It's only logical that the computer temps is dependent on ambient temperarature. The greater the difference between the components temp and the air temp, the more heat will be exchanged.
Originally Posted by Taeric
Try this experiment - put two glasses of water in a freezer - one tap water, one hot water (heat it up good). The hot water will freeze first. The rate of heat exchange more than makes up for the additional heat that needs to be dissipated. (this is why hot water pipes burst in the winter while cold water pipes rarely do).
This is wrong. You are not taking into account the rate of change of the rate of change of the exchange of temperature. Let's say you have a glass of water at 10C, and one at 20C. The intial rate of change of the second glass will be greater, therefore It will take less time for the second glass to get from 20C to 10C than for the first to get from 10C to 0C, but both of them will take the exact same time to get from 10C to 0C. However, by the time the second glass get to 10C, the first one will be below 10C already.
What makes hot water pipes burst is that hot water is supercooled, then it freezes all at once, making the pipe burst. Hot water will supercool but not cold water, because the foreign particles in hot water are broken down by the heat, making it harder for ice crystals to form. The cold water pipes will freeze sooner, but they will do so gradually, blocking the pipe, but not bursting it.