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Seeming CPU Overheating/Throttling

Last response: in CPUs
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August 10, 2012 8:17:15 PM

I'm posting this here for a friend who I am trying to long distance coach through some computer issues, so bear with me a little with the lack of good information.

The computer is a fairly new build, not even a year old. Here are the specs I know about:

Intel Core i5 2500
ASROCK p67 Pro3
8 GB DDR3 running at 665 MHZ (CPUZ info)
Radeon 4850
TX 750 PSU (I'm assuming a 750W psu)

And here is the problem. The computer jumps to 100% CPU usage very quickly, like when playing LoL or Minecraft and with most other applications (other than like Firefox) closed. Sometimes this will happen when the computer is more or less in a passive state. The other day it crashed entirely when the owner was at work and had left a Minecraft server running, with no one on it.

I'm pretty sure the issue is with the CPU. CPUZ tells me that the Core Voltage is running between .98 and 1.01, the FSB is running around 100 mhz. The multiplier, however, varies dramatically. When the CPU gets to 100% usage, the multiplier drops to around x8 and the core speed drops to 800 mhz, and won't go back up until the offending program (be it Minecraft, Windows Silverlight, etc.) is shut off.

I think the issue is overheating, but I'm really not sure. The fan and heatsink have been seated and reseated, and the fan is operational. He did say the thermal paste applied looked pretty patchy, and so he's been thinking about reapplying that, but I don't know if that will fix it. I'm really not super familiar with the Core i5 series, so any advice on what might be causing his issues would be appreciated.
a b à CPUs
August 10, 2012 8:42:27 PM

can you have your friend run a program called core temp? it will track the temps of the cpu to see if it is indeed over heating. also to test the cpu to see how hot it gets he could run a program called prime95 to p[ut 100% load on all of the cores
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a c 109 à CPUs
August 10, 2012 11:37:15 PM

Since you mentioned the owner of this rig reseated his heatsink multiple times, I'm thinking this is the issue. Have him reapply and you may see some better results...

Also is he using the stock Intel cooler? Or is he running an aftermarket cooler? One other concern of mine is dust build up. I understand you said this is a fairly new build, but it's still something to consider.
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August 11, 2012 1:13:14 AM

Dust isn't an issue. He IS using the stock cooler for the processor, but he doesn't have it overclocked or anything. He's ordered some thermal paste, so that is already in the works.
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a c 109 à CPUs
August 11, 2012 1:56:13 AM

gallen89 said:
Dust isn't an issue. He IS using the stock cooler for the processor, but he doesn't have it overclocked or anything. He's ordered some thermal paste, so that is already in the works.


Good to know, he may see better results after he's replaced the paste :) 
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August 11, 2012 3:55:33 AM

Alright, so I had him run core temp, at idle the cores are running at about 57 degrees C, and once they take on a load, they almost immediately jump to over 90 degrees C. So it seems it is definitely an overheating problem. His thermal paste should be in in the next day or so, and I'll see if that helps remedy the situation.
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a b à CPUs
August 11, 2012 8:11:37 AM

can you tell us what the vcore is when the cpu is under load? just want to rule out insanely high voltage...I know you said it goes between .98 and 1.01 during idle so that doesnt explain the high idle temps....to me its gotta be the thermal paste....even if he had poor airflow in the case his temps wouldn't be that high
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a c 188 à CPUs
August 11, 2012 8:55:41 AM

you may want to switch out the heat sink...the intel plastic legs are a pain in the butt to lock all the way down. you better off using a heat sink that has a back plate and screws.
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August 11, 2012 8:23:00 PM

drums101 said:
can you tell us what the vcore is when the cpu is under load? just want to rule out insanely high voltage...I know you said it goes between .98 and 1.01 during idle so that doesnt explain the high idle temps....to me its gotta be the thermal paste....even if he had poor airflow in the case his temps wouldn't be that high


As far as he can tell, it never goes above like 1.07, even under load, though everything starts to gum up real bad as soon as he gets under load.
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August 11, 2012 9:29:29 PM

Well, following the application of the thermal paste, the idle temperatures are down to between 48 and 50 C, but the load temperature still sits around 90 C. The only good news that I can tell is that the CPU isn't throttling itself quite so readily for him (the multiplier doesn't drop way down like it was before). I know that the paste needs to cure, but I would have assumed there would be a little more drop in the temperatures than that.

EDIT: Actually, only the idle temps have gone done. Under even what should be a small load (Netflix) the cores are running at 98C stable and Core Temp is flashing red for him.
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a c 188 à CPUs
August 11, 2012 9:57:17 PM

check the bios to make sure that the cpu running stock speed and voltage. i would go in and hit f5 factory default and save and exit. then give the pc a few min see if it cools down. i would also see if it one of those min dells/hp that there airflow around the pc and the case fans are working. if it a airflow issue try running the pc with the side off and see if the cpu cools off.
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August 12, 2012 4:19:14 AM

Yeah, the cpu in the bios is set to run at the stock speed (100 mhz) and within acceptable stock voltage (.98 being the very bottom acceptable voltage according to Intel). Airflow isn't a problem, as there is at least six inches of space free in front of every side of the computer. Resetting to stocks just keeps everything at the settings they were already at.

Edit: He did mention, and I think it could be relevant, that the speed with which the cpu overheats has gone down somewhat. Running Minecraft it now takes about 3 mins to overheat.
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a b à CPUs
August 12, 2012 4:43:12 AM

this is odd lol...we have pretty much covered every base you can...voltage is normal...speed is normal....fresh thermal paste is applied....airflow in the case wasnt covered but I doubt that poor airflow would really cause the cpu to be this hot...but to satisfy my curiosity how is the airflow in the case? can you describe the fan setup? Also I hope this was already done but make sure there isnt any dust in the system....the only other thing to think would be a faulty cpu cooler...if he can look at the link i posted earlier that cooler will work wonders.
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August 12, 2012 5:06:53 AM

Here is his case: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168.... The fans are in that exact setup.

Two of the fans (the side 80mms) haven't worked since a few weeks after he put the PC together, well before the computer began having overheating problems, but the other four fans work fine.

In terms of the fan, I just don't want him to keep throwing money at the problem if the problem is a faulty CPU. I'll let him know about it, but it just doesn't seem like the fan is really going to be able to keep the system running at an acceptable level if something as undemanding as Minecraft overheats and crashes the computer. I'm thinking about having him take up the issue with Intel, theoretically the processor is still covered under their 3 year warranty.
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a b à CPUs
August 12, 2012 6:11:35 AM

yea you could do that....in my opinion it would be worth the 30 bucks to see if the different cooler would help...there is a big possibility that the stock HSF is broken some how like the pin not holding it on tight enough (this is even more possible because he has taken the HSF off many times over) if he were to get the cooler now and find out that the cpu is "faulty" then once he gets a replacement cpu he can still use the new cooler with the new cpu....it will be cooler and quieter than stock and will give him the option to oc if he wanted to in the future.
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August 12, 2012 6:39:17 AM

He thinks that's a little pricey. I was doing a little digging around for cheaper coolers from Coolermaster. Do you think this might do the job? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

He really has no interest in OC'ing, he doesn't really need to as he mostly runs fairly undemanding programs at low resolutions.
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a b à CPUs
August 12, 2012 9:15:00 PM

the difference in $10 from the cooler I posted to the one he wants is WAY worth it....the Hyper 212 EVO is a much better cooler and will give you better results...temps and noise...now there is the EVO's older bro

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

its $20 with a rebate so its kind of in the middle between the two in terms of price bc you have to put the 30 down right away but it would be worth it....this cooler is only a few C warmer than the EVO if that
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August 12, 2012 10:48:54 PM

Alright, he went ahead and ordered the one with the $10 rebate. I'll update when he has received it and put it in. Thanks for the help.
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a b à CPUs
August 12, 2012 10:55:41 PM

for sure man...I really hope that was what the issue was....I have never really heard of a faulty cpu thats only symptoms is over heating like crazy....it has to be the cooler...but then again you never know. what you could also do is have your friend try and update the BIOS on his mobo...i doubt that would make a difference but its one more base to cover.
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August 12, 2012 11:09:37 PM

Yeah, I'm gonna try the fan first. He has never messed with a BIOS, and its not something I'm completely comfortable trying to talk him through over the phone.
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a b à CPUs
August 12, 2012 11:26:42 PM

fair enough its not the easiest concept to grasp maybe you could refer him to a how to online?
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