Intel previews SSD overclocking

Summary:The next frontier for tweakers was on display at PAX Prime, with more details supposedly to come at an upcoming IDF session.

Overclocking of processors and graphics cards has been a staple of the PC enthusiast community for years, but it looks like a new component will soon be available for the tweaking set.

Intel, which offers CPUs with unlocked multipliers (the "K" series) to ease the overclocking process, is now apparently working on letting users overclock their solid-state drives. The company just previewed the overclocking potential of its SSDs at the PAX Prime festival, with more info supposedly coming at the upcoming Intel Developer Forum next week.

According to LegitReviews, Intel showed off two ways to goose more performance from SSDs, increasing the controller clock speed and the NAND flash memory chip speed. It used an updated version of its Extreme Tuning Utility to change the settings. (Myce subsequently posted code that it says comes from a new version of Intel XTU and that will allow SSD setting tweaks.)

ExtremeTech has confirmed that the tech giant will provide more details in a panel titled "Overclocking Unlocked Intel Core Processors for High Performance Gaming and Content Creation." While that session will be mostly devoted to how to squeeze the most from Intel's new processors, we may find out that the company is planning a "K" line of its SSDs.

It may also touch on the potential risks of overclocking. Adjusting the settings of your processor or graphics card can lead to system stability and other issues; tweaking SSD settings could potentially threaten your data on the drive, so Intel will need to address this concern as well as the potential for shortening the life of your SSD.

Would you overclock your solid-state drive if Intel released a K-series SSD? Let us know in the Talkback section below as we await further details from Intel at the upcoming IDF conference.

Topics: Intel, Hardware, Storage


Sean Portnoy started his tech writing career at ZDNet nearly a decade ago. He then spent several years as an editor at Computer Shopper magazine, most recently serving as online executive editor. He received a B.A. from Brown University and an M.A. from the University of Southern California.

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