i7-2600 with cooling issues?

First, a disclaimer -- I'm not necessarily looking to do any over-clocking -- but I figured this group would have the pro suggestions. I recently moved from a Q6600 on a P5K with 4GB and a Asus ATI 5770 running Windows XPsp2, to an i7-2600 on a P8P67 with 16GB and a eVGA GTX 460 SSC+ running Windows 7 Pro.

I'm apparently having some cooling problems.

First, I did the primary install with the stock Intel fan that came with the chip, using only the dab of thermal material included on/with the processor itself. Installed the OS, moved on -- was seeing a variety of 30-40c when idle with a little hotter specs in bios -- hovering around 60c in bios.

Then, I got back to work after reinstalling my apps like CS5 Photoshop/Premiere/After Effects. The GTX 460 and the i7 made Premiere Pro scream with HD like I'd never seen before -- but when I hit for a 5 min render, suddenly Asus AI Suite was screaming at me: my CPU had reached 85c.

Eventually after some testing with Prime 95, CPUID Monitor, and some side-apps like Real Temp, I came to find that on load after only a few minutes I was getting up into the 80s and 90s; one particular test one of the cores hit 96c. At this point, I called it quits.

Today, I figured I would go grab some AC5 and try to re-seat my old HS from my Q6600: an Arctic Cooling Freezer Pro 7 Rev 2 - ( ). Went ahead with the installation.

Idles are now about the same place: varying between 33-38c across the cores. Load testing with Prime 95 has dropped to hover pretty solidly around 70c. There is some variation between 69 and 73 and it will come and go.

I am pretty certain I have some case cooling issues. I have an older ATX mid-tower circa 2002 that has a 120mm feeder on the front, and then plastic cowling on the exterior that seems to kill all air flow into the system. On load, air coming out is warm, but not uncomfortably so. Upon some more cash, I plan on building up a new case with new fans. I have tested with the case open and not -- seeing a difference of about 5-7c.

So, hovering around 70c at load on that Arctic Cooling HS -- is that normal, or expected? 80c/90c+ on load with the Intel stock -- is that normal?

At what point do you start wondering -- hmm.. I wonder if the casing is off with this chip and I should RMA it?

Thanks much. Any suggestions welcome.
7 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about 2600 cooling issues
  1. Sounds odd, did you check BIOS just to triple check that the core voltage didn't some how get set too high?
  2. I haven't checked BIOS.. but from CPUz it looks like all is reporting correctly.

    Around 1648 MHz (x16 @ 103) and 0.952v at idle.
    Around 4017.6 MHz (x39 @ 104) and 1.216v at load after a couple minutes.

    I spoke too soon by the way. Ran Prime95 torture for about 25 minutes.. got up to hovering around 79c. Eventually screen went black and system rebooting. That indicates overheat, yes?

    I was under the impression that nowadays these chips will throttle before overheating to the point of a reboot.

    Thanks for your help. Any further thoughts?
  3. Best answer
    No, a reboot can simply indicate general instability. Mine does that after 5+ hours of Prime95 if I set it to less than 1.488v at 4.8GHz overclock. It works for regular games and programs, but not when really loaded. By the way ... I don't recommend that voltage, but I accept that I'll have to buy a new CPU if/when I fry this one.

    The Sandy Bridge CPU will auto-throttle itself at around 90ºC to prevent heat damage. I have tested my 2500K personally on that point. If your core temps were 80ºC or less, they were at the upper limit of comfort but not overheating.

    I think you just need to increase the CPU voltage a bit to get Prime95-stable at that overclock. The problem is, I wouldn't trust that cooler to handle the additional over-voltage. It's too small and light, and the fan is too small. It's already struggling with the current settings you're using. I'd at least want something larger with a 120mm fan, like a Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus.
  4. It seems like the stock cooler for this cpu is really bad. It doesn't fit tight, doesn't seem to be very effective at keeping temps down to a reasonable level and it's made me regret my decision to not include a cpu cooler in my new build (first time builder mistake).

    My cpu stays running in the high 80's C no matter what. Part of that is my fault because I took the cpu cooler off and put it back on w/o applying any thermal paste (at the time didn't know this was a no-no). But the reason I took it off in the first place is because my temps were so high in bios (60s) and because I noticed how loose the cooler fitted to the cpu and thought maybe I mounted it wrong. My PC is also really sluggish and I think it might be because of the over heating issues.
  5. Stock cooler for i7-2600 is junk. Get an aftermarket one... for example, Cooler Master Hyper 212+ or something even better, if you have the cash. My i7-2600 went from overheating all the way up to 90C to steady 55-60 on full load. (Idle @ 40-45C, but that's due to my ambient). So get better cooling solutions... case, side fans, CPU cooler, whatever you can, but CPU cooler is #1 target here.
  6. Thanks for the help, everyone. Eventually it was discovered that the combination of my cooler, my non-K 2600 and my Asus motherboard's "TPU" switch being set to on was causing the majority of the trouble. Either that TPU switch is a) junk; b) optimized for K-series; c) my cooling couldn't keep up with the over-voltage.

    I ended up turning the TPU switch off, and the system began operating with stability. This is all that I wanted.

    The chip now idles at around 1600 MHz at 34c and burns full throttle (depending on application) at 3400 to 3800 MHz at around 62c.
  7. Best answer selected by narnianoutlaw.
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