How to Overclock Raspberry Pi

How to Overclock Raspberry Pi

How-to-Overclock-Raspberry-Pi

If you have followed our guide to setup your Raspberry Pi, you might be wondering whether there is any way to make your Pi go any faster. Since Raspberry Pi is using an older generation of ARM microprocessor known as ARMv6 to keep costs low, it might feel a bit slow, as we are used to modern smartphones and tablets that have moved to ARMv7. In fact, some of Apple’s new products have moved to 64-bit ARMv8. Also, Raspberry Pi is on a single core processor while most of the above mentioned products have moved to dual or quad core processor. There is in fact a way to make your Raspberry Pi faster. Stay with us.

 

Raspberry Pi runs on a 700MHz single core ARMv6 processor by default, but can be overclocked. Overclocking means to increase the frequency at which the processor runs. The faster the clock frequency, the higher the performance. Generally, each processor is designed to run at its default frequency, and overclocking too much might result in the CPU becoming unstable which would cause crashes or SD card corruptions. However, with the advancement in technology, most chips including the Broadcom BCM2835 used in Raspberry Pi can run at higher speeds safely.

 

The Raspberry Foundation announced that overclocking is officially supported and would not void your warranty.

 

Overclocking your Raspberry Pi

The built in raspi-config tool is used to overclock the processor.

 

  • To bring up raspberry configuration menu, use this command:

sudo raspi-config

How-to-Overclock-Raspberry-Pi-01

  • Select Overclock and press Enter. You may need to press Enter again to agree that you have understood the possible problems associated with overclocking.
  • Use the up and down arrow to select the mode of overclock, then press Enter to select. There are five overclock preset:
    • 700MHz (no overclock)
    • 800MHz (modest overclock)
    • 900Mhz (medium overclock)
    • 950MHz (high overclock)
    • 1000MHz (turbo)

How-to-Overclock-Raspberry-Pi-02

  • Once you have selected the mode of overclock, exit raspi-config. Raspberry Pi needs to be rebooted for the new clock frequency to take effect.
  • Reboot Raspberry Pi, then type the following command to check the clock frequency:

cat /sys/devices/system/cpu/cpu0/cpufreq/scaling_max_freq

 

The highest clock frequency allowed under raspi-config is 1000MHz but some users are experiencing SD card corruption with this speed. The stability of your Raspberry Pi with overclocking differs with every Pi and also dependant on the quality of your power supply. If you have overclocked too high and your Pi fails to boot, hold down shift key during boot up to temporarily disable the overclock and then set a lower clock frequency under raspi-config.

 

As a rule of thumb, always backup your data beforehand and feel free to experiment with different clock frequencies, as you can always revert back to a lower speed if your Pi becomes unstable.


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