How to Undervolt your CPU and GPU

Unfortunately, in our daily routines with our laptops and PCs, we tend to use our GPU and CPU to their max limit. These tasks whether they be graphics-intensive or power-intensive can take a toll on the health and performance of our devices. This particularly applies to laptops.

This excessive use of tasks is what will force your CPU to heat up. Of course, there are other reasons why your CPU might be heating up already, so you might be adding to the degradation of your PC. If you play heavy-duty games or indulge in video editing and your device heats up a lot, then you might want to look for a solution to this dilemma.

Of course, the first step would be to make sure that your CPU is in good condition and it is well-ventilated as well. However, if everything seems to be in order, then you can try to opt for a process called undervolting. This will not only decrease power consumption but will also reduce high temperatures. Learn How to Undervolt your CPU and GPU.

What does undervolting a GPU mean?

Now coming to the good stuff! Let’s discuss what this supposedly miraculous process means. Probably sounds too good to be true right? On the contrary! This is a process whereby you can lower the operating voltage of your GPU or CPU. Since many times, the higher voltages that you are utilizing can be avoided, they can even increase the power consumption.

Another unfortunate development is that they increase the temperature limits. Here is where undervolting comes in! This is certainly a process that we recommend as it helps regulate the limit of the system voltage. This in turn will guarantee that a decent temperature range is maintained.  

In the simplest of terms, this process can help reduce the overall power and voltage that is being sent to your CPU. Of course, if more power is being sent in that direction, the hotter your GPU will get. We want to avoid this! Hence the undervolting process. If you are a laptop user, you will also appreciate this process as it can increase the battery life of your device.

Now that we have the specifics out of the way, we have to ask the real questions! We know what undervolting is, however, should this be a step that anyone can take? Let’s find out!

Should you undervolt your GPU and CPU?

Undervolting is completely safe! It doesn’t cause hardware or software issues either! There are no adverse effects to the undervolt process. On the contrary, as we have mentioned multiple times before, it only works to increase the processing power overall. This is the same for both your GPU and your CPU.

Therefore, if you have a laptop we certainly recommend having a go at it. We also recommend that if you are into gaming or crypto-mining and use a graphics-intensive GPU, then undervolting might be the best! Undervolting is also great for maintaining optimal temperatures so it would be perfect for a small form factor PC case.

What are some of the main advantages of undervolting your CPU and GPU?

  1. It won’t cause any decrease in power or performance of the computer.
  2. Your system will end up consuming less power than before.
  3. It makes the system work smoother, thus less noise is created in the process.
  4. It prevents any chances of thermal throttling.
  5. Your laptop’s battery will last much longer.
  6. It increases the usage and life of your hardware.

How to undervolt your CPU and GPU?

To undervolt your GPU and CPU, you will need the help of software. In this instance, we are using a program called Throttlestop. This is an application that will monitor and correct the three types of CPU throttling that are most laptops or computers are using nowadays.

The process is largely the same even though some laptops will be using multiplier reductions and others use clock modulation to decrease the power consumption of your device. Down below, we are listing the main processes that you need to understand as we begin undervolting your system.

However, the first step is to download throttlestop! You can download it from this link and then install it onto your device.

  • Speed Shift

The first option we are discussing is called the Speed Shift. This is not a feature you will find on CPUs that go back to 2015. This is the latest development from Intel. However, it offers many advantages.

The most important one is that it enables your CPU to respond quickly to changes in the software-set clock speed. If you have a CPU that is 2016 or higher, then you need to switch this option on in Throttlestop.

  • Disable Turbo

Up next, we have a setting called Disable Turbo. With this setting, you can make sure that the cores of your CPU will not be quicker than their base clock speeds. Therefore, if your CPU has a core with a base clock speed of 2.6GHz, it may go up to 3GHz.

You can guarantee this doesn’t happen by checking the Disable Turbo box. In this way, it will remain in the 2.6GHz domain and will not get boosted.

  • SpeedStep

In case you have a CPU that is older than 2015, then you might see this option instead of Speed Shift. However, this does the same job so you should certainly switch this on if your CPU falls under this category.

  • C1E

This is the next checkbox and with this, you can optimize the battery power by saving power when you’re low on battery. If you switch this on via Throttlestop, it will help switch off your cores automatically. This will depend on what core is under the most strain in the CPU but this is not something you have to worry about as it is automatic.

  • BD Prochot

Finally, we come to the final checkbox and safety feature that ThrottleStop will contain. When the temperature inside your laptop gets too hot to handle, then this can cause issues within. The most common issue might be throttling. This will start when the CPU gets to a temperature of 100C. However, using the BD Prochot feature, you can get the CPU to throttle even when the GPU is affected.

Now that we have familiarized ourselves with the main checkboxes on the throttle stop menu that we will need, we will not guide you through the process.

For undervolting your CPU and GPU, here are the steps you need to follow:

  • After you have checked all of the features listed above, the first thing you will need to do is go to the top-left-hand side and click on the four select circles. These will enable you to transition between profiles that have different Undervolt settings. Each will be different.
  • You can also create different profiles to use with different settings that would be optimal settings for that particular use. For example, if you want to use your CPU for gaming, you will create one with that name. normally, the profile will be called performance. However, having multiple profiles pre-made will allow you to switch between them with ease.
  • Your will therefore click on the profile that you want to set up. Select it and then press the option for “FIVR” in your Throttlestop menu. A new Window will pop up. Here you will rick the box that reads, “Unlock Adjustable Voltage”.
  • The next step will be to lower down the slider for the “Offset Voltage” option. This is the tool for undervolting. We suggest that you take this slider and decrease it to “-100mV” as a start
  • After that is done, you will proceed to click on “CPU Cache” from the “FIVR Control” section. This must be set at a similar voltage as well. This is necessary as the cache of your CPU and its Core must always work with the same Voltage Offset.
  • Your next step will be to choose the option for “Apply” and then you may look up the CPU temperatures and make sure your system is stable. You will get complete details on CPU temperatures via the Throttlestop main window.

When you’ve done this, you will wait and see if your CPU and GPU are stable. In case you get a blue-screen crash on-screen, we suggest that you stop immediately. However, if the system is completely stable, continue decreasing the cache and core voltage of the CPU using only -10mV increments. This will help decrease the temperature of your CPU further.

What to do if undervolting didn’t work out?

However, as we mentioned, if you go too far, it might cause your system to crash. So, if your system crashes, you will have to restart or reboot your PC. After this, we recommend that your launch Throttlestop again and then make sure to set the Offset Voltage at a point where it was most stable.  

An important aspect to remember here is that with different CPUs, you will get to experience and set different parameters of undervoltage. Therefore, you need to figure out what works best for your device. A good idea is to test the limits of your CPU.  

No matter what kind of adjustment you make, you need to remember to click OK via the FIVR Control Panel. After this, you will also need to click “Turn On” using the main Throttlestop window.

That’s it! These are all the steps on how to Undervolt your CPU and GPU! Now, let’s sort out a few misconceptions surrounding this process.

What is the difference between underclocking and undervolting?

Since a lot of readers seem to be confused about this, we thought we would clear out the air. There is practically no correlation between the two. This is because while undervolting is an attempt to decrease the overheating and power consumption of the CPU and GPU, overclocking has another purpose entirely.

Overclocking is a process that will work to increase the operating speed of your hardware. It works to increase the clock rate of a computer so that it can exceed the speeds that the manufacturer dictates. However, overclocking can take a toll on the overall health of your device as the operating voltage is also increased. This will conserve the operational stability of your hardware even at faster speeds.

Therefore, overclocking will mostly lead to an increase in both power consumption and fan noise. So, undervolting might be the potential solution in this case! We need to do everything we can to ensure that the system doesn’t become unstable. This can end up damaging the hardware.

Can overclocking and undervolting coexist?

With the undervolting process, you are working to decrease your GPU’s operating voltage. We think that undervolting is more advantageous than underclocking as decreasing the clockspeed may harm performance.

Decreasing the voltage on the other hand does not do the same thing. Performance because decreasing clock speed harms performance than decreasing voltage. Most of the latest CPU models will handle overclock and undervolting together but you need to make sure that it is done in balance.

With that, we have come to an end for our detailed guide on how to undervolt your CPU and GPU. We admit that the process itself sounds particularly tricky for those who do not have a background or experience with this kind of stuff. However, we still think that anyone who follows these steps will be able to handle it.

Summary

As a result of undervolting your device, your will be able to increase the lifespan of your hardware. This, in turn, will also allow you to speed up the processing speeds and performance of your CPU and GPU. We hope that today’s detailed guide has presented more than enough information to help you to go through with this process.

With that, we leave the rest up in our reader’s capable hands since that’s it from our end.