Question Effect of Ambient Temperature on CPU/GPU Temperature

franches

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Nov 11, 2014
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Simple question here, about a month ago I bought a RX 580 Gigabyte and noticed that it ran quite hot... anywhere between 70 - 78 Degrees, did a custom slightly more aggressive fan curve where the fan is always 5% more speed than the temp. My CPU runs slightly less hot, i7-7700 non k with a CM 212x and freshly replaced thermal paste ('bout a month ago too). However I live in Spain, a very arid country and our current temperature in Madrid sits anywhere between 35 - 40 degrees. My question here is, how far should I be concerned about the high temps on my GPU? My CPU spiked 78 degrees when gaming Sekiro.

Can I expect lower temps say in the winter and autumn months? If so, how much do Ambient Temps affect component temps?
 

WildCard999

Titan
Herald
As long as the CPU & GPU stay below 80C then they will be fine. When it's colder and the ambient temp lowers then the idle temps will lower as well which can also result in lower max temps or at least it taking a bit longer for the parts to reach those higher temps.
 

franches

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Nov 11, 2014
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As long as the CPU & GPU stay below 80C then they will be fine. When it's colder and the ambient temp lowers then the idle temps will lower as well which can also result in lower max temps or at least it taking a bit longer for the parts to reach those higher temps.
Alright, makes sense, we're sitting at 39 Degrees here, literally burning while trying to game
 
Woot, really that much? Hot Damn, then the ambient temp explains the high GPU and CPU temp?
It certainly does, no amount of fans can lower temps under ambient temps or change those temperatures. Unless artificially cooled not eve liquid coolers can do that, just slow down temperature raise giving CPU some respite in CPU loads that are not maxing out and let them cool down in mean time.
Passive coolers don't actually cool any dry objects, they just take heat to outside. Try blowing air of ambient temperature at a thermometer, it's not gonna drop.
 

truegenius

Distinguished
the temp you see is ambient temp + delta temp

so if you live in 40'c and see 70'c gpu temp then your delta is 30'c
that means if you get 10'c ambient in winter then you will see 10+30=40'c gpu temp

And the cooler they run the lower is power consumption means even lower temps or higher performance.
 
May 4, 2019
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Ambient is the lowest possible temperature at 0 power, barring use of ice baths or some sort of evaporative cooling. For each additional watt used by the system, the temperature increases above ambient in proportion to the thermal resistance of the cooling system. For a given physical cooling geometry, the only way to lower the thermal resistance is to increase airflow across the heat exchanger. That can only go so far, though, since the air to heat exchanger thermal resistance will always be greater than 0.

All other things being constant, a drop in ambient temperature results in the the same drop in junction temperature, or perhaps slightly more as the resistive and leakage losses in the chip usually decrease with lowered temperatures.
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Herald
In layman's terms (thanks for the techese explanation lol) it's physically impossible to cool a cpu/gpu below ambient temps by mechanical means. A fan blowing air across/through a heatsink is a mechanical process. You'd need a chemical process, like peltier or phase change compressor or LN2 to get below ambient.

But application of ambient temps depends on location. There's a difference between outside case ambient and inside case ambient. Your case temps are affected by outside case ambient, the cpu cooler is affected by inside case ambient. (case temp).

Your case temp will be highly affected by airflow. Lack of sufficient airflow results in case temps climbing until saturated, driven by the cpu/gpu as major heat sources, and motherboard components as minor heat sources. With sufficient airflow at idle, cpus generally average 6-12°C above outside case ambient. With insufficient airflow, this can top 20°C easily.

Ambient temps, both inside and outside affect idle temps the most, have very little affect on load temps, as loads are well above ambient saturation. Load temps are affected the most by airflow. As long as there's a decent exchange of hot exhaust for cooler intake air, your load temps are going to be based more on actual power usage than outside heatsink influences.

So whatever your load temps are, they are, they'd be roughly the same even in an air-conditioned room. If you have decent airflow.
 

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