There was a time when CPU makers frowned heavily on the practice of CPU overclocking. Not only would it toast your warranty, it represented a way for users to buy a cheaper CPU and get the same performance of a much more expensive model for free.
It got so bad, that chip makers started putting blocks in place to thwart overclockers. Today things could not be more different. Not only do modern CPUs overclock themselves according to available power and cooling, most desktop CPUs have unlocked multipliers. Both Intel and AMD actually have their own official overclocking utilities and even provide sophisticated automation to make finding the highest stable clock easier.
Ryzen Master Letís You Master Your Ryzen
For owners of a Ryzen CPU, thatís where AMDís Ryzen Master utility comes into the picture. All desktop Ryzen CPUs have unlocked multipliers and this official utility from AMD lets you both see exactly whatís going in with your CPU and then tune its performance to get the most out of it.
We like Ryzen Master because it has both a very simple basic mode and an advanced mode. Which makes it easy to do fast adjustments. In basic mode you can adjust the two most important metrics: voltage and clock speed. Thereís also an Auto OC option that lets the software figure out what your specific CPU can do with the power and cooling it has.
Ryzen Master is also notable for having built-in testing and validation as well, so you can be confident that a specific overclock isnít going to cause system instability or heat problems.
If you open up the advanced mode, you can really get granular info about your CPUís settings and status. As well as info about your memory. In fact, you can actually overclock and tweak your DRAM from within the application as well.
Honestly, even for us the basic mode is good enough to get the lionís share of stable performance increase. Finely-grained tuning is only really worth it if the time required is justified by your workload and the small additional performance you can eke out.
Another neat feature is support for up to four profiles. You may have one profile for playing video games, one for crunching numbers overnight and another for working in apps like AutoCAD or Premiere. It means you can do certain types of work with little or not fan noise or absolutely put the pedal to the metal when needed.
It Works for AMD Integrated GPUs Too!
While you canít use Ryzen Master to overclock your discrete AMD GPU, you can push your integrated GPU (if you have one) to perform better. This can be useful in situations where you want to run more graphically intensive apps that donít need as much CPU TDP, which means you can shift some of the cooling and power headroom to the GPU side of things.
In general, OEM tuning utilities get a bad rap, but Ryzen Master is definitely worth a look for anyone who owns a Ryzen CPU.