Ultimate Guide to Overclocking a Hard Drive

by Paul | Last Updated: July 5, 2022

Overclocking is a term common with the graphics processing unit (GPU) and central processing unit (CPU). It means an increase in the capacity of either your CPU or GPU to get a task done. There are many types of software that make this process possible, they can come with the PC and there are sometimes you need to get a third-party tool.

Can you Overclock a Hard Drive?

Overclocking a hard drive is not possible, if you want changes that will boost the capacity of your hard drive to ensure better performance of your PC you have to optimise your drive and boost or change your GPU or RAM. Revolutions Per Minute is how the speed of a hard drive is measured. A regular hard drive has 5400rpm, while faster ones have 7400rpm. There are several reasons you might want to overclock your hard drive, let us look at a few.

General Performance

You turn on your computer, it takes its sweet time to boot, it can be so bad that you might have even made a cup of tea before it turns on completely. Another scenario is if your system is slow while browsing, glitches, and takes a lot of time to launch applications. You have two options, optimize your hard drive, or purchase an SSD.

How to optimize your Hard Drive

  1. Delete Files: check for files that are no longer valuable to you and delete them. This includes junk files, temporary files, and duplicate files. A manual check should be done, you can complement it with a third party tool for best results especially if you have a lot of files.
  2. Defragment: hard drives are designed with moving parts which leave fragments of data scattered across different sectors of the disk. You should use the windows option to defragment and optimise your disk to maximise the use of your drive.
  3. Antivirus: trojan, ransomware and any other virus can cause your drive to be slow. It cannot damage the drive, but it will duplicate files and cause other kinds of havoc to prevent a smooth performance. To resolve this, get an antivirus install it and scan your system to eliminate all virus. The windows security that comes with the windows 10 operating system is good for this task too.

Purchasing an SSD

Solid-state drives are preferable to hard disk drive for a lot of reasons. First, they use flash memory owing to the NAND technology, they can also have other interfaces (NVMe and PCIe), making them faster. This speed results in an overall improvement in the performance of your PC.

SSDs also have better data integrity or security feature as it is not easily prone to damages owing to accidental drops, vibrations, or magnetic fields. Purchasing an SSD will result in a better performance for your PC without a doubt. This will be evident in everything but as for gaming and design, it will launch the app fast and save fast, but the other aspects are dependent on other components of the computer.

Gaming and Design

Gaming and designing on a computing system are the two major activities that require a lot of processing power from different components of the computer. We have already established that SSD is a better option but if you decide to stick to your HDD, the following component require certain features.

RAM: The size of your RAM is crucial and a minimum of 8GB RAM for these activities is where the fun begins and the higher the size of the RAM, the better the experience.

GPU: There really is no point trying to enjoy high-end gaming or design without a dedicated graphics card, this comes with its own RAM size which should be at least 8GB too.

CPU: generally, your processor should not be below core i5 or the AMD equivalent. This is important as it determines your gaming speed. There are games that specify the processor you should use to maximise the game, in this case that is the processor you should use. The dangers of using a processor that is lower than the one specified for a game includes glitching, your PC will run very hot and in the long run it might erode the capacity of your graphics card causing display problem.

The components that can be overclocked however are the GPU and CPU. They have clock speeds assigned to them and there are a lot of software that can boost them, sometimes it is as simple as a controller that is built into the computing system. Overclocking it usually gives it a tremendous boost, for instance, a CPU speed might by clocked at 3.6GHz and overclocking it will result in 5GHz, an extra 1.4GHZ!

As fun as overclocking sounds, it cannot and should not be done regularly as it will affect the component you are overclocking in the long run. There are specific tasks you might need a speed boost for, these are the tasks you should use the overclocking feature for. They must not be regular, and they must not be small.

We cannot end this article without admitting that there are YouTube videos that say you can overclock your hard drive, some are even demonstrative. As for now, this is not true as some methods are not safe because users run the risk of damaging their drive. Others are just people joking around.

Hard Drives can be slow, so it is understandable that users seek a way to increase its capacity. Asides all the methods we have mentioned above, you can purchase a higher capacity hard drive. If you currently use a 1TB hard drive, an upgrade to 4TB or 8TB will help with space issues which usually slows down a drive.

Another option is to give your system a boost by adding an SSD cache, that way the SSD lightens the burden on your storage disk giving it room to provide better performance. SSD cache is not difficult to install or expensive, you can get 60GB and it will get the job done.