I've got an Intel E6600 on a Nvidia 680I, in a Thermaltake Swing case. Stock CPU heatsink, stock case exhaust fan, and stock EVGA MCP fan. Stock voltages, no overclocking. All hardware is completely brand new, and I'm on a fresh install of windows.
With the stock thermal pad I was getting temperatures of 50C on idle. I went out and bought some Zalman STG1, and applied a thin layer to the Heatsink only. Remounted the heatsink, still got readings of around 50C on idle. Removed heatsink, cleaned with isopropanol again, and applied a thin layer to the heatsink and CPU. Same story. I cleaned off both, and applied a thin layer to the CPU only, and am now getting temperatures of 55C idle on the windows desktop with nothing running and nothing installed. I'm using Coretemp and TAT (coretemp reported temps of 60C while installing TAT).
I know I don't have a front intake fan, but I ordered one, and it's on its way. Realisticly though, the lack of a front intake fan can't be the justification of a CPU that is running 15C too hot. Does anybody have any suggestions? How can I get this damn thing to run colder? The heatsink is fitted properly, and the thermal paste was applied in a very thin layer. (I even tried a thick layer with no luck).
I am damn out of ideas, so I'm really hoping you guys can help me out. Thanks in advance.
Take off the heatsink and see how the thermal paste has covered the heat spreader.
With a thin layer applied across the cores about 1/16 " wide and 3/4 to an inch long the thermal paste should almost cover the entire spreader if the heatsink is installed properly.
Make sure your not being held up by nearby Caps heat pipes or regulator sinks.
When you install the hsf push lightly on the top and gently move the hsf in a small circular motion.
It should slide with very little resistance.
If it has push lock pins like the Intel stock hsf you must push the pins two at a time diagonally across from each other firmly until you hear two distinct clicks.
Do the same with the other two.
Free_User, the Intel HSF is not easy to install, and not easy to see if its installed properly. I have a Celeron D, I've had my CPU run at 60C idle. Now it runs 47C idle.
1. Problem: I've found I screwed up the installation badly and during my attempts to put it back properly I broke one leg of the HSF off and it was sort of hanging. It was so bad that pressing on the HSF with not too much force would show an immediate 4-5C benefit.
Solution: I've got a new heatsink, and used every measure to ensure its installed properly. When installing the HSF, you install the two opposing legs first, then the last two to ensure stability.
-You also must check beneath the motherboard to ensure each hooks are mounted properly.
-Check the sides of the HSF legs to see the black part of the leg is properly hooked to the white portion. You'll know it when you see it, play around with just the HSF to see how the mechanism works
2. The case I had was a white, generic looking one. I've got a Antec case. I don't really know the model number, but it was a cheap one in stock, that brought the temps by another 6-7C. This one added one side fan.
My Noctua NF-S12 arrived today, and I installed it into the intake placeholder. I also set my CPU fan to run at 94% at all times. This manages to get the temp down to about 44C on idle! It would be nice to have an even lower temp WITHOUT overriding the fan RPM, and I think it should do so. I'm going to take apart the computer and check to see that the pins of the heatsink are pushed all the way through. Unfortunately my case doesn't have a pull-out motherboard tray, so I will post results in about an hour. Thanks for all your help!