So... Have I fried my CPU or something?

By KillerTV
Feb 15, 2007
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  1. OK, before starting, a little information.

    CPU - Intel Pentium 4 560 (3.6ghz).

    Idling temperature - 65c-70c.

    Full Load temperature - 100c+

    I kid you not. I have replaced my heatsink, a decent enough copper one, and a 120mm fan for it running at a constant 3500RPM. The temperature didn't even change a bit. Everytime I try running something, it does this in 2d games as well, the TM1 throttling will kick in, but push the temperature even higher while killing the performance.

    For the smaller less demanding games this is fine, I can deal with a bit of performance loss, but the new, better games, it just gets too hot and restarts itself.

    I also tried disabling TM1 throttling via RMClock to see if that was the problem, my performance problems disappeared, and my system was running as well as it should be, but in pretty much any game it simply gets too hot and shuts itself down.

    Now as you can guess, this is highly annoying, and nothing works! I've removed covers, opened windows, increased airflow and there's not even 1c change in my CPU's temperature. I looked into underclocking, but my BIOS is seriously terrible and simple (It was originally a system bought at PC world, so the BIOS is nerfed), and I also couldn't find any program that ran in windows that could properly detect my motherboard and lower the FSB. (As my motherboard is a rare MSI one and is discontinued, an MS-7046.

    So my question is, is there anything I can do? I am not particularly comfortable with removing the heatsink and re-applying compound. Should I simply look into a new motherboard and CPU?

    Cheers.
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 12,419   +281

    You replaced your heatsink and are not particularly comfortable with removing it and re-applying compound?

    I think you did it wrong, there is ABSOLUTELY no reason it should get that hot unless the ambient air inside your case is above about 120F.

    It really sounds like you didn't install the heatsink properly and or used about 1000% more thermal compound than you were supposed to.
  3. KillerTV

    KillerTV Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Ah, well it wasn't ME that replaced it, as it was having troubles it was covered under my PC world warranty, so I got them to do it.
  4. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 12,419   +281

    They screwed it up again. Replacing it yourself isn't as difficult as you might think. Really you have nothing to lose anyway since you have already considered that you might need a new motherboard and CPU.

    You should be able to look at it and see how it comes off. It is a LGA 775 processor right? My guess is that the 4 plastic pins that go through the motherboard to hold the heat sink on the processor aren't pushed through to where they click open. I screwed up with that on a Pentium D system about 5 or 6 months ago and only got 3 of the 4 properly pushed through, it was idling in the 50s. Perhaps only 2 are properly done on yours?

    I'd take the heatsink off and clean up the thermal paste with isopropyl alcohol (higher percentage better, try to avoid 70%), and pick up a tube from a computer shop. Preferably Artic Silver. Radio Shack has a silicon based one that works "ok" and it will certainly be better than none.
  5. KingCody

    KingCody TechSpot Guru Posts: 1,568   +7

    SNGX is right on, there is nothing wrong with your CPU, motherboard, or any hardware for that matter. opening windows or increasing airflow won't help because your ambient air temp is not the problem.

    the problem is that your heatsink is not making good contact with the heatspreader. PCworld did not properly install your heatsink, if you still have that warranty you could bring it back again and ask that a supervisor looks into it to make sure that it is done correctly this time.

    otherwise, as already mentioned it's not hard to do yourself. and since almost all modern CPUs use heatspreaders, it's much harder to damage it than it used to be. just give both the CPU and heatsink a good cleaning and apply a small amount of compound to the center of the CPU heatspreader only. different componds have different instructions, so follow the manufacturer's application instructions.

    cheers :wave:
  6. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 10,074   +13

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