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Overclocking Competitions - Online & Global/Local - att mfc's

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Hey guys,


Due to the absolute failures and epic goofs that occurred in the overclocking events/competitions organized by some hardware manufacturers the last few months I decided to take some time and write an article about it, not to bash them for their silly mistakes, but to point out their mistakes and mishaps, and to give the manufacturers and the people responsible for the contests some suggestions and ideas to better organize them, leading to better competitions and therefore better products.


Whether you're an overclocker ( accomplished or not, an experienced one or a newbie ) or an employee of a hardware manufacturer, I believe this article is worth a few minutes of your time.


I'll leave you with some quotes and a link to the article.

Your comments, ideas & suggestions are welcome ( and will be added ;) ).


Back on topic now, it's time to speak about this article, what's it about and what you'll find in the following pages.

The topic of this article is "Overclocking competitions" ( be it online, local or global, it doesn't matter, we'll talk about them in general and specifically as well ) organized by computer hardware manufacturers, their benefits, the nice things, and the bad things ( flaws ) and we'll try to offer some suggestions that can make these competitions better and attract more participants and... "viewers".


What made me write this article ? The fiascos of two overclocking competitions that took part online the last few months organized by two well-known manufacturers.

-Oh no, it souds like another "Bill bashing the manufacturers" article!

No no, don't worry, I'm not going to bash them ( well, I might for a bit, but I do it for them, I mean to grab their attention and get them to listen to us in order to better organize their competitions, and have a win-win scenario for both the manufacturer and us, the overclockers and the consumers ). I will try to pin-point the organizational mistakes and the ridiculous ( leading to low or even... total lack of participation ) limitations on entering the competition.


Before we go ahead and talk about the manufacturers in specific, I'd like to make myself clear and make sure that you ( the manufacturers ) don't get discouraged by our judgement and critique, we ( the overclocking community ) appreciate what you do and we just want you to listen to us and let us help you in organizing more and better events & competitions ;-)


Assuming that you are planning to host an online or local/global overclocking competition here are the key points that you want to pay attention to and follow carefully to please the overclockers, attract lots of people and have a successful contest for you and the overclockers:


Let's start with the easiest part and proven to be wrong from our experience over the past few years, the DON'Ts:


DO NOT ( DON'Ts ):


* Select improper benchmarks & hardware combinations, if we're going to use a Dual-Core processor do not choose unsuitable benchmarks like CineBench, wPrime, 3D Mark06 or 3D Mark Vantage.

Wisely chosen hardware & benchmark combinations is one of the keys to a successful overclocking event/competition

* If it's a global contest with qualifiers stick to a plan, organize the qualifiers the same way for every country/region, do not handicap people by allowing E.S. CPUs/VGAs/Motherboards in a contest that people need to buy the stuff on their own to participate, supposedly you're looking for the best overclockers, not the overclockers with the highest salary.

* If it's a 2D benchmarking competition ( e.g. SuperPi, PiFast, wPrime, etc ) do not restrict the competitors to use a VGA of your own brand, limit the motherboard selection or don't limit the hardware at all.

If it's a 3D benchmarking competition ( e.g. 3D Mark, AquaMark 3, etc ) do not restrict the competitors to use a motherboard of your own brand, limit the graphics card selection or don't apply any brand limitations at all.

* Don't make the competition more unfair than it really is by sending cherry-picked samples to a few people or just one ( considering that in a competition where the participants need to buy the hardware on their own the overclockers with a higher budget can buy more pieces in order to find a better CPU, motherboard and/or graphics card, things are unfair already, no need to make things even harder ).

* Do not organize a product launch contest when the product hasn't been launched already or it was just released and its retail availability is really limited, give the people some time to get a chance to buy the product and get ready for the contest....


Here's the link to the full article ( click me! )



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You forgot one of the do's. :D


Good point Frederik, rev 1.1 time :D


I agree with everything, except the first "don't". It's perfectly possible to create a successful competition with a "weird" benchmark, we showed that during the wprime singlecore competition:) But of course you won't get the low numbers you get with 6-core rigs etc.


I partially agree with you on that.

Sure it's fun too, and stressing, but it would consume a lot of time ( wPrime 1024m on a single/dual core for example :D ) and some benchmarks ( like CineBench for example ) would be a matter of clock frequencies as they're not tweakable at all.

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