Originally Posted by Azazel
There are different ways to do it. I wanted 3.6ghz on my cpu. I looked around here to see what it took for other people to get that so I would have a basic idea(aka most people needed about 1.4 volts for it). Before I start overclocking I bump the voltage up a lot at reg frequency to see if the cooler can handle it. If it can, then I make one big jump on the frequency. I went from 2.4ghz to 3ghz and then from 3.0ghz to 3.6ghz. From there I tinkered around and got 3.7ghz. I find it much faster to do it this way. I refuse to go up by 5-10mhz ever.
I'm the same. I'm an impatient overclocker, at least compared to most people, it still took me at least 15 solid hours spread out over a couple weeks to get my system to what it's at now.
I start by making a big jump that I know will be a safe bet on my chip (eg, 333fsb to 380fsb) and then from there I go up 10 mhz at a time. This saves alot of time passing through frequencies that I have a very good idea will be stable. Once I hit my wall at stock voltage (approx 400fsb) and am stable at that frequency, I take an unstable frequency at stock (420fsb) and up the voltage till it's stable, then I up the frequency more until it becomes unstable and rinse and repeat until I can't go any higher.
After that, I play with RAM timings and voltages to squeeze a bit more speed out of both my ram and my CPU and that usually allows me to get at least 10 more mhz out of my fsb.
After that, changing dividers so that my CPU can increase without my RAM dieing allows an even greater increase in FSB. I have yet to play with dividers on my current setup but I think I'll be able to push it even higher.
Finally, something I forgot, finding a simple vdroop mod for your motherboard will save you the trouble of having to set stupidly high voltages just so that you have a stable voltage when vdroop kicks in.
GPU comes last for me, as I prefer to make sure that I have a good, stable CPU to test certain games with for artifacts and performance and such. 3Dmark06 allowed me to find out that there was a wall in memory speed on my 8800gts which caused bad artifacting to occur during the forest section. If the "shooting star" artifacts showed up in that section I knew my memory speed was too high so I could lower it until the artifacts no longer showed up.
Hope that helped OP a bit, I'm not very experienced with overclocking but I've learned alot from my own system as well as from many users on this site. Good luck in your future ventures.