Question Should I be worried about my CPU Temps?

Feb 8, 2020
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I've been using an i3-4170 for about 5 years now and I've always thought that it had somewhat hot temperatures. I've applied thermal paste many times but it doesn't seem to help all that much. My case has fans but the motherboard doesn't have any connections for them so they don't work and my CPU uses the stock cooler that the prebuilt machine came with. I get ~46C with nothing open except Speccy, ~83C in Fortnite (min settings 900p, ~75fps), ~83C in R6 Siege (lowest settings, 900p, 60fps cap), ~84C in Rocket League (med settings, 1080p, ~120fps) I'm not gonna have enough money for a new pc until about the end of the year, but I can spend $25 on a cpu cooler right now if that'll help. If so, can you recommend me which one to get? I've heard a lot of people recommend the 212 evo but others say it's over glorified. I feel like I shoudn't spend too much money on it cause I know i'm gonna build a new pc around december. I just want to get better framerates so I'm thinking that maybe lowering my cpu temps would increase fps :) here are my specs
i3-4170
GTX 1050ti
12GB DDR3 ram
 
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Zizo007

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Feb 23, 2019
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I've been using an i3-4170 for about 5 years now and I've always thought that it had somewhat hot temperatures. I've applied thermal paste many times but it doesn't seem to help all that much. My case has fans but the motherboard doesn't have any connections for them so they don't work and my CPU uses the stock cooler that the prebuilt machine came with. I get ~46C with nothing open except Speccy, ~83C in Fortnite (min settings 900p, ~75fps), ~83C in R6 Siege (lowest settings, 900p, 60fps cap), ~84C in Rocket League (med settings, 1080p, ~120fps) I'm not gonna have enough money for a new pc until about the end of the year, but I can spend $25 on a cpu cooler right now if that'll help. If so, can you recommend me which one to get? I've heard a lot of people recommend the 212 evo but others say it's over glorified. I feel like I shoudn't spend too much money on it cause I know i'm gonna build a new pc around december. I just want to get better framerates so I'm thinking that maybe lowering my cpu temps would increase fps :) here are my specs
i3-4170
GTX 1050ti
12GB DDR3 ram
You won't get any better performance with a new cooler and as long as your temps are under 85C your fine. CPUs throttle/slow down at 95C.

Did you try cleaning dust from your cooler and apply fresh thermal paste? The best thermal paste is Grizzly Kryonaut.
You can buy the Hyper 212 now and then use it in the new PC but if you can get the Arctic Freezer 34 Duo for slightly more it will be much better than the Hyper 212.
 
Feb 8, 2020
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You won't get any better performance with a new cooler and as long as your temps are under 85C your fine. CPUs throttle/slow down at 95C.

Did you try cleaning dust from your cooler and apply fresh thermal paste? The best thermal paste is Grizzly Kryonaut.
You can buy the Hyper 212 now and then use it in the new PC but if you can get the Arctic Freezer 34 Duo for slightly more it will be much better than the Hyper 212.
I've dusted my computer countless times and applied fresh thermal paste a few times, I just don't find it reasonable to drop $10 on thermal paste which probably won't do anything again. What do you mean by cleaning out the cooler though? Where do I clean it? I've dusted the visible side of the fan and that's about it.
 

Zizo007

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Feb 23, 2019
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I've dusted my computer countless times and applied fresh thermal paste a few times, I just don't find it reasonable to drop $10 on thermal paste which probably won't do anything again. What do you mean by cleaning out the cooler though? Where do I clean it? I've dusted the visible side of the fan and that's about it.
Take it out and remove the fan. Clean inside the heatsink fins.
 

Ncogneto

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Dec 31, 2007
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I've been using an i3-4170 for about 5 years now and I've always thought that it had somewhat hot temperatures. I've applied thermal paste many times but it doesn't seem to help all that much. My case has fans but the motherboard doesn't have any connections for them so they don't work and my CPU uses the stock cooler that the prebuilt machine came with. I get ~46C with nothing open except Speccy, ~83C in Fortnite (min settings 900p, ~75fps), ~83C in R6 Siege (lowest settings, 900p, 60fps cap), ~84C in Rocket League (med settings, 1080p, ~120fps) I'm not gonna have enough money for a new pc until about the end of the year, but I can spend $25 on a cpu cooler right now if that'll help. If so, can you recommend me which one to get? I've heard a lot of people recommend the 212 evo but others say it's over glorified. I feel like I shoudn't spend too much money on it cause I know i'm gonna build a new pc around december. I just want to get better framerates so I'm thinking that maybe lowering my cpu temps would increase fps :) here are my specs
i3-4170
GTX 1050ti
12GB DDR3 ram
For the love of *** get your case fans running, if you can't do this, you certainly can't install a new cpu cooler.
 
Feb 8, 2020
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rubix_1011

Contributing Writer
Moderator
Airflow / Fan / Cooling / Overheating - How to test, steps to resolve

This could be caused by a few different things, please don't automatically assume 'the cooler is not working' without also checking if the case airflow is sufficient.

Remove the side panel of the PC case. Orient a house fan (desk or box style fan) to blow air into the case, directly over components at the highest setting.

This will represent a case with the best possible airflow possible. For reference, the fans I am providing as examples would look like the items below (just to clarify for anyone who might want reference)



Re-test as you have normally done - play games, run benchmarks, etc. to get to where temperatures were normally seen to be higher than they should. Normal room temperature is usually between 20-24C or 68-75F. Please note that every air or liquid cooler operates as a product of delta-T over ambient, meaning that if the PC is operational (simply turned on), it is impossible for the CPU to display a temperature below ambient room temperatures. If it is, this is likely a bug in software temperature reporting either from the desktop UI or the BIOS reading it incorrectly.

With the fan running at full speed, if temperatures drop by 5-7C or more, case airflow is one major issue to contend with. You will need additional fans or better fans for your setup in order to optimize air in and out of the chassis. This might even require consideration for a new PC case or leaving the side panel partially open during sessions of heavier computing until these items are corrected.

If your temperatures remain relatively the same (difference less than 1-2C), then you likely have an issue with the cooler in question (if CPU is hot, CPU cooler, if GPU is hot, GPU cooler). It would be good to then approach the next steps by thoroughly cleaning the cooler with compressed or canned air and ensuring there are not large blockages in cooling fins or on fans, etc. This might require the cooling fans to be removed from the heatsink or radiator to ensure there is not a buildup of pet hair, dust or even carpet fibers which can trap additional debris. Please ensure the PC is turned off and unplugged during this process to prevent unwanted startup to keep fingers safe from fan blades or accidental shorting if you happen to drop a screw onto other components during fan removal.

Removal of the cooler and re-application of thermal paste & re-seating the cooler can also be beneficial once cleaning of the cooler is ruled out by retesting the steps above.
 

Gfost73

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Mar 23, 2019
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how is the stock CPU cooler plugged in? it must be a 3 or 4 pin connection .. can you not unplug that and buy a better cooler, or am I somehow missing something. something like the hyper evo 212 would I think greatly improve temps over a old stock cooler..
 
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I cleaned out the inside of my heatsink like zizo007 suggested and I think it dropped my temps by about 8 celcius... wow.
I tried to use a fan on the highest power. Idle temperatures dropped by about 3 Celcius after a few minutes with the fan, but when I turned the fan off the temperatures barely increased. Ingame temperature didn't really seem to change much, at least nothing that I could really notice.
Yes, my CPU uses a 4pin connector.
I ordered this splitter on ebay https://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-1-To-3-Way-Splitter-Sleeved-4-Pin-PWM-Connector-Fan-Extension-Cable-1PC/142567796876?epid=2279824775&hash=item2131b3f08c:g:dDIAAOSwTO9Z~7RJ
 

Gfost73

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Mar 23, 2019
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well you could upgrade cooler to the Hyper Evo 212 , it will improve cooling over a stock cooler as it has much more surface area plus heat pipes which are technically liquid cooled as they are liquid filled, so that cooler would transfer heat much faster than a stock cooler.
 
Feb 8, 2020
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well you could upgrade cooler to the Hyper Evo 212 , it will improve cooling over a stock cooler as it has much more surface area plus heat pipes which are technically liquid cooled as they are liquid filled, so that cooler would transfer heat much faster than a stock cooler.
I have a feeling that better cooling won't really help my frames anyways... because I've been getting ~8C cooler since I've cleaned my heat sink and haven't improved on frames, what is the performance impact of a new cpu cooler really gonna do, especially since getting an external house fan up to my pc on the highest setting barely drops temperatures?
 

Gfost73

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Mar 23, 2019
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probably none .. just cooler temps .. but performance has a lot more to do with just heat .. so your probably correct , as long as temps stay below thermal throttle (around 80°C) you'll be good to go but if not below 80, then Id consider a new cooler.
 
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