Question Ryzen Base Clock Fluctuating Wildly

rcampbell578

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Hey guys

So I just finished a build for a friend of mine. It's a Ryzen 3700x paired with a Gigabyte Aorus Elite B450 motherboard.

It seemed to be running fine at first, but as I was doing some more setup and installing software, I noticed that the fans would ramp up and down every 5 seconds or so. It sounded like it was running something in the background, but it was idling. I checked the base clock speeds and saw that it was jumping between 3.6 GHz and 4.5 GHz back and forth every several seconds or so. I used some programs to look at temps and monitor clock speeds, and it was showing the same thing, but temps seemed to be ok.

I booted into the BIOS and decided to disable the Core Performance Boost. While in BIOS though, I noticed that CPU was running fine, fans were quiet and clock speed was holding steady at 3.6 GHz. I booted back into Windows without changing anything and got the same crazy fluctuations again. I went back into my BIOS and disabled CPB, and now everything is running fine. Clock speed is holding nice and steady within Windows, and temps are great and fans are quiet.

Here's the thing though, I really don't want to disable a feature or lose performance. Not sure what could be causing the crazy fluctuations, and don't want to leave the system running like that. Could it be a result of something else? Could it be an issue with my CPU or motherboard? I built an almost identical system for myself a while back and never experienced this issue.

Any suggestions or advice? I'm up to try anything really, just kinda at a loss on what to do.

Thanks!
 

maikutech

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Download this and tell me the current bios version on the mobo, also boot back to uefi and check system status/performance.
If his Ryzen 3700x is holding a steady cpu speed for about 2 - 5 minutes, I am willing to blame an app mainly by amd if it got installed during setup.
If its still going bonkers in the uefi cmos setup utility, look for a newer revision bios update by gigabyte to fix the issues.

https://www.amd.com/en/technologies/ryzen-master
If you know how to overclock and underclock manually, I start there first and leave any 1st party or 3rd party off of the windows system completely.
 
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rcampbell578

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Are you using the stock cooler? (wraith prism)
Yes. I've been going over this in my head, and I remember when I put the cooler on, the pre-applied thermal paste on the cooler didn't look right. Usually it's a solid square, this was not. It looked like a bunch of random dots and it was very thin. I also realized that I noticed the fan ramping up after I put the side panel back on. I'm thinking part of the problem could be a cooling issue. I'm going to take the cooler off and apply fresh thermal paste. I also ordered another case fan to exhaust out the back of the case so I've got good airflow moving through. Once I've done this, I'll check everything out again and see what it's doing. I also need to look at the power settings in Windows. I'm pretty sure I've got it set to Balanced, but I'll look again and see if I need to tweak anything there too.
 

kurdtnz

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I used a wraith prism on my old 3600X and the constant ramping up and down was driving me crazy,it was so loud! More experienced members can explain way better than I can but Ryzen's core speeds and temps continuously jump up and down which in turn effects the cpu cooler and making it sound like a jet engine. You can adjust the fan curve in BIOS to make it less aggressive,(which again,others can advise you to do,) but for me, buying a better after market cooler was the best thing I ever did.
 

rcampbell578

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I used a wraith prism on my old 3600X and the constant ramping up and down was driving me crazy,it was so loud! More experienced members can explain way better than I can but Ryzen's core speeds and temps continuously jump up and down which in turn effects the cpu cooler and making it sound like a jet engine. You can adjust the fan curve in BIOS to make it less aggressive,(which again,others can advise you to do,) but for me, buying a better after market cooler was the best thing I ever did.
Yeah I've got a hunch that it's a cooling issue, so I'm going to try a few things. The friend who I'm building it for, he picked the 3700x specifically for the Wraith Prism cooler, so I don't want to remove that just yet. That processor is overkill really, I had suggested something smaller, like the 3600. Honestly, this build is mainly for his home office. He'll be surfing the web, and working in Microsoft Office. That's probably about it. But we upgraded specifically for the cooler. Oh well. Like I mentioned in my original post, I've solve the problem by disabling the Core Performance Boost in the BIOS. Now that it's set at a steady 3.6 GHz, it seems to be running fine. If I can't solve the cooling issue, I'll just leave the Performance Boost disabled. No need for a performance boost while using Microsoft Office I guess. 3.6 GHz should be plenty. Thanks for the suggestions. I'll try some things and respond with how it went. Like I mentioned before, I'm going to clean off the original pre applied thermal paste and add some fresh, better stuff. I've also ordered a fan to help exhaust air out the back of the case. I'm hoping this will help, but we'll see!
 
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....

Any suggestions or advice? I'm up to try anything really, just kinda at a loss on what to do.

Thanks!
It's not a cooling issue, it's the way Ryzen works. Especially with Zen2 (Ryzen 3000) and it might be completely different from what you're used to.

Ryzen boosts aggressively from 'idle' and when it does clocks will go to as high as it's max rated clock on a single core at at time. AMD calls that a rush to idle. It's perfectly normal and totally by design. Windows has lots of things running in the background so it's always got something that causes it to boost when you think it's at idle.

Disabling CPB (Core Performance Boost) disables it's ability to boost and it will just operate at base clocks. It kills the CPU's performance and what you paid money so it doesn't make sense to me.

A 3700X hitting 4.5Ghz does seem pretty darn good though. I think it's way more normal to get 4.4-4.45Ghz max boosts even on newer CPU's. I'd say you have a good CPU and good motherboard. No reason to try and change anything as far as I can tell.
 

rcampbell578

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It's not a cooling issue, it's the way Ryzen works. Especially with Zen2 (Ryzen 3000) and it might be completely different from what you're used to.

Ryzen boosts aggressively from 'idle' and when it does clocks will go to as high as it's max rated clock on a single core at at time. AMD calls that a rush to idle. It's perfectly normal and totally by design. Windows has lots of things running in the background so it's always got something that causes it to boost when you think it's at idle.

Disabling CPB (Core Performance Boost) disables it's ability to boost and it will just operate at base clocks. It kills the CPU's performance and what you paid money so it doesn't make sense to me.

A 3700X hitting 4.5Ghz does seem pretty darn good though. I think it's way more normal to get 4.4-4.45Ghz max boosts even on newer CPU's. I'd say you have a good CPU and good motherboard. No reason to try and change anything as far as I can tell.
I don't mind the clocks ramping up really, it's really the CPU fan ramping up and down with it. It's kind of annoying and that doesn't happen on my system, but I'm running a 2700x. My understanding is that the 3000 series run hotter, so my theory is that when the CPU clocks ramped up, so did the temps. From what I've heard, the Wraith Prism doesn't offer sufficient cooling if you over clock your Ryzen. I thought if I could cool the inside of the case more, or move more heat away from the CPU, maybe the fan wouldn't ramp up with the clock speed. Just a thought. Also like I mentioned before, the pre applied thermal paste that came on the cooler looked horrible. It was splotchy and very thin. It didn't look like it normally does. I just didn't feel good about it when I installed it. I definitely want to reapply the thermal paste and know that I've got a good application. I'd probably do that anyway, so that's worth a shot. If I can just calm down the fan some, I think I'll be happy.
 
I don't mind the clocks ramping up really, it's really the CPU fan ramping up and down with it. It's kind of annoying and that doesn't happen on my system, but I'm running a 2700x. ...
That's easy to fix.

First thing is understand that Ryzen's clocks are very dynamic and when it boosts it also spikes in temperature. There are dozens of temperature sensors all over the cores and the temperature you're seeing is the hottest one at the moment. If you've ever heard of SenseMi...that's part of it.

So the temp spikes are just one tiny little area of the core, not the whole thing. Like a match lit in the room...kinda hard to say it will make the whole room hot isn't it? It's also hard to cool off the match by turning up the AC.

So you want to ignore the spikes for your fan profiles. One way is follow the VRM temperature for fans instead; that's not spikey and much more evened out. Another way is to set a fixed, low, barely audible fan speed up to about 65 or 70C, then gradually increase it from there to about 80-85C before it gets really very loud.

Ryzen isn't really hotter than any other modern high performance CPU (go check out what 10900K's operate at). It's perfectly safe up to Tjmax of 95C even though it's desireable to keep it in the mid 70's to keep clocks at the highest. That doesn't mean running into the mid 80's under extreme heavy all core, AVX workload (like video rendering) isn't perfectly OK if that's what it does. It pulls back on it's clock and voltage to stay in safe range, that's what SenseMI is all about.
 
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maikutech

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Yeah I've got a hunch that it's a cooling issue, so I'm going to try a few things. The friend who I'm building it for, he picked the 3700x specifically for the Wraith Prism cooler, so...
Just a little secret between you and me, but never trust AMD and Intel oem heatsink to cool down anything.
I haven't been with amd since I left am3+ but its a guranteed bet their heatsinks, "wrath (j/k) wraith" won't do anything
 

rcampbell578

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Ok I'm back with an update...

So, I went ahead and installed another case fan in the back of the case to exhaust some of the heat out the back. I also played with the fan curves a bit to work on the ramping up of the fan. I'm happy to say that everything seems to be working fine now.

For whatever reason, the clock speed isn't jumping all over the place. It still varies, obviously, but it's a much more reasonable range. The idle temps are between 35-45 degrees C, and after several Cinebench benchmarks with 100% CPU usage, temps top out at about 72 C. The Wraith cooler seems to be doing the job now when paired with the rear fan. It also doesn't ramp up and down anymore.

Also, I decided not to mess with the thermal paste. After some research, turns out what I saw pre applied to the cooler was normal. Looks like AMD is applying thermal paste in a dotted pattern now and not a solid block like I was used to seeing. That eased my mind a bit for sure.

Thanks everyone for your advice and suggestions. I'll be delivering the PC to my friend this weekend and I'm sure he'll be pretty excited to get it. I just wanted to make sure everything was running correctly before I handed it off.
 
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Colif

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For whatever reason, the clock speed isn't jumping all over the place. It still varies, obviously, but it's a much more reasonable range. The idle temps are between 35-45 degrees C, and after several Cinebench benchmarks with 100% CPU usage, temps top out at about 72 C. The Wraith cooler seems to be doing the job now when paired with the rear fan. It also doesn't ramp up and down anymore.
those are about normal
if you use hwinfo its best to watch the CPU CCD1 sensor as its the closet to reality or at least, closest to what AMD use. Otherwise all you see is spikes all day. That sensor is average of all cores so ignores the constant up and down the package reports. My CPU almost always below 40c on that score.

what case is it? always helps if CPU can get cool air or have the heat removed.
 

rcampbell578

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those are about normal
if you use hwinfo its best to watch the CPU CCD1 sensor as its the closet to reality or at least, closest to what AMD use.
Yes, I used HWMonitor to monitor that sensor. Most of the time it was in the 30s to low 40s with the occasional spike a little higher. After doing some research and reading what others are getting for their temps with the 3700x, I'm pretty satisfied.

Sorry I never mentioned it before, I'm using the Fractal Design Focus G case. It comes with two 120mm fans in the front of the case, then I installed another 120mm fan in the back, and set it to exhaust.
 

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