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Centurion 534 -- Poor Cooling Performance... ?

Last response: in Components
February 17, 2008 12:18:57 PM

Hi everyone, I've had my setup for a few months now and never, ever had a problem with it.

Here's what's in it:
G.Skill DDR2 6400 (2x1GB)
8800gts 640mb
Seagate Barracuda 320gb (Perpendicular blah blah) SATA
Antec NeoHE psu

All wrapped up inside my Centurion 534 case.

My problem/question is about temps. My CPU is running at 55/51/51/55 on average (idle) and up around 60-65 on load when gaming and such.

I've been reading that 70 is dangerous... so I was wondering if there's anything I can do to improve airflow/cooling in my case? I thought of putting a 120mm scythe s-flex in the front mount position on the case, since there isn't one there currently (no fan at all)... and also thought of replacing the current fans with s-flex as well. Then though of maybe making a top-hole and putting a fan over that. The idea being that a few fans & case mod work can be less expensive than buying an Antec 900... which was going to be my next step. Other than that I thought of getting a third party cooler instead of the stock one... but there's so many options I really couldn't decide.... I was thinking the Arctic Freezer 7 because it's so inexpensive compared to zalman and thermalright and those others... but I don't want to sacrifice quality to save a few bucks...

Thanks in advance for any help or advice. I've got more questions about OC'ing but I figured I'd put those in the OC forum :D 
February 17, 2008 1:15:40 PM

Hi there,

First, I would definitely add another fan in front of my case. A two fans setup in a pull / push configuration is IMHO the bare minimum. Pull fresh air in front / push hot air in the back. Using high quality fan is always a plus but be warned, high velocity fan have a tendency of being noisy. An interesting option is when you can adjust the speed of the fan at a level you're comfortable with. This can be done by using a fan controller or simply purchasing fans that offer this possibility.

As for an heat sink, I would buy a high quality product. The Freezer is a good product but for a quad that you might eventually OC, I would go for a different product. Look around there is plenty of good HS. My own favourite is the Thermalright Ultima. It's compact and performs almost a well as the top HS without being huge. I am pretty sure that it will do the trick for you. In the end, if you do end up changing your case, the HS you purchase won't be lost. One last thing, if you go and buy a monster heat sink, make sure that your case is wide enough to accommodate it.
February 17, 2008 1:30:35 PM

The thermal specification is 71C. I believe that the Tcase max temp, or the sensor(between the cores) that is used by the bios for the health monitor, or like in Speed Fan where there's only 1 CPU temp, rather then the core(s).

So you shouldn't confuse that temp with the Tjunction temps on the cores themselves, which Core Temp reads. CoreTemp should show the Max Tjuction temp... 100C or 105C on the Q6600?

Correct me if I'm wrong. :oops: 
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February 17, 2008 1:56:16 PM

@FatCat - Thanks for your advices. I'll certainly look into adding a fan to my current case and see if that helps. Do you think adding a fan to the top would help as well? If so should it be exhaust or intake?

In relation to heat sink... I liked that the AF7 was very small and compact looking compared to some of the giant sized ones I've seen. I also liked the idea of not having to use a back plate to support it. Does the Thermalright Ultima use a back plate? You said it's compact... do you think it would fit in my case? I may just end up buying an Antec 900 anyway, and I know it'll fit there since your sig says it's what you use.

@Grimmy - Tjunction in core temp says 100c. Not sure really about a lot of this, I've read a ton of threads and the sticky ones and such, but I'm still trying to process and understand all this info... no coffee this morning is kind of like running a 4 core application on an old pentium 2... I think I may have to go get some.

At any rate guys, thanks for your help. I'm enjoying learning about cooling and this type of thing.
February 17, 2008 2:24:49 PM

Okay... well your core temps are reading 60-65C. So that is a Tjuction reading. Your Tjuction max is 100C.

The thermal spec is 71C, which is related to the Tcase sensor, or more of a IHS (Intergrated Heat Spreader) reading.

C2D have 3 sensors.

Tjuction sensor - 2 one on each core.
Tcase - 1 between the 2 cores.

The quad would have 5 sensors.

The Tjunction would be 1 sensor per core - 4.
The Tcase would be in the center I believe for - 1.

Your Tjuction temps will always be hotter then your Tcase temp... usually.
February 17, 2008 2:31:26 PM

Ok... so what's the best way to lower these temps? Do you think buying new/more fans for the case would provide sufficient drops in temps or should I Just buy a new case with better cooling (Antec 900 vs Thermaltake Armor)
February 17, 2008 2:40:15 PM

Just get the antec 900, its made for cooling and its cheaper then the armor.
February 17, 2008 2:43:22 PM

Well... to give you an idea or contrast.

To me... bigger is better (heat sink). (that is if it can fit in your PC case :lol: )

Now this may relate to older technology... but I still do run a P4 3ghz, and before that upgrade P4 2.66 ghz.

Now I used the stock HSF, then I brought the Zalman 7700, which is not like the 9500 or 9700.

Since the 7700 is just a big piece of copper compared to the aluminum stock HS on my P4 setup, the size of the copper could actually absorb 10C more heat.

P4 3.ghz

Idle 44C <- both stock and zalman 7700 room temp 78-80F

Load - 65-68C

Zalman 7700
Load - 55-58C

Having fans to help get hot air out of your PC case is also the best way to improve cooling. Not its not how many that you need, but what can give you the best airflow. Simply having too many fans can actually cause the airflow to be interrupted that will cause trapped pockets of hot air, which ends up being a heat loop.
February 17, 2008 2:48:01 PM

Hmm that's good to know... sounds like I'd be better off getting a new case for what I'm trying to do with this system, but that maybe if I add a front intake fan to the Centurion it should be fine for a lower end system (Thinking of making a budget PC for my brother)