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What did I screw up?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hello All,

About two months ago, I built a new machine with an i7 950 as the proc. Build went well, although I have not used the machine much. Maybe only 50 - 100 hours use.

I used a Akasa AK-CCX-4001HP Nero S Direct Contact Heatpipe CPU Cooler as my air cooler. It works well and I have the fan installed and it is working well. I used the TIM supplied, but I cannot remember whether Intel or Akasa supplied that. I know that I did not order any special TIM.

My proc is running way to hot to safely overclock.

At stock settings for this i7 950 proc (133 and x24) the temp of the proc (reported by CoreTemp 0.99.8) is 43- 45 degrees C. When I run the blend test with Prime95 the temp immediately rises to 75 - 78 degrees C. It doesn't really rise much more than that after 20 minutes. Ambient temperature in the room in 21 degrees C.

I think I may have applied way too much TIM. I used almost the entire tube and covered the entire proc with TIM - nice and thick.

This is the only thing that I can think of that I may have done wrong, my heatsink looks good, the fan is working well, the ambient is cool, the case is cool and has other fans all working well.

If I over clock just a little, the temps immediately rise to 50 but shoot over 80 degrees C if I start the blend test on Prime95.

I did manage to get the proc up to 3.8 Ghz last night, but the temps went to 95 - 99 when running blend tests on Prime95 before I paniced and hit the reset switch.

What do I do now?

Order high quality TIM (and high quality cleaning solution) and remove and clean the proc and heatsink, and then re-apply a single grain of brown rice. (have to wait 3-4 days for this solution to arrive)

or

Remove the heatsink, scrap off a little TIM and then re-seat the heatsink with the remaining TIM and hope for the best (can do this today)

or is is something else that I have missed?

From what I have read, I should be only seeing 30 degrees C when running stock settings (50 when running Prime95).

Is there something else that I should have done or checked and reported to you? Is the heatsink poor? It looks good enough.

I eagerly await your responses,

thanks in advance for your help and time

Mark Breen
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post #2 of 9
hi, I think applying too much thermal paste can lower the cooler performance, the best way is to put a thin coat. So u just put a small drop in the base, or two adjacent stripes of thermal paste, and let the heatsink with it's mass and pressure of the mounting do the rest.

But than again, i don't know if's possible to have more than 5C difference if u put too much thermal paste
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post #3 of 9
Not very familiar with that cooler, to be honest. Are you sure that it's seated properly? Anyway, don't go back and reuse the TIM like you had mentioned. Gently scrape and then clean it all off and properly apply the correct amount of some decent (AS5 would be good) TIM.

You are running a bit hot, but what are your ambient temps like? How is your case airflow? You should go into your control panel and fill in your system details so we can understand more.
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post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hello Unobtainium and Plex,

Thank you for your replies. Sorry I had not updated my details, I have done that now.

Can I just ask whether you think my temps are actually crazy high or normal? The reason I ask is that someone in a tech support department just told me that stick temps of 43 idle/ 75 on Prime95 are normal and he said he customarily runs his machine at 85 degrees C.

Is that normal ? Do overclockers consider 70 - 85 degrees C to be acceptable temps to run a proc at for months on end?

I am not compaining about it, just surprised initially. It seems that I have very little room for error if I want to try to get to 3.9, or 4.0. I am also assuming that if I change voltages, it will compound the heat issues.

thanks

Mark
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post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by marklbreen View Post
Can I just ask whether you think my temps are actually crazy high or normal? The reason I ask is that someone in a tech support department just told me that stick temps of 43 idle/ 75 on Prime95 are normal and he said he customarily runs his machine at 85 degrees C.
They are high. They're not crazy high, but they're definitely high for a stock clock. Now, that isn't to say that it isn't "normal," which is why I asked what your ambients were .

Quote:
Is that normal ? Do overclockers consider 70 - 85 degrees C to be acceptable temps to run a proc at for months on end?
I would say 85 is acceptable for 24/7 on the i7s assuming that you're hitting that 85 at absolute load. Some people won't be comfortable with 85. I personally don't like seeing my load temps go past 80, but that's just me. That doesn't change the fact that you're running very hot for a stock clock. My 950 barely hits 80C with P95 and max IBT @ 4.2 with HT on. My chip needs about 1.33V to hit that clock stable. When I'm actually gaming with it, be it WoW or BO or SC2, temps don't even go above 45C.

Granted my cooler is a little better, I would still consider the H70 an "economy" cooling solution. It's nothing extravagant.

Quote:
I am not compaining about it, just surprised initially. It seems that I have very little room for error if I want to try to get to 3.9, or 4.0. I am also assuming that if I change voltages, it will compound the heat issues.
Of course it will. If you aren't aware, voltage is really the only reason your temperatures are going up. Clock doesn't cause heat, volts do. That's why when we OC, it becomes a balancing game of determining that point right in the middle of how much voltage you're comfortable with, determining the absolute minimum required to become stable at the absolute highest clock you can handle while keeping your temps in line. Every chip is different.

What is your voltage when you're hitting 99C at only 3.8GHz? That's absurdly high. I don't even think the stock Intel HSF is that bad.
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post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hello Plex,

Opps, sorry, I forgot to re-state the ambient temp. My kitchen where I am currently working is 21 degrees C, although my ankles feel a but chilly today

Is there a general method of measuring the interior of the case temp? I guess I can remove the mercury thermometer from the fish tank and test it, but is there a more high tech, overclocking way to monitor case temps?

I think that I need to remove the heatsink, and re-apply the TIM. At least if I do that, I will feel comfortable that I have given it my best shot. If I do not remove, clean, re-apply, I will always be wondering ......what if.

Thanks again for your time and interest.

Mark
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post #7 of 9
At an ambient of 21C, I wouldn't be too concerned about the temps outside. If you have some decent fans (both intake and exhaust) then the airflow in your case should be fine.

I would start looking elsewhere. Bad application of the TIM could hurt, but I'm not sure it could affect your temps to the extent that you're hitting almost 100C with a super easy load.

I'm beginning to think there's something going on with BIOS settings now. Can you give me a print out? At least give me your voltages.
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post #8 of 9
Okay well a couple things. With those direct heat pipes a la 212 (and yours) often enough guys do apply a thin thin thin layer on the sink face itself. This helps fill in voids between the sink face and the heat pipes.

As for applying paste on the CPU itself the CPU face is concave slightly and most seem to recommend a grain of rice / pea sized glob in the middle of the CPU. Direct pressure from the sink helps spread the paste evenly without air bubbles.

Do what works for you but frankly a pea sized glob along with lines will likely just spill over the edge. A single line or a glob generally suffices but I'd be careful with both.
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post #9 of 9
I always thought the cover of a cpu was convex, not concave.

Recommendations for direct touch heatsinks center on those grooves between the heatpipes. What I have seen: 1. put thin lines of TIM between the heatpipes. 2. Put lines of TIM on the heatpipes themselves. The latter looks better IMO. Just remember that the purpose of TIM is to fill in gaps. Most of the heat transfer will occur metal to metal. This will be especially true with direct touch heatsinks.
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