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CPU Temp 15-20 Degrees Hotter than Core Temperature?

Last response: in Overclocking
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February 24, 2012 3:19:35 PM

Hey all! I've been tryin to keep my posts less long-winded, so here goes. Basically I have an AMD Phenom II X4 960T Zosma (shows as 'AMD Processor 6050e (Thuban)' in Core Temp, and 'AMD Phenom II X4 960T' in Open Hardware Monitor) that is currently overclocked to 3.8GHz (5th and 6th cores run stable, but I currently have them locked). I used to monitor my temps in SpeedFan, but it recently stopped showing the CPU temp (just shows as 0c). I had never really payed attention to the core temp before (don't laugh at my naivity). So I tried some alternate temp monitoring programs, and I found core temp. Dang it, gettin long-winded! Anyways, I looked in Open Hardware monitor. It showed both the Core temp and the CPU temp (the CPU temp matched up about with what SpeedFan showed previously). After doing some research it would seem its generally accepted that the temp difference between the CPU temp and the Core temp should be between 5-10 degrees. My research also showed that some overclockers tend to go off the CPU temp for safety, while others go off the core temp due to greater accuracy.

Well as far my temps go the CPU temp is generally 15-20 degrees hotter than the core temps. So I guess I have a couple questions as far that goes. First of all, should I be worried? Could it be to hardware, improper mounting of the heat sink, or perhaps even sensor failure or inaccuracy (I've heard the CPU temp sensor is notorious for inaccuracy)? Or is it normal? Also, I want to push my overclocking even further, perhaps even see how far I can go with the other two cores unlocked. So should I go off the CPU temps for that, or off the core temps? If I go off the CPU temps I don't have a whole lot of room left for overclocking, but if I go off the core temps I have plenty. I'm looking forward to your responses, and thank you in advance! I hope I wasn't too long winded :D 

Some Numbers

Idle
CPU:38
Core:23

Under Load (Prime95 for 10 min)
CPU: 58
Core: 38
February 25, 2012 7:46:52 PM

Got the same problem with a 9850BE, don't know what to believe.
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February 25, 2012 8:11:54 PM

I've never seen that anomaly on my 2500K, idle or o/c'ed. Had a 7-10C difference but never 15 or 20C difference.
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March 6, 2012 12:45:33 AM

Well after doing plenty of research on the matter I've resolved that it is the core temperatures I should be keeping my eye on. The CPU temperatures are simply from a motherboard temperature probe that is monitoring the temperature of the outside of the CPU casing. This particular temperature probe is notorious for not being properly calibrated and besides that, due to it's positioning, can vary drastically from the core temperatures depending mostly on the heat sink, thermal paste, and how they are applied/mounted. As long as the CPU temps (not core temps) are not getting to anything insane (as in hot enough to melt metal) you should be perfectly fine. Another thing to mention, and supports my deduction to go off the core temps, is that the TJ Max (the temperature at which your processor throttles down to help prevent damage) also goes off of the core temps.

Please use your own discretion in this matter, as for me I will be going off of the core temperatures. I do not hold responsibly for any damage that may result. Have a nice day :sol: 
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March 26, 2012 8:56:17 PM

Best answer selected by PIZZA Man.
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