AMD's new "Bulldozer" chip is apparently the processor of choice to break new overclocking records. Last month, AMD itself brought in a team earlier this year to overclock its then unreleased chip and got the FX-8150 processor up to 8.429 GHz. It managed to get that feat recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records. Now MaximumPC.com reports that someone else has already broken that record using that same exact chip.
Overclocker Andre Yang managed to crack up the speed of the processor, using what was likely a ton of liquid nitrogen, all the way up to 8.46151 GHz. The story points out that while the Bulldozer-based chip has a whopping eight processor cores, Yang disabled six of those cores to lower the chip's heat and thus allow for it to reach that ultra-high clock speed.
The idea of overclocking a PC's processor is now firmly into the mainstream. It used to be that chip makers like Intel and AMD discouraged the idea of increasing a processor's clock speed, saying it would void a PC user's warranty. Now PC makers actively sell gaming PCs with overclocked processors and cooling systems and users often raise the speed on their own in order to get the most value from their processor.
But the idea of increasing a chip's clock speed to pretty much insane levels is very much a mix of science with a little bit of art as overclockers try to find ways to use super-cool systems like liquid helium and nitrogen, along with other tricks of the trade, to bring a processor up to speeds that it was definitely not designed for.