[SOLVED] Are CPU temperature-spikes normal on my laptop ?

Eyan32

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Good day! I have an Acer Nitro 5 with a GTX 1050 and i5-8300h. I've been having a lot of problems with my cpu temps lately. Before undervolting my CPU, I have a temp of 95C that is almost stable at that range (90-95) when playing Rainbow Six Siege and other games. I do have a CPU Cooler too(the vacuum type), and I have the Nitro Sense set to max speed for the fans of GPU and CPU.


Right now, I undervolted my CPU using ThrottleStop. I have my turbo ratio limit to 38 (used to have 40 or 4.0mhz, now 3.8mhz is the maximum core) and a -0.166 undervolt for both cpu cache and cpu core. I did have a drastic change in temps, which is now at 80-90C. It's still spiking at 95 at times though. Is this supposed to be worrying? When I look at HWmonitor, I see that my max cpu temps were reaching to 97C or 98C sometimes. This spike of cpu temps also happens when I'm browsing the net, but maybe it's because I have like 4 or more tabs open a lot of times. Is this normal?

The last time I had a repaste was January of this year. Do I need a repaste again? Also, is my undervolting too much? Can I still go for -0.170(or higher) or should I not? I have not experienced BSOD when playing games so I think it's still viable but I need a second opinion for this because I don't want to destroy my cpu of course... hope someone can help me!!


Other specs of the laptop are:
12 GB RAM
1TB HDD
256 GB NVME SSD
 
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Hey there,

Yes, that kind of fluctuation is mostly normal. Although temps that high while browsing seem way off.

For the core/cache undervolt, The advise is to have the cache at approx slightly above one half of the core undervolt. My I7 9750h, runs with a -182 core, -121mv cache. You might be able to push the core a little more if you dial back the cache. It's the core undervolt that gives most reduction in heat. At least that's how I understand it.

If you've only re-pasted in January, it's not really worth doing it again just yet. Unless you were very sure you did it correctly. What paste did you use. I did mine in Jan with Arctic MX4. It was a huge difference. A good 10c drop in most situations. If you didn't get at least a 5c drop or an even out of temps across cores, then you might think of doing again to rule that out.
 
Hey there,

Yes, that kind of fluctuation is mostly normal. Although temps that high while browsing seem way off.

For the core/cache undervolt, The advise is to have the cache at approx slightly above one half of the core undervolt. My I7 9750h, runs with a -182 core, -121mv cache. You might be able to push the core a little more if you dial back the cache. It's the core undervolt that gives most reduction in heat. At least that's how I understand it.

If you've only re-pasted in January, it's not really worth doing it again just yet. Unless you were very sure you did it correctly. What paste did you use. I did mine in Jan with Arctic MX4. It was a huge difference. A good 10c drop in most situations. If you didn't get at least a 5c drop or an even out of temps across cores, then you might think of doing again to rule that out.
 

Eyan32

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Aug 15, 2015
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Hey there,

Yes, that kind of fluctuation is mostly normal. Although temps that high while browsing seem way off.

For the core/cache undervolt, The advise is to have the cache at approx slightly above one half of the core undervolt. My I7 9750h, runs with a -182 core, -121mv cache. You might be able to push the core a little more if you dial back the cache. It's the core undervolt that gives most reduction in heat. At least that's how I understand it.

If you've only re-pasted in January, it's not really worth doing it again just yet. Unless you were very sure you did it correctly. What paste did you use. I did mine in Jan with Arctic MX4. It was a huge difference. A good 10c drop in most situations. If you didn't get at least a 5c drop or an even out of temps across cores, then you might think of doing again to rule that out.
Hey thanks for the reply!!

I mean, is it not normal when browsing? I noticed that the spike mostly happened when I was opening a new tab or refreshing it. Besides, again, it's not stable on the 90C, just a sudden spike. Is it still not normal in that sense? I'm not sure if anything has to do with this but I am using Brave Browser.

Do you use throttlestop as well? I only followed whatever videos I saw and most of them say that the cache and the core undervolt being equal is much better. But yeah, I'll follow your suggestion too and will definitely try that. Thanks for the advice! Also, I reduced my Turbo Ratio Limits to 36 now, which means I can only use 3.6 mhz of my processor even when fully loaded instead of its maximum (4.0 mhz).. Is it okay to lower these limits or should I stay with the original one, which is 40 (4.0 mhz)?? I do notice a slight drop in temps right now because of this.. maybe just revert it back to 40 when I experienced a BSOD?


Yeah, I figured that out too. Maybe I'll just check out first if it the paste dried out. I'm not sure if it was enough though because I only asked for a friend's help for the appropriate amount of paste. I used a Deep Cool Z5 Thermal Grease. I do not remember what my temps were when it was newly repasted, but I'll definitely check out now for sure!
 
Hey thanks for the reply!!

I mean, is it not normal when browsing? I noticed that the spike mostly happened when I was opening a new tab or refreshing it. Besides, again, it's not stable on the 90C, just a sudden spike. Is it still not normal in that sense? I'm not sure if anything has to do with this but I am using Brave Browser.

Do you use throttlestop as well? I only followed whatever videos I saw and most of them say that the cache and the core undervolt being equal is much better. But yeah, I'll follow your suggestion too and will definitely try that. Thanks for the advice! Also, I reduced my Turbo Ratio Limits to 36 now, which means I can only use 3.6 mhz of my processor even when fully loaded instead of its maximum (4.0 mhz).. Is it okay to lower these limits or should I stay with the original one, which is 40 (4.0 mhz)?? I do notice a slight drop in temps right now because of this.. maybe just revert it back to 40 when I experienced a BSOD?


Yeah, I figured that out too. Maybe I'll just check out first if it the paste dried out. I'm not sure if it was enough though because I only asked for a friend's help for the appropriate amount of paste. I used a Deep Cool Z5 Thermal Grease. I do not remember what my temps were when it was newly repasted, but I'll definitely check out now for sure!
Yes, most laptop users with Intel use TS :)

Try out the difference settings with cache reduced, and see if it helps stability with higher core undervolts. I suspect you will have better results.

Yes, of course you can set the turbo limits at whatever you want. It won't harm the CPU. I've three settings on mine. 3.2ghz for standard gaming - temps at about 65-70. 3.6 to push a few more FPS on demanding games (temps about 70-75c), and then 4ghz all core for absolute performance and benchmarking (temps about 75-85c max).

If you want lower heat and fan noise, use TPL to change the turbo boost power limits down a notch or two. See how much drop in heat and fan noise you get (with fans on auto). So for example, with my own CPU (9750h), I reduce the Turbo boost long power to 35w and turbo boost short power to 45w. So the CPU can hit about 3.6 within that thermal setting, but there is very little heat and is easily managed by the fans. I get temps about 69-74 with this setting, and 3.6 tipping up to 3.9 when thermals allow.

Also, the paste you chose, doesn't seem to be very good. It has a thermal conductivity rating of 1.46 W/m-k, whereas the MX4 I used has is 8.4 w/m-k. It dissipates the heat better. In that case, I'd suggest you re-paste with MX4 or maybe Grizzly Kryo which has an ever higher rating of 12+ w/m-k. Better paste, give better results.
 
I mean, is it not normal when browsing? I noticed that the spike mostly happened when I was opening a new tab or refreshing it. Besides, again, it's not stable on the 90C, just a sudden spike. Is it still not normal in that sense? I'm not sure if anything has to do with this but I am using Brave Browser.
Yes, it's a bit unusual that it spikes like that. It could be down to the application of the thermal paste.
 

Eyan32

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Yes, most laptop users with Intel use TS :)

Try out the difference settings with cache reduced, and see if it helps stability with higher core undervolts. I suspect you will have better results.

Yes, of course you can set the turbo limits at whatever you want. It won't harm the CPU. I've three settings on mine. 3.2ghz for standard gaming - temps at about 65-70. 3.6 to push a few more FPS on demanding games (temps about 70-75c), and then 4ghz all core for absolute performance and benchmarking (temps about 75-85c max).

If you want lower heat and fan noise, use TPL to change the turbo boost power limits down a notch or two. See how much drop in heat and fan noise you get (with fans on auto). So for example, with my own CPU (9750h), I reduce the Turbo boost long power to 35w and turbo boost short power to 45w. So the CPU can hit about 3.6 within that thermal setting, but there is very little heat and is easily managed by the fans. I get temps about 69-74 with this setting, and 3.6 tipping up to 3.9 when thermals allow.

Also, the paste you chose, doesn't seem to be very good. It has a thermal conductivity rating of 1.46 W/m-k, whereas the MX4 I used has is 8.4 w/m-k. It dissipates the heat better. In that case, I'd suggest you re-paste with MX4 or maybe Grizzly Kryo which has an ever higher rating of 12+ w/m-k. Better paste, give better results.

Hi, I just tried what you said with the cpu cache and cpu core. I have set it to -160.2 for cpu core and -130.9 for cpu cache. I tried playing Borderlands 2 multiplayer and I did have a much more stable temps. it's stable to 70-75C mostly but sometimes hit 85C. Then again, it spikes to 95C at times but I suppose that is normal, as you have said right?

I see. Well I guess I will have to create a lot of profiles like that as well since some games are more heavier than others.

I want to consider lowering that short power and long power, but I have no idea what is a safe sweet spot. Currently, my long power PL1 is set to 45 and my short power PL2 is at 56. My turbo time limit is set to 28. I have no idea what these numbers mean but I am willing to fiddle with it. How do I determine what's a good number for my Short Power and Long Power? Also, what is the "Turn on" and "Turn off" in throttlestop? Do they help? Any advice would be much much appreciated!!!:)


As for the paste, I would consider getting an MX4 next time maybe because I don't have the funds yet and my paste has still a lot on it. I'm willing to open my laptop and repaste every other month I guess, gotta consume it all first lol. But thank you for the suggestion, at least I know what to look for when buying thermal paste now.

Also if you could send your throttlestop settings just so I can have a good reference on what to check/uncheck and change values, it would be highly appreciated!!!
 
I want to consider lowering that short power and long power, but I have no idea what is a safe sweet spot. Currently, my long power PL1 is set to 45 and my short power PL2 is at 56. My turbo time limit is set to 28. I have no idea what these numbers mean but I am willing to fiddle with it. How do I determine what's a good number for my Short Power and Long Power? Also, what is the "Turn on" and "Turn off" in throttlestop? Do they help? Any advice would be much much appreciated!!!:)
So PL1 (Long power max) is the base TDP for your CPU. Typically it might be 35w, 45w. PL2 is your short power max and for my chip is default 60w. So when thermals allow the CPU will boost to the long power short (PL2) for 28 seconds (28 being the default too). PL1/PL2 are measured in watts. The time at boost, 28 seconds, is called TAU.

My CPU has a tdp down mode. Which is 35w. My CPU at 35w PL1, and 45w PL2, will boost to about 3.7/3.8ghz. But the heat is relatively low and fan noise is appreciably low. So if a game, as you've said isn't that demanding you can set you clockspeed with a lower TDP and see if it suits the game you're playing. Yes, I have a few profiles for different scenarios. Even at 3.2ghz you'd be surprised how it will game. I play a lot of BF V, and at 3.2ghz I get a very comfortable, high FPS (for my GPU - GTX 1660ti). 3.6ghz will give another few FPS but nothing to note.

Turn ON/OFF TS does nothing any more. It did have functionality, but not now as I understand.

In terms of PL1/PL2. I have one setting with PL1/PL2 being 35w and 45w respectively. For my other profiles I have one with 45w and 65w, and then another with 60w (PL1) and 80w (PL2).
The last one seems high, but what it does is give max performance with no throttling, but big heat and fan noise. This would be for absolute performance or benching.

Edit: I will send a few screenies shortly.
 
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Eyan32

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So PL1 (Long power max) is the base TDP for your CPU. Typically it might be 35w, 45w. PL2 is your short power max and for my chip is default 60w. So when thermals allow the CPU will boost to the long power short (PL2) for 28 seconds (28 being the default too). PL1/PL2 are measured in watts. The time at boost, 28 seconds, is called TAU.

My CPU has a tdp down mode. Which is 35w. My CPU at 35w PL1, and 45w PL2, will boost to about 3.7/3.8ghz. But the heat is relatively low and fan noise is appreciably low. So if a game, as you've said isn't that demanding you can set you clockspeed with a lower TDP and see if it suits the game you're playing. Yes, I have a few profiles for different scenarios. Even at 3.2ghz you'd be surprised how it will game. I play a lot of BF V, and at 3.2ghz I get a very comfortable, high FPS (for my GPU - GTX 1660ti). 3.6ghz will give another few FPS but nothing to note.

Turn ON/OFF TS does nothing any more. It did have functionality, but not now as I understand.

In terms of PL1/PL2. I have one setting with PL1/PL2 being 35w and 45w respectively. For my other profiles I have one with 45w and 65w, and then another with 60w (PL1) and 80w (PL2).
The last one seems high, but what it does is give max performance with no throttling, but big heat and fan noise. This would be for absolute performance or benching.

Edit: I will send a few screenies shortly.
thank you for the screenshots!!

This might be my last question. so basically, when changing the long power pl1 and short power pl2, should i only change it lower than the original values? I have also saw that my processor has a "Configurable TDP-down" of 35 watts based on the intel website. Does that mean that my pl1's lowest value should only be limited to 35?? How about the pl2 value though, what should be my reference? Based on your settings, my pl2 can go higher but what should I consider a "dangerous" and unstable value??

There is also a setting called TDP Level Control that can be checked and unchecked, but mine is unchecked by default in my Throttlestop 9.3... should I leave this as it is?
 
This might be my last question. so basically, when changing the long power pl1 and short power pl2, should i only change it lower than the original values? I have also saw that my processor has a "Configurable TDP-down" of 35 watts based on the intel website. Does that mean that my pl1's lowest value should only be limited to 35?? How about the pl2 value though, what should be my reference? Based on your settings, my pl2 can go higher but what should I consider a "dangerous" and unstable value??
No, it's the opposite. You can put PL1/PL2 at any amount you wish, but obviously within reason, given the chip is a 45w CPU. You can raise it higher as I highlighted. What that does is basically take off power limit throttling. So your CPU won't dial back, it will stay at it's max all core clock. For my CPU that is 4ghz.

In terms of dangerous, maybe stick with below 90 for PL2. You'll know if things don't work, as the CPU might crash, or temps get real high. Your t-junction is 100c so your CPU will shut off or dial back when temps go that high. Play around with PL1/PL2 if you want better performance. You do that by increasing the values. The other side of it is keeping them low, which reduces heat and fan noise, but CPU clockspeeds max out about 3.6/3.7 ghz, task dependant.
 

Eyan32

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Here's a good guide, that shows you how playing with certain values help reduce heat, but also how to maximise performance. Yes, the CPU here is mine I7 9750h. But as a reference, it's essentially the same: i7 9750H Undervolt Settings Using Throttlestop - YouTube

This is useful too: The ThrottleStop Guide (2020): How to Lower Temperatures, Increase Performance, and Boost Battery Life on Your Laptop (ultrabookreview.com)
thank you so much for your help!! . I've tried all the undervolt that I could, and while it did help a lot, I still point my suspicion to the thermal paste. And that's what I'm going to change soon enough.


Again, thank you so much! I really appreciate the time and effort,
 
thank you so much for your help!! . I've tried all the undervolt that I could, and while it did help a lot, I still point my suspicion to the thermal paste. And that's what I'm going to change soon enough.


Again, thank you so much! I really appreciate the time and effort,
No worries. You're very welcome! :) If there's anything else I can help with, feel free to PM me.

Happy gaming :)
 

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