Question i7 5960x at 104 Degrees under load

Aug 6, 2022
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I have an old tower from 2014 with a 5960x (overclocked to 3.9 GHz) and some Corsair AIO (H10i or something like that, don't know exactly). It has always used the case fans and has been fine. Recently I transported it over a long distance and noticed that the CPU temperatures under load jumped up from around 85 degrees previously to 105 degrees now (I do 3d renders so it is under load frequently). I checked all the fans and they are all still working, so I am not sure what's wrong. They are just the default 140mm fans that came with the case (a Corsair 760T case). There are two in the front, one in the back, and two above the radiator which is mounted at the top of the case. When I put my hand over the top of the case (above the radiator fans), it feels like more heat comes out of the second fan toward the back of the case compared to the one in the front. I don't think I had noticed this before, but both fans are definitely spinning.

I will mention that while transporting it, the tower was on its side, rather than standing upright, for an extended period of time (7 hours), but I don't know if that has an effect. One of the radiator fans makes a rattling noise, but it has done that for years so that's not anything new.

The new location is warmer and the overall airflow is worse than before, but I wouldn't expect this much of a difference in temperatures under load. Here are some pictures:





Did transporting it on its side break something with the fans or AIO? Any ideas on what else to check?
 

Barty1884

Retired Moderator
Unlikely the transport broke anything.... but given the age (assuming the AIO is of the same era), it may well just be failing.

Always possible the mount moved a little during transport, breaking the 'seal' with the thermal paste. I'd start with re-mounting the block, personally.

A rattling in an AIO is unlikely to be a good sign... but I can't think of anything that should rattle. Fan or screw, that's about it.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Sounds like you got an air bubble trapped where it doesn't belong. With it running, try leaning the case all the way back, like, rocking it on it's rear bottom "corner" until it is nearly laying on the back of the case, then same thing forward until it is nearly laying on it's front. Then side to side as well to see if you can dislodge the air bubble from the pump housing.

I'd also double check that none of the wiring has come loose inside the case for the pump. If the pump is connected to a fan header check the reference signal in the BIOS to ensure there is an adequate RPM signal and that that header is configured for full speed (100%) operation on the pump. Given the age of the system and the fact that it was disconnected for a period of time it's also possible you might have a dead or weak CMOS battery and disconnecting from power may have caused it to lose it's BIOS settings. Double check to ensure that all fan headers and pump are properly configured. IF the pump is SATA power only connection, and is monitored through Corsair software on the desktop, check to see that it is seeing a proper RPM signal as well.

If all of that is good, then it's possible this AIO is simply done had it.

If that AIO is from 2014 as well, then it is WAY, WAY past time to be replaced. Generally, on average, these AIO coolers, especially the older ones like that, were only good for about 3-5 years IF you were lucky. Newer ones, remains to be seen because they aren't to that age yet but I've seen even a lot of the newer ones not make it much more than 3 years before the pump internals either stop functioning or become clogged with biological debris that grows and builds up inside the small passages.

And, since that looks like it's only a 240mm anyhow, it was probably never really big enough for that CPU to start with, much less with it overclocked. My recommendation would be that you simply consider a new cooler, whether air or another AIO. If you go with an AIO I'd recommend looking at 280mm models.
 
Reactions: Barty1884

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Unlikely the transport broke anything.... but given the age (assuming the AIO is of the same era), it may well just be failing.

Always possible the mount moved a little during transport, breaking the 'seal' with the thermal paste. I'd start with re-mounting the block, personally.

A rattling in an AIO is unlikely to be a good sign... but I can't think of anything that should rattle. Fan or screw, that's about it.
Well, he indicated it was one of the radiator fans, so that wouldn't be terribly uncommon given the age AND as you say is further evidence that the whole cooler really SHOULD be replaced.

85°C is VERY much borderline and at the extreme limit of what should be acceptable. Anything over that is simply not acceptable at all and at 105°C this system should not even be operated until the cooling problem is resolved.
 

Barty1884

Retired Moderator
Well, he indicated it was one of the radiator fans, so that wouldn't be terribly uncommon given the age AND as you say is further evidence that the whole cooler really SHOULD be replaced.

85°C is VERY much borderline and at the extreme limit of what should be acceptable. Anything over that is simply not acceptable at all and at 105°C this system should not even be operated until the cooling problem is resolved.
Yep, misread that it was the fan, not the rad.

100% agreed, it would've been a a little disingenuous to call the cooler 'sufficient' even in 2014 - let alone tacking 10+ years of use onto it.

Does seem strange to see a 20'C swing though just from moving it. If it's truly given up the ghost, which is completely possible (and probably expected at this point), it would be one heck of a coincidence...
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Well, I mean, we see a LOT of these threads where problems develop immediately after a move or moving the PC to another room, although they always seem to be mostly random in nature, but an awful lot of them are cooling related and most of those that are cooling related tend to be with older AIO coolers. I feel like they are generally air bubble related OR possibly even minimal bumping and jarring around might dislodge some small biological mass inside the radiator, lines or pump and move to an area where it clogs it up somewhat restricting flow through the unit. Given the almost certainty that the pump itself is bound to be much weaker than when it was new it's unlikely to be able to power through such resistance well like it might have with a stronger pump.

Like shown here at about 21:52 on.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9U_5aGf0G9Q
 
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Aug 6, 2022
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Thanks for the advice. I tried moving the AIO and I did hear air bubbles in there. I also re-applied thermal paste and re-mounted the block but unfortunately even after all that I'm still having the exact same issue. I suspect it's an issue with the AIO itself. My guess is that something solid in the loop may have gotten dislodged when it was laid down and could be restricting the flow more somehow now that it got caught somewhere else in the loop. It wouldn't surprise me if there was something growing in there like in the video you shared, especially considering it is 7 years old.

Any recommended air coolers to try for a 5960x?
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
There has probably been significant permeation over time as well which is why you hear so much air inside (Known as cavitation), and that too is an AIO killer.

Scientific explanation: https://www.twi-global.com/technical-knowledge/faqs/what-is-permeation

That's an extremely high TDP processor at 140w and it's actual power consumption under a load is going to be MUCH higher than that since Intel's TDP specifications do NOT include power draw under boost conditions, but base clock only.

You will need either a big air cooler or a 280/320mm AIO.

What is the actual model of your case so that we can determine exactly what size coolers it will accomodate?
 
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Reactions: Karadjgne
Aug 6, 2022
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There has probably been significant permeation over time as well which is why you hear so much air inside, and that too is an AIO killer.

Scientific explanation: https://www.twi-global.com/technical-knowledge/faqs/what-is-permeation

That's an extremely high TDP processor at 140w and it's actual power consumption under a load is going to be MUCH higher than that since Intel's TDP specifications do NOT include power draw under boost conditions, but base clock only.

You will need either a big air cooler or a 280/320mm AIO.

What is the actual model of your case so that we can determine exactly what size coolers it will accomodate?
Thanks for providing the background. Also keep in mind I only have this one running at 3.9 GHz (it was just an overclocking preset directly in the Asus X99 Deluxe Motherboard BIOS), so it probably won't be quite as demanding as the ones which are overclocked above 4 GHz. According to LibreHardwareMonitor and HWMontior, the CPU pulls on average around 148 watts under load with my particular overclock (even when the load temps were in the 80s, before I transported the computer). I think that's because it somehow locked the frequency (Task Manager only reports the frequency at exactly 3.91 GHz, and it never fluctuates no matter what I'm doing, whether a single or multi threaded workload).

This is the case I'm using (Corsair Full Tower White 760T): https://www.corsair.com/us/en/Categories/Products/Cases/Graphite-Series™-760T-Arctic-White-Full-Tower-Windowed-Case/p/CC-9011074-WW
 
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Aug 6, 2022
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In fact, I even recently started monitoring the system resource utilization and other information while it is rendering. Here are the watts the cpu is pulling (as far as those hardware monitoring tools are accurate) during a 3D render over about two and a half days:



That example was measured prior to transporting it, back when the temps were in the 80s under load.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Actually, your "automatic overclock profile" probably is WORSE than if you overclocked it manually to the same clock speed/frequency and manually set the voltage, because all of these automatic utilities in the BIOS and via desktop application tend to drastically overdo it on the voltage in order to err on the side of stability. Generally speaking you can configure the same overclock as any setting used by these presets and utilities and end up with a better configuration that is still perfectly stable but uses less power and produces less heat by not going overboard on the voltage but only setting the core voltage to what is actually required to achieve stability. Just, as an FYI. I totally understand if you do not wish to pursue that yourself. Not everbody does, but you might be able to either achieve the same overclock with less voltage and heat or achieve a higher overclock with the same voltage and heat, depending on various factors such as the quality of the CPU sample, motherboard model, cooling, etc.

So, anyhow, I always feel compelled to share that just to be sure users are aware.

With that 760T you can use just about any cooler you want almost. Basically any air cooler on the market and most AIO coolers up to 360mm. Out of curiosity, is your AIO currently configured so that the fans which are sandwiched in between the top of the case and the radiator are blowing INTO the case or blowing OUT of the case. This is important, because if that AIO was setup to where those fans are blowing into the case while up top it's no wonder your temperatures were so poor even before you moved it.

Personally, you could go either way with this, and it totally depends on what you prefer. Do you prefer to go with an air cooler or would you rather stick to some flavor of AIO cooler?

If you want an air cooler, I'd probably recommend one of these for your application.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black 82.52 CFM CPU Cooler ($109.95 @ Amazon)
Total: $109.95
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2022-09-27 00:16 EDT-0400



PCPartPicker Part List

CPU Cooler: CRYORIG R1 Universal 76 CFM CPU Cooler ($84.61 @ Amazon)
Total: $84.61
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2022-09-27 00:21 EDT-0400



PCPartPicker Part List

CPU Cooler: Thermalright Le Grand Macho RT 73.6 CFM CPU Cooler ($79.98 @ Amazon)
Total: $79.98
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2022-09-27 00:25 EDT-0400



And my preference would far and away be for the Noctua NH-D15 but these other coolers are quite capable too. In reality, for that CPU, you might be a lot better off looking at 360mm AIO coolers if you will be running a lot of very high long term sustained loads as they will handle the saturation better but these air coolers are good enough if you prefer air.
 
Aug 6, 2022
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Thanks for the suggestions! The radiator fans have always been blowing air out of the case. I suggested an air cooler because I was just wanting to avoid this situation from potentially occurring again in the future (I am OK with less performance if it means less maintenance). But if you think there really would be a significant difference (especially since this thing is typically under 100% CPU load for multiple days at a time), or you think modern AIOs have greater longevity, I'm all ears.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
I would recommend going with the Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black if you want something that is going to last a very long time. Any of the AIO coolers are going to have a finite lifespan of probably around 5-7 years. They just don't typically last longer than that because they are prone to biological growth inside like basically any liquid environment that isn't periodically flushed and refilled with fresh chemicals plus the pumps simply wear out. Galvanic corrosion is also a problem eventually on most loops because few of them are entirely the same metal throughout the entire AIO loop so when the corrosion suppressive chemicals start breaking down you'll begin seeing signs of galvanic corrosion.

Scientific explanation: https://www.twi-global.com/technical-knowledge/faqs/faq-what-is-galvanic-corrosion-and-how-can-it-be-avoided

Of course, air coolers have their own issues but the occasional replacement of a fan is far cheaper than replacing an entire AIO cooler. Especially if you only have to replace the fan every 5-7 years as well. My current Noctua cooler, the NH-U14S, has been continuously in service, lasting through three motherboard/platform upgrades, since 2014. It started out on an AM3+ FX-8320, then was moved to a new system with a 6700k and is now on a 12700k, and all of them were at least moderately overclocked.

A 280 or 360 AIO will probably cool marginally better, but you will be replacing it down the road and you'll likely be paying more for it initially, although the prices these days are very up and down so that can be a hit or miss call at times.
 
Aug 6, 2022
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I would recommend going with the Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black if you want something that is going to last a very long time. Any of the AIO coolers are going to have a finite lifespan of probably around 5-7 years. They just don't typically last longer than that because they are prone to biological growth inside like basically any liquid environment that isn't periodically flushed and refilled with fresh chemicals plus the pumps simply wear out. Galvanic corrosion is also a problem eventually on most loops because few of them are entirely the same metal throughout the entire AIO loop so when the corrosion suppressive chemicals start breaking down you'll begin seeing signs of galvanic corrosion.

Scientific explanation: https://www.twi-global.com/technical-knowledge/faqs/faq-what-is-galvanic-corrosion-and-how-can-it-be-avoided

Of course, air coolers have their own issues but the occasional replacement of a fan is far cheaper than replacing an entire AIO cooler. Especially if you only have to replace the fan every 5-7 years as well. My current Noctua cooler, the NH-U14S, has been continuously in service, lasting through three motherboard/platform upgrades, since 2014. It started out on an AM3+ FX-8320, then was moved to a new system with a 6700k and is now on a 12700k, and all of them were at least moderately overclocked.

A 280 or 360 AIO will probably cool marginally better, but you will be replacing it down the road and you'll likely be paying more for it initially, although the prices these days are very up and down so that can be a hit or miss call at times.
Thanks, I think I'm willing to try an air cooler for now. Is there a specific reason you suggested the NH-D15 vs your NH-U14S?
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Because it is a much better performer for high TDP processors or high end overclocking. Consider, my 6700k was a 91w part. My 12700k is a 125w part. Your 5960x is a 140w part that can draw about 190w under all core 100% load conditions. The U14S would never be able to handle that kind of TDP and if I was running anything beyond a very basic OC on my 12700k I would be moving to either the D15 or one of the higher quality AIO coolers. Or a full custom loop.

The Deepcool Assassin III is another good choice, but the Noctua NH-D15 and D15 chromax.black are generally considered to be the very best big air coolers money can buy. A newer version of the D15 is slated to be released at some point but given how long Noctua spends developing and fine tuning their products, sometimes spending two years or more on a product before releasing it to the public, who knows when that will be. For now, the D15 twin fan, twin finstack cooler is the very best option for air cooling. Keep in mind though, this cooler is freaking HUGE and is basically two of my U14S in one.





 
Aug 6, 2022
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Because it is a much better performer for high TDP processors or high end overclocking. Consider, my 6700k was a 91w part. My 12700k is a 125w part. Your 5960x is a 140w part that can draw about 190w under all core 100% load conditions. The U14S would never be able to handle that kind of TDP and if I was running anything beyond a very basic OC on my 12700k I would be moving to either the D15 or one of the higher quality AIO coolers. Or a full custom loop.

The Deepcool Assassin III is another good choice, but the Noctua NH-D15 and D15 chromax.black are generally considered to be the very best big air coolers money can buy. A newer version of the D15 is slated to be released at some point but given how long Noctua spends developing and fine tuning their products, sometimes spending two years or more on a product before releasing it to the public, who knows when that will be. For now, the D15 twin fan, twin finstack cooler is the very best option for air cooling. Keep in mind though, this cooler is freaking HUGE and is basically two of my U14S in one.





Thanks for all your help! I ordered the NH-D15 yesterday and installed it today. Now idle temps are in the mid 40s and under full CPU load it is at 68-70 C. Big improvement.
 

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