Best CPU cooler to overclock 2500K to over 5.0GHz?

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Apr 15, 2011
I'm currently building a Gaming Rig optimized for Starcraft 2. I'm going to use a single monitor in 1920x1080 resolution. Majority of the time, I will be playing Sc2, DotA 2 and HoN . I will also try out these games; LoL, Skyrim, Dragon Age II, GW 2, Tera, WoW and Diablo III.

This is what I'm planning to buy:

CPU: Intel Core i5 2500K $229
CPU HSF: CoolerMaster Hyper 212+ $33
Mobo: Asrock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 $145
RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws X F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL (1600MHz 9-9-9-24-2N 1.5v) $65
HDD: Samsung SpinPoint F3 1TB HD103SJ $59
GPU: MSI GeForce GTX 560 Ti Twin Frozr II OC 1GB $249
Case: Antec 300 $59
PSU: Antec Neo Eco 520W $69

I want to try and overclock 2500K to 4.7GHz ~ 5.3GHz. I know that how far you can overclock depends on 2 things:

1.) Good CPU cooler
2.) CPU capacity(Luck)

Is Hyper 212 Plus good enough to overclock over 4.5GHz or do I need a noctua nh-d14?

- I'm overclocking 2500K because Starcraft 2 is a VERY CPU intensive game and apparantly even the 2500K overclocked to 4.5GHz can't maintain minimum of 60FPS during the whole match in 1v1.


FPS will be limited by your GPU more so than the 2500K overclocked.

Overclocking the 2500K to 4.7ghz ~ 5.3ghz, > 5.3ghz? Really? That's some high expectations!

There are various ways to overclock the 2500K, the different overclock routes take you into different heat ranges, 5.3ghz 100% stable is not even possible with an air cooler overclocking all 4 cores unless you live in the Artic with your computer sitting outside your window.

The voltage it would take to run 5.3ghz is past Intel's tested specs, so how much heat do you think it will generate.

I think first off you need to decide the route you'll be using to overclock the 2500K, and if you don't know there are various routes to overclock the 2500K, you need to do some serious research in that area first.
5.0GHz!! WOW! :ouch:
You like to dream big don't you!

Seriously though,
If you really want to do some serious overclocking then use liquid nitrogen!
1. Otherwise I suggest you buy a small personal freezer,
2. Coat your motherboard and all of your internal components with an electric waterproofer (it's like a shiny waxy coating that waterproofs electronics.
3. Mount your motherboard inside the freezer OR if it's big enough put your whole computer in the freezer.
4. You will need to get an extra thick freezer seal that is soft enough to allow cables to get out without causing the freezer to loose air.
5. You may need a bungie cord to keep the door closed depending on the type of freezer you use.
6. If you do this you must use air cooling inside the freezer. Liquid cooling often causes the liquid to freeze. You may be able to do it with some kind of liquid that doesn't freeze then you would have some world class cooling that would easily allow for over 5.0GHz

It's been done before... Look it up.

If you want to get realistic about cooling then just get a really big liquid cooling system. (Large radiator with 3 or more large fans cooling the liquid)


Jan 7, 2009

There's a little more to it than that.

Two more main factors will be the motherboard, good PWM, cooling and quality of components. Also the PSU, if you don't have a quality, clean power supplying PSU your never going to obtain a stable high overclock.

The 212+ cooler is great for the money, but there are many better choices if you really want to push it.

As already stated by 4ryan6, you really need to do a lot of research on the subject if your serious about running at a higher overclock.
I think you must temper your expectations.

1) The chip you get may or may not be able to reach high overclocks. Virtually all 2500K's can reach 4.0.
Perhaps half can reach 4.5
Perhaps 5-10% can reach 5.0
You can probably improve your odds of getting a good chip by getting a 2600K, or even the 2700K which should launch sometime.
Or, buy several chips, and test them out to see which is best and resell the rest.

2) Up to a point, a better cooler will get you a better OC. But, each chip seems to have a limit, beyond which better cooling does no good.

3) Ultra oc's may depend on the motherboard. In this case, you should be prepared to spend more than $150 on amotherboard better suited to maximum oc's.

4) For the most part, I do not recommend ram faster than 1600. But in this case, you might want to spend twice the amount on faster ram.

5) Never the less, I can't but help think that a faster graphics card would do you more good than seeking that last bit of cpu speed.

6) Finally, to answer your question, there is some value in a better cooler than the hyper 212. The Noctua is about as good as it gets for an air cooler.


i already told you that anything above 4.5 ghz will not boost your fps.

2600k 4.7ghz and 5.2ghz perform similar.

and for maintaining 60 fps you need 560ti sli(you will get 60+ lol).i think that a single 560 ti will not maintain 60+ in SC2.
but still for 5.0ghz go for atleast a H80 in push/pull or H100(my recommendation)
my personal advice dont go 5ghz.2500k is a good CPU but you will fry it unless your using nitrogen(sorry for gramer,i am in hurry).


Apr 15, 2011
This Gaming Rig is not for BF3, it's for Sc2 and actually 560Ti is more than sufficient to run Sc2 in 1920x1080. It's the CPU that will be bottlenecked especially in 4v4.

But it sounds like it's too much of a hassle to overclock beyond 4.5GHz. Since I need to think about:
1.) More expensive Mobo
2.) More expensive CPU cooler
3.) Shorter CPU lifespan

On top of that, there's only have 10% chance that I can overclock beyond 4.5GHz. So if I get a 2500K that isn't capable of overclocking beyond 4.5GHz, I'll end up wasting money on expensive Mobo and CPU cooler.

So I guess realistically I should just play it safe and aim for 4.5GHz with Hyper 212+ instead, yes?

Sounds like a more reasonable plan to me.

If you are near a microcenter, they have been selling 2500K's for $180.


Apr 15, 2011
how about if I buy 2500K first without any aftermarket CPU cooler and post 50x multiplier to see if it can overclock well.

If it overclocks past 4.5GHz THAN I buy a CPU cooler like Noctua NH-D14 or anything else better than Hyper 212+.

Is this a good idea?


if you are gonna try 4.5 ghz with stock cooler than be ready to buy a new can overclock it to 4.5 ghz with a 212+(stock fan)barely maintaining good temps under load.anything aboove 4 ghz will requires some good cooling.i dont know still why are you wasting your own and others time asking useless questions.if we can reach 4.5ghz with stock cooler(maintaining decent temps),than why do we need aftermarket coolers????

best solution for is get this one -

replace stock fans with this one this one for pull/push and overclock your 2500k @
5.0 ghz-

sorry for language i was angry sorry


Apr 15, 2011
I'm sorry if I upset you but your answer is inconsistent. You previously said "212+ is good till 4 gh". Now your saying "you can overclock it to 4.5 ghz with a 212+(stock fan)".

And I was asking if there was a way to find out how well my 2500K can overclock without using the aftermarket CPU cooler.

Since that way, I won't need to take a risk deciding which CPU cooler to buy. I mean it would be a waste of $66 if I buy noctua nh-d14 and only to realized my 2500K can only overclock to 4.5GHz..

/////how about if I buy 2500K first without any aftermarket CPU cooler and post 50x multiplier to see if it can overclock well.

50x with a stock heatsink? :lol: Come On Dude, Are you serious?

Why don't you just take your 2500K when it comes in and throw it in the garbage disposal, or take it outside and smash it with a hammer.

You might get to 40x with a stock cooler, might? IDK

Here's basically the facts OK depending on luck of the draw and hardware quality.

The best after market air cooling will probably get you 45x or 4500mhz 24/7 rock solid, and keep you in an acceptable, not preferred, heat range.

It may allow you to reach higher clocks but not necessarily stable because of the heat generated to get there.

If your goal is 5.0ghz 24/7 stable with a 2500K you need a serious water cooling solution, not some half stepping solution either, you need to go big period and totally forget air cooling.



i posted that 212+ is good till 4 ghz for 212+ version(before the release of EVO version,sorry i forgot to mention the eveo thing with 212+)
A Noctua nh-d12 will keep your cpu perhaps 2c cooler than a hyper 212. That MAY increase your oc by .1 oc .2
If money is no object, get the NH-d14.
If $40 or so is important to you, get the hyper212.

Regardless, a 2500K with a 4.0 oc will not likely be the bottleneck for any game.


chaboi,no offence bro but i am having megahalems rev.2 with coolermaster sickflow 120mm fans and i have overclocked my 2600k to 4 ghz easily at very low temps.
you can easily go 5ghz+ with H80 and H100 is a hell better than spending 100+ on H100 for doing 4.5ghz is not a wise decision


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Staff member

You can't just put a PC in a freezer or refrigerator...where are all of these ideas coming from again? They seem to come and go time to time in waves...the only way you can use a fridge or freezer is to strip off the compressor and run a chiller or use it for phase change. Nothing else.

For the price, you're better off with an entry level Rasa watercooling kit than the H100; better performing but I know there are a lot of people that don't like to do much other than take stuff out of a box, plug it in and go, so this may/may not be the route for you. However, for anyone hoping to hit 5.0ghz on an i5 or i7, you are going to need some hellish cooling to handle the heat from the extra voltage needed (as referenced by 4ryan6, above)

Most people aren't quite sure what they need to hit these magical marks they see other people hitting. I'll be honest- a lot of it is high-grade hardware, much of it is luck and the rest is doing it right. I just don't get why its such a big deal to go from 4.5 to 5ghz...what does that get you? There isn't anything real-world measurable that actually matters with these processors at this speed increase. If it's just to tell your buddies that you hit that speed and link CPU-z stats in your need to get out a little more.


Oct 11, 2011
I'm not sure abotu everything you guys are saying but I OCed my 2500k today to 4.53 ghz with stock CPU cooler and idle was 23*C. Ran Prime 95 for 30 min and didnt go higher than 61*
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