Should I overclock my AMD Phenom II x4 965 black edition, and how much?


Jan 30, 2017
I have an AMD Phenom II x4 965 black edition 3.4 hz, an motherboard asus m5a88-m, and a cooler corsair 500w, and a GPU HD7850
I had recently overclocked my CPU to 3.6 hz, I wanted some extra fps, and i'm having very bad fps at games like dark souls 3. While I was playing CS GO, my pc just turned off. When I restarted it, there was a really loud noise, after going back to 3.4 hz my pc went to normal. What happened? I don't know much about overclocking, My motherboard/cooler couldn't handle it? Maybe I overclocked it the wrong way? Should I try to overclock again, or just stop?
It's lousy VRM on that MB that's stopping you and possibly CPU cooler if you don't have a good aftermarket one. It took my 965Be a Gigabyte ga-890fxa-UD5 and Mugen3 Cooler to keep it at 4.2GHz. Gigabyte GA 790 xt-USB3 burned VRMs when I tried same thing.


Feb 5, 2011
Please make sure you have adequate cooling as CountMike suggests. Do you have an aftermarket CPU cooler? If not, you shouldn't even consider anything above a very mild overclock.

I used to have a x4 955, and overclocking it was helpful to get another year or so out of the CPU. I used a Xigmatec cooler that was similar to the Hyper 212. You can get a cheap Hyper 212, and that will do a good job.

Check out guides at or here in the Tom's forums before proceeding.

The 965 is getting a little old so you are not going to see massive performance increases, but an OC will help a bit.

If you don't want to mess with changing the cooler, which is a pain in the ass, you may just want to OC your graphics card a bit to squeeze out a few more frames.


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