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MSI Afterburner for Laptops (Read this first!)

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As one of the most efficient and most used performance monitor tools on Windows, the MSI afterburner, as a software, gives you total control over several settings and activities on your laptop, all in real-time. So, let’s say you are looking to increase your fps (frames per second) or overclock your GPU (Graphics process unit or graphics card as you know it); MSI afterburner gives control over the temperature, operating speed, fans speed, voltage, frame rate, core clock, and other parameters.

Can you use MSI afterburner on any laptop?

MSI afterburner is free and universal, working with any graphics card- including NVIDIA and AMD- and any brand of laptop. However, if you don’t completely understand the software yet, you might want to hold on first and learn how it works: you can even watch videos on YouTube to get a clear understanding before installing it on your laptop. 

If your laptop starts to underperform after installing MSI Afterburner, you might want to open the panel to ensure that the vents, CPU, and GPU are not covered in dust and dirt, which can cause low fan speed and impair the performance of your laptop.

Is it safe to use MSI Afterburner on a laptop? 

MSI afterburner is safe and secure to use; nevertheless, if all settings are placed on max, it generally increases the heat output of your GPU and, if not careful, may damage the GPU if you exceed its cooling limit. Some experts might advise that you leave all settings at default to avoid overheating: but the reason why you installed this software in the first place is to control the settings at will, according to your needs. So, watch closely to ensure that the voltage, power limit, and temperature does not exceed their limits.

Is it safe to overclock an MSI afterburner laptop?

The main reason for overclocking is to improve the GPU’s performance by altering the manufacturer’s default settings on your laptop. MSI afterburner is specifically designed for this purpose and is safe to use. In reality, most laptops do not allow overclocking because laptops, in general, do not have top-notch heating systems. So when they are overclocked, the excess heat they generate may cause them to shut down.

To avoid glitches when overclocking, start by increasing the memory by +50 and the frequency by +15. Watch how your laptop responds to it, monitor the GPU temperature, and ensure it stays below 90 degrees Celsius. 

Is it safe to overclock an MSI afterburner laptop

What is the power limit for an MSI afterburner laptop?

In simpler terms, the power limit regulates the electrical energy that your graphics card consumes. In some cases, you may need to increase the power limit so that your graphics card gets access to more energy, which will impact the performance and speed at which it operates. The more energy your GPU consumes, the higher the chance of overheating. 

While MSI did not explicitly explain the principles behind its power limit features, reviews from different users show that throttling becomes activated when the power limit exceeds its limit. This will prevent overheating, and even though most people are scared of changing the default settings of the power limit to avoid damaging their graphics card, you can still adjust the power limit as long as you are mindful of the turbo frequencies and voltage.

P.S. Throttling in MSI afterburner refers to when the GPU limits or resets the turbo frequency to default or sometimes a lower frequency to avoid damage.

Can I control the fan speed of the MSI afterburner laptop?

With this software, you can spin your laptop to maximum speed to protect your graphics card from overheating. However, doing this frequently may affect the fan life over time. To remain on the safe side, slide the fan speed to max only when carrying out a heavy task on your laptop. And if you have your fan speed setting locked or grayed out, you can enable it from the menu and set the fan curve according to your needs. 

Generally, overclocking increases your laptop’s temperature: so you will need to increase the fan speed to balance the temperature. If you notice that the fan isn’t producing optimal cooling as it should, you may want to take out the vent and clean it thoroughly. Also, place the laptop on a table or other surfaces that will allow ventilation.

Other than overclocking, does MSI afterburner have other features?

While most people may know MSI afterburner for overclocking/underclocking alone, the software offers other features, which include:

  • Monitor GPU health in real-time- As mentioned before, you can check the temperature, power limit, voltage, core speed, clock speed, and overall usage of your GPU.
  • Undervolting- this feature allows you to reduce the energy your GPU consumes.
  • Run benchmarking test: this is a stress test for the GPU to know how well it will perform in different scenarios. For this test, you need the Kombuster app (download and install separately) alongside MSI afterburner.
  • Video capture- your games can also be recorded in different frame rates and saved in different formats.

With these features, imagine what you can achieve using this software.

Frequently asked questions

Does MSI afterburner work with non-MSI cards?

MSI being universal means that it works efficiently with different cards, even non-MSI cards. 

Is it safe to underclock my GPU?

Yes, it is. Doing so will keep the temperatures down, and your fan doesn’t have to work at its max as well.

How can running MSI Afterburner have a negative effect on my laptop?

Afterburner overclocks your GPU, which may cause heating, and seeing as laptops have poor cooling systems, this may lead to the laptop being damaged by heat. 

Can an MSI afterburner damage the GPU?

Just like your laptop, when your CPU or GPU is overclocked, it will perform better but generate more heat. Your GPU doesn’t like heat, and this may reduce the lifespan of your GPU even with the right cooling system. 


While the MSI afterburner is a great tool that gives you control over certain features to improve the performance of your laptop, you must understand that creating a balance in how you use its features is necessary. Companies set power limits to keep your laptop protected. So if you must go over these limits, ensure to monitor all parameters effectively. With MSI, doing this becomes even easier.

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Pigtou Editorial Team

A group of tech enthusiasts who find pleasure in troubleshooting and resolving various issues. When we're not engaged in writing, we typically enjoy playing table football or spending time with our office dog.
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