CPU overheating due to GPU

Hello once again Tom's Hardware, I come seeking advice. So I and several of my buddies are extremely Starcraft obsessed and quite good at it actually, been playing BW since it released. In any case... I have a "guest computer" which is an old HP which I've taken the liberty of "mildly souping-up" with spare parts since I devote most of my time to my flagship Cosmos S ^^.

This HP has an AMD Athlon 6400 x2 processor, 2 gigs DDR2, and a new refurbished mobo (I fried the other one last summer ><). But it also has a 480w PSU and an ATI HD 4850. The 4850... as most know... runs incredibly hot, even compared to some of the newer Nvidia cards. You might as well light a fire in your computer tower every time you're running a game... However its performance/$ is unparalleled and I can easily run sc2 at very high settings (not 1080p or all the way "ultra" but good enough). One of my good friends and Starcraft partners is forced to use this computer since he does not have one with sufficient enough parts to play--which is fine with me. However lately, whenever we would play beta... We always would run the risk of having it randomly shut down-no post, no BSoD... Nothing.

I at first attributed this to the gpu overheating... but was wrong. Then I thought "it's definitely the psu" but when switching out the shitty HP one with a newer Rosewill, the same thing happened. I was wringing my mind, the cpu fan was working, the gpu was working... EVERYTHING WAS FINE. That is until a good friend of mine brought up "it sounds like the cpu is overheating" I checked the temps and it was fine... however--when going into game (sc2 campaign editor testing a map proved it tonight) what ends up happening is that the GPU gets so hot that it ends up heating up the CPU to thermal threshold INSANELY fast. I believe this is because the refurbished mobo I have is not equipped to handle such a hot card and transfers too much heat. So even when the processor % is low, if the GPU is stressing, I might as well be slow-roasting the CPU.

Now here's my dilemma--In order to fix this do I:

1.) Get a new mobo and rely on its heatsinks to help disperse the heat better
2.) Get a new less powerful but cooler running GPU
3.) Get a new cpu heatsink?

I am really not sure which would be the best way to go about fixing this problem.

Any advice is greatly appreciated, sorry for the wall of text guys its just been rattling my brain for the entire beta and I want to get it up to snuff' before release!!!!

Thank you!

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  1. Har Har CT. I (almsot) doubt that the CPU will heat up coffee faster then a microwave. Unless your still using one of those older .7cuft/700W microwaves.

    I'm assuming you moved the old CPU onto the new mobo? Did you install the heatsink correctly? Are you REALLY sure? Remove all the old paste and apply new good paste? If you did, a new cooler is a good idea, but I have the feeling that if it worked before, it should continue to work that way still.
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