NVIDIA GPU Boost 4.0

NVIDIA GPU Boost 4.0 is the 4th generation GPU clocking technique that converts available power headroom into increased GPU performance. It is the successor to the GPU Boost 3.0 technology.

With the release of the Turing graphics cards on September 20, 2018, NVIDIA also introduced GPU Boost 4.0. The fourth version of the automatic GPU clock boosting algorithm introduced a couple of new features:

  1. No hard temperature limit
  2. User editable temperature threshold points
  3. NVIDIA OC Scanner

On GPU Boost 3.0, if the GPU temperature exceeds a predefined maximum temperature, the GPU would immediately drop from boost clock to base clock. At the base clock, the fan would ramp to reduce the temperature. If the temperature is above the hard threshold again, the boost clock would be active again.

On GPU Boost 4.0, there’s no more hard temperature limit but rather a frequency plateau between the uncapped boost and base clock when the temperature exceeds the threshold. Two temperature points define the plateau

  • Point 1: boost clock + temperature/power, where the user prefers the fans to ramp
  • Point 2: base clock + temperature/power, where the user prefers the frequency to drop
gpu boost 4.0

These two points are user-configurable via the Boost API.

The NVIDIA OC Scanner feature has two parts: the test program and the test workload.

The test program analyzes the factory-fused voltage-frequency curve and determines which points it should test to check for stability quickly. It can lock in a specific point – something already present on GPU Boost 3.0 – and run a workload at that particular point.

NVIDIA explained they go after five specific points on the V/F curve to tune, then interpolate between those points to generate the final V/F curve.

The test workload is a mathematical test designed by NVIDIA to test the stability accurately. According to NVIDIA, what’s unique about their test is that it doesn’t make the GPU crash while stress-testing, whereas third-party tools routinely would.

nvidia oc scanner

According to NVIDIA’s Tom Petersen, the OC Scanner would deliver a high-quality, automatically adjusted voltage-frequency curve in roughly 20 minutes.