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Intel plans to roll out an update to stop you overclocking locked processors

It has been possible with Intel's latest Skylake processors to overclock even the locked family of chips. Motherboard manufacturers have made it so even those who opt for the more affordable (but locked) Intel processors can get more out of the component, but Intel is set to shut down this little unofficial party by releasing an update to block any form of overclocking on locked processors.

Should you wish to grab an Intel Skylake processor that actually supports overclocking, you'll need to fork out slightly more for the K series of chips (the i5-6600K for example). Chips that are being overclocked without Intel's blessing are in fact locked CPUs like the i5-6500 or i5-6600, enabling consumers to spend less without losing out on much power.

Since this lock down is part of an update that will likely be bundled by motherboard manufacturers as a BIOS update, it may be possible to ignore the release and carry on as usual. Then again, should you purchase a new board down the line, it may already be patched with no wiggle room for overclocking affected processors. Will you be among others affected by this move from Intel? Let us know in the comments.

Source: PC World

Rich Edmonds
Rich Edmonds

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

58 Comments
  • The question is why?
  • For the upsell
  • Because you didn't pay for it.
  • If you bought the processor, yes you did. It doesn't matter that it's not meant for overclocking, it's yours.
  • You never really own things, just the right to use it, like games
  • lol, sure you do, and in EU you own digital games as well as was ruled by the courts.  
  • The simple fact is that if you want to receive updates from them then you have to play by their rules. If you buy a budget version then they will do everything they can to lock it to it's specification. If you don't like it, that's fine - but don't expect any updates...
  • You bought locked version?
  • The answer is here. You can like it or not, but this is what it is.
    http://wccftech.com/intel-confirms-overclocking-nonk-skylake-processors-...
  • Nothing can stop the tech enthusiast crowd. As long as there's a will there will always be a way.
  • But you can buy the unlocked CPU for 10-20$.
  • Gordon Bennet, where are you buying desktop CPUs for $10-20? They have to be hookey.
  • I would assume he means $10-20 more than the normal cpu. I haven't bought a processor in a while though, so I don't know if he's right or not.
  • He knew that. He's trying to be funny.
  • More 10-20$.My skylake(LG1151) i5 6600 costs 259€ and i5 6600K 269€ so if you want to buy unlocked just pay 10€ more.
    P.S
    I'm from Greece so I put them to €
  • Think he means over the locked price. :-)
  • Boohoo
  • Tale my ball and go home...
  • Seems faster...ehhh wait...no? - what???
  • Update: Seems back to normal
  • They've got time to fix this glitch in Skylake but nothing else, way to go Intel! ;)
  • k
  • And if AMD was smart, they'd advertise the hell out of their processors being wide open.
  • Yeah and you can make toast bread and hot coffee if you put them at your case.
    I'm joking I don't want to start a fan boy war...REALLY.
  • Happy I'm an AMD user...
  • Happy I've never had to deal with AMD and that I always bought K series chips!
  • I want AMD to crack into the Windows notebook and tablet market.
    Intel has their monopoly in that.
  • AMD makes CPU for phones???
    Like Intel Atom and Cherry???
  • Error 053 :))
  • Come on AMD this is where you kick the boot in!
  • I have never had an AMD CPU and probably I will never buy but I think AMD must raise the competition.Intel now have the monopoly to Notebooks,laptops and try to be at phones to.At desktop computer have the majority so has an unbreakable monopoly.We need Competition for better prices and products.
  • If u have an XBO or ps4 u have an amd processor :) http://www.extremetech.com/gaming/156273-xbox-720-vs-ps4-vs-pc-how-the-h...
  • I speak for PC.I have Xbox,Xbox 360 and my brother has Xbox one.so...yes I have amd for my consoles but not for my pc,laptops,notebooks...
  • No, it hasn't
  • I've had both intel and AMD.. I'm more proud of AMD over intel any day... And $$ has nothing to do with it.
  • Booooooo
  • Some advice guys. Should I get an AMD or Intel processor? Budget is around 600 dollars and it is for gaming.
  • If You want to save some of that 600$ i recommend the FX 8xxx. Otherwise an I7 6xxx will do fine
  • I agree with arjan.. I currently have FX8350 and plays games like a champ with NVIDIA GT740 2gb gddr5 128bit.
  • When it is for gaming I'd recommend going with the cheaper processor (which most likely will be AMD) and spend that extra money towards a better graphics card. Most games nowadays mainly tax the gpu while your processor gets to 50% at max
  • Well, except you play flightsim
  • No reason to have an I7 if you just use your PC for gaming. There is a very small number od games that use multithreading.
  • And those that do generally max out at 4 'real' cores, not the fake hyperthready crap which is the only difference between i5 and i7.
  • Yup! AMD we need you!
  • This is what having no competition in the CPU market gets us. Unfortunately Zen will probably be on par with Haswell at best, so I don't have much faith AMD will make much of a difference any time soon.  
  • Even if it is only on par with haswell, so what? It's a cheaper alternative to intel, not only in CPU but also motherboard(price:features) Personally, I use AMD for a hyper-v host. Get a ton of performace out of it for the price.
  • As what Bryce says.. Mass performance boost for the price from AMD and I've own mine over 6 years and still holding abusive gaming. And for AMD.. There are many CPUs you can overclock but it's based on whether you purchased right motherboard to support it and other accessories.
  • Or rather what her you've bought the right cooling ;)
  • Good.
  • The good bios will likely be available for download anyway, you could buy a new mobo and get the old one asap, or simply people will keep buying the mobos that come untapped by intel
  • Does this affect Turbo mode on my 6400?
  • OC only.Turbo mode isn't oc
  • I remember reading long ago (like 20years ago) about how Intel designates some processors as lower end some and higher end. During testing phase, some processors fail quality checks for the high end, either high clock speed stability, or some cores don't function quite as well or overheat etc. These processors have cores disabled and run as cheaper processors, or are locked at lower clock speeds where they can still run reliably, despite failing high speed quality control. It sounds like the same thing all over again. And again. And again. People figure out how to overclock, and Intel says, don't! I remember one generation of CPU (coppermine, I think?) people were actually physically pulling out a CPU pin to unlock the multiplier.
  • lol yeah, I remember that too!
  • Remember back in the day of the 440 BX where you could use a pencil (graphite) to join the connections and gain access to the multiplyer? Those were the good old days.
  • Nah, still giving so much love for my Core 2 Duo xP
  • Sadly, I have a K version CPU but run it at stock clocks =/
  • Me too, planning to oc it to 4.4, mines a 6700k