My i7-870 idles at about 37-40C, however, when I open a game such as Black Ops, the temperatures skyrocket. I can experience temps around 85C+. I'm relatively new to troubleshooting this kind of stuff, and I've done my fair share of researching, but haven't found anything terribly useful. My idle temp seems to be right around normal, but i'm unsure as to why it gets so hot. I have a Scythe SCSMZ-2000 heatsink, but I really didn't notice much difference except for a couple degrees when I swapped it with the stock intel heatink and reapplied thermal paste. Any suggestions would be great!
Should also mention I turned off Turboboost so i'm running at 2.9ghz and temps drop to upper 60s lower 70s, still high though
Max temp for your cpu is 72C you're going dangerously over that. http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=41315
I would go into my bios PC Health and adjust the temp for shut-down at tmax.
And yeah your cooler is too small for the cpu.
Any quality 120mm 4-pipe cooler would be ideal for your cpu.
The 212+ and Scythe Mugen 2 are excellent and priced affordably.