
  • Select the custom resolutions option
  • Enter your desired refresh rate as well as the width and height required
  • Press add
  • If your refresh rate is above the max, the control panel will inform you and you’ll either have to quit the program or attempt to try again.
  • If you get a successful prompt, reboot your machine.

After all of this has been done, use the steps provided above for the Windows display settings (mentioned in the CRU method) to complete the process.

Refresh rates are the frequency with which the image on a computer monitor or similar electronic display screen is refreshed, usually expressed in hertz. Breaking this down into simpler terms with meaning, essentially refresh rates are the number of times the image being displayed on your monitor is regenerated to prevent flicker when viewed with the human eye. Naturally, this means the higher the refresh rate of the monitor, the better performance you’ll see when gaming, for example, boasting silky smoothness no matter how fast you’re moving that mouse about.

The most common refresh rate you’ll see is usually 60Hz and is plenty for the everyday user but with more advanced monitor tech entering the market, you can pick one up that has a massive 240Hz refresh rate. As alluded before, higher refresh rate monitors are usually the go-to choice for gamers who normally opt for between 144Hz and 240Hz variants, predominantly leading to increased performance in multiplayer titles.

Can Your Monitor Be Overclocked?

So you want to know how to overlock your monitor but first, you need to know if your monitor can handle the extra strain.

You can in fact access overclocking on pretty much all monitors but we advise you to check the brand and model of your monitor as some manufacturers overclock your monitor as a standard before shipping. If you then increase the strain even further, it will cause you some serious issues.

We recommend searching around for other user success stories on overclocking your specific model of monitor and increase your Hz in increments of 5 to ensure you won’t be damaging your screen and can quickly revert the overclocking if you see any problems forming.

How To Overclock Your Monitor

There are a number of ways you can access the overclocking function for your monitor but all of these require third-party software to do so. We’re going to list all of the programs you’ll need as well as what options to pick so you can overclock your monitor safely.

How To Overclock Your Monitor With Custom Resolution Utility

Custom Resolution Utility (CRU) is a tried and tested method of overlocking your monitor but unfortunately, it might not be compatible with your system. It isn’t compatible with some GPUs or integrated Intel graphics so check your setup and see if you can use CRU as your method of overclocking. If you can, let’s get to the steps.

Firstly, you’ll need to download CRU, click here to do so.

  • Once it’s been downloaded, open CRU
  • There should be two boxes on show; detailed resolutions and standard resolutions.
  • Select detailed resolutions and click add
  • Now click on timing and change it to the LCD standard option
  • Change the refresh rate to above your stock level. Start with increments of 5Hz to ensure you don’t damage your display.
  • Click OK and reboot your PC.

Once your PC has been rebooted you need to go into Windows display settings and change the refresh rate, there should be more options now available to you.

  • Right-click anywhere on your desktop and select display settings
  • Click advanced display settings
  • Select display settings
  • Head to the monitor tab and choose your desired refresh rate.

If you’ve successfully overclocked your monitor it won’t go black. If it did go black, it’ll revert back to the previous settings in 15 seconds and you should see your monitor come back to life.

How To Overclock Your Monitor With AMD Radeon Settings

There are many advantages to choosing an AMD GPU and another of these is the Radeon Settings application. It allows you to customize a bunch of graphics settings as well as overclocking your monitor.

If you don’t have AMD Radeon Settings installed on your PC, download it here to get started. Without further ado let’s get into it.

  • Right-click anywhere on your desktop and choose AMD Radeon Settings
  • Head over the display tab
  • Now go to custom resolutions and hit create
  • Adjust the refresh rate to your desired Hz
  • Hit save
  • Now, reboot your computer and repeat the above steps to adjust the refresh rate if necessary.

After all of this has been done, use the steps provided above for the Windows display settings (mentioned in the CRU method) to complete the process.

How To Overclock Your Monitor With NVIDIA Control Panel

Like AMD, if you’re sporting an NVIDIA GPU, they also have a set of controls to tweak your monitor’s overclocking. Before we get into the steps, as always, ensure the NVIDIA control panel is installed. Click here if you haven’t.

  • Right-click anywhere on your desktop and choose NVIDIA control panel
  • Expand the display menu in the control panel
  • Hit change resolution and then create custom resolution
  • Change the Hz value to suit what refresh rate you want
  • You can now test by pressing the test option until you’re happy
  • Once you’re happy, reboot your machine

After all of this has been done, use the steps provided above for the Windows display settings (mentioned in the CRU method) to complete the process.

At PC Guide, Jacob has shared his expertise across best and buying guides, including the likes of GPU, CPU and beyond.