Those rumours from a couple of weeks ago that Intel may only support overclocking on the high-end, expensive Nehalem processors may have been nothing more than FUD. Eric Mentzer, Intel's vice president and general manager of the Graphics Development Group, told InfoWorld at Computex that overclocking capabilities are a main feature of the Intel's 4 series chipsets. However, Mentzer does stress that failures due to overclocking are not covered by warranty.
That same ability is available to users, but it hasn't always been. Intel used to lock down its chips to prevent overclocking, but the company's mindset has changed. Overclockers are now viewed as an important market segment, rather than troublemakers.
"There's a very small segment that just love to play with this stuff," Mentzer said. "They're very important to us because they are also the people who set the tone for what they think is a good chipset."
But embracing the market doesn't mean the warranty on Intel chips will cover overclocking. Intel puts its chips through a strenuous testing process, and the chips are guaranteed to perform reliably to the levels tested -- and no further.