To overclock or not to overclock

Hi, guys.

This question is primarily aimed at the veteran miners of Zcash and, perhaps, older cryptos too. I am trying to:

  1. Get a sense of what proportion of miners are running their GPUs overclocked 24/7 (if you want to post your stats, great, but I realize that stability depends heavily on card-type and a bit of “silicon” luck).

  2. For those that did overclock, what consequences did you suffer down the line, and how quickly was payment demanded of you by the Silicon gods?

I am using all EVGA cards in my rigs and keeping temperatures X =< 65 C on all cards with a +100 core overclock yielding about +25 sol/s/card. To be honest, I feel I’ll be lucky to have more than a year or two to mine (let’s say 2 for the sake of argument)…am I significantly increasing the risk of catastrophic failure with this setup?

I appreciate your thoughts and consideration.

In case it’s needed for a more complete answer, I am using EVGA 1080 Ti SC BLACK Gaming Edition cards with Micron GDDRX memory, and EVGA 1600W PSUs (1x T2, 1x P2).

What I’ve been doing so far (and what most other miners seem to do) is to also reduce the power limit of the card to anywhere between 65%-85% in order to obtain a better sol/W ratio, besides overclocking them.
To my knowledge, if anything, that should improve the card’s lifespan not reduce it, even though core and GDDR are overclocked because the card’s TDP is reduced and it runs cooler.

“Overclocking” as far as Ethash or Equihash are concerned doesn’t have (for most or at least many miners) exactly the same crazy meaning that it does in the gaming world context. That’s because it usually involves a component of lowering the TDP somewhat and/or undervolting whereas in gaming you strive for the opposite and that stresses the components much more than what we’re doing here I guess.

Of course, one could argue that gamers rarely run their cards 24/7 so there’s that argument, but many of the nowadays’ electronic appliances seem to be able to run for years when kept in the range of default parameters, so…

I have 16 1080TI’s , EVGA, MSI, Giga Running 90% power 100+ core 450+ memory with a temp limit of 75 for the last 45-60 days no issues, no reboots, singing along. Am I worried about losing one, sure, but they all have a 3 year warranty through the manufacturer. As long as I don’t change the bio’s on the GPU I am covered.

I also have 7 AMD Furies, for 9 months now. I have lost one of them, but I believe it had to with faulty part thermal tape inside of card. took 12 days for RMA, back up and running.
if you purchased the GPU’s new, you have a 3 year warranty, don’t be careless with your over clocking but you should try for 680-700 h/s

In the end, you do what you think is best,

@tuxer @CitricAcid

Many thanks for you inputs. Citric…I’m in the same boat. I purchased all of my cards new and from EVGA largely because of the robust warranties (I put a few under water cooling too). I think that’s a good idea regarding a slight drop in power consumption, so I’ll give that a shot. A question for you regarding memory clock: I’ve mostly read about people not getting much of an increased hash rate from memory clocking, and in fact some people have professed to under clocking memory to save on heat generation a bit. Is your memory over clock in any way stabilizing your core overclock? It’s a bit of a noobish question, I realize. Appreciate your patience.

I read people saying increasing the memory clock does not improve your H/s, in my world, with all of my cards, there is a H/s increase. Am I putting a little more strain on the card, I am sure that I am. I am also getting more from it too.

if you are willing to step outside of your comfort zone, You said your core is +25,leaving that, change your memory to (if you are running 1080TI) to either 300 or 400. You should see a difference.

if you are worried about heat, set your max temp to 75


I’ll give it a shot! I’ve actually been running a +100MHz Core Clock for about a week. Regarding heat, I’m not too worried. I had no problems keeping the cards at <= 65 C with 70% fans at 100% TDP.

PS The +25 was the increase in sol/s I observed in each card after applying the +100 MHz core overclock.

On a side note, I wish I had 16 X 1080 Ti too :grin::grin::grin: