GIGABYTE X299 Kaby Lake-X 5.1GHz+ Overclocking Guide
The GIGABYTE OC team prepared a GIGABYTE X299 Kaby Lake-X overclocking guide for those who wish to get the most out of their Intel Kaby Lake-X Core i5 and Core i7 processors. The guide was originally published by GIGABYTE and is shared at Overclocking.guide with explicit permission.
5GHz has long been considered the holy grail of overclocking without LN2. Recently owners of Z270 boards and i7-7700K CPU’s were able to reach the 5GHz pinnacle with our previous OC guide. Now with the introduction of Kaby Lake X and X299 AORUS motherboards users are able to push well past 5GHz. This guide will show you how to reach 5.1GHz on air straight out of the box, and 5.3GHz after de-lidding your CPU.
What is overclocking?
Overclocking refers to pushing your computer components harder and faster than the manufacturer designed them to go. CPUs, video cards, and memory often have the capability to run faster than their rated speeds and overclocking takes advantage of that.
Overclocking your CPU, VGA, and/or memory can result in higher frames per second in games, increase benchmark scores and provide better overall performance of your PC.
Is my notebook processor comparable to my desktop processor?
Desktops have much higher power requirements and better heat dissipation capabilities compared to notebooks. The same model processor in a desktop performs better than the mobile equivalent.
What can I overclock?
The most often overclocked components are the CPU, video card and memory. In this guide our focus is CPU overclocking.
Disclaimer: Overclock at your own risk!
Overclocking your CPU voids your warranty and it can also damage your CPU, especially if done incorrectly
GIGABYTE X299 Kaby Lake-X OC with i7-7740X & i5-7640X CPUs
For reference we are using a GIGABYTE AORUS X299 Gaming 7 motherboard and an Intel i7-7740X CPU. Based on our testing most Intel i7-7740X’s can hit 5.1GHz, without delidding, using standard air coolers and a 1.35 Vcore.
Hardware used in this guide
- Intel Core i5 7640X (Find at Amazon)
- Intel Core i7 7740X (Find at Amazon)
- GIGABYTE AORUS X299 Gaming 7 (Find at Amazon)
- LEPA AquaChanger 240 AIO (Find at Amazon)
- Der8auer Delid Die Mate 2.0
Step 1: Enter the BIOS by pressing the “delete” button
If you have never been inside your BIOS before welcome! No need to worry, we will guide you step by step with screen shots.
Step 2: Load your Extreme Memory Profile (X.M.P.)
Enter “Advanced Frequency Settings.
Here you see the “Extreme Memory Prole (X.M.P.)” option. Change it to “Profile 1”. Depending on your RAM you might see a second X.M.P. profile.
X.M.P. profiles are a quick way to get optimal performance for your memory without having to tweak the settings manually. These settings are verified by the memory manufacturer so you don’t have to worry about stability.
Step 3: Change your CPU Multiplier
The formula to calculate the frequency of your CPU is: CPU Base Clock * CPU Clock Ratio.
The Intel i7-7740X the CPU has a Base Clock of 100 and CPU Clock Ratio of 43 for a frequency of 100 * 43 = 4300MHz. In this guide we will be overclocking to 5.1GHz for an 800MHz increase.
Set your CPU Clock Ratio to “51”.
Step 4: Disable Power Management Settings
Enter “Advanced CPU Core Settings
- Set “Enhanced Multi-Core Performance” to Enabled.
- Set “Energy Efficient Turbo” to Disabled.
By default Turbo Mode boosts the 2 strongest cores to the highest multiplier while leaving the rest at a lower multiplier. Enhanced Multi-Core Performance boosts all cores to run at multiplier we set in step 3.
(Optional) These power management settings may decrease the stability of your system.
You can keep them enabled if you think you really need them but we suggest you disable them.
Disable the following power management settings: Intel® Speed Shift Technology, CPU Enhanced Halt (C1E), C3 State Support, C6/C7 State Support, and C8 State Support.
Step 5: Change Uncore Frequency
The formula for Uncore frequency is CPU Base Clock * Uncore Ratio = Uncore Frequency.
Uncore frequency is the frequency of the non-core parts of the CPU – IE cache, memory controller, etc. To start set your uncore to 45 and continue on with the guide. After you have determined your CPU’s highest overclock you can re-visit your uncore settings. In general higher uncore values do not produce meaningful performance differences, but they may improve benchmark score.
Set CPU Uncore to “45”.
Step 6: Adjust Your LLC Settings
Now that we have set our memories XMP profile, Uncore, and CPU multiplier we must also adjust the CPU voltage (Vcore). In order for the CPU to operate at higher frequencies more voltage will be required.
Go to the starting BIOS page (M.I.T.) and select the “Advanced Voltage Settings” option.
Select the “Advanced Power Settings” Option
AORUS X299 motherboards are already optimized to reduce voltage fluctuation which is bad news when you’re overclocking. To begin leave LLC on AUTO. If you experience any shutdowns while stress testing set LLC to “Turbo” and test again. If you still experience shutdowns set LLC to “Extreme”.
Step 7: Change CPU Vcore Settings
Go back one page (ESC) or from the main BIOS page (M.I.T) select “Advanced Voltage Control”. Then select “CPU Core Voltage Control”.
Raising this helps keeps the system stable at higher CPU frequencies. However, it also increases the amount of heat your CPU produces. We suggest you keep Vcore under 1.4v depending on your CPU cooling solution. Most CPU’s should be able to hit 5.1GHz at this voltage, however CPU’s are not all created equally. Some may need more voltage, some less.
Set Vcore to “1.35” to start. If you system is not stable raise the voltage in increments of .01 with a maximum of 1.4V.
Note: changing Vcore voltage also changes your Uncore voltage since they are on the same rail.
(Optional) Advanced Settings
The following are settings you might sometimes need to change when OCing on air or water. There are additional voltages settings not covered here—they are used mostly when trying to hit overclocking records while using liquid nitrogen.
CPU VCCIO and CPU System Agent Voltage:
Both of these settings help when we overclock the DRAM frequency. Values up to 1.4-1.45V are high but they are ok if you are using air cooling. Since we used X.M.P. profiles for our memory these voltages will be automatically set.
BCLK Adaptive Voltage:
This setting helps when you raise the “CPU Base Clock” frequency. You should not need to adjust it because we left “CPU Base Clock” at the default value of 100.
Step 8: Save Your Settings
Before rushing off to test your new overclock we suggest saving your profile. You will find this option on the last page of the BIOS named “Save & Exit”.
Select the option “Save Profiles” and select and name the profile.
Using the “Load Profiles” option you can load the profiles you’ve previously saved.
This is very useful when you need to clear the CMOS due to overly aggressive overclocks and you’ve lost all of your previous settings.
Step 9: Save & Exit
Last step is to select the “Save & Exit Setup” and click yes on the pop-up window. This will reboot your motherboard and apply all the settings that you have changed.
GIGABYTE X299 Kaby Lake-X Stability Testing
Congratulations! You are now running at 5.1GHz, which is nothing to scoff at. Now it’s time make sure that it’s stable. We’re going to use the software below to monitor our system, test stability, and adjust our overclocks.
Prime95 Version 27.9 Build 1
This is used to stress test our CPU in order to ensure that it’s stable in the most taxing of conditions. This particular version of Prime95 uses AVX instructions which push our CPU to the absolute max.
CPU-Z – Used to monitor our CPU frequencies and Vcore settings.
CoreTemp – Used to monitor idle, load, and loading temperatures.
How to Stability Test
Step 1: Open up CPU-Z, CoreTemp, and Prime95. Make sure Prime95 is configured. Click Custom, change “Min FFT size (in K):” to 1344, and change “Max FFT size (in K):” to 1344, then check “Run FFTs in-place” and then press OK to start.
Step 2: Start Prime95 and look at “CPU Load” in the CoreTemp app. If one of your cores is not at 100%, your system gets the blue screen of death or just freezes, that means your settings were too aggressive and your CPU has failed the stability test. We normally test for 1 hour. You can keep it running overnight for increased assurance.
Step 3a (If Prime95 Fails): Close Prime95 by right clicking the Prime95 icon on the tray bar in the lower right side of your screen and selecting “Exit”. This closes Prime95.
Step 3b (If Prime95 Fails): Now it’s time adjust your frequency or voltage settings. You can do this either through the BIOS or using EasyTune which is available through the GIGABYTE App Center. You have two options: Either increase CPU Vcore or decrease CPU Clock Ratio. We recommend you to keep CPU Vcore below 1.4 volts if possible. After making an adjustment go back to Step 1. If it continues to fail dial down your CPU Clock Ratio until you pass stability testing.
Step 3C (If Prime95 Fails): If you aren’t stable at 5.3GHz on Prime95 you can try setting AVX offset to “2”. This will lower your CPU multiplier by 2x when running AVX instruction sets. For instance if your CPU is set go 5.3GHz it will run at 5.1GHz during Prime95.
Step 4 (Success): Congratulations, your current overclock is stable. You may want to try for a higher frequency. To do so, experiment with raising your CPU Clock Ratio and CPU Vcore settings either in BIOS or EasyTune and go back to Step 1 to ensure that it’s stable.
Example of a 5.1GHz non-delidded CPU on air:
Delid for Lower Temperatures
There’s an additional way to get extra performance out of your CPU and that is to delid it. Delidding your CPU will reduce your CPU temperatures by 15-30C on load which allows for higher voltage settings thus higher overclocks.
Delidding is the process of removing the integrated heat spreader (silver part) from the PCB (green part). Once you delid you can remove the thermal interface material (TIM) that is used to conduct heat between the IHS and the PCB and replace it with superior performing thermal paste.
There are a few ways to delid. The safest way is to use a delidding tool that is available on
We ran tests using watercooling both delidded and non-delidded Intel Core i7-7740X’s to show the difference in thermal performance.
Our Watercooling Setup
- Water cooler: LEPA AquaChanger 240 AIO
- Motherboard: X299 AORUS Gaming 7
Non-delidded temperatures in Celsius (average of all cores)
|Intel Core i7-7740X||1.35V idle @ 5.1 GHz|
Delidded temperatures in Celsius (average of all cores)
|Idle||~ 34.75C||~ 33.75C|
|Load||~ 86.25C||~ 79.00C|
We recommend to always keep an eye on your temperatures and to keep them below 90 degrees Celsius.
We’ve increased frequency from 4.3GHz to 5.3GHz—a 1GHz increase! The results of our overclocks can be seen in the Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility benchmark below.
XTU Benchmark results at Stock frequency – 1231 Marks:
XTU Benchmark results at 5.1GHz – 1526 Marks:
XTU Benchmark results at 5.3GHz – 1570 Marks:
From stock to 5.1GHz we jump 295 marks from 1,231 to 1,526. From 5.1GHz to 5.3GHz we gain an additional 44 Marks.
GIGABYTE X299 Kaby Lake-X Overclocking Past 5.1GHz
5.1GHz+ is possible even without deliding. However we suggest you delid as it increases your chances of obtaining a stable 5.3GHz. Delidding your CPU will reduce your CPU temperatures by 15-30C on load which allows for higher voltage settings thus higher overclocks.
We recommend using dual-radiator water cooling for the best results. A good air cooler such as the Enermax ETS-T50 that uses a push-pull fan setup paired with a good CPU may be able to hit 5.3GHz or higher.
For the specific steps please refer to the overclocking guide above. The specific settings for a 5GHz overclock are listed below.
Step 1: Adjust CPU Clock Ratio
Previously we set our CPU Clock Ratio to 51 and now it’s a simple adjustment to 53. Since this overclock is more difficult than the previous 5.1GHz overclock, we suggest you change these settings through the BIOS.
Step 2: Adjust CPU Vcore
Since we are aiming for a higher frequency this time, CPU Vcore needs to be increased. Depending on how lucky you were in the CPU lottery the CPU Vcore setting can range from 1.3V to 1.4V. Our particular CPU needed 1.38V to be stable.
Step 3: Change CPU Vcore Loadline Calibration
In order to reduce any possible Vdroop that interferes with our stability when overclocking set LCC to “Turbo”. If the system is not stable set the LLC to “Extreme”.
Step 4: Stability Testing
Test the stability of these new setting by following the steps under “How to Stability Test”.
Below is an example of a delidded Intel Core i7-7740X using a LEPA AquaChanger 240 AIO cooler.
AVX Offset: AVX Offset ranges from 1 to 5. When you set an AVX offset it will reduce the multiplier by 1-5 (whatever you set it to) when running AVX instruction sets.
If you aren’t stable at 5.3GHz on Prime95 you can try setting AVX offset to “2”. This will lower your CPU multiplier by 2x. For instance if your CPU is set go 5.3GHz it will run at 5.1GHz during Prime95.
AVX offset is found under M.I.T -> Advanced CPU Core Settings