Kernel Tuner for Android Review

Kernel Tuner for Android Review


Check the times in state for the processor, set governors for the speeds


Kernel Tuner is an awesome utility for those who are use Android-based HTC smartphones, especially with multi-core processors. The phone needs to be rooted though, and you need to have a custom ROM installed with a compatible kernel that allows you to underclock/overclock and undervolt/overvolt your CPU and GPU. Usually, the kernel of the stock Android OS of most smartphones is designed to operate at the set core speed, and not higher, to avoid instability issues and overheating. Another issue with stock kernels is that they are programmed to keep only one CPU core active while the other cores are used only when needed. Using the Kernel Tuner utility app, you can force all the cores to be active simultaneously to enhance the performance of your operating system. Kernel Tuner can also individually overclock or underclock each core along with overvolting and undervolting. You can additionally set the governors for each core so that the cores can operate individually and effectively. One can also overclock the GPU to enhance the graphical interface for a more fluid operation.


One can create profiles according to his/her wish and make the processors operate with schedules. Other features included in the app are options to change the capacitive button’s backlights, fastcharge, Vsync for the display panel, colour depth tweaks, IO scheduler, notification LED timeout, Sweep2 Wake and enabling Swap. You can also tweak the cache size for the SD card. The app has a widget using which one can see the present state of the processor, battery and more information in real time.

Tweak the processor settings to overclock or underclock it

Tweak the processor settings to overclock or underclock it



Visible graphs are available in the app itself for CPU load and speeds of each core, battery life and battery temperature. A click on the ‘Times in State’ button will give you detailed information about the amount of time the processor has been spending in each of the frequencies available. This can help you tweak the processor efficiently so that you can set the core speeds according to the actual usage of your phone. This will not only keep your phone performing at par, but will also help save on battery life. Lastly, a system information is also available to get complete info about your phone’s hardware, the kernel and operating system.

Check the times in state for the processor, set governors for the speeds

Check the times in state for the processor, set governors for the speeds



The options menu of the utility app has settings for restoring the settings or changes you made on rebooting the device. This helps in case you goof-up the speeds or voltages and your phone freezes or becomes instable. You can also set the widget updating interval according to your preference to save on battery power. Options to show the processor speeds in the notification bar is also available, but it is recommended not to enable it as it can drain the battery power to an extent. Lastly, you can set the temperature units in Celsius or Fahrenheit.

Create profiles, tweak the display settings and add a widget

Create profiles, tweak the display settings and add a widget



Kernel Tuner presently as works on a few HTC models, but has also been known to work on other models. However, it should be used with caution if your phone is not compatible. Do note, this app needs a rooted phone and a compatible custom kernel installed. For GPU tweaking or overclocking, only Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 and S4 devices with appropriate kernel are supported. If this app does not work efficiently for your device, or if your phone behaves erratic after applying the tweaks, uninstall it after restoring all settings and changes. A complete Nandroid backup is recommended before you try out this app. For more information on this utility app, refer to the developers website. To download and install this app on your phone, click here.

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