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High idle temps, chip in cpu

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December 5, 2009 12:16:42 AM

Hi everyone,
I recently purchased parts to build a computer (from Newegg and Microcenter). After completely installing all of the components into my machine, I booted up and attempted to install Windows XP. After about 3 minutes, the computer shut down. I rebooted, and tried again. It shut down again. So after that I went into the BIOS and found that my CPU temperature was over 70 degrees celsius. I figured it was probably a bad connection due to either the thermal paste or the heatsink/fan not being all the way on. I opened my case and removed the heatsink/fan (stock cooler for intel i7 920 CPU), and decided to apply some Arctic 5 silver thermal compound instead (I originally just put the cooler on with the regular thermal paste that comes pre-applied). I used some Q-tips and rubbing alcohol to remove the old thermal grease, and when doing so I noticed a small chip on the top of the processor. It was not there originally, so after removing the thermal compound from the heatsink I found there was a small chip that lined up with the one on the processor. I looked online and didn't find anyone who had the same problem, only people who had scratches on their processors, so I decided to just apply the arctic 5 compound and fasten the heatsink/fan back onto the CPU. I booted up the PC and checked the temperatures in the BIOS, and this time they maxed out at around 45 degrees celsius. I decided that was fine, and proceeded with my installation of Windows XP. After using the computer for about 2 hours (right after I played Garry's Mod to check my FPS), the CPU temperatures rose to 70 degrees celsius. I thought the temperatures had just risen due to the game, but after waiting about 10 minutes they remained around 70 degrees. I shut down my system for a few minutes and turned it back on, and the BIOS listed the CPU temperature as over 60 degrees. At that point I decided something was seriously wrong and I needed to do something, but after searching around I couldn't find any people facing similar problems. So I have a few questions concerning my processor.
Does the standard 3-year Intel warranty cover something like this (as in, the chip in the processor, as it was due to the heatsink)? Is it voided if I removed the old thermal paste and applied a new one?
Would the small chip in the CPU/heatsink be the reason I am getting such high temperatures? For comparisons sake, both my motherboard and GPU idle temps were listed between 30-40 degrees celsius.
My system specs are as follows:
ASRock Extreme X58 motherboard
Intel Core i7 920 processor
OCZ 700W modular power supply
4GB (2 x 2GB) G.Skill Ripjaw DDR3 1600 RAM
Maxtor 100GB SATA harddrive
Gigabyte Super Over clocked Nvidia GTX 260
Antec 300 case (with 4 fans (top, side, front, back))

By the way, I purchased the processor from Microcenter, so if anyone knows their return/warranty policy, could you tell me? I'm not sure if I can try to get another one if the box is already open.

Thanks in advance, and hopefully some of you can give me some insight as to how to solve this problem.
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December 5, 2009 2:13:25 AM

With a chip in the top of the CPU I highly doubt Intel will warranty anything for any reason. It's too easy for them to claim the CPU was mishandled or physically abused. That's odd though, I've never seen one chip before.

As far as temperatures goes, are you sure you got the AS5 spread properly? And is the CPU running at stock clock speeds? 60C at idle is fairly high, even for a stock CPU cooler.
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December 5, 2009 2:52:03 AM

The AS5 should have been spread properly. I spread a thin line horizontally (triangle indicator on the top left), as described on the Arctic Silver website.
I did not touch any overclock settings, but by default it overclocks a little (~150MHz) due to the built in performance boost feature. I don't think that would make the temperature so high, though.

I think I'll contact Intel about the issue and see if they can cover it. If not, would a small chip in the CPU actually cause the temperatures to rise that dramatically? And I don't see why it would idle at 45C right after I applied the thermal paste but then a few hours later it idles over 10C higher, unless I did apply it incorrectly. Anyway, if Intel doesn't cover it and the small chip is the issue, would anyone recommend that I smooth the chip to try to make the contact between the heatsink and CPU as close as possible? If so, does anyone have any suggestions on how to do so (or any links to put me on the right track)?
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December 17, 2009 9:13:14 PM

That's funny, my i7 920 also has those temperatures while idling, and mind you this is with an aftermarket cooler and AS5 (which I applied correctly). I will have to examine the cpu for a chipped spot on the top of it, as this may somehow be causing an issue. I doubt Intel/newegg/microcenter will replace the cpu's though if this is indeed the issue, as the chip will probably fall under the "warranty void if chip has physical damage" clause.
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June 22, 2010 4:05:58 AM

Did you end up getting it to work or able to exchange it?
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