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Old 07-07-2005, 08:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Need Help Understanding CPU Temperatures

Hello, all. I am the proud owner of a P4 Prescott 3.0GHz processor. At least, I think I'm proud. I'm not absolutely certain. You see, I'm getting mixed feedback as to whether or not my computer is running at it's best.

I downloaded Motherboard Monitor to check my CPU temperatures. Since I own an Albatron 865pe motherboard, I can also check the CPU temps in the BIOS. I thought my processor might be running a bit hot (and the fan was loud), so I bought a Zalman 7000B-Cu to try and keep it cool. I put some thermal grease on the chip, and I'm not sure if I put too much or too little, and I'm also not sure if I should have covered the whole chip or just the inner circle, but I still have some other things to figure out first.

At 3.0GHz, the BIOS says this about my temps:

System: 46 C
CPU: 64 C

Motherboard Monitor says this:

Case: 46 C
CPU 64 C

The instruction manual for the Zalman says I should keep my CPU-Case temperature lower than 69.1 C, and that most monitoring software records the CPU-Die as the CPU temperature. It also says that the CPU-Case temperature will be about 4-10 degrees less than the recorded CPU-Die temperature.

The terminology here is throwing me way off. I don't understand why the BIOS says "system" while Motherboard Monitor says "case." Is the CPU-case the same thing as the "system" or "case?" Or does "system temperature" refer to the ambient temperature in the immediate vicinity of the motherboard?

I'm also confused because there are postings all over the internet where people claim to have an idle CPU temperature of anywhere from 20 to 40 C, but I don't know if they're referring to the CPU-Die, the CPU-Case, or the "case." Depending on which one it is, my processor could be running anywhere from totally normal to ridiculously hot!

Help!
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Old 07-07-2005, 08:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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64c for any processor is hot. Gotta love the prescott core!
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Old 07-07-2005, 08:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The system is considered the case. Definately look into an aftermarket cooling solution for your processor, it is fairly hot.
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Old 07-07-2005, 09:21 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default UGH!

Thanks for replying, but neither of your replies were helpful.

By saying "system is the case" are you saying that the "system" temp in my BIOS is the same as the "CPU-Case" temp defined in the instructions?

I also said in my post that I HAD bought an aftermarket cooling solution, the Zalman 7000b-Cu heatsink/fan.

I'm still lost. Can someone please tell me what each of these temperatures refer to and what they should be for my processor?

P4 3.0 GHz
Mobo Monitor "Case" Temp: 49 C
Mobo Monitor "CPU" Temp: 65 C
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Old 07-07-2005, 09:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Case temp is the temp inside the case. The CPU temp is how hot the CPU itself is. It doesnt get any easier than that. The CPU should be around 40C-50C at idle
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Old 07-07-2005, 09:36 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Sorry skipped over your heatsink, that is a good one. Are you using Artic Silver 5 thermal paste?

Anyways, yes the system is the case. The system is just the air inside of your case, so you can see the similarity.
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Old 07-08-2005, 11:09 AM   #7 (permalink)
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ok what u should do is give intel a call and see whats up cause mine idle at about 25-29C and under a load jumps up too about 45C when playing counter strike source. I have 5 fans 120mm fan on the side and 2 80mm in fron 2 in back keeps it nice and cool and the fact that i have mine overclocked to 3.48 is pretty sad that ur temps are that hight so give intel a call and see what they say cause they say the processor shouldnt go over 39C but of every proccesor is gonna go over that! GIVE EM A CALL AND SEE WHAT THEY SAY tell them u have tried a different heatsink and fan but dont tell them bout the thermal paste just to be safe and dont oc until eveything is taken care dont wanna give them any reason to say no!
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Old 07-08-2005, 11:38 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Aye

I just have been confused because the instructions for the heatsink define the CPU-Case as the actual cpu components that surround the CPU-Die. But I'm guessing that the "system" temp is indeed the ambient temperature.

This next part is going to sound like a no-brainer, but since my CPU is running hot after all, it's obvious that I need to invest in a chassis that has more than zero fans... uh, which is what I have now. Absolutely no fans in or out of my case, I think it's something I just found lying around and decided to use, or maybe it was a hand-me-down. But it was obviously meant for computers that didn't need that sort of thing, and I'm using one that does - I need to catch up with the 21st century and get a better case. I'm hoping that alone will solve my problem.

Thanks for the help, guys.
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Old 07-08-2005, 06:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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That is definately your problem! Good air circulation is always key!

I'm looking to get rid of my case, it has plenty of fans, one 120mm side intake fan, five 80mm front intake fans, and four 80 mm rear exhaust fans (2 slots, but they are double stacked). I modified the side panel to accept the 120mm fan, the original was an 80mm fan. I also put a custom fan on the bottom middle of the front bezel were where the fan holes were, I will give you that fan, but all the others you have to get :P. I need most of them for my new case. Here is the case I have now- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16811156142 You won't get the PSU either..... It sounds like you have one already anyways. Make me an offer, I am negotiable to a certain point. PM me or IM me, (handle is razortalonz).
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Old 07-12-2005, 03:42 AM   #10 (permalink)
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By removing the cover, sitting the case on it's side, and blowing a large fan on it, I can bring down the CPU temp to 51 degrees C.

Still seems kind of pathetic. I even cleaned off the chip and heatsink and put on a new layer of thermal. Should I expect better from a case with built in fans?
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