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i7-950 Overheating, no OC stock fan


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#1
Rik111

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I recently had to RMA my Sabertooth x58, and I had to take off the old thermal compound (which was working great at ~35C), and apply new stuff.

I'm still using the stock heatsink/fan, and CPUID is reporting the following at idle:
SYSTIN: 37C
CPUTIN: 34C
AUXTIN: 55C

When I run Prime95 for ~30 seconds, temps quickly rise to 80-90C. This is clearly not a good thing.

I have already removed the thermal paste I put on and applied a second try, smaller than the first (the first was the size of a pea, this one probably 1 grain of rice).

I'm using a Cooler Master Elite 430 with all 6 slots filled with fans.

Less thermal paste is not doing the trick, it seems. What could I be doing wrong?
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#2
Rik111

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Tried a third time to apply thermal compound. I found that a line down the center (splitting the chip symmetrically) brought my temps down to normal levels.

If you're googling this, do that! Brought me down 20C!! :D
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#3
iammykyl

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Hi.

If you are saying that temps have dropped about 20C and this while under load, I think it is still pretty High.

If you have removed the CPU fan at some time? Was it put on in the correct orientation? Does the fan alter speed with temps?

Six fans going may cause turbulence in the case rather than good flow. Monitor temps and try adjusting the fans, like
Turn off the side fan,
Run 1 front fan on half, then on full.
Add the side fan on half then on full.
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#4
iammykyl

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Hi.

If you are saying that temps have dropped about 20C and this while under load, I think it is still pretty High.

If you have removed the CPU fan at some time? Was it put on in the correct orientation? Does the fan alter speed with temps?

Six fans going may cause turbulence in the case rather than good flow. Monitor temps and try adjusting the fans, like
Turn off the side fan,
Run 1 front fan on half, then on full.
Add the side fan on half then on full.
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#5
Digerati

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If you are saying that temps have dropped about 20C and this while under load,

To clarify (for me anyway), if you mean they dropped from 90C to 70C, then I agree, 70C is still too high.

See my sticky for applying TIM.

I also agree that too many fans can be counterproductive. Understand it is the job of the case to move hot air out of the case. Therefore, your fans should be oriented such that you have good, unrestricted (as much as possible) front-to-back air flow through the case. Generally, I prefer one 120mm fan in front drawing cool air in, and at least one fan (not counting the PSU's) fan exhausting hot air out.

You might try opening the side panel and blasting a desk fan in there. If you temps drop significantly, your case cooling needs to be reconfigured.
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#6
Rik111

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If you are saying that temps have dropped about 20C and this while under load,

To clarify (for me anyway), if you mean they dropped from 90C to 70C, then I agree, 70C is still too high.

See my sticky for applying TIM.

I also agree that too many fans can be counterproductive. Understand it is the job of the case to move hot air out of the case. Therefore, your fans should be oriented such that you have good, unrestricted (as much as possible) front-to-back air flow through the case. Generally, I prefer one 120mm fan in front drawing cool air in, and at least one fan (not counting the PSU's) fan exhausting hot air out.

You might try opening the side panel and blasting a desk fan in there. If you temps drop significantly, your case cooling needs to be reconfigured.


Perhaps I was a bit over-enthusiastic. I didn't see any 90C's, so I just called that a victory :D

I tried taking the side panel off and blowing a high-speed fan into it... here's idle (well, I have some stuff going, but not a whole lot. CPU usage is normal for what I'm doing):

Posted Image

And here's w/ Prime95 going for about 30 seconds (fan still blowing into the side):

Posted Image


I'm sort of stumped... the stock fan was working just fine w/ stock thermal paste. Now I'm using Arctic Silver and getting far worse results...? :/

And the fan on the side didn't lower temps, if that wasn't clear from the images.
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#7
Digerati

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Those temps scare me. What does CoreTemp say? What are your hardware specs?
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#8
Rik111

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Those temps scare me. What does CoreTemp say? What are your hardware specs?


Coretemp with ~30% loads:
Core 0: 64
Core 1: 68
Core 2: 65
Core 3: 67

Hardware:
Sabertooth x58
i7-950
Cooler Master Elite 430 w/ 6 fans (currently 5 fans & a large desk fan blowing into the case)
XFX Radeon 4850
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#9
Digerati

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I still get nervous with anything over 60C, but at least those are under 70. Are you overclocking? If so, stop, until resolved.
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#10
Rik111

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I still get nervous with anything over 60C, but at least those are under 70. Are you overclocking? If so, stop, until resolved.


No. Processor is running at stock speeds. "My computer" says:

Intel® Core™ i7 CPU 950 @ 3.07GHz 3.07GHz
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#11
iammykyl

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Did you check that the CPU fan is on the correct way around?

Did you clean both the CPU face and the heat sink base?

What did you use for cleaning?

Edited by iammykyl, 08 April 2011 - 03:07 PM.

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#12
Rik111

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Did you check that the CPU fan is on the correct way around?

Did you clean both the CPU face and the heat sink base?

What did you use for cleaning?


It's the stock Intel fan. There's only one way it fits on, and I haven't screwed with it since I bought it.

Yes, I cleaned both with isopropyl alcohol until they shone.
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#13
Digerati

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Well, in reading around, that processor has some history for running very warm with some motherboards. I note some folks have gone so far as to lower the voltages on the CPU to lower the temps - and thus fan noise. I have the 2.8Ghz i7 860 on a Gigabyte board pushed a little to 3.15Ghz using Gigabyte's EasyTune utilities. CoreTemp's tray icon typically sits around 51 - 52 when I am using my machine. That said, I am not a gamer but typically have several things busy on two monitors so while I may tax my CPU's resources to it's limits, it is typically in very short bursts - easy for my OEM cooler to handle. I may touch 60C but that's typically a warning to me it's about time to clean the air filter of dog hair, dust and who knows what.

As far as TIM, as long as you have complete coverage across the die, there is no such thing as too thin of a layer. The best heat transfer occurs with direct metal to metal contact of the mating surfaces. The TIM just fills in (and pushes the air out) of the microscopic pits and valleys of those mating surfaces. Any extra is in the way and counterproductive. And as noted in that sticky, with some TIM, you can realize another 3 or degrees of coolness once the TIM has "cured" over several full heatup and cooldown cycles. So if you think you might have it too thick in some spot, you might try another layer of TIM one more time. And of course, make sure the fan assembly is properly fasten - necessary for even pressure.

That said, benchmarks don't typically, in spite of what their makers may say, reflect real-world computing. At best, they reflect the computing demands of what the makers think is the "typical" user. What's typical? There are 1 billion Windows machines out there and each and every one became unique the first time its new owner turned it on. Benchmarks were designed to measure benchmarks - the extreme limits of the design and configuration. If you are testing to see how long your CPU can run at full power before blowing up, use a benchmark program. For my machines, I don't care what Prime95 says. I care what CoreTemp says, and my own observations of performance. I like CoreTemp, BTW, and you can set it to display only the highest temperature of the CPU's cores.

If this were me, I would put the OEM fan back on, with a fresh new layer of TIM and see what happens.
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#14
Digerati

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Oops - sorry, I forgot you said you were using the OEM fan. I would check your air flow.
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#15
Rik111

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Oops - sorry, I forgot you said you were using the OEM fan. I would check your air flow.


I just ordered a Corsair H70. It should be here by Tuesday. I want to OC a bit, anyways. This issue just made me do it sooner than I wanted to.

Regardless, I'll post back what I get for new temps then. :]

Thanks for your help. (It wasn't the airflow, remember the desk fan?)
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