Staredit Network > Forums > Technology & Computers > Topic: CPU Throttle Fun Time
CPU Throttle Fun Time
Aug 20 2009, 7:54 pm
By: DevliN  

Aug 20 2009, 7:54 pm DevliN Post #1

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

I built my cheap computer in September 08. Here's what I've got:
160GB HD: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136075
1TB HD: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148433 (Added later)
LG CD/DVD: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136144
4 GB RAM: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820134582
550w PSU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817170019
EVGA 9800GT: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?Sku=E145-9826
ASUS M2N-MX SE: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?Sku=A455-2810 (Combo with CPU)
AMD Athlon 64 x2: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?Sku=CP2-AM2-5800 (Combo with MoBo)
NZXT Case: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?Sku=A406-1101
Cooler Master Heatsink: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=4177137&CatId=1188

When I first built it, everything was fine. After a few months, I noticed the CPU would randomly start to throttle while playing Left 4 Dead and WoW (the framerate would drop from 60 to 5 for five seconds, then shoot back up to 60). After a small bit of research, I found out CPU throttle is mostly due to an overheating CPU. I then replaced the heatsink with the one listed above. Everything was fine for a few more months until this past month when we've been getting record heat in Los Angeles and the throttling has gotten worse. I thought the heat in the house was to blame, but even at night I'd have the throttle issue.

That brings us to now. My computer will not only throttle randomly (sometimes dropping from 3000 Hz to 800 Hz and not coming back up until I restart my computer), but it will also randomly shut down. The only thing I can think of is my PSU is not putting out enough juice for everything, and I need to replace it. What do you techies think? I just don't want to spend $120 on a new PSU and have it not actually solve the issue.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 20 2009, 7:59 pm Excalibur Post #2

The sword and the faith

If your ambient temps are unusually high, just about anything (PSU, GPU) could be overheating. Though I will say, you picked one shitty PSU mate. ;O




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Aug 20 2009, 8:10 pm DevliN Post #3

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

Yeah, I was going for cheapest possible due to lack of funding. It lasted for months and months without crapping out, so I assumed it was going to be fine. Shortly after buying everything, I got a very very nice job (that unfortunately only lasts for 8 or 9 months before going on hiatus for 4 months - so I'm unemployed now), but never thought I'd need to replace it until now.

Post has been edited 1 time(s), last time on Aug 20 2009, 8:15 pm by DevliN.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 21 2009, 4:50 pm NudeRaider Post #4

We can't explain the universe, just describe it; and we don't know whether our theories are true, we just know they're not wrong. >Harald Lesch

Have you tried removing the heat sink from your processor, cleaning both heatsink and processor and applying fresh heatsink paste before putting them back together? The problem may have started when your original heatsink paste dried out.




Aug 21 2009, 9:16 pm DevliN Post #5

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

I removed the paste and reapplied it when I bought and attached my newer one. Is reapplying heatsink paste something that should be done regularly? I always assumed you put it on once and you're good.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 21 2009, 9:26 pm NudeRaider Post #6

We can't explain the universe, just describe it; and we don't know whether our theories are true, we just know they're not wrong. >Harald Lesch

Quote from DevliN
I removed the paste and reapplied it when I bought and attached my newer one. Is reapplying heatsink paste something that should be done regularly? I always assumed you put it on once and you're good.
Usually yes, if done properly.
But when problems occur you should consider everything.




Aug 22 2009, 11:15 pm Forsaken Archer Post #7



Make sure all your fans are nice and oiled up. My current cpu cooler has a problem of drying out every few weeks. I think it needs a better sticker on the top because it doesn't really stick anymore.
Just sayingas you didn't mention it at all. Sewing machine oil is supposed to be excellent for computer fans.



None.

Aug 23 2009, 8:07 am DevliN Post #8

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

My case has 6 fans in it, and so far airflow doesn't seem to be a major issue (hence the lack of mention). I'll look into that, though. Thanks.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 29 2009, 8:42 pm DevliN Post #9

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

Update!

I bought a 750w Corsair PSU and some Arctic 5 thermal greasy-goodness. So far my core temp is pretty much the same as it was before. I still see throttling occasionally, and last night my computer randomly shut off while I wasn't using it. Basically nothing has changed.

My case fans are working perfectly, my heatsink is (theoretically) working well. I'm out of ideas. Could my CPU (or mobo) just be messed up after months of crazy over-heating?

Over the next few weeks, I'm thinking of getting a new motherboard and a new CPU, but I don't want to spend that kind of money if this problem will just persist.

Ideas?



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 29 2009, 8:57 pm CaptainWill Post #10



Hmm, I thought the PSU change might have sorted the problem. I had a similar issue with a terrible PSU early this year as well. The PSU would overheat, voltage would drop and the entire computer would lock up during intense activity, like gaming. Sometimes the system would turn off randomly. Switching to a Corsair PSU solved my issue.

If the system is cutting out it's likely a power issue or an overheating issue. Have you tried using Everest or Sandra to perform a burn-in test of the computer components?

I have had nothing but trouble with Athlon 64 X2 CPUs - the one in my laptop overheats and triggers the thermal trip on a regular basis. Sometimes it doesn't even throttle correctly, leading to more overheating.

I would recommend ditching the CPU and going for an Intel one. I've never had overheating issues with Core 2 Duos.



None.

Aug 29 2009, 9:45 pm DevliN Post #11

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

That's what I've also heard about AMD chips, so I may just do that. I was really hoping the PSU would solve everything. I guess it isn't throttling as often, but it still hits me when I'm playing either WoW or Left 4 Dead, randomly.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 29 2009, 10:29 pm CaptainWill Post #12



I would still recommend using a program like Everest to run a burn-in test. The results will likely give you a good indication as to where the problem is. I'm sure you can find a copy somewhere.



None.

Aug 30 2009, 12:51 am DevliN Post #13

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

I downloaded a trail version of Everest Ultimate. Running a "System Stability" test now. What should I be looking for? Basically so far it's making my CPU run at 100% and causing it to throttle (which I can see using RightMark CPU Clock Utility as seen below).


The temperature gauge on there is pretty off, so I would disregard it. I use CoreTemp (at Excalibur's suggestion) and find it to be a helluva lot more accurate.


EDIT:
And I forgot to mention earlier that my computer randomly froze this morning with nothing major running, so I'm not sure how the CPU would have caused that. It's idling at about 37 to 46 degress C at this point.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 30 2009, 3:04 am CaptainWill Post #14



What temperature was CoreTemp reporting during the test? It is sounding very much like an overheating issue now. No way would the processor scale down so much unless it was operating at close to its critical temperature, or unless it had faulty drivers.



None.

Aug 30 2009, 8:50 am DevliN Post #15

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

Between 50 to 57 degrees C (occasionally a red 228 would come up for a second and then disappear, though I doubt that would be possible). When it throttles, it drops to about 38 to 44 degrees C.

I've always assumed it was an overheating issue, but I have 6 working 120mm fans in my case and so far a pretty good heatsink. Temperatures here in Los Angeles have been like 95-105 degrees F daily, so I figured it was just external heat screwing it up. I'm told, however, that shouldn't be the case with something like this. I'd also note that my computer keeps randomly turning off when I'm not using it, even at night when it is significantly cooler.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 30 2009, 10:40 am Sauceover Post #16



throttling at 57 degrees? that seems awfully low....albeit, i'm not an AMD guy....

based on the other details, i'm kinda iffy on whether or not its the heat thats causing the problem. but ya, like captainwill said, do a stress test and see how it handles it.



None.

Aug 30 2009, 10:53 am DevliN Post #17

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

I've had it running for 5 minutes and it's basically throttling every couple of seconds; my RightMark CPU monitor looks identical to the screenshot I posted above (as far as visual throttle charts go). I'm worried that if I leave it on unattended, it wont help much because my computer may just shut off during the test.

I'm somewhat tempted to reformat my HD and reinstall everything just to see what happens (could some sort of corruption cause this?), but I've been waiting on that until Windows 7 comes out mostly because it'll be a hassle otherwise.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 31 2009, 6:18 am ShadowFlare Post #18



I'd say you don't really need to wait if you want to install Windows 7. You could download and install it now for a trial version and put in a key later. Just be sure to follow the proper installation procedure for the type of key you would buy. For example, if you would be buying Windows 7 Home Premium, be sure to install that version. If you would be buying an upgrade edition, be sure to run the installer from within Windows instead of booting from the disc (otherwise it won't accept the upgrade key). I'm unsure of whether OEM keys work for upgrades or not, so if you would be buying one of those and you would be doing a clean install anyway, probably boot from the disc to run the installer, just in case. (Remember, clean install doesn't mean you have to format. The installers for Vista and up actually move the clutter of the old OS to a new folder called Windows.old, making it even easier to have a clean directory tree on a new install.)

Of course, whether doing it this way is legal or not may be questionable. There probably isn't really anything wrong with it provided that you buy a key to activate it when it becomes available.

You will need to use the "slmgr -rearm" command at least once for resetting the trial period since it is more than a month until it will be possible to purchase copies of Windows 7 to get the keys.



None.

Aug 31 2009, 6:49 am DevliN Post #19

OVERWATCH STATUS GO

Thanks for the info regarding that, I may just go ahead and do it this week. I've been thinking of reformatting anyway after I more recently bought a 1TB HD, and my old 160GB drive (which Windows is on now) is running out of space.



\:devlin\: Currently Working On: \:devlin\:
My Overwatch addiction.

Aug 31 2009, 10:32 am ShadowFlare Post #20



If you want to verify that a downloaded copy is authentic, you can go to http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/subscriptions/downloads/default.aspx to find the SHA1 hash of the official version of the disc you downloaded and compare it with the one computed on your downloaded copy by an SHA1 hashing utility. You may need to sign in with a Windows Live ID to access the list (you don't need a TechNet subscription to view the list). If you only want an authentic disc, also be sure to only download one where the authentic SHA1 hash for the disc you want is mentioned. It is more likely to be one that matches if they are stating up front that it is the one that matches the file.

Oh, and just a note for if you've ever installed Vista without a key. In the Vista installer, when you don't enter a key it prompts you to select which edition of Vista to install. The Windows 7 installer no longer supports this (even though all of the installation files are there), so you need to use the disc for the specific one you want to install. It was possible to make a disc that had the choices back on the pre-release versions, but it is no longer possible on the RTM version, from what I've read. It is possible to make one of the other discs based on an existing one, but that is all (for example, you can make a Home Premium disc from an Ultimate disc).

BTW, if you want to know where to download it, I'm not going to tell you. :P However, you should be able to find it on Google by simply doing a search for the SHA1 hash of the one you want (no need to even mention Windows 7 in the search).

Post has been edited 2 time(s), last time on Aug 31 2009, 11:09 am by ShadowFlare.



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