Question CPU in MSI GL65 Leopard 10SFSK-493 is constantly throttling, overheating, and maxing out at 100% usage.

Apr 13, 2022
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So this problem has been going on for a while now, basically since I got the laptop about a year ago. I have an MSI GL65 Leopard 10SFSK-493, with 16 GB of ram, an RTX 2070 Super, and an i7-10750H CPU. Some slight info about things I've done with this laptop (I have little to no knowledge about the complicated stuff in tech, so I'm just listing things I think may have affected the situation):
-When I first got the laptop, I did a clean install of Windows, which uninstalled a lot of drivers by default and changed settings to defaults again. I installed the drivers I needed back, but I'm still not sure if this might have affected anything else.
-I do a lot of gaming on this laptop, for several hours at a time, typically with higher settings, (Some games I play are Dying Light, Elden Ring, Minecraft, Dauntless)
-I have never gone into BIOS settings and changed anything there (I plan on checking if Hyperthreading is enabled or disabled, but I don't want to mess up anything in BIOS until I know how to properly navigate it), but I have spent a lot of time configuring other settings in power management, NVIDIA Control Panel, and many other things, to try and optimize my CPU and GPU usage and try to fix the problem (GPU is mostly fine now, it almost never exceeds 80% usage or around 70 C temps).

Essentially, the problem I've been having is exactly what's stated in the title. My CPU is constantly throttling itself whenever I'm gaming (this happens the most in Dying Light and Elden ring), maxing out CPU Usage to 100% in Task Manager, and getting extremely hot. If this was something that only happened when I had settings too high or when I was running a game beyond my laptop's performance capabilities, I wouldn't be worried... but this happens at random, and even when I play games on the lowest settings. For instance, I will be playing Dying Light, and for 3 hours I will have a good, constant 120+ fps, and then all of the sudden for seemingly no reason (even if I'm in an area that is loading minimal entities and anything that would increase CPU usage), my fps will suddenly drop to 15-20, and stay like that for the next 20 minutes or so, or sometimes longer. I've looked up if anyone else has this problem with this laptop, but all of the tech reviews and benchmarking for it show it to be extremely good for gaming, and seemingly running at a decent 60 fps all the time. I have no clue what to do anymore, because the problem could be anything from what I stated it to be, to something as simple as my laptop not getting enough power. After this whole year of frustration with my CPU, I'm just looking for answers as to what the heck is happening, so I know if I can even fix this, or if I need to start saving for a new gaming setup.

Edit: Another problem I forgot to mention is that whenever Task manager shows the CPU being used at 100%, other third party monitoring programs on my laptop show it at 50% (Xbox Game Bar, MSI Dragon Center). I trust task manager over the other two, but it's a little strange.

Also, today I ran a small test of my own, to try and identify the problem with the CPU, and throttling is definitely a huge part of it. I downloaded FPS Monitor and had that run as an overlay while I launched Dying Light. I sat in one spot and didn't move for 3 minutes, and for that time, it was fine, averaging at around 70% CPU usage, 70 C, and 100 fps. at the fourth minute, all of the sudden everything went wrong, and the fps dropped to 35, CPU temps jumped up to 80+ C, and CPU usage suddenly maxed out. GPU usage and temps remained normal, but for sitting in one spot and idling, that's definitely concerning.

Edit 2: Just to clarify, I do have my fan curve's edited and sometimes I just turn on cooler boost via MSI Dragon Center, and I also have performance mode set to turbo in Dragon Center.
 
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uWebb429

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May 22, 2020
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I trust task manager
Why? The first tab does not report CPU usage. Most users assume those graphs are CPU usage but they are not. Try switching to the Details tab. That info typically aligns better with what other monitoring software reports.

CPU is constantly throttling
Thermal or power limit throttling is a very common problem in many performance oriented laptops. Learn how to use ThrottleStop. You need it.
 
Apr 13, 2022
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Why? The first tab does not report CPU usage. Most users assume those graphs are CPU usage but they are not. Try switching to the Details tab. That info typically aligns better with what other monitoring software reports.


Thermal or power limit throttling is a very common problem in many performance oriented laptops. Learn how to use ThrottleStop. You need it.
The problem is I'm not sure that throttling is the whole of the problem, I meant it when I said I don't know much about tech, so I'm very confused at the moment. I will look into throttlestop but I need some more concrete answers as to what the heck is going on right now, but I can't find any.
 
Apr 13, 2022
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Try clean Installing your GPU drivers using DDU (DISPLAY DRIVER UNINSTALLER)
SEARCH IT UP ON GOOGLE.

It fixes most GPU related issues, as far as I know... It should work. Worth a shot...

Hope this helps!?!
 
Apr 13, 2022
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Run ThrottleStop. See what speed your laptop is running at. Turn on the log file option and play a game. The log file will show if there are any throttling problems and how to fix them. Copy and paste the log file data to www.pastebin.com or upload the log file somewhere so I can have a look at it.
https://pastebin.com/HuEj9tJm

Played Dying Light for about 25 minutes on the settings I usually use, fps went down below 30 for extended periods of time during the test.
 

uWebb429

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Code:
   DATE       TIME    MULTI   C0%   CKMOD  BAT_mW  TEMP    VID   POWER
2022-04-14  12:16:00  38.16   19.6  100.0       0   82   1.0906   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:01  38.18   18.8  100.0       0   81   1.0913   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:02  37.83   16.5  100.0       0   81   1.1053   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:03  38.10   23.0  100.0       0   82   1.0834   45.2   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:04  37.44   18.4  100.0       0   83   1.0911   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:05  37.27   17.4  100.0       0   81   1.0823   45.0   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:06  37.26   40.6  100.0       0   80   1.0547   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:07  37.18   33.5  100.0       0   81   1.0715   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:08  37.23   40.2  100.0       0   81   1.0653   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:09  37.39   32.2  100.0       0   81   1.0968   44.7   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:10  38.61   23.6  100.0       0   82   1.0894   44.8   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:11  38.55   16.3  100.0       0   81   1.0951   45.2   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:12  38.64   17.0  100.0       0   82   1.0802   44.7   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:13  38.47   15.3  100.0       0   81   1.0938   45.0   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:14  38.04   23.1  100.0       0   80   1.0854   45.0   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:15  38.03   29.0  100.0       0   81   1.0852   45.0   PL1
@Temporice
The log file shows lots of PL1 power limit throttling. The 10750H has a 45W TDP rating so the CPU is forced to slow down so power consumption does not exceed 45W. This type of throttling is completely normal. When throttling, the CPU is running at around 3800 MHz which is not too bad.

In the ThrottleStop Options window you should have checked the Nvidia GPU box. If you do that, the log file will include Nvidia GPU temperatures and MHz. It might be GPU throttling that is causing the problem you are having. The CPU throttling is relatively minor.

The C0% column in the log file shows what percent of your CPU is being used. 20% to 40% is nowhere near fully loaded. Ignore the Task Manager Processes tab data. What it reports is useless information. It has nothing to do with CPU load.

Your CPU temperature in the log above is only 80°C to 82°C. These are normal operating temperatures for an Intel CPU in a gaming oriented laptop. The CPU temperature is not causing any CPU throttling. When the CPU is not power limit throttling, the CPU temperature gets up to 90°C which is still perfectly fine.

The FPS problem you are having is might be GPU temperature or a GPU power limit that is holding you back.

Try running GPU-Z. It should show in one of the tabs what the GPU throttling temperature is set to. Run another ThrottleStop log file with Nvidia GPU data included.

Post some screenshots of ThrottleStop including the FIVR and TPL windows. You might be able to increase the PL1 power limit up to 50W or so. That might reduce the amount of CPU power limit throttling. It will not help the GPU any.
 
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Apr 13, 2022
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Code:
   DATE       TIME    MULTI   C0%   CKMOD  BAT_mW  TEMP    VID   POWER
2022-04-14  12:16:00  38.16   19.6  100.0       0   82   1.0906   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:01  38.18   18.8  100.0       0   81   1.0913   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:02  37.83   16.5  100.0       0   81   1.1053   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:03  38.10   23.0  100.0       0   82   1.0834   45.2   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:04  37.44   18.4  100.0       0   83   1.0911   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:05  37.27   17.4  100.0       0   81   1.0823   45.0   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:06  37.26   40.6  100.0       0   80   1.0547   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:07  37.18   33.5  100.0       0   81   1.0715   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:08  37.23   40.2  100.0       0   81   1.0653   44.9   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:09  37.39   32.2  100.0       0   81   1.0968   44.7   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:10  38.61   23.6  100.0       0   82   1.0894   44.8   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:11  38.55   16.3  100.0       0   81   1.0951   45.2   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:12  38.64   17.0  100.0       0   82   1.0802   44.7   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:13  38.47   15.3  100.0       0   81   1.0938   45.0   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:14  38.04   23.1  100.0       0   80   1.0854   45.0   PL1
2022-04-14  12:16:15  38.03   29.0  100.0       0   81   1.0852   45.0   PL1
@Temporice
The log file shows lots of PL1 power limit throttling. The 10750H has a 45W TDP rating so the CPU is forced to slow down so power consumption does not exceed 45W. This type of throttling is completely normal. When throttling, the CPU is running at around 3800 MHz which is not too bad.

In the ThrottleStop Options window you should have checked the Nvidia GPU box. If you do that, the log file will include Nvidia GPU temperatures and MHz. It might be GPU throttling that is causing the problem you are having. The CPU throttling is relatively minor.

The C0% column in the log file shows what percent of your CPU is being used. 20% to 40% is nowhere near fully loaded. Ignore the Task Manager Processes tab data. What it reports is useless information. It has nothing to do with CPU load.

Your CPU temperature in the log above is only 80°C to 82°C. These are normal operating temperatures for an Intel CPU in a gaming oriented laptop. The CPU temperature is not causing any CPU throttling. When the CPU is not power limit throttling, the CPU temperature gets up to 90°C which is still perfectly fine.

The FPS problem you are having is might be GPU temperature or a GPU power limit that is holding you back.

Try running GPU-Z. It should show in one of the tabs what the GPU throttling temperature is set to. Run another ThrottleStop log file with Nvidia GPU data included.

Post some screenshots of ThrottleStop including the FIVR and TPL windows. You might be able to increase the PL1 power limit up to 50W or so. That might reduce the amount of CPU power limit throttling. It will not help the GPU any.
https://pastebin.com/zYcjV2fu

View: https://imgur.com/a/geeYE4D

^ TPL, FIVR, and GPU temp limit screenshots

This time it looks like the CPU temps reached 90 several times, pretty normal tho I'm assuming?
 

uWebb429

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May 22, 2020
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Your Nvidia GPU is set to the default thermal throttling temperature which is 87°C. In the log file your GPU temperature is mostly under 70°C. The GPU is running at a very consistent 1875 MHz so there are no obvious GPU throttling issues.

CPU temps reached 90 several times, pretty normal
That is correct. Pretty normal. Your computer is set to start thermal throttling at a peak CPU core temperature of 95°C. This is a little lower than the Intel recommended 100°C value. The CPU running at up to 90°C is not going to cause any CPU throttling.

If you want, you can use ThrottleStop to undervolt your CPU. This helps reduce power consumption which might help improve performance or decrease temperatures a little. Most 10th Gen mobile CPUs are stable if you set the core and the cache offset voltages to somewhere between -50 mV and -75 mV. Check the Unlock Adjustable Voltage box in the FIVR window and move the Offset Voltage slider to the left and press Apply. The offset voltage should show up in the Offset column of the monitoring table at the top right corner of the FIVR window. Start by setting both the core and cache offset voltage to -50 mV. Play a game and see if you are stable.

In the TPL window try checking the MMIO Lock box near the top right. This is an additional set of turbo power limits that are not necessary. This feature locks and disables them so they are not used. It might not make any difference. It is likely that your laptop is locked to 45W long term by an embedded controller and there is nothing you can do about it.

When testing with ThrottleStop, have you had any of the huge FPS drops that you were having before? Your laptop seems to be running a lot better than most gaming laptops do.
 
Apr 13, 2022
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When testing with ThrottleStop, have you had any of the huge FPS drops that you were having before? Your laptop seems to be running a lot better than most gaming laptops do.
Funny enough, yeah. I dropped down to 20-30 fps several times during that log, and I just played Elden Ring for a couple hours (low/medium settings), and did a log in the background, and even though I was getting pretty substantial fps drops (though that is more common with the PC port of Elden Ring, it seems to be a little unstable at the moment), the log looks pretty good. I'll try undervolting and see if that helps.
 
Apr 13, 2022
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Most 10th Gen mobile CPUs are stable if you set the core and the cache offset voltages to somewhere between -50 mV and -75 mV.
Setting it to -50 mV actually did help quite a bit, though I'm still getting some FPS drops unfortunately. Probably can't do much about that. Will changing it to -75 mV have a negative or positive impact on the performance? I might try that next, then if that doesn't work, there's not much more I can do I'm assuming.
 

uWebb429

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May 22, 2020
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Keep reducing the voltage. If the TS Bench test reports any errors or if your computer crashes when playing a game, you have gone too far. Less voltage is less heat and better performance.

Every CPU is unique. Only you can find out what works best for your CPU.
 

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