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Intel i3 running at 60C -- too hot?

Last response: in CPUs
a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 1:07:18 AM

I just finishing building a new computer (my first time in years), and I'm worried that my CPU is running too hot. I've had it sitting in the BIOS screen now for about 30 minutes, and the CPU is currently running at 60 degrees celsius (140 farenheit).

One thing to note is that this computer is a micro-itx form factor... meaning that the case is about the size of a shoebox. The tower sits vertically (with rubber spacers on the bottom of the case) with an 80mm intake fan on the bottom, and an 80mm outtake fan on the top. There's no room for an exhaust fan on the back of the case.

Do you belive that my CPU is running too hot, given this setup? I used Arctic Silver 5 between th CPU and heatsink, but I'm worried that I may not have applied it as carefully as I thought. My real concern is, given that I haven't even installed Windows 7 yet (or a DVD drive for that matter), I'm afraid that once I do, the temperature will raise even higher.


More about : intel running 60c hot

a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 1:12:53 AM

That's way too hot for idle. Those are around what temps should be around at full load. Make sure that you applied thermal paste properly, that the heatsink is seated properly, and that your fans maximize airflow within the case.
a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 8:37:11 AM

Does the case have any side vents?
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a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 9:41:11 AM

@damasvara: No. The case only has vents on the top and bottom; no sides, front intakes or back exhausts. And the temp of the CPU was the same whether or not I had the two system fans connected.

@Dipankar2007i: As mentioned in my original post, I have yet to install Windows. Could you clarify your first point? The Intel temp does not typically read correctly in the BIOS?

(Thanks everyone)
a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 1:11:41 PM

(1) It bios is reporting that themp, then the Core temps dor core 0 & 1 will be hotter. Can not verify untill you load windows as you need a program (MB utilities to look at.

(2) My guess it is a combination of poor are flow and the fit/thermo compond of the HSF. Intels stock fan although adiquate in most cases is very POOR, couple that with poor / cramped case and well. I would try taking the HSF off, clean thermo compound and reapply using a very small amount smear it good with (I use a latex glove). When reattaching the HSF pay attention to the Push pins and that none of them are damaged. Myself I do NOT even bother with the stock HSF. I prefer one with a backing plate - But with your setup not sure you could fit a backing plate.

(3) Another possiblity is that for some reason the Bios is not providing the correct Vcore voltage (Should be less than 1.2V, probably arround 1.1 V).

Dispankar2007ind - could be wrong, but I thought that CPU speed was dependent on CPU loading and controlled by the CPU (Changing multiplier) same as throttling back when excessive temps are reached. You may be correct in that it is not fully enabled until operating system is active.
a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 3:28:22 PM

^ Thanks good read, cleared up a couple of points.

Not OP's problem as even though the cpu is at max multiplier (Nominal CPU speed) the CPU utilization will be very low. Most all Systems I've set up the reported Bios temp is generally equal to idle temp and most cases slightly lower than idle temp under operating system. However I've never left system just sit in Bios mode, Normally only long enough to set parameters.

Op has a definate Heat problem that needs to be addressed.
a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 3:34:31 PM

First thing I would do is to make sure the heat sink is on properly. Make absolutely sure the pins are all the way through the mobo, and that they are locked in (twist the top).

I would then simply continue to install the OS, download Real Temp and HWMonitor, and check things out from there.

Also, since you're monitoring the CPU temps from the BIOS, make sure you set the fan to speed up with the temps.

You can try taking the side panel off and just see if the temps are better, as that would indicate the problem is definitely case air flow. Better fans (faster/hicher cfm flow) would help.
a b à CPUs
October 1, 2010 4:05:32 PM

The posts from RetiredChief and Wolfram remind me of a just solved thread about overheating and a currently active thread about shutdown problems.

The solved thread found out that his CPU fan is defective. Replacing it clears the issue. I suggest you check the CPU fan and the heat sink seat. Re-seat the heat sink if necessary (and I think you should try it right away) after you apply adequate thermal paste. And try that suggestion from Wolfram about taking the side panel off, since your answer to my previous question is no. Removing the side panel will give the components inside a lot more air flow.

Thank god my Athlon II is only running at 31º min and 45º max. I'd be running in circles if I were in your shoes. Good luck!