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 Post subject: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 2:42 am 
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Hi all, my first post but I use the website a lot.

I just built my first fanless PC. im posting from it now! Its a MSI z87i mobo in a Streacom FC8 EVO case.

CPU is a Haswell 4770S, 65W processor.


I put everything together yesterday and it seems to be running great. Idle temps are around 40C. Heavy surfing or watching 1080p video seems to up the temps to around 50C.

I ran Prime95 stress testing and it takes about 2 minutes and the temps go up to around 90C. I ran it for 8 minutes and none of the cores went above 92C.


Should I run it longer? Are these temps acceptable? I am just wondering if I used enough thermal paste between teh copper pipes and the case.

Thanks for your help.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 5:36 am 
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Z87 and an i7 is not optimal for a fanless setup, but it is doable. With very high temps I would be concerned about the longevity of the hardware inside the case, not primarily the CPU. The CPU will throttle down if overheated and how high temps one is willing to accept are really a matter of personal preference. 92C is way to hot imo and I would look into underclocking and undervolting if I were you. Should be possible with that motherboard.

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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 5:52 am 
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Thanks for your reply. So what exactly would be breaking if not the CPU, the MoBo?


I struggle to see how Prime95 is any sort of real world test, and idle temps for what I will be doing on this (watching movies, surfing, MS Office, emulation of 16 bit games etc) seem to be fine? I ran it because everyone runs it but this is no gaming PC.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 6:06 am 
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Sorry just a follow up as I see from your signature you have a lot of experience with fanless/no moving parts build.


Do you think with that Mobo and CPU combo those temps seem normal for Prime95 or would there be any benefit to take it apart and reapply the thermal paste? I woudl say I did an OK job but could do a better job if I tried again.


Personally I dont know as much as you guys but I dont see any problems with idle/medium use at 40-50C.

Thanks again for your help.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 6:40 am 
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ChinBo37 wrote:
Thanks for your help.


I agree with Vicotnik about undervolting (that requires stability testing), but what about delidding the CPU?

And, at any rate, which are your temps for just 2 and 4 threads of smallFFT?

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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 6:46 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
ChinBo37 wrote:
Thanks for your help.


I agree with Vicotnik about undervolting (that requires stability testing), but what about delidding the CPU?

And, at any rate, which are your temps for just 2 and 4 threads of smallFFT?



Honestly delidding is not something I really want to do, how does smallFFT work? Any guides or walk throughs? I can test it tonight.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 7:49 am 
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what others have said,
+ its all going to depend on airflow and ambient temps around the case, what your real usage will be, and how many monitors/at what res. Sticking it in an enclosed, unventilated AV rack, or behind a hot TV will be very problematic. (I assume no folding/mining ect.)

also might want to get low volt ram, if you haven't yet.



EDIT;

Oh, and, WELCOME TO SPCR!!!

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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 7:53 am 
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xan_user wrote:
what others have said,
+its all going to depend on airflow and ambient temps around the case, what your real usage will be, and how many monitors/at what res. Sticking it in an enclosed, unventilated AV rack, or behind a hot TV will be very problematic. (I assume no folding/mining ect.)

also get low volt ram, if you haven't yet.



Thanks, the RAM is regular Corsair Vengance low pro, I shoudl have gotten the low volt but I didnt :( I will build a dedicated Windows based server in a couple months so I may have to wait until then and switch out the RAM at that time.

THe location is a very open location, its not boxed in at all, completely open.

Usage is browsing the web, Using MS Office (emails etc) reading comics, organizing comics, organizing and playing music, organizing and playing movies (XBMC). Light gaming which is basically old emulated NES/SNES games, no modern gaming. Just 1 monitor (for now). 1080p.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 8:27 am 
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Ok I ran SmallFFT 2 threads and its similar. Took longer to get up to 90 but ran at 9/91 after that, not higher, mostly ran lower but temps woudl jump up a bit.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 8:33 am 
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Sorry for all the posts but forgot one thing, i will use it a lot as a seedbox running 24/7


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 1:09 pm 
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If you don't see CPU temps above 60C for your apps, don't worry about it. Prime95 is an unreasonable stress test compared to the applications you listed. You should monitor the other temps available to see if anything is baking long term. OCCT is a decent tool to expose the voltages/temps. Or Speedfan.

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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 11:40 pm 
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Right now I am using CPUID to monitor temps. Is there something that Speedfan does btter or OCCT?


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2014 1:51 am 
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I really appreciate all the help! SPCR is a great recourse and I will definitely make a post when I am about to start building by Windows based NAS server to check my parts list.


I think what I will do regarding this build is leave everything as it is for now, keep monitoring temps to see if they ever creep into the 60s and why. I am going to buy a WD Red 3TB drive next month and put it in this case. I know I know, it wont be a "no moving parts" build after that, but its only temporary. Eventually that drive will come out and go into my NAS.

When I install the WD Red I am going to take apart the heatsink and copper pipes and reapply thermal paste (man that is going to be a shit job to clean up the old paste). Then I will test the temps again. If the temps dont improve after that I will probably replace the 4770S 65W processor with a 4770T 35W processor OR undervolt/underclock the 4770S. Which do you think would be the better option? I dont have any experience with overclocking/underclocking so I am a bit nervous about that, but I would prefer to keep the CPU speed as fast as possible.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:34 am 
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For single thread speed you could go with a dual core CPU and forget about underclocking. Not as fast as the i7 on the parallel stuff, but do you really need that? What will the system be used for?

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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 1:27 am 
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System uses;

- 24/7 torrent seedbox and downloading
- Web browsing, youtube etc
- Organizing and reading digital comic books
- Organizing and listening to music
- Organizing and watching movies and tv shows (XBMC)
- Light emulation (NES/SNES/maybe Playstation and Saturn but not required if too taxing)
- MS Office (Word, Excel and Outlook)


Thats all I can really think about for now.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 1:48 am 
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Now that you have an i7 4770S, there's no reason not to use it. But I think a dual core like an i3 or even a Pentium would fit better in that setup, especially considering the cost of an i7. A quad with hyper threading gives you plenty of power for stuff that can be parallelized. But if the heat forces you to underclock it a lot, then single thread performance will suffer. It will handle the stuff that you mention though, with ease. All at the same time if needed. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 9:33 am 
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SIGH, ya I am seeing your point. I am leaning to changing this CPU out for an I3 35W 4330T @ 3.0. I guess Ill just sell my i7 after that.


Last question, is it worth it to try to reapply the thermal paste? I used 2 full tubes of arctic silver but I dont think I "filled teh cracks" where the pipes attach into the case. I definately covered all the flat surfaces but there are spaces next to the round pipes I could have done a better job to fill that with thermal paste.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:00 am 
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In case anyone wants to see pics ...



Note the ATX extension and the internal USB 3.0 extension. I knew from reading online that those would be problematic with this case as the heatpipes get in the way. However it ended up working nicely.


Image




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Image




Image


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:31 pm 
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Nice pics, thank you. :) I used the first FC-8 in my previous build. There's some improvements in the new version.

If you think you need more paste, I would add more paste. But no need to clean the old stuff off from the pipes and begin from scratch imo. You could also first try to determine if the contact between the pipes and the case side is good or not. Temps are very high with the i7 at stock settings, but you could try disabling two cores and make it a dual core, if you have such an BIOS setting. If Prime95 temps are acceptable with two cores and the case get warm/hot as it's supposed to, then thermal contact is good.

The heatpipes are tricky, difficult to know how much paste is optimal. I usually use more than optimal I think, but I use the cheaper Arctic Silver Ceramique compound. Comes in huge 22g syringes.

No need to get a T version of the i3 btw. That case can handle a normal TDP 55W dual core.

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Main: ASRock B85M-ITX | i3-4330 | 16GB DDR3 | Intel 730 240GB | HDPLEX H1-S | picoPSU | No moving parts | Idle 13.9W
HTPC: ASRock H81M-ITX | Pentium G3420 | 4GB DDR3 | Intel 520 120GB | HDPLEX H1-S | picoPSU | No moving parts | Idle 11.2W
Gaming: Intel DH77EB | i5-3570K | GTX 750 Ti | 16GB DDR3 | Intel 520 120GB | TJ08-E | G-360 360W
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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 1:20 pm 
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Cool thanks, I guess I will play around with it a bit more, temps dont run above 58/59 when playing 1080p, watching youtube, downloading torrents, and browsing the web watching gifs etc, all at the same time. Usually its closer to 55 degrees.

Can you explain to a noob what exactly does disabling cores do? I mean does it slow down the CPU? Sorry for being so dumb. When I ordered the parts I read online that you could do 65W so I just got the fastest/best 65W CPU there was.


When running prime95 the case and fins definately get hot and they are warm at idle or browsing so I know heat is being transfered, I guess the question is just how much and is it enough.


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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 3:07 pm 
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I'm no expert, but I've found an option in the BIOS/UEFI settings on many boards that lets the user set the number of active CPU cores. I've never played with that setting myself, but I assume that it means you can in effect turn a quad core into a dual core. The Steacom FC8 can handle the heat from two cores, and if you still would experience unusually high temperatures that might indicate poor thermal contact.

I first tried an i5 in my Steacom FC8 btw, and then stepped down to an i3. :)

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Main: ASRock B85M-ITX | i3-4330 | 16GB DDR3 | Intel 730 240GB | HDPLEX H1-S | picoPSU | No moving parts | Idle 13.9W
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Gaming: Intel DH77EB | i5-3570K | GTX 750 Ti | 16GB DDR3 | Intel 520 120GB | TJ08-E | G-360 360W
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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:03 pm 
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Vicotnik wrote:
The heatpipes are tricky, difficult to know how much paste is optimal. I usually use more than optimal I think, but I use the cheaper Arctic Silver Ceramique compound. Comes in huge 22g syringes.


IME the supposed quality of the thermal paste won't do any practical difference: however, it's true that AS5 has a long curing time, I'd expect the OP should gain 3-5°C after the canonical ~200 hours for break-in.

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 Post subject: Re: Acceptable Temps for a Fanless Build
PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 11:40 am 
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Just an update, the system has been running 24/7 and temps usually stay to the low to mid 40s.

CPUID shows that the max temps go to the low 60s but i can never make the temps stay there so it appears to just be a temporary spike.

The only thing I havent really done is play games yet, and this isnt really for gaming. Although I do plan on firing up some Doom2 with zDoom but I guess it should be ok :lol:


Anyways I am going to keep monitoring temps but for now I am going to say that tentatively this is a success. Thanks for all your help.


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