Liquid nitrogen-cooled Haswell chip hits 6.5GHz

The CPUs in most computers are usually cooled using a combination of fans and heatsinks. PC enthusiasts have gone one step further by using liquid cooling, as shown in the rig below. This allows them to push the processor to run beyond its normal operating speeds to achieve better performance without overheating the chip.

One of the many liquid-cooled PCs showcased at Computex.
(Credit: Philip Wong/CNET)

Professional overclockers, however, use subzero cooling to achieve extreme processing speeds. In most set-ups, liquid nitrogen is used to chill the processor, and has to be topped up regularly, while Vaseline is applied to the surrounding microchips. This prevents them from short-circuiting due to condensation.

The folks at Asrock cool a Haswell chip using liquid nitrogen.
(Credit: Philip Wong/CNET)

Using this technique, the team from Asrock managed to overclock a 3.5GHz Core i7-4770K to 6.5GHz at Computex. This high-end Haswell processor is paired with an Asrock Z87M motherboard, which supports 2800MHz DDR3 memory modules (RAM). In comparison, Intel is officially supporting RAM modules of up to 1600MHz.


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