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Cooling issues with i7-2600 - suggestions?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm apparently having some cooling problems.

I recently moved from a Core 2 Quad Q6600 on a P5K with 4GB and a Asus ATI 5770 running Windows XPsp2 Pro, to an i7-2600 non-k on a P8P67 (latest BIOS) with 16GB and an eVGA GTX 460 SSC+ running Windows 7 Pro.

First, I did the primary install with the stock Intel fan that came with the chip, using only the dab of thermal material included on the boxed heat sink. Installed the OS, moved on -- was seeing a variety of 30-40c when idle with a little hotter specs in the Asus BIOS - about 60c.

Then, I got back to work after reinstalling my apps like CS5 Photoshop/Premiere/After Effects. The GTX 460 and the i7 made Premiere Pro scream like I'd never seen before -- but when I queued up a 5 min render, after a minute or so the Asus AI Suite was suddenly screaming at me: my CPU had reached 85c.

Eventually after some testing with Prime 95, CPUID Monitor, and some side-apps like Real Temp, I came to find that on load after only a few minutes I was getting up into the 80s and 90s; during a particular test one of the cores hit 99c.

Today, I figured I would go grab some Arctic Silver 5 and try to re-seat my old HS from my Q6600: an Arctic Cooling Freezer Pro 7 Rev 2 - ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16835186134 ). Went ahead with the installation.

Idles are now about the same place: varying between 33-38c across the cores. Load testing with Prime 95 has gotten better but introduced some new issues. Things hover for a while around that 70c mark, approach 80c and then the system simply reboots. All of these temps are being reported with RealTemp 3.67.

It's going to prove impossible to do any rendering or output work inside Adobe apps until this is solved.

So, reviewing numerous threads across the web, I'm seeing that people are seeing the i7-2600 go full load anywhere from 58c to 75c -- and that's with the stock cooler. Further, no one is reporting reboots.

What should my next step be? Should I look at getting another, newer fan like the CM Hyper 212+ or is what I'm seeing an indication of more serious problems? At what point do you start suspecting that your processor's heat shield is wonky?

Many thanks for any suggestions!
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Ghetto
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post #2 of 12
Check your mount to make sure you are getting good contact. The Hyper 212+ is a great cooler and should help, but first make sure that your TIM is showing good contact and you don't any uneven surfaces contributing to the problem.

Also, check your case flow to make sure you can exhaust all of that hot air. Remove the side panel and see if it affects your temps. If it makes them go down, then you need better case flow.

The stock cooler for these chips are despicable and shouldn't be included with such powerful CPU.
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post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the response. The TIM is making good contact from what I can tell. I've placed a lot of heat sinks in the past, so I'm no stranger to the process. The stock cooler looked like it had good contact too when I pulled it off, as apparent by the dispersion pattern of the compound.

As far as the case, I know it could use some better cooling.. I'd like a new case and fan configuration -- but from what I can tell open/closed is only causing variations of about 2-3c. The results I'm posting at present are with the case open.

A strange new element has popped up today. Prime 95 will no longer complete its process. Within a second or two, up to 5 of the workers quit with the error "FATAL ERROR: Rounding was 0.5, expected less than 0.4". As I understand, this can indicate some sort of hardware failure or mis-configuration. Tips?

One person I spoke with asked about my voltages -- but I don't know the ins and outs of voltage. I simply popped the processor on and let the BIOS do its thing. I'm not OCing this by any means (minus whatever Turbo Boost or the Asus Bios is doing under "Normal" setting) -- just trying to get it running solid from the get go. Should I be checking or configuring the P8P67 with something specific in order to get this chip running stable?

Many thanks.
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Ghetto
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post #4 of 12
AS5 is pretty out-dated. One of the advantages of more modern alternatives like OCZ Freeze or IC7 Diamond is the lack of cure time. AS5 requires something like 200 hours or so of burn in to really hit optimal performance AFAIK, and even then it will fall several degrees short.

HT also adds a decent amount of heat to your processor's operating temps. The 212+ is a very good budget cooler, but I have found that it doesn't really get the job done unless you have decent ambient temps.

I would suggest picking up a decent cooler even if you don't plan to OC, especially with summer coming. The absolute "best" are the Noctua D-14 or Thermalright Silver Arrow, and they will run you something like 80-90 USD. The performance difference between the two isn't significant enough to lose sleep over, so just pick based on looks or whichever you can get cheaper. While you're at it, invest $5 into some IC7 Diamond/OCZ Freeze, you won't regret it!

What type of case and what fans do you have in it? Can you go to your user profile and fill out your system as detailed as you can? It would help tremendously!
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Velathawen,

Thanks much for your response. I've filled out my profile as you requested. Hopefully it gives a bit more info on my system.

I've been doing some more reading. When I installed the P8P67 Pro, I ended up following standard directions and flipped both the EPU and TPU to on. This apparently resulted in allowing the Bios, or Asus software to "auto tune" and OC and monitor power. I'm not entirely sure that this is exactly what I wanted for stability sake.

Out of curiosity, I flipped off the TPU and EPU switches, rebooted, and things seem to be acting a bit more stable. I've gotten Prime 95 to work well once again and have been running a torture for over 30 minutes. Load is running at 100% and CPU temp is hovering around 61c.

At present, cpuz is reporting around 3511 MHz (x35 x 100.3). Voltage is pretty stable, hovering around 1.136-1.144. The weird thing is that CPUz is reading my memory at 668.9 MHz 9-9-9-24. I wonder if my memory is not set correctly. If it's stock 1600, it should be running 1600, yes? Candidly, I get confused with all of that "target" stuff.

I'm starting to wonder if that TPU switch being on is what was causing problems. I get the impression that the TPU switch is a "dummy OC" switch -- and that's simply not something I'm interested in. Down the road I may learn how to minimally OC once I can afford better cooling, better case, etc but at present, it's simply not my passion. At the top what I'm looking for is a stable system for what I payed for that will blow my Q6600 away. (In Adobe apps -- the GTX 460 is already making that possible).

Bottom line, it was making little sense to me that less than a 10 min torture was killing my system. I was concerned that something was wrong with the MB or Proc and I wanted to make sure that if I needed to RMA I could do it inside of the warranted timeline. I can regularly run renders that will peg my Proc for 4+ hours, so 10 minutes at 100% causing reboot was going to end productivity work-wise.

I believe switching off that TPU brought back the stability. I'm wondering now how I get that turbo boost feature running -- shouldn't that be bringing me to 3.8 or so --- or is the fact that I'm at 3511 Mhz turbo-boost in action? And how to get that ram clocking right.

I believe I'm going to play with the bios some more, and see what's what without those switches set. Do you have any recommendations, further tips, or thoughts?

Again, many thanks.
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Ghetto
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post #6 of 12
TPU is part of the Auto-OC, so as you reported it could very well have been utilizing insane voltages and settings that it determined would keep your system stable. keep it off!

EPU is the Asus power saving utility, you can leave it on or off.

Concerning your memory, all systems will start up at fail-safe settings whenever you change some or all hardware. Default is usually 1333 for Sandy Bridge systems. You take the reported value and multiply it by 2 to get the effective rate. so 668.9 x 2 is roughly 1337.8, which would be your effective memory speed at the moment. In order to set it to 1600, you will have to go into your bios, look for DRAM Frequency, and set the multiplier to DDR3-1600. The rest of the timings you can leave on auto.

Concerning your CPU frequency, are you seeing that 3500 on your desktop or while running an intensive program like Prime? There are power saving features where your processor won't function at full speed and full voltage all the time when it isn't necessary. I haven't played around with a non-K processor myself, but I would wager that it is throttling itself due to power limits. You could try going into the bios and looking for the turbo power limits and setting them manually from 115/95/150 (i THINK) to 200/200/300. That should let you run at 3.8 under load. Maybe someone more familiar with the non-K processors could chime in.
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hey Vela,

Thanks again. Agreed about the TPU .. Before, with it on I was seeing cpuZ reporting 100% load at anywhere from 4100 MHz to 4350 MHz at voltages of 1.3 to 1.45. This was very much likely the issue. My cooler most likely can't handle those voltages, agreed?

Now, EPU is set on (in bios, not via switch) and I'm seeing around 1600 MHz at idle, at voltage of around 0.6 to 0.7. At load, we're looking at 1.136 to 1.14 at about 3500 MHz. At the point of my last post, idle was seeing around 1600 MHz at 1.136-1.14. So the EPU must be what's bringing voltages down to 0.6 during idle, yes?

To confirm, my Load data is coming from Prime running full throttle with CPUz and RealTemp 3.67 reporting data.

I also fiddled with bios under AI Tuning, and set my AI "tune" to the XMP profile that my ram has in its spd. This pushed me to DDR-1600 and the bios is reporting this correctly, now. CPUz is also now correctly reporting 800.1 MHz.

In bios, CPU is reporting 3443 MHz, so 100% load with Prime in Win 7 and CPUz reporting 3500 MHz must be turbo boost engaged. Additionally, the "target Turbo Boost speed" in bios is set to 3800 MHz --- maybe it can't find a way to get further than 3500 MHz because it doesn't want to top 60c?

I also confirm that the P8P67 may be kinda wonky with the non-K. There are many settings that are still open for me to tweak that clearly depict being K-specific. I wonder if they're simply being ignored or if the motherboard is getting confused. I see very few references of people pairing non-Ks with P8P67s - but I wanted the MB features like 4x USB 3.0, built in IEEE 1394, etc that were not available in many of the other boards meant for non-Ks. I would have in the end bought the K, but NewEgg was at the time offering the non-K at a $45 discount under the K and I knew I didn't plan to do customized OC.

As I understand, the K can OC in various ways, not only limited to your proc voltage -- whereas the non-K can only really push past that 3800 MHz point if pushing voltage. Is this correct? Perhaps that TPU switch is truly meant for K-sku chips and it being on with the non-K gave it only the option of pushing voltage and pegging the proc hot which my cooler can't handle.

Any of this make sense? I know, I'm an OC newb trying to understand it all.. hopefully I'm grasping it to some extent.
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Ghetto
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post #8 of 12
If you see yourself idling at 1600, EPU and the other power saving features are working properly. It is supposed to reduce the load and voltage when there isn't a need for the extra processing power, leading to less wear and tear. Keep it on imo.

~60C is actually a very comfortable temperature range to be in so I doubt it is being throttled thermally. Did you manage to find the turbo power limits?

I think you have a misunderstanding concerning Sandy Bridge OC. You do need to tweak the voltages when you OC, but the benefit of the K processors over their non-K is the unlocked multiplier. Intel has for the most part locked your Bus Speed to 100. The only way to overclock is to play around with the multiplier, so x47 multiplier would yield the 4700 mhz that I am currently running. Just boosting the core voltage by itself doesn't actually do anything except generate more heat.
post #9 of 12
My 2600k is running at 69c MAX at 4.5ghz. Thats insanely high temps man
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post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hey Vel,

Thanks again for the feedback. The system has been running stable for some time, now -- got the case back on and everything is back in place including all my USB and 1394 gear that needs to be connected. It's good to have it all back in place.

I ran Prime for about 4 hours last night just to see where things stood. Went swimmingly. Some charting on temp over that time showed me max of 62c -- never went above. Thanks for all the help in solving this!

As to power limits for turbo, I haven't looked further into them. The BIOS remains set at targeting 3800 MHz and that's fine with me. I might look further into it down the road once I have a better cooling -- but I know that this Freezer Pro thing isn't the best. It's a smaller fan (92mm) and its housing is a little weird. I'm not convinced that it's pulling air straight through the HS.. I think the housing creates a lot of opportunity for air to be pulled from -around- the HS instead. Regardless of the flow, I'm just not happy with how the HS feels after it's been running load for a while. I bought it on budget for my Q6600 and I was never happy with it. When I have more cash, I will be piecing together a new Antec-based case with dual 120s on the front, and replace the Freezer Pro with a Hyper 212 or something larger as space warrants. I am using all my ram slots and intend to keep it that way, so I have to pay attention to spacing.

Regarding Turbo .. I did see the system finally hit 3800 MHz. Out of curiosity, I downloaded 3D Mark 2011 and ran the standard bench to see how my system was competing at stock -- pretty good stats. What was interesting was how it pegged the proc. Apparently, if I only have 1 or 2 "threads" going, it'll TB up to 3800, it's when I hit full load across the board that it maxes at 3500. I'm assuming this is some sort of throttling process that's occurring to keep the thing cool/stable depending on the function being asked to perform. It makes sense to some extent -- if an app can only work with one core, it makes sense to push that core to 3800 -- but if the app can work with each thread, peg them all but keep it down. I'll keep watching it as I do more renders in tandem with CUDA on the GTX 460. One of the best tests it seems is running multi-thread render work on the CPU and feeding the output to H264 for the GTX to take over encoding. Make sense?

As to my understanding of Sandy Bridge OC, you're right in all aspects. I don't know what the hell I'm talking about -- just trying to form semi-educated guesses at this point. I'm still very unclear on how core voltage is related to the multiplier when raising the multiplier past stock and why you guys talk about stuff like having 4.5ghz at 1.25 and that kind of junk. Thus far, all I see is my proc getting to 1.3vc to hit 4.2 and then the system rebooting if that damn TPU switch is on. I'm sure I can learn it all once I apply myself to it, but right now it's simply not a priority. Thanks for the guidance.

As to Toology and his comments: I agree to your comparison. You're specs denote that you're running a liquid cooler with a full radiator. I'm running a puny HS with a questionable fan. Hats off to you.

Thanks again for the help. System is stable and faster than my Core 2 Quad. That was the intent.
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Ghetto
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