Skip to main content

Watch Intel's Rocket Lake CPU Burn Up Before Dying

Intel Core i5-11400
Intel Core i5-11400 (Image credit: Fritzchens Fritz)

Ever wonder how long Intel's 11th Generation Rocket Lake processor can survive without a CPU cooler? Well, famous chip photographer Fritzchens Fritz has killed a Core i5-11400 for the sake of science.

The Core i5-11400, which is the current budget CPU king, arrives wielding six Cypress Cove cores clocked at 2.6 GHz. The hexa-core chip features a 4.4 GHz boost clock and a 65W TDP (thermal design power). Bear in mind that 65W is the PL1 (Power Level 1) rating, which is the Core i5-11400's power consumption at the base clock. In reality, the processor is rated with a 154W PL2 (Power Level 2) that corresponds to the power draw during boost.

Fritz mentioned that it was impossible to run the Core i5-11400 at stock because Rocket Lake isn't designed or optimized for low power consumption. The author had to modify the processor's operating parameters to prevent it from going into an emergency shutdown.

The author started by fixing the operating clock speed to 800 MHz. He then disabled Hyper-Threading, the iGPU and AVX altogether. Additionally, he also lowered the VCCSA with a -200mV offset and drop the memory speed down to DDR4-1333. Fritz performed a couple of single-and multi-threaded tests to evaluate the Core i5-11400's thermal behavior.

If you zoom into the thermal camera, you can see how each core inside the Core i5-11400 reacts differently to the type of workload. It's pretty cool to see the Cypress Cove cores jump around during the single-threaded test.

The point of the experiment is to see how the Core i5-11400 operates without a heatsink. In case you're curious, the Core i5-11400 at 800 MHz with Hyper-Threading and AVX scored 106 and 116 points in the single-and multi-core tests, respectively, in Cinebench R15.

The Core i5-11400, which retails for $188.99, obviously didn't survive Fritz' torture. However, the dead chip will be put to good use as Fritz will likely delight us with some beautiful die shots of the Rocket Lake-S part pretty soon.

  • Olle P
    Would have been nice to see what happens at stock config first. How well does the normal protections work?
    Reply
  • TerryLaze
    Olle P said:
    Would have been nice to see what happens at stock config first. How well does the normal protections work?
    He already said that he did all that to keep the CPU from shutting down all the time, so that's what would happen, anytime it would go above 100-105° it would shut down instead.
    Also in the video it stays below 100°C at all times so I don't see how he managed to burn the CPU at all.
    Reply
  • froggx
    Olle P said:
    Would have been nice to see what happens at stock config first. How well does the normal protections work?

    "...it was impossible to run the Core i5-11400 at stock... The author had to modify the processor's operating parameters to prevent it from going into an emergency shutdown."

    You seem to have skipped this paragraph. It seems the protections at stock work well enough that the processor shuts down to keep itself from frying. Presumably, it can't throttle back enough to keep running.
    Reply
  • Olle P
    TerryLaze said:
    He already said that he did all that to keep the CPU from shutting down all the time, ...
    And just how that happen (time frame, power and temps) is what I'd like to see.
    Reply
  • TerryLaze
    Olle P said:
    And just how that happen (time frame, power and temps) is what I'd like to see.
    Yeah me too, together with what was done to actually fry it and how long that took.
    Reply
  • everettfsargent
    "-0.200mV" is obviously wrong, for 1V that would change it to 0.9998V. The stated offset was -200mV, for 1V that would change it to 0.8V.

    Oh and why does crap like this continue to be published here on TH? A video with absolutely ZERO human audio content. I do not believe that it burned up at all as one cannot see such from this lame video as shown.
    Reply
  • punkncat
    Watch how "dude" completely ignores and disables stock function on a chip so he can cast shade on 11th gen for a (crap) article.

    Boo.
    Reply
  • Karadjgne
    "The point of the experiment is to see how the Core i5-11400 operates without a heatsink."

    It doesn't. Turned an 11400 into basically an 11000.04 just to see the physical fireworks as different cores heat up with different loads. And destroying a $188 cpu in the process.

    Done with an i3 2120 or q6600 that's of little to no value to anyone, that would have been more appropriate, but with limited availability, limited budgets that everyone is feeling after covid, destroying something that's very useful or needed isn't helping. That's akin to taking a 3080 and cutting it in half, just to see how many layers are in the pcb.

    Sorry if that offends anyone's sensibilities, since there was a fair amount of effort put into the article as a whole, but to me it comes across as just wasting food when everyone else is being rationed.
    Reply
  • cryoburner
    Karadjgne said:
    ...That's akin to taking a 3080 and cutting it in half, just to see how many layers are in the pcb.
    Except unlike a 3080, the 11400 is readily available from some retailers for around its suggested asking price. And its a relatively budget, lower-mid-range processor that can be bought for less than $200, not a high-end GPU that's currently been marked up to over $2000. So, not really at all similar in that sense. : P

    Also, this guy's thing is actually stripping down processors to take detailed, high-resolution microscopic images of the silicon, providing a look at their internal architectural layouts. So, that's what this chip will ultimately be used for, and getting it to run without a cooler was just something extra to do with it before the destructive dissection process.

    I agree that getting the processor to run this way is of limited usefulness though, since it wasn't actually running as designed.
    Reply