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AMD Temp Information and Guide

post #1 of 117
Thread Starter 
AMD Temp Information and Guide

We've had a few great threads recently where members contacted AMD and asked what temps they should be looking at, what the max temp was on, and what programs should be used and why. But this information is still scattered and not well defined in one place. It also doesn't quite explain when you should be looking at certain temps. Well I've made it my mission to insure that people are reading the right temps and have been trying my best to give all the information each time I respond without sounding like a broken record. So I decided to write this information thread and little guide to help you out there.

What is "Core Temp" ?

"Core Temp" is what AMD refers to as "TCTL" and is a non-physical temperature on an arbitrary scale measured in degrees. It does not represent an actual physical temperature like die or case temperature.

What is "CPU Temp" ?

"CPU Temp" is read by a sensor in the socket of the motherboard.
It is a physical temperature and therefore will be effected by ambient temps inside the case.

Why should I use "Core Temp" and when?

AMD designed this equation to accurately read peak (45C+) and load temps. It has an equational offset to determine said temps which equalizes at 45C. Since it's designed for peak temps and is a non-physical temperature it cannot read idle temps or account for ambient temps correctly.

So what is "CPU Temp" good for then?

At peak temps this value is typically 7-10C higher (depending on motherboard) than the actual temp due to it being a physical sensor. At idle it's a little more accurate, but still not dead on, and besides idle temps do not matter near as much as load temps do.

AMD says my chip has a [INSERT SPEC] Celsius limit, what value is this referring to? This limit seems kind of low, why?

This is referring to "Core Temp" of course.

So for example Phenom IIs have a recommended 62C "Core Temp" limit while not exceeding 60C for extended periods.

It has long been argued that the recommended limit is merely a larger safety net. There is a thermal shutdown in the chip at 90C and the silicone is rated for 97C+, so it seems plausable that we could indeed go higher, but this guide (and most in general) will simply *nod* and point you to the recommended limit for your chip.

What programs read "Core Temp" ?

AMD recommends the Core Temp program and AMD Overdrive for this reason.

The core section of HWMonitor also reads this value, but be careful as it also shows CPU Temp.

Where are you getting this information?

Aside from the great information threads below, I am a Mechanical & Computer Design Engineer who has several colleagues that either currently work in AMD's engineering department or used to.

Source: OCN Thread #931241
- Information from Alex Cromwell, Senior Technology Director, AMD

Source: OCN Thread #1095360
- Information from AMD Global Customer Care
post #2 of 117
Finally, a worthy explanation of the big picture all in one area. Excellent write up +Rep

Keep up the good work!
post #3 of 117
Great work, should be stickied
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post #4 of 117
excellent write up, +rep. You should write one about voltage for them, since you can get access to such knowledge.
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post #5 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by ginger_nuts;15145576 
You should write one about voltage for them, since you can get access to such knowledge.


There's a great idea. Another topic that could use a little organizing/face lift (thinking of the new comers). Some of us know where to get the info after being on OCN for a while, but myself can remember very well what it was like when first joining OCN. There's so much information posted and generally just where you'd expect to find it. Only tough part is realizing how many possible choices of where you might find said information you really have here, and taking the time to search each one takes a lot of time.

Guides like this one (and several others) will help many as it covers all areas of one topic top to bottom with the answers that have been pieced together over a period of time and ends by putting at least one controversy to rest.

Until the time comes that a new voltage guide is assembled, check this thread out on voltages in case you haven't come across it yet http://www.overclock.net/amd-motherboards/762641-voltages-whats-what-what-they-mean.html

Some very good reading inside this one too. thumb.gif
post #6 of 117
so coretemp is the only temp that matters?

no wonder using gigabyte easytuner temps were always lower than the ones from coretemp
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post #7 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by ALUCARDVPR;15113829 
AMD Temp Information and Guide

So what is "CPU Temp" good for then?

At peak temps this value is typically 7-10C higher (depending on motherboard) than the actual temp due to it being a physical sensor. At idle it's a little more accurate, but still not dead on, and besides idle temps do not matter near as much as load temps do.

Sorry, I misunderstand this. Does this mean that if HWMonitor shows 57c at load, then the ACTUAL temp in the CPU is 47c-50c?

Or does it mean that the ACTUAL temp is 64c-67c?

Bit confused with that bit, otherwsie a very interesting read, thanks.
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post #8 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by samwillc;15148997 
Sorry, I misunderstand this. Does this mean that if HWMonitor shows 57c at load, then the ACTUAL temp in the CPU is 47c-50c?

Or does it mean that the ACTUAL temp is 64c-67c?

Bit confused with that bit, otherwsie a very interesting read, thanks.

HWMonitor has two sections. CPU and cores. The CPU section is reading "CPU Temp" from the motherboard and at load it's 7-10C off, that value is "typically" higher than the actual temp, so if it says 57C loaded then yes it's likey only 47-50C but since this depends on the maker of the board - you can't simple add or subtract, look to the core section for accurate temps under load. If you look at the cores section that reads "Core Temp" at load then that is the actual temp.



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post #9 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by ALUCARDVPR;15149211 
HWMonitor has two sections. CPU and cores. The CPU section is reading "CPU Temp" from the motherboard and at load it's 7-10C off, that value is "typically" higher than the actual temp, so if it says 57C loaded then yes it's likey only 47-50C but since this depends on the maker of the board - you can't simple add or subtract, look to the core section for accurate temps under load. If you look at the cores section that reads "Core Temp" at load then that is the actual temp.



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Of great, I will try again. I was getting 44c at load in the core and 57c in the CPU at 3.7GHz with 1.4v.

So my temps aren't *too* bad looking at this.
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post #10 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ginger_nuts;15145576 
excellent write up, +rep. You should write one about voltage for them, since you can get access to such knowledge.

I agree that we need something with practical application for voltages - which I think Is what I'm good at (application). Most tech people can write a manual, but unless you understand how it's applied and under what conditions certain rules change then it just becomes useless information.

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