CAUTION: Overclocking can damage your graphics card (not covered by your warranty) so use the information of this post at your own risk.
Today, a small hardware tutorial: how to overclock a GeForce GTS 250 (1Gb GDDR3).
Why I need to overclock my graphics card? Overclocking your graphics card will allow you to get the most out of your card for free! You can expect a gain up to 10%!
This GeForce, from Twintech, was equiped with a really noisy cooler (and not efficient):
So first thing I did was to replace this cooler with a better one: the Scythe’s Musashi:
This cooler is really efficient and is very quiet!
Okay, now that the hardware side is in place, let’s see the software one. Basically, overclocking a graphics card is an easy operation: find the max graphics card’s clocks that keep the video card stable. By stable I mean no freeze nor artefacts. To find these max clocks, you need two utilities:
- RivaTuner: RivaTuner will allow you to changes graphics card clocks.
- FurMark: will allow you to burn the graphics card to check stability.
A GeForce has three different clocks we’re going to change: GPU clock, Shader clock and Memory clock. Before starting the overclocking, we have to know the graphics card default clocks. You can use RivaTuner for that, but GPU-Z gives you these values faster:
Twintech GeForce GTS 250 default clocks:
– GPU: 738MHz
– Shader: 1845MHz
– Memory: 1000MHz
And before starting the overclocking, let’s have a look at the FurMark’s score (1280×1024, fullscreen, no AA, 60 sec):
Now we can begin the graphics card overclocking. Here are the steps:
- 1/ launch FurMark
- 2/ launch RivaTuner
- 3/ do overclocking: increase one clock (GPU, shader or memory) by 5 or 10MHz while keeping the two others to their default values. Repeat this step until you see artifacts or notice a FurMark freeze. At this moment drop speed by 5MHz until you don’t see artifacts anymore.
- 4/ Once you have found the max clocks, set them all to their max values. I bet you will see artifacts on FurMark because all values to the max will produce more heat. At this point, drop the clocks until you don’t see artifacts anymore.
Let’s see each step in detail.
Start FurMark in stability test mode, in a 512×512 window with no AA, and check Xtreme Burning Mode:
Press I key to hide text on the 3D window (that will speed up a tad the rendering).
Start RivaTuner and display frequencies and temperature monitoring:
Now display low level settings:
RivaTuner will ask you to reboot in order to detect the graphics card clocks. But if your card is not overclocked, just click on Detect now:
Now RivaTuner shows you the default clocks:
Uncheck the Link clocks checkbox.
Now, we’re ready to find each max clock. Increase GPU clock until you see something strange (artifacts or freeze). In case of artifacts, drop the clock by 5Mhz until they disappear. After each increase, wait a little bit (30sec) before increasing the clock again.
With this GeForce GTS 250, exceeding max GPU clock causes a FurMark freeze (but on other cards, too high GPU clock may cause small dots). In this situation, the only solution is to click on Default button to restore default clocks. If you can’t do this, reboot your PC.
The max stable GPU clock I found is: 837MHz. About 100MHz in more!
Click on Default button to restore default clocks. Now increase Shader clocks until you see artifacts. With this GeForce GTS 250, exceeding max shader clock causes large artifacts on FurMark. Here is the video that shows artifacts due to a too high shader clock:
The max stable Shader clock I found is: 2074MHz. About 230MHz in more…
Click on Default button to restore default clocks. Now increase Memory clocks until you see artifacts. With this GeForce GTS 250, exceeding max memory clock causes small rectangular artifacts on FurMark. Here is the video that shows artifacts due to a too high memory clock:
The max stable Memory clock I found is: 1083MHz.
4/ Final Clocks
Now the final tuning. Set all clocks to their max stable values. You will certainly see artifacts with these settings because set all clocks to the max will produce more heat. But now, depending on the artifacts you see, you can drop the right clock. After each modification, wait at least for two or three minutes to be sure your graphics card is stable.
Here are the final clocks I found:
– GPU: 808MHz
– Shader: 2017MHz
– Memory: 1044MHz
As you can see, final clocks are different from previous max clocks found separately.
Now, let’s see the gain of this overclocking:
The gain of this overclocking is around 7.5%.
You can also run other benchmarks like 3DMark or your favorite video game to see overclocking gain or just to be sure that these new clocks are OK.
As you can see in this screenshot, the GPU temperature didn’t exceed 75°C with overclocked clocks. We can thank the Musashi VGA cooler that was able to keep GPU temperature relatively low.
25 thoughts on “GeForce GTS 250 Overclocking”
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this tutorial is very complete GOOD!
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The Twintech VGA (The tested vga) is standard GPU 750 SHADER 184 VRAM 1125!
A normal gts250 is GPU 738 SHADER 1836 VRAM 1000
And Musashi isn’t better than stock Cooler!The normal cooler is an accelero with NVIDIA name!
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this really helped me(setting ground #s) but as i have ventured further in to the overclocking of this card i have noticed it can be pushed a lot further. I got core clock:800
but all in all this really helped
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muy buen post, aunque me tendré que comprar ese cooler porque el que trae la mia no me sirve para el furmark
Furmark is useless for testing overclocks. You must set a unsanely high overclock to begin to see the first artefacts.
3Dmark is far more reliable.
im just wondering if anyone has an idea why im getting low overclocks on my msi gts 250. It is an underclocked version and i am only able to get the core to the stock 738 and the shader to 1836. the odd thing is that im able to get my memory clock up to 1325 stably.
If its an underclocked version, they probably went cheap on the cooler. You may not be able to reach these kids of overclocks.
well is the cooler the problem because it stays under 65 degrees c, but even when i first overclock it when its only 35 degrees it just crashes my whole computer if i try to get the the core over 740
It Sounds to me like its one of them eco edition cards that draw there power from the pcie slot and do not have a power connector from the power supply, If it is then u cant oc it that far cause u are not getting the power the card needs to run at the clocks u want, I think a pcie slot only supply’s about 80 watts.
I have a gts 250 deep green edition from gainward, with 1GB DDR 3, 256 bits, 675 Mhz gpu and 1800 Mhz memory in normal mode (no OC). When I’m running a 3D application, for example Avatar The Game, in Ultra High Quality mode, with AA 16x and AI 16x, for a half an hour, the GPU core temp goes over 75 degrees C. I dont intend to OC the vga card, I’m very happy with the performance that it delivers in normal mode, but I cant understand why it overheats so easly. I bought it only 3 weeks ago and allready got problems with it 🙁
It’s the cooling system of your card. I have the same card but I’m able to keep it below 70 degrees C. Try a better cooling system.
I have XFX GTS 250 DDR 3 1GB graphics card .. I mainly work in Dynamics to create VFX for my project and sometime interior and exterior works of building or houses etc… So, while interior or exterior architecture works ,I use Vray rendering output,it takes 1 – 2 hour for rendering a single frame. I shows only 150-250 MB the graphic card usage in GPUZ. How can I increase the graphic card memory for rendering ….And why it use only less memory for rendering ?
Pls i need help ….
Reply me @ firstname.lastname@example.org
PC Config :-
Processor :Intel i7 Exterme
Motherboard : Intel DX58SO
RAM : 16 GB Cosair XM3
Graphics Card : XFX GTS 250 DDR3
An extra 200 points isn’t a big deal. Benchmark points don’t matter anyways. I went through the tutorial and was able to overclock as much as the tutorial. I have a PNY Xlr8 GTS 250. It only gave 1 or 2 extra FPS. It’s not worth overclocking. Especially since this card gets decent FPS in most games out of the box.
That card couldn’t go up that high unless voltage tweaked. Anyone without a MSI card couldn’t hope to achieve this unless they modded for a higher intake of power; Otherwise, nice OC tut for those with a MSI card.
Would recommend ATi tool as a much better method of testing for artifacts compared to Furmark (use Furmark to test max. temps only).
Also if you have Crysis download the benchmark software and run 99 loops of Crysis at your native resolution – if you card completes this then your overclock is stable! 🙂
after overclocking my gts 250 my windows hangs …..
once i overclocked correctly my gts 250 with this method i rebooted my system and hangs in windows …..
how to cancel overclock ??
i tried safe mode but my gpu didn’t identified in safe mode …..
Hello guys i have an asus engts 250 di and i have reached 808 gpu clock 2017 shader clock and 1100 memmory with the stock cooler. now i have purchashed an other vga cooler and reached 910 gpu 2257 shader and left memory the same. i dont know why u guys cant overclock but it works fine with me. also max temp i reached was 71 degrees celcius.
try using evga precision (im using it) and each time before u apply an overclock click the test button to check if ur vga supports tha overclock
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