Overclocker in Focus: Alva Jonathan "Lucky_n00b" Interview

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Overclocker in Focus: Alva Jonathan “Lucky_n00b” Interview

Author: Sdougal

In the Indonesian Overclocking scene today there is one name which stands out from the crowd. One player that really epitomizes the spirit and energy of the country’s blossoming OC scene. That player is Lucky_n00b. Today we are delighted to bring you the thoughts and opinions of Lucky_n00b in the latest installment of the HWBOT Overclocker in Focus series. Enjoy!

The Interview Transcript

Alva Jonathan Lucky_noob overclocking

HWBOT: Hi, and welcome to the HWBOT Overclocker in Focus series. Please introduce yourself.

Lucky_n00b: So I’m Alva Jonathan. My nickname is Lucky_n00b. I’m from Indonesia.

HWBOT: What is your educational background?

Lucky_n00b: I took Computer Science for my bachelor degree, and then in 201y, sorry 2011, I took a short course about Semiconductors and Electronic Engineering in Australia.

HWBOT: When did you start overclocking?

Lucky_n00b: I started overclocking when I was still in Junior High-School. So I started overclocking because, well, I wanted to play games. I want to play games and I want my games to have a better frame-rate and at my age it’s quite expensive. For the game that I want, you need high system requirements – it was Quake 3 by the way – and you need a fast CPU, you need fast graphics cards and well, I cannot afford it. So did I do? I took a cheap CPU, the Celeron 300A (300MHz) and overclocked it 450 (MHz) and I get this massive boost of performance.

You know, computers used to be a lot slower than we have today. Even if you some multimedia task like video conversion, it took really, really high computing horsepower that we didn’t have at that time. So basically Overclocking has been done, not only on the low end system but on the high-end system as well. I mean, like ten years ago a computer was not as fast as we have right now. The original bottlenecks were usually gaming performance and if you want your computer to do some multimedia tasks.

HWBOT: What has been your best moment in Overclocking?

Lucky_n00b: My best moment in Overclocking is when I went for this Overclocking competition called the MSI Overclocking Arena in 2008 and that was one of my first international Overclocking competitions, with all the competitors and contestants (from) all over the world. That’s like really my first.

So I came there like almost unprepared because you know all the contestants, they were well known overclockers from their scene, from their country. But me on the other hand, even in my country I don’t rank that high, I mean I lost a lot of competitions. Really, like a lot. So when I got the opportunity to go there I was like, Ok let’s do it and try not to be the last place. But with a series of really, really good luck, I came out first in an international competition and that actually changed my overclocking life as well.

HWBOT: How do you see the Overclocking scene today?

Lucky_n00b: Compared to what we have in the past Overclocking has been changed. The things that have changed a lot, er… it’s not the correct term but maybe its ‘difficulty’. Overclocking difficulty has been really changed going to back to what have like eight or ten years ago. Right now Overclocking is really easy.

Like, ten years ago if you want to do overclocking first you have to know your CPU, you have to know your motherboard. But right now you already have this motherboard, right now we have here, it’s like one button to overclock the CPU. It’s like presets from the manufacturer. It has been really easy overclocking these past three to four years. That’s one of the differences.

The second difference is, eight or ten years ago we don’t have motherboards or PC hardware components that are actually designed to do Overclocking. There was no such thing as overclocking grade hardware, but right now we already have all the manufacturers – GIGABYTE have their own SOC Force, ASUS got their ROG series, ASRock got the OC Formula, MSI have their OC series – like the four big motherboard manufacturers have their own line of specialized Overclocking motherboards that are guaranteed to be durable, has really good options in it… And basically if you are talking about competitive overclocking anybody with good components can get a benchmark world record with those kind of boards.

Yeah, so that’s the main difference, difficulty and that right now we already have specialized components to do overclocking.

HWBOT: Is an easier overclocking experience good or bad?

Lucky_n00b: Well… (laughs). That’s a tricky question. Erm.. if you are saying easy Overclocking means good or bad? Well, I can say it’s a little bit of both. A little bit of both because you know, well some – I don’t dare say geek, because geek has some negative tone to it – well some enthusiasts like Overclocking because they like to tamper with things, they like to you know, change the variables, the parameters of their hardware and they like because it’s quite complicated. It’s kind of challenging. But right now the challenge factor is well… I’ll probably just be honest and say it’s been reduced by a lot.

But when… Overclocking in the past was hard to learn, but after that it’s ok, or not that difficult to master. Overclocking right now is easy to learn, but it’s really hard to master.

HWBOT: Where do you see overclocking in five years from now?

Lucky_n00b: Five years from now… if you’re talking about Overclocking like five years from now, probably I’m going to predict that the CPU is going to be a lot faster. A lot more cores perhaps and well if you are talking like five years maybe we see some CPUs from AMD competing with Intel as well because they say it’s the next year, 2016 they are going to release their next CPU.

But the main difference for me I think, things are going to get a lot faster and maybe a lot trickier because you know… Sometimes when we are thinking about what the technology has given us, the fabrication process of the transistors. Right now we are at 14 nanometers or something and I don’t know, because some transistor properties could be changed by a different fabrication process. We cannot really predict what going to happen with that kind of shrink.

We have seen 14 nanometers and then we will see 10 nanometers, things are going to get changed and the thing that I’m hoping is that the clock speed of the hardware actually scales in performance . Well, there are more cores so we can still get, you know, a good percentage out of it.

HWBOT: What do you think of Overclocking as an eSport?

Lucky_n00b: If you are thinking of the Overclocking scene of the future, I think that competitive Overclocking is going to get bigger and bigger because right now HWBOT is making the OC-ESPORTS initiative. I think there’s a lot of people that right now know that ok, there is competitive Overclocking.

Usually people don’t know or even maybe don’t care about Overclocking and competitive Overclocking, but right now we see a lot of people – even in Indonesia where those people who don’t have those expensive components – we see a lot of university students, budget gamers are interested in Overclocking. They want to tamper with stuff. They just want to – I don’t know if this phrase is right – they just want to ‘geek-out’ with their hardware. And then they could get something out of it while at the same time they learn something.

So, for me I hope that the competitive Overclocking scene is getting bigger, and it could become a kind of eSport.

Actually I might add, Overclocking could be an eSport but there are some people that are actually against the idea of Overclocking becoming an eSport. Because usually in an eSport, like gaming, you have the reflexes, you’ve got to have the strategy and those people are saying Overclocking has no strategy. You have to buy the best CPU. You bin the best CPU and that’s it.

But under the right rules. Under the right regulations I think competitive Overclocking could be a lot more from what we have right now. So what I’m thinking is there’s some, I don’t know maybe HWBOT or maybe somebody else make Overclocking to be a good show. People like games because they’re entertaining to see. When we are looking at Overclocking competitions, it’s basically a bunch of guys, some people say a bunch of nerdy guys, playing with the hardware and don’t really know… they cannot relate to that at all. If you could stream the screens to see what they are doing with the hardware, making the competition much more exciting. I think Overclocking could be made into a show as well, and that’s what I’m hoping.

HWBOT: If you could change one thing in Overclocking what would it be?

Lucky_n00b: OK, if I could change one thing? Well that’s a tricky question. For me Overclocking is good as it is right now, but I’ve been thinking about.. there are some people thinking very negatively about Overclocking. They’re saying that Overclocking is pointless. It’s useless. Even deep in the scene, behind the scenes there are a lot of dramas about… ‘Ah this overclocker has the best chips and he could bin a lot because he’s got a lot of money and because he has a vendor background’.

If there’s one thing I could change, I wish that overclockers had a better attitude to Overclocking because some people start overclocking because they want something and some are actually doing it for money and some things could get not really good when you do things just for the money. Things could get, or competitions could get dirty.

I think that some people need to change their view of Overclocking and just love Overclocking for what it is.

HWBOT: Your advice to someone just getting started?

Lucky_n00b: So if you are an overclocker that is starting in the competitive scene, my advice is very simple – just get to know your hardware. You don’t have to have the highest-end hardware, you don’t have to have the best binned chips in the world, but just get to really know your hardware. Your processor, your cooling and then try to maximize it and take things slow.

There’s a lot, like seriously a lot of information that could be found in overclocking forums. I think one of the biggest is overclock.net and then there a lot of, you know a forum in Germany and the US and there are a lot of other forums, you just (need to) know where to look. And even though, if you are confused and don’t know where to look, just put the word ‘overclock’ into Google. You’ll find a bunch of content that will help you getting started.

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