Once in a while, when the mood grabs us, we have an opinion poll on HWBOT where we ask a question related to Overclocking. The most recent poll asked ‘What’s the most extreme cooling you will use in the next 3 months?’ You can check the image on the left for the results.
The lion’s share of the votes, of which there were 368 in total, were actually ‘Winter Air’ which garnered 26.09%. With 25.54% of the vote we have ‘Liquid Nitrogen’, which to all purposes is actually about as far removed from ‘Winter Air’ as you can get. In third place we have ‘Chilled Water’. Single Stage, Dry Ice and Cascade cooling between them managed to muster only 15.76% of all overclockers polled.
What vital insights can we glean from these results? Clearly there are two large groups of overclockers, ostensibly residing on opposite sides of the OC scene. There is a large, majority group (40% of overclockers polled in this case) which is content to push their hardware using either air or water cooling. However, there is another group, the second largest in this poll, that is determined to overclock on LN2. Overclockers aspiring to pursue Cascade, Dry Ice and Single Stage cooling are evidently a minority group.
What does all this mean for the Overclocking scene? Well, one interesting interpretation is that these results confirm the notion that there is a gulf between ambient and sub-zero overclocking in terms of participation numbers. A gap caused perhaps by ambient overclockers being somewhat reluctant or even a little intimidated by the idea of sub-zero, and in particular LN2 based overclocking. Any way we can fix that?
Interestingly, a few days ago we published a news article outlining our plans to roll out the HWBOT Apprentice League, a league designed to counter the ambient-subzero gap just outlined above. Indeed Cascade, Dry Ice and Single Stage overclocking is a great way get started in sub-zero overclocking, while also negating the jump straight to LN2. The poll results would tend to concur that the there is plenty of space for Apprentices dabbling in the darker arts of Cascade, Dry Ice and Single Stage cooling to really make their mark.
Read more about the Apprentice League here.