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Corsair H60 undervolting Vcore on the fly?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I installed a Corsair H60 recently, and it appears to somehow lower my Vcore from, say, 1.35 to 1.0 whenever temps reach 46 degrees, after which point Vcore goes back up...then down, etc.

The reason I'm blaming the H60 is that the same system with a ZALMAN CNPS7000C-AlCu 2 Ball CPU Cooler allows temps to reach 55 degrees without affecting voltages. I'm setting Vcore manually in BIOS and have turned off Cool n' Quiet. I have run tests with two different AMD Athlon II X3 450 Rana chips (both as 3-cores and 4-cores); two different Asus M4N68T-M V2 mobos; three different power supplies; in three different GNU/Linux distributions. I've tinkered with every possible BIOS setting, keeping things constant between systems.

I'm running stresscpu2 and watching voltages and temps in lm-sensors. Whenever temps get around 46 degrees with the H60, Vcore drops, and the floating point operations in stresscpu2 slow down, though CPU clock speed doesn't change.

If someone can shed light on this mystery, I'd be grateful. Is this how the H60 keeps things cool, by robbing me of power?

OS: GNU/Linux Debian 6, openSUSE 11.2, Linux Mint 11
Motherboard: Asus M4N68T-M V2
CPU: AMD Athlon II X3 450 Rana 3.2GHz
Memory: Kingston Hyperx 1600 2gig
PSU(s): Antec True 430, Antec Earthwatts 380, Raidmax 450
Edited by shawn.nuxtp - 4/28/11 at 12:57am
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post #2 of 10
Try tinkering with something called "Load Line Calibration", might be labeled LLC in the bios. It works a bit differently in every bios but for mine system enabling it raises the vcore past what I have set in the bios as the load increases. While under 100% load I get about a .8 voltage increase so I just compensate for that in the bios. If I have it disabled it does the complete opposite..

Although this may not fix or help with your problem at all.. couldn't hurt to try changing that setting though.

I don't see how it could be related to the CPU cooler. Think? How is a CPU cooler going to lower your voltage.
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post #3 of 10
a heat sink cannot change voltages dude.
 
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post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord Xeb View Post
a heat sink cannot change voltages dude.
This. It's absolutely impossible for your cooler to be changes your vcore. Your problem is in the BIOS.
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post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Right, I get that a heatsink can't reach out and turn down my Vcore. But between two identical systems -- a pair of identical systems, actually, where I've made all kinds of matching BIOS and OS changes with the only difference being the heatsinks -- the one with the H60 gives me problems.

I'm beginning to think it has something to do with the pump/fans. Lm-sensors and BIOS indicate the H60 pump is operating at around 4200 rpm (I've read elsewhere that this is a way-high misreading). Whenever the fan hits 4300 rpm, Vcore goes down; thus, it isn't temperature that triggers the drop.

So, I unplugged the pump from the mobo and run it directly off the PSU thinking this will hide its speed from the system, but the problem persists. I've run the system with CPU Q-Fun Function disabled and then enabled, and that makes no difference. And I've turned off every power-saving/monitoring daemon/program in the OS I can think of -- and even if there is something in the OS lowering Vcore, why should it only do so for the H60?

Also, adjusting LLC hasn't solved the problem.
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post #6 of 10
Could it be overheating and giving you the wrong temperature readings? I know intel cpus will hit the TJmax point and automatically throttle down. Maybe the temperature sensor reading on the mobo is off or something, or there is a problem with the CPU's actual temperature sensor? I know that AMD CPUs max temp is 62c, so it could be hitting that and reading wrong?

This happens with BOTH CPUs regardless of which motherboard it's on? Just by having an H60 on them, they're undervolting? If so that's bizzare. If it were temperature or something explainable, you should see it in a sample of 2 separate CPUs and motherboards.

You've made sure that the mount isn't hitting anything, is seated properly, and the TIM application was good?
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Temperature sensors on both motherboards and both CPUs appear to be reporting correctly -- temps climb to 55 degrees with Zalman heatsink/fan, which doesn't change Vcore. Temps stay down when Vcore drops with H60. And there is no reason my system should change Vcore when temps rise anyway -- Vcore is set manually in BIOS and Cool n Quite etc. is turned off. The heatsink is seated properly, unless I'm somehow systematically doing it wrong with the H60; but that would mean I've done it wrong five or six times, and wrong in such a way that exhibits this weird behavior rather than just overheating.
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post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by shawn.nuxtp View Post
I installed a Corsair H60 recently, and it appears to somehow lower my Vcore from, say, 1.35 to 1.0 whenever temps reach 46 degrees, after which point Vcore goes back up...then down, etc.

The reason I'm blaming the H60 is that the same system with a ZALMAN CNPS7000C-AlCu 2 Ball CPU Cooler allows temps to reach 55 degrees without affecting voltages. I'm setting Vcore manually in BIOS and have turned off Cool n' Quiet. I have run tests with two different AMD Athlon II X3 450 Rana chips (both as 3-cores and 4-cores); two different Asus M4N68T-M V2 mobos; three different power supplies; in three different GNU/Linux distributions. I've tinkered with every possible BIOS setting, keeping things constant between systems.

I'm running stresscpu2 and watching voltages and temps in lm-sensors. Whenever temps get around 46 degrees with the H60, Vcore drops, and the floating point operations in stresscpu2 slow down, though CPU clock speed doesn't change.

If someone can shed light on this mystery, I'd be grateful. Is this how the H60 keeps things cool, by robbing me of power?

OS: GNU/Linux Debian 6, openSUSE 11.2, Linux Mint 11
Motherboard: Asus M4N68T-M V2
CPU: AMD Athlon II X3 450 Rana 3.2GHz
Memory: Kingston Hyperx 1600 2gig
PSU(s): Antec True 430, Antec Earthwatts 380, Raidmax 450
erm sounds like you have your h60 plugged in to a motherboard headder.. MAKE SURE its plugged in to CHA_FAN (chassie fan) as this keeps the pump running at full which is required according to corsair!
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post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
H60 is plugged into CHA_FAN. Is it possible that the pump is running intermittently, so system drops Vcore when pump stops? Chassis fan speed, as mentioned, is listed as 4200 rpm or so, which I think is clearly wrong -- 1400 rpm is more like it.

So here's a noob water-cooling question: how loud should the pump be? My H60 is nearly silent -- if no other fans are running I can faintly hear it gurgling; it sounds like a really quiet hard drive. And how can I check to see if the pump is running correctly if BIOS misreports motors speed? (My BIOS is up-to-date.)
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post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Well, the voltage fluctuations I've been experiencing are, as far as I can tell, due to my cheap 4+1 phase motherboard. If Vcore is set above 1.35 or so, I get the problem of it dropping down to 1.0 and back up while stress testing. What's strange is that, for the most part, I don't get errors in mprime or stresscpu2 during these massive fluctuations. My system would post at 4.1GHz and test without error at 4GHz -- but the benchmarks were worse than at 3.6GHz, which sort of tipped me off. I just assumed that a system given more voltage than it could handle would throw errors and crash.

So the cooler wasn't the issue. I can only speculate that the H60 placed slightly greater power demands on the already beleaguered motherboard since it uses the pump and a fan, whereas the Zalman had just one fan. But I'm only guessing...

The other thing I learned during my hailstorm of ignorance and confusion -- which may be common knowledge to other OCers -- is that ACPI (Advanced Configuration and Power Interface) daemons/utilities such as processor power throttling can basically override some BIOS settings; at least, this is the case in GNU/Linux, where it isn't necessarily apparent that they are even running. The kicker was that I needed ACPI support in order to get temperature readings off my motherboard, so I couldn't just completely compile them out of my kernel. Though that wouldn't have solved the problem of my inferior hardware.
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