My i7 920 and extreme heat

I have a completely factory i7 with no overclock on it. I run a single EVGA GTX285 also with no overclock, 6gigs of corsair DDR3-1600 RAM. The i7 is liquid-cooled by an Asetek liquid cooling system. There is a picture of the inside of my computer

now, to the problem.

This. Thing. Runs. So. Ungodly. Hot. I'm. Afraid. It. Might. Start. Me. On. Fire.

Seriously. now you know why.

I have been told that perhaps whilst being assembled, the folks who did it for me forgot to use thermal compound on the liquid cooler. Perhaps. That doesn't explain why the GTX285 burns at 100C, as that isn't daisy-chained into the liquid cooler loop. Ventilation seems good. In the picture of my internals you cannot see the side panel, but it has an intake fan of equal size to the one in the picture.

This honestly worries me on a number of levels. I paid good money for this, and have not found anyone with problems like these, though admittedly, I haven't been looking too hard. I want this investment to last instead of waking up one morning to the smell of melted plastic just before feasting my gaze on a pile of smoldering ruin where my tower, monitor, and desk once was. Secondly, I don't really need my house burning to the ground from this heat. It is old, and likely more flammable than any number of houses made in past 70 years. Really, I just wish it ran at a safe temperature and ran things at proper framerates, of which this machine fails miserably at either.

I have posted this information on a number of different sites. I'm always looking for some new insight. I never temped this machine out until last week, so I can only presume it has been running at these temperatures since March when I recieved it. I'm going to take the liquid cooler off sometime in the next few days and take a look, but I know those cores aren't getting so hot that they make my GPU get just shy of a complete thermal meltdown.

Help. Please.
34 answers Last reply
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  1. Who did you get it from? Also, what kind of intake fans does it have on the front? What are your ambient temperatures (room temp)? The i7 cooler looks a little cheap, and you're right, they may have forgot the thermal paste. If it's a self-contained cooler, you could probably remove the base and re-apply it yourself.

    Having a hot i7 and video card brings up red flags for me in the way of airflow in the case and ambient temperature.
  2. ID think your problem with the cpu might bee that your pump isnt working (all in one water coolers are notorious to be bad ) or it might have air in the line, get an aftermarket cooler for the gpu. and a better water cooler
  3. looking at the NZXT PSU worries me..... that POS is a great indicator of corner cutting...

    The HSF is also very curious, as the rad is part of the case fan, only the cheapest gimmick water setups have it like this, and most usually have a fan on the rad and another for the case at least, while the best "cheap" ones house the rad in some 2 height cd bays (takes up 2 slot) with fan, and an intake fan in the front (its all one unit) with a exhaust fan at the back.

    Take a giant house fan and blow into it when it is running and see what improves.

    If things does, they cut corners too far and used premium quality item only on things a regular joe would care and not on the important parts.

    I would try to reseat the HSF with some Arctic Silver 5 and see how that works.

    Do you have a front intake fan at the bottom of the front? Cant see it in the pic, and if you don't then that could be a reason why the GFX is running that hot.

    IF these don't work, get a Core contact freezer for your cpu, or a Thermal right 120 extreme and mount that on the CPU (hard to do, since both needs mobo removal to mount, they need the back plate) and if you are doing that may as well invest in a quality case like the HAF 932 or 922, or the CM storm, or the antec 900.

    Also, the PSU looks really really really bad on an i7 system of this calibre. Get a corsair 850 w or even better the Hx1000w psu, or a PC and power Cooling 1000w for the power.
  4. CPU is clearly too hot. Grab some thermal paste and take that block off and have a look. If there is no paste there, you found the problem. If there is, there might be a problem with the pump/radiator.

    GPUs run hot. I wouldn't venture to say there is a serious problem until you check out the load temperatures. Run something like 3dmark Vantage and see how hot it gets.
  5. Quote:
    The i7 is liquid-cooled by an Asetek liquid cooling system

    That is your problem.

    Waiting for Conumdrum/rubix to chime in..... :lol:

    In the meanwhile:
    If you really want to WC you will need ~$200-250.
    And read up on REAL wcing:
    Conumdrum said:
    I'll just snip the whole thing, I just redid parts of it.

    Us guys have done the WC thing, there are basics you gotta know. Take a look, don't take it as a diss on you or a rebuttal, look at as a friend saying "Dude, you gotta know what to say and how to communicate".
    CPU HS $65
    GPU HS and air HS for vram and mosfets $95, full cover block, $100-$200
    Radiator $60 min, up to $130
    Pump $50 +
    Resiviour $25
    Hose, some barbs and clamps etc (min $25, more like $35)
    Fans $15-30

    I went top notch and spent close to $600 to cool my CPU and GPU.
    First you gotta learn about WC. It's not like walking into Best Buy.
    Spend a while (weeks is best for your sanity) at these links.
    Look at the hundreds of loops close to your case and components in the stickies, read a couple 50 or so threads over the next week or so, you'll be on the ball to make the right choices and by then know how to put it together.
    Not 'Roket Sience', but basic knowledge is required.
    And you should spend a few hours on the listed sites reading threads. It's how we learn. Once the goodies show up on your doorstep your on your own.
    For your benefit please spend a few days reading a LOT. At the busiest places for WC masters. Guys who have done it for YEARS at OC Forums and xtreme forums. It took me a while (I was OCing on air, aftermarket stuff, bios settings, best chipsets etc etc) to learn the language and the tricks to a easy install.

    Don't expect miracles or SUPER DOOPER over clocks. What you will get is a quiet system that can handle OC to the max of your hardware IF you buy quality and buy smart. And minor maintenance too, a bonus for the water cooler.

    Also while there please read on case mods etc. The radiators are not for small cases, pumps and hose routing, wire management and other things are important. Google your planned case and the word water-cooled in one line. You might get lucky.
    Edit: The next paragraph was from 2008. With the advent of the HOT i7 and bigger GPU's, it has changed. A 220 size MIN rad for an i7, you want big overclocks, better go 320 sized rad.

    IF you just cool your CPU and your NB if you want, you can get by with a 120.2 sized radiator (RAD). And MAYBE fit in inside depending on your mod skillz. You want to cool your GPU too, you'll need a 120.3 sized rad, and it probably won't fit inside. The rear external rad really works great. No matter what your adding 10lbs to your PC.

    Once you got an idea of what is good/bad then start getting your system for WC put together and we'll be glad to help.
    Here is the poop on solid info on air/water temps. The link is to an MCR320.
    Scroll half way down and you can see the in/out air diff on the chart. It depends, like I said on fannage what the out air temp vs. the in temp is.

    You can also see the water in/out is very close in temps. No more than 1.5 C. Amazing eh? I thought so too once I deciphered the charts.

    So if you put a second rad with good airflow, you still get good results. Fannage needs to be higher to compensate for the increased air restriction. Meaning double fans on the rad setup, but it's a viable solution.

    Equilibrium (tough word) means with a set heat load (idle/load) after an amount of time temps in a WC loop will stabilize. The heat load is the same, ambient air is the same, fannage is the same, pumps are the same, size of rads are the same, temps will stabilize for those conditions. Any of these parameters change, it has to stabilize. …………………………………………………………
    Cleaning a loop, not a new loop: I do this once a year, I drain and refill at 6 months, the next time I do this……..
    Wash hands very well, getting rid of hand oils.
    For pumps and blocks, fittings, clamps, acrylic res/block parts.... not hose, tear it to smallest pieces, put in a bowl, heat water up not to boiling add 10% vinegar, when hot, pour over parts. Rinse in 10 min or so. Put aside.
    The bocks will probably have some black oxidation. Take the copper parts out of the pile of parts you took out of the water. Dry well and pour ketchup on them, and set aside. Only the copper parts need this.
    Rad cleaning: fill with very almost boiling hot water. Let sit 10 minutes, drain half out and shake for 5 min. Repeat till liquid is clean.
    All the pump, block, fittings, and clamps, inspect, get in the tiniest corners with a tooth brush. Kind of meditative, time consuming, you learn a lot about o-ring size, how it all feels. Run a rag using a caat hanger and dish soap through the tubing, rinse well.
    Rinse all the parts and hose with distilled, dry then really dry with an air compressor (nice extra step to get rid of water spots). Don’t need to dry the inside of the hose.
    Now on to the copper parts, they should have been soaking an hour or two. A toothbrush and ketchup should clean much of the oxidation. It probably won’t be like new, but pretty darn good. Rinse, dry, and blow the parts.
    That’s it.
    Benching software and such is very varied. I use these for each purpose:
    These are pretty standard and used by many.
    Monitoring the PC temps overall: HWmonitor aka hardware monitor
    CPUZ for CPU info
    GPUZ for GPU info
    CPU only: RealTemp
    GPU only: ATI Tool, I have a Nivida GTX280, so it works on Nvidia

    Loading/benching tools:
    CPU loaders: Prime95 and OCCT
    GPU Loaders: ATI Tool and the best one is Furmark, nothing pushes the GPU harder right now.
    Benching for overall graphics/gaming performance is 3DMark06
    Guides Pretty up to date info and buying guide Another good guide What to do once all the stuff is in the door

    Forums Not a noob site, but great stickies My fav, good peeps, know their stuff, less hardcore [...] opic=20277 A GREAT Europe site Decent site

    Tests on equipment, not reviews, truly scientific tests [...] n&ie=UTF-8 Info on rad testing More rad testing Host for Martins lab and some newer tests Test results, very technical

    Stores [...] e&Itemid=1

    Most of us WCers are no fan of pre built WC systems like H50(one of the better pre built ones)/and that Asetek,etc. We believe in REAL WCing (or even cheap moded ones with good block) see:
    Total under $200. You can swap out rad to make installation easier instead of the heater core.

    Let see....
    A good WCloop for an i7 needs a 2x120 rads MIN. The Asetek doesn't have a rad that cooling an i7 is pretty hard for that cooler...that explains your CPU temps.
  6. the system was built by IBUYPOWER

    The room i'm in is usually between 21 and 26C, middle of summer temperatures.
    There is no fan at the front of the case, that could be part of the issue.
    When my GTX285 fan is set to run at 100%, I get temperatures on it between 60 and 70, which seems much closer to the realm of acceptable temperatures.

    I ran another 3Dmark Vantage on it, paying close attention to Precision temperature readouts:
    During Jane Nash, GPU went from idle to 80C
    During New Calico, GPU went up to 86C
    Crash and Burn CPU Physics ran at a dismal 4.5 FPS, and after it finished, i checked my temps, the cores were at 88C, 88C, 86C, and 86C just from running the less than 6 minutes of 3Dmark

    also, compared to the 129 other similar systems, mine looks to be just about the worst.

    Taking the side of the case off didn't seem to have any effect on internal temperatures for either piece. A few days ago when it became terrible hot out and I put my Air Conditioning on, temperatures dropped down 2 or 3 degrees tops, nothing too major. I'll try blowing a fan in it today with the case off, though i'm not too hopeful.

    The intake fan on the side panel blows pretty much dead on to the videocard, so the cool air would be hitting that first, and even so, the temps get really hot without topping out my fan speeds.
  7. lol Ibuypower is like Ibuypwned, they cut so much corner its not even funny....

    their important component like the mobo and cpu and what nots are usually pretty good, but the other stuff that you usually dont check at purchase time are ***.
  8. well thanks, now I know. The criticism doesn't make my machine run any cooler; although it does make me run hotter.
  9. ^The best option is to swap out cooler to a Core Contact,S1283,etc. Also check if thermal past was applied correctly. At any rate your are very limited by that CPU cooler like I said above, that rad is WAY too small to cool an i7.

    As far as GPU temp goes, 70-80C under load are good.
  10. i'm not even sure if the liquid cooler is working at all, with the side off, i can barely touch the cooling unit or the hoses, they are so hot. Looked up core contact freezer and s1283, seems like that would be a good way to go. You've seen the inside of my tower, will either of those fit?
  11. I'm on my old computer. Just took the liquid cooler off to check thermal paste. It isnt evenly distributed, is really tacky like puddy. Not sure if that is normal about how it feels, but it definately isn't on there evenly, will upload pictures once i toss it back and boot the i7 up.
  12. That cooling system sucks badddddd. Ibuypower is pretty much a rip off if you ask me. Did you check your pump working or not? Remount the cooler? Blow fan into it .

    Might as well get a Core contact freezer, then complain at ibuypower about their sh*t pc.

    ur temps should be under 40 easily with ccf no overclock
    what case u using?
  13. That, is not something we can determine from one picture, since will it fit usually is a question of height of the stuff on mobo and what nots, along with the dimensions.

    Is there a model with your case, and the specific mobo?

    Also, try the house fan and then come back with the results, since I'm willing to bet the no intake fan deal is a big mistake, and that even if there is a side fan feeding fresh air, there is not exactly a path for it to go out easily...

    usually air flows from the front to the back, now atm, it seems maybe the PSU is pulling air, and then the side fan is pulling air, then the cpu exhaust is pushing air out and the GFX is pushing air out. This isn't ideal.

    And well, about that, just letting you know lol, the people here usually build our own machines, and when something like Ibuypower that comes and say its the greatest machine there is and people buy them thinking its like an alienware or something...

    EDIT: wow lol too long to type this, about the puddy, they seems to have used a ceramic? And DO NOT BOOT if you have not applied a fresh coat of TIM on the block!! Grab some AS5 and then do it.
  14. have a single 120mm rad trying to cool an i7 CPU? Seriously, if you watercool i7's, you need at LEAST a 2x120 or a 3x120 radiator just for that CPU. There is a chance the cooler isn't working at all, but if the radiator is also warm/hot, then I would say its at least moving coolant. Regardless...its not nearly enough to cool that least any better than a decent air cooler.

    Someone suggested you pull the case side off and blow a fan inside...if things get cooler, you have a serious airflow problem. This is an excellent start to your troubleshooting. The GTX285 puts out some serious heat as well, so the fan idea should help there as well. How many fans do you have on that case? What case is it? What kind of case?
  15. shot of where the LC was mounted. faceplate of the LC.

    consistency of the thermal paste was like tacking putty. when i removed the bracket holding it onto the CPU, it was stuck there. I'm not some kind of computer building whiz, but that doesn't seem right to me.

    I got the dimensions of the core contact freezer, the width and length should fit fine, the height is the only thing im worried about, as it is 155mm tall. With my side panel off and in there with a ruler it looks like it will JUUUUUUUST fit.

    I have the fan up against it now and the temperature is going down, thought I also just had to turn my AC on, it is miserable hot and humid out today, so that could just be a byproduct of all the air in the room being much cooler.

    The case is an NZXT Alpha. 800w PSU.
  16. That cooler wouldnt work even if it was working. With that tiny rad the fan dont even get a chance to cool it before it shoots it through the block again.

    Id send the whoe piece of *** back and build your own with help from here.

    The stock air cooler would coool better then that.

    Im looking at getting a cooler master v10 for mine. Got mine running 3.4 on stock with 40c idle 70 load now.
  17. The back plate brackets are held on by real good sticky stuff, it is very common to be darn near impossible to remove.
  18. So I have my boxfan pressed right up against the side of my open tower set on high. Just ran a prime95 test, and during heat up phase, the cores barely reached 70C just as the phase was completing. which is about 20C better than what it did previously.

    So as a suggestion, you would all go with a core contact freezer and another intake fan at the front of the computer?
  19. Any air cooler will beat what you got.

    Look up some reviews and buy one that you like.
  20. Quote:
    So as a suggestion, you would all go with a core contact freezer and another intake fan at the front of the computer?

    Yup. That's what I would do.
  21. a few things.

    With the box fan on my computer, my idle temps dropped down to 39, 41, 42, 40.
    Under standard load of playing WoW, they got up around 50, sometimes higher, sometimes lower, but right around there.
    GPU got up to 76, then i turned the fan speed on the card up to 100%, temp dropped to low 60s.

    Hmmmm, now if only I could find a 490mm case fan... I kid... or do I? there is the only spot with a vent at the front of my computer, it isn't high enough to fit a 120 in there, nor is there the clearance to slide it in even if I wanted to. between the bay that my hard drive is docked in and the case-clip U U U U Us, there is only about 2/3rds of an inch of clearance when looked at straight on.

    Any ideas?
  22. Get one of these CPU HSF Coolers' if you want to cool by Air.
    XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler - Retail $44.98 Free Shipping*

    Scythe MUGEN-2 $36.99

    CoGage True Spirit Heatpipe CPU Cooler with 120mm PWM Silent Fan for Intel LGA1366 $37.95

    Thermalright CoGage True Spirit 4-Heatpipe Core i7 CPU Cooler $39.95

    One of the latest Reviews on 1366 CPU HSF Coolers'.

    Thermal Compound and Thermal Cleaner.
    Noctua NT-H1 Thermal Compound - Retail $9.99

    Tuniq TR-1 High Performance Thermal Material Remover $6.99 ($1.99 after $5.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*

    Hope this helps some.
  23. Hiyas, good discussion! Got a few questions and then some ideas.

    You have a PC case with No front fan, a rad sucking hot air out on the back and a PSU fan? And a HOT GPU. Correct?
    Really important question!!!!!!! Is the Rad fan blowing into the case or out of the case?
    Is the rad cool when the PC is powered up after being off for a few hours? When you turn it on check the CPU/PUMP side temps. Check the rad. Does the side of it get warm or does it stay cool? With a i7 That rad should get WARM, and you will feel it. Not hot but warm for sure. If it's warm, your pump is working.

    If the rad is using case air to cool the rad, and you have no other fans besides the rear fan I see your FIRST problem. Your case air is wayyy to hot because of the GTX285. If the rad fan is blowing cooler outside air through the rad, your case airflow is so terrible the air can't flow fast enough through the rad.

    On to suggestions.
    Send the whole thing back. The case is substandard for the CPU and GPU you have. The WC setup for the CPU is crap.

    Or: Buy a new case with great aircooling, ditch the cute wannabe watercooling thingy, buy a high end air CPU cooler.

    Or: Buy a new case and spend over $400 min for a CPU/GPU watercooling setup.

    It's bad, real bad. Send it back get a refund, and probably worth it to pay shipping and a 10% return fee and start over.
  24. it is well outside the timeframe in which I could return it, which was 30 days. For the first while I had the computer, I wasn't gaming on it, so I never noticed it not running how I thought it should be.

    Can you RMA the entire computer because it all runs too hot? That seems like a bit of a stretch.
  25. ^Easiest/best thing you could do is swap out that cooler to a Core Contact (note: you will need to get the i7 brackets separately) and be happy.
  26. ok, so help me out with this. I have my AC set to max cool, a box fan set to high blowing cold air all over the internals of my tower. My temperatures are completely within an acceptable realm (39 across the cores at idle, high 50s at load; gpu at 42 on idle, 65 at load) but my framerates while playing WoW or Crysis are still very poor compared to what people with similar systems are reporting.

    Even with no overclock, it seems to me that V.High on crysis should run more than 10fps on this system. WoW runs great in some places and ass awful in others. I -do not care- about framerates in dalaran, but it would be nice if while i was out in the middle of nowhere doing dailies i could get better than 20fps. Any ideas with that?
  27. Nope, don't play that game. You could ask in the gamers forum or the GPU forum.
  28. Quote:
    WoW runs great in some places and ass awful in others.

    Your internet connection makes quite a bit of difference. Are you sure your ISP isn't the one lagging?
    Like said, post new thread over at GPU section.
  29. I know it isnt my internet, since I could get ported from a 20fps place and immediately be in a place that gives 100fps over the course of a matter of a few seconds.
  30. errrr are you in dal? that place is known as lagcity, my I7 is at 4 Ghz, my internet connection is a 10 Mbit one and it still lags like a bitch in heat in dal during rush hours (~25 fps... i get ~140 fps in Sunken temple idle), I'm on Bladefist us so maybe the sever pop has to do with it..........
    Try to log during off peak hours.

    Also, if you have some power tools, or patience, you can take some (2x of these old brackets for me) old 5.25 bay covers, buy a 120mm fan, and cut into the bay covers to make some insta fan holder and mount the fan, and get some grill for the fan before it cuts something off.
  31. Hmm, I believe you have this one:

    According to Frosty, it should work as well as a decent air HSF.

    However, as others have stated, you need more fan size with watercooling. A 90-120mm fan just won't cut it.

    What I would check first is to see if there's a fan control. Maybe (like mine) it's not set to max out of the box.

    Hmm, also according to frosty, when yours is set to low, you'll see +32.5 over ambient, while on high it will be +16.5, which appears to match your idle temps.

    edit: I read the review, and it appears it should be working much better than you experienced.
  32. issue is how they test the rig, normally, you or me with that setup would mount the reservoir somewhere cool, but if you take a look at the pix, you can see that ibuypower mounted it where the rare fan is and is using the cpu fan as the rear fan as the system fan....

    that is a BIG no go, this may improve if he gets a asys fan, mount the reservoir somewhere cool (maybe outside, like where the HAF 932 cases has a holder for the res...) and get a system fan for the case then it would work like what frostytech has done

    frosty's methodology is great for most hsf, but not when the tested condition is too far away from their setup, which is not in a case w airflow taken into consideration (see how they set it up, its more like the best case scenario, and that is not how they mounted this for his i7).
  33. that water cooler looks like the same one I bought at best buy for my i7 920. there was some thermal stuff on it out of the box so they couldn't have screwed it up. those pipes should be warm, but not scorching hot. mine cools mine just fine. even when i oc'd it to 4.5ghz that radiator with one fan didn't let my cpu get over say 60 (referencing all the cores) though I have 3 intake fans on the front, the fan for the radiator is an intake too, as well as a 200mm fan on top. ensure the fan for the radiator is drawing air INTO the case past the radiator that way its the coolest air available. if its blowing air out the case through the radiator then the radiator is getting the hot air. also, verify that the wires from the water reservoir on the processor is actually plugged in (i made that mistake the first time i turned mine on, didn't damage anything but i could tell w/ the temps). or plug it into another spot on the mb to test it. my whole cpu (not a particular core) is operating at around 31C right now (no oc atm). check it out or call the people who put it together and make them figure it out.
  34. I have a i7 920 OC'd to 4 Ghz With prime running for 3 mins...

    I have a similar cooler
    Corsair H50

    I have my fan blowing into the case and THROUGH the radiator. Not pulling air through. that's the only difference I see setup-wise.

    I have 2 120mm fans in front of the case. Both blowing OUT. Before I had 1 blowing in over the HDDs.
    With the case cover on I saw a dramatic increase in ambient temps inside of the case. Because the CPU heat was being blown into the case.

    And for those people out there that say this cooler is horrible.. I have had 3 other premium air coolers that couldn't keep this CPU under 100c when running prime95. Not even close. Now with this cooler I can run it and more. An that's with the stock hsc that came on the cooler.

    Now I had to reverse all of the airflow through my case because of this... But it's worth it in the end..
    (meaning in through the back, and out the front.)

    no I'm not defending ibuypower crap. But that cooler works fine IMO. I am extremely happy with mine.

    Edit: Also my 5870 idles around 58c and while under load, highest temps I've seen on it was 71c
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