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Is this CPU too hot?

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June 16, 2004 10:22:43 PM

Ok, I bought the stuff to put together a 2nd PC. My old one is just fine, but beginning to show a little age.

I bought a P4 3.0E processor with the 1mb l2 cache. This is my first Intel chip in over 10 years of building my own machines.

When I got everything together and fired it off, I went straight to the bios and changed all of the settings to where I needed them. No OCing involved, just disabling unused mobo components, setting my display to AGP, etc.

As is my normal habit, I checked the CPU temp in the bios. It was 64 degrees Celcius. That seemed a bit warm. So I remounted the heatsink, after cleaning it and the CPU and reapplying my arctic silver. 62 degrees celcius. The CPU fan was supposed to be rated for this (Cooler Master Aero 4 Lite). After reading that the fan was considered loud, and since mine was very quiet, I made sure the speed control was set properly, etc. and wound up RMAing the fan.

I bought a Spire SP420B8-2. This thing has a very decent sized all copper heat sink with a ton of fins and a decent looking fan on it. It's also rated for the job and looks like it should have no prob in most cooling situations.

Guess what? Same temps.

I RMA'd the CPU. I paid an Intel sized price for the thing, and did not want to be stuck with a dead CPU in a week.

Got the replacement in today. It is definitely not the same CPU. I made an inobstrusive scratch on one corner of the heat spreader and checked this one when it came in. I was pretty sure that I wouldn't have a problem like that, but it never hurts to be 100% sure.

Well, this baby is running the same sort of temps. I let it idle in bios for about 15 minutes and it seemed to peak around 65 degrees while idling. Sat at 64 for the longest time before it touched 65 a couple of times. I have the CPU fan set to run wide open in the bios, btw.

Now, for my question. Am I just wrong about this being too hot for this CPU? I thought I'd be idling around 35 or so.
And I thought that if it starts hitting about 85 or so, I may as well start shopping for a 478 pin coffin because it won't last all that long.

Please advise me on this. I'd like to learn that I've just been wrong about this.

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June 16, 2004 11:24:33 PM

Thats is pretty hot there. Could be a contact issue, crappy HSF, or poor case irrigation. If you are not pushing that heat out good enough then it will burn up the components.

Try opening the case up to see the temps approve. Could try putting a box fan at it too. Personally a good enough HSF is never "good enough" Try vesting into a quality HSF such as the thermaltake copper HSFs.

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June 16, 2004 11:34:05 PM

Additional info:

Tried running it with the case open and a 9" turbo house fan blowing directly in. Not a single bit of variance in CPU temp.

Case temp is sitting at 32 celcius during all of this.

The mobo is an IC7-G. Apparently, Abit has a temp reporting issue, from what I'm reading (at this very moment in another window). It seems this line of mobos reports the CPU temp about 10 degrees celcius over the real temp all the time.

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June 16, 2004 11:39:51 PM

Prescott is known to be hot, really hot.. but I'm not sure it is supposed to be THAT hot when just iddling. Maybe your motherboard is being overly generous with vcore ? Maybe its misreading a bit.. maybe both.

Anyway, here is what I suggest you do; go to Van's hardware -yes I know, but he has a nice tool that will help you see if your cpu throttles or not. Go <A HREF="http://www.vanshardware.com/articles/2004/05/040517_eff..." target="_new"> here </A>, read it, you'll get it.

let it run for a few hours. If it doesnt throttle, don't worry too much. Its anyone's guess what this will do in the long term, but assume intel did its validation/qualification, and if these temps where truly significantly decremental to its lifespan, it would mean intel would be getting lots of RMA's on average which cost a bunch of money (and PR), so I don't think it is very likely.

Now if it does throttle, mail Van Smith or THG, and you'll have a nice scoop :) 

All that being said, if you can, send it back and get a northwood instead. Its a lot cooler, and typically (slightly) faster as well. Not much point in getting prescotts unless you think electrical heating of your house is economical (even in the summer) ;) 

= The views stated herein are my personal views, and not necessarily the views of my wife. =
June 16, 2004 11:53:12 PM

Thanks for the link. I'm going to go ahead with my install of Windows and assuming that no bursts of smoke shrouded flame rise from my case, I'll run it. :) 

Now that I've found out that the temp is likely being misreported, I feel a bit braver about letting the thing run long enough to do something.
June 17, 2004 3:46:25 PM

Abit huh? Yeah Ive seen that variant issue before. I was wondering why your CPU did not scramble on you or crash frequently. Are you getting these readings straight from BIOS or from other software? Either way, looks like Abit REALLY needs a bios update.

Mobile Barton 2500+ @ 2420mhz 11x220 1.7v
Asus A7N8X Dlx 440 FSB
1gb Geil GD pc3500 Dual Channel (2-3-3-6)
Segata 80gb SATA 8.5ms seek
ATI Radeon 9800 Pro to XT(420/730)
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