I am brand new at new computers and am learning the trials and tribulations of updated computer technology. A question that reoccurs in my mind follows. I am wondering if I can overclock my processor, and in the event that something happens to my processor during its use can I use the warranty? There is no detailed information about this written in the Micro Center warranty information like Intel explains in their warranty coverage specifications.
You're very welcome, and I wish you a fantastic 2022 as well! Another important thing to consider is that our warranties are only typically voided if damage occurs as a result of the modification. Lets use a pre-built system as an example. For this example, we will assume you overclocked your CPU and loaded your memory XMP profile (also considered an overclock). If you buy a protection plan on this system and your SSD fails, we wouldn't void the system warranty simply because you overclocked your processor and memory, the failure would have to be related to your modification in order for us to consider that a voided warranty. Now if your PSU failed after overclocking your components, this would be considered something that would be related to overclocking as an increase in clock speeds/voltages can result in increased stress on the PSU.
This would be found under 14T:
Damage resulting from unauthorized repair; software virus; or electrical wiring and connections; damage caused during delivery or removal, improper installation, or setup including, but not limited to packing, unpacking or assembly, user facilitated minor adjustments and settings outlined in the product’s owner’s manual, external antenna or local reception problems, inaccessible products or parts, negligence, misuse or abuse whether willful or not. Repair of resolution (pixels) failure must match the factory minimum standards before an authorized repair occurs.
As always, if you have questions, always check with your sales rep as they are informed of our warranty terms and will know how to assist you should you have any concerns. We are also here to help on the community forum as well, so definitely let us know.
So this is a tricky subject, given how memory works. You are correct in that your processor is rated to run at 3200Mhz for memory, however this isn't exactly the case with modern DDR4 XMP profiles. You have two different types of 3200Mhz. You have the JEDEC defined standards and the XMP overclocks. JEDEC standards are defined by a council of companies that all mutually agree on specifications that their products can operate at and they design them to meet these specifications. XMP overclocking often pushes beyond these standards for more performance. Here is a list of JEDEC DDR4 standards: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DDR4_SDRAM#JEDEC_standard_DDR4_module. If you look on the right hand side of that link, you will see the various DDR4 JEDEC standards and their primary timings. Common primary timings include: 3200 20-20-20, 3200 22-22-22, and 3200 24-24-24. It is important to note that these JEDEC DDR4 profiles must operate at 1.2V. Intel defines their memory controller limitations to these standards. You can find their memory controller specifications for your 11th gen processors here: https://cdrdv2.intel.com/v1/dl/getContent/634648. Details outlined in Section 2.1.
In the image above, you can see the 1.2V they are specifying.
In this image above, you can see they are defining their support for CAS Latency 22, meaning they are using the JEDEC 3200 22-22-22 standard.
Your XMP profiles on the other hand, can run much tighter timings such as 3200 CL14, with a DRAM voltage of 1.35V or higher. This will offer a significant improvement in latency performance, but does put additional stress on your CPU's memory controller and may result in system instability. Since these values operate outside of the Intel official specifications, they are not guaranteed to work like the JEDEC standard is.
To answer your question as to whether an XMP overclock would void a CPU warranty in the event of damage, the answer is yes. HOWEVER, I have been overclocking memory for over a decade now and have never killed a CPU doing it. That is not to say it is impossible, as certainly too much VCCIO/VCCSA voltage can do so, it is not something that you'll likely ever encounter by simply loading an XMP profile. Just ensure that when you load XMP, it isn't trying to set absurdly high voltages. When you load an XMP, your motherboard BIOS will tell you all of the changes it plans to commit. If you need help finding out which voltage values are too high, I am sure there are guides on this forum that can answer that, or I can answer that myself. Either way, as long as you do not damage your product as a result of overclocking, your warranty will remain intact. That G Skill kit of yours should be perfectly safe to use with your processor, so load that XMP and enjoy that performance boost!
Greetings and welcome to the forum. Unfortunately our warranties do not cover overclocking, as that would void the warranty under the following:
Misuse, abuse, reconfiguration of equipment or improper movement of the equipment. Any utilization of equipment that is inconsistent with either the design of the equipment or the way the manufacturer intended the equipment to be used.
This would be under section 14E: https://60a99bedadae98078522-a9b6cded92292ef3bace063619038eb1.ssl.cf2.rackcdn.com/documents_MCCESTC09.13State.pdf
Intel may design some of their processors to be overclockable, but their standard product warranty does not cover overclocking and our protection plans are designed around the operation of equipment for their standard use. We do not offer an overclocking-specific warranty at this time.
Now being an overclocker myself, I've been in the same boat of trying to learn how to OC without risking damage to expensive parts. My recommendation would be to buy a cheap unlocked platform such as the i3 K processors or older generation processors (the Pentium G3258 was cheap and really good for learning how to overclock) and begin your journey on those. The core concepts of overclocking has remained the same across most generations of Intel CPU's, with few things changing in the memory overclocking area and the addition of per-core adjustments being introduced in later generations. I would also strongly urge looking up video tutorials and online guides of overclocking tailored to your specific processor family. Understanding how others are running their voltages/clock speeds can give you an idea of what may be feasible, and what may be too extreme.
Hopefully this helped, and if you have any questions, please let us know. Also know that you can always ask overclocking questions here, we happen to be enthusiasts along with the rest of our customers so while it may void your warranty, we can always help you operate within "safe" voltages and current limitations for long term use.
Thank you for the fact-based information on this subject. I have asked Technical support multiple times, and a few say you can overclock and the warranty will not void, while others say that Microcenter does not cover damage to processors if the processor has been overclocked. Same in the store, I overheard someone saying "We cover overclocking in the warranty," on two separate occasions, and possibly more than twice. This discussion will help many inquiries about warranties and overclocking. Micorcenter is an easier solution than intel's warranty mail in exchange. Very awesome, and thank you so much. I hope you have a great 2022!
Thank you for the perfect insight! I would never have thought of it unless the problem happened, or had to desperately search for this information without such a specific answer. You are very considerate of technology people's "must-know" needs concerning potential PC disasters. Which brings me to the need to know if the XMP clocking RAM at a processor's specification voids a warranty? For example, I have an i7-11700 2.5GHz " locked processor, and I have an F4-3200C16D-16GVKB 16GB (8x2) G.Skill Ripjaw 3200MHz RAM kit. The RAM specification for my processor is 3200MHz and I have to use XMP 2.0 to enable the refresh rate of the memory. Is this going to void the warranty? I have heard multiple yeses and nos. Intel confirmed that as long as the RAM is functioning within Intel specifications then I am okay. Do you know the truth? Also, which brings to question if the possessor warranty is void after clocking RAM in my motherboard at 3600 or above would void the processor warranty? I personally know it would, but if you can confirm I would be grateful. Thank you again. I will post your answer to this question in a separate thread/discussion, so everyone knows the right answer too. It is a difficult consequence to justify when such an investment is destroyed by fraught research.
Gosh, I don't know how to say thank you. I am sincerely impressed by your consideration of my questions. I have the most awesome PDF of my processor, and will study it a lot. I am taking a Mike Meyers A+ certification class to become a certified Technician. This PDF talks about all the details that underline the reasons for taking the class, and thought I would never find the right curriculum to explain what I am looking for. I am grateful you are helpful. Glad to meet you, and thank you again Michael B. I will let you know if I have any more questions.
P.S. May I post your comment in a new discussion titled "XMP Overclocking and How It Affects Warranties?"
P.S.S. FYI, I feel like I have a real motherboard instead of a boring board with shiny pieces of metal and interface plugs. Awesome research. Thank you again!
I am happy to have been able to answer your questions. You can certainly re-post any of the information we provide, it always helps to get this information out there to those that may need it. Often times, these finer details can get lost in a lot of the legal-speak, so it never hurts to have additional clarification. Enjoy the weekend!
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