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Upgraded processor -- good and bad news 
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Well, the Core i7 series is out now. And I'm very underwhelmed.

$289 minimum for 2.67GHz, minimum of 4 cores (two of which I have absolutely no use for), and 256KB L2 cache/core. Sure, there's lots of L3 now, but i7 L3 is quite a bit slower than Penryn L2. The integrated memory controller is really nice, though. I'd also need a new mainboard, cheapest one at Microcenter was $300. I'd even need new RAM, $130 for 3GB. Even my Zalman fan would need to be replaced. Not worth it even if I did have that kind of money.

So, I decided to push my current mainboard a little more, and opted for a $150 E8400 instead. Should've just bought it when it first came out ... ah well.

Chip is really nice, I get a solid 30% speedup in bsnes, despite it only being clocked 20% higher (I don't overclock these things.) Per core, I get about 120fps in Star Ocean, 158fps in Zelda 3; compared to 92fps and 117fps before.

Not bad ... but I hit one really annoying problem: it seems I got one of the E0 models with a bad TDS (thermal diode sensor.) I'm getting 52-58c idle, 60-65c max load.

It can't possibly be the correct temperature: the heatsink base (Zalman 9500) is only very very slightly warm, exhaust air is pretty cool, exactly the same as on the E6600.

I swapped back to the E6600 (same board, same HSF, same grease), and I get 28c idle. Back to E8400, 58c idle. Tried reseating a total of four times on the new processor (wasted a ton of AS5 -- tried 2x grain of rice amounts, 1x too much amount, 1x thin spread over chip), same temps every time.

No sense exchanging just to get another from the same batch.

Sigh, oh well. Even if it is 63c, which is absolutely insane ... it's still well within spec, stable for several hours in Prime 95. I'll just (try and) ignore the temp readings. If it burns out, I'll go for the i7 crap or something. But I really do want this one to last at least 1-2 more years. Preferably until the next Intel 'tick' cycle.

More good news is the E6600 found a new home in the OS X box, replacing its' E2160. Had to use the stock fan to clear the Minuet case height -- and it gets 26c idle!! Bah.

So yeah, blah blah neat speedup blah. Anyone else run into temp sensor problems with their E8400s?


Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:04 am
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the current quad core i7's are techincally server models.

the dual-core i7's come out sometime next year IIRC.

still need a new board tho.

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Sat Nov 29, 2008 7:51 am
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Hmm ... this is interesting:

Another several hours of Prime95 with no errors.

Tcase is showing up at ~58c/idle and ~64c/load, whereas Tjunction on both cores show as ~40c/idle, ~46c/load.

I've never heard of Tjunction being ~20c lower than Tcase. It's almost always supposed to be at least 5c higher.

Reassuring that the individual core sensors are in sane heat ranges, at least.

Hope the dual-core i7's have better frequency ratios than these server model chips. I may budge if they have a decent price on a 3.33+GHz model, the E8600 now has a terrible price/performance ratio.


Sat Nov 29, 2008 2:00 pm
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byuu wrote:
Hmm ... this is interesting:

Another several hours of Prime95 with no errors.

Tcase is showing up at ~58c/idle and ~64c/load, whereas Tjunction on both cores show as ~40c/idle, ~46c/load.

I've never heard of Tjunction being ~20c lower than Tcase. It's almost always supposed to be at least 5c higher.

Reassuring that the individual core sensors are in sane heat ranges, at least.

Hope the dual-core i7's have better frequency ratios than these server model chips. I may budge if they have a decent price on a 3.33+GHz model, the E8600 now has a terrible price/performance ratio.

Not like I'm at all an expert on these things, but isn't it only natural that your E8400 runs at a higher temperature? I mean, it's a much more powerful processor right?


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Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:07 pm
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Hahahahahaha


Hahahahaha

Hahaha

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Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:27 pm
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funkyass wrote:
the dual-core i7's come out sometime next year IIRC.

the mainstream nehalems (doesn't seem like they'll be branded i7, but who knows) will still be available in quad-core, but they're going to have a dual-channel memory controller (instead of the tri-channel on the i7), use a DMI link (instead of the higher-bandwidth QPI), and possibly have an on-die PCIe 2.0 root port (intended for the graphics card's slot).

funkyass wrote:
still need a new board tho.

to clarify, the mainstream variant uses a different socket altogether - it won't work in a current 775 OR i7 board.

Franky wrote:
isn't it only natural that your E8400 runs at a higher temperature?

NO NO NO. the penryn core 2's are manufactured on a 45nm process (as opposed to the 65nm conroe). smaller transistors -> less power usage -> less power leakage -> less heat output.

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Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:53 pm
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Franky wrote:
isn't it only natural that your E8400 runs at a higher temperature? I mean, it's a much more powerful processor right?

You do know that chip manufacturers are constantly searching for new methods and materials to built computers, right?

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Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:36 pm
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I'm probably the only other person here with a e0 stepping E8400, but I'm not finished building the thing yet. It's my first foray into mini-itx and I'm goofing up on clearances for parts. It sounds like a temperature reporting problem, though, either from the motherboard or the program you're using.

Try reading through this:
http://forums.anandtech.com/messageview ... id=2161227


Sat Nov 29, 2008 10:10 pm
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Thanks for the link. Yeah, RealTemp shows slightly lower readings due to assuming a lower TjMax rate.

I decided to play it safe rather than sorry, got another E8400 while in my return window. Unfortunately, almost the same thing. 40c Tjunction0, 32c Tjunction1, 55c Tcase idle.

At this point, I don't think it's the processor at all. I'm using a cheap old 650i Ultra board, and I had to flash the BIOS just to get the chip detected. And indeed, the BIOS is what calibrates Tcase, whereas Tjunction is done by the chip itself.

No choice but to disregard the temps and go on. If it fries, it fries. Bought the extended in-store replacement warranty on it just to be safe.

Since I'm not worried about longevity, may as well push it ... at least for a little while to ensure stability:

http://byuu.cinnamonpirate.com/images/cputemps.png

Max load with Prime 95 + overclock on air. Gotta love the worthless nForce sensors. 11,200MHz CPU frequency + 1.6 CPU voltage ... right.

CPU: 9x400 FSB @ 1.3v
RAM: 800MHz @ 4-4-4-15 (low-end OCZ from a few years back, could do better but I like the evenness to the CPU FSB.)

FEoEZ = 147fps, Star Ocean = 145fps, Zelda 3 = 185fps. About ~55% above the old E6600 at this point. Meh, not bad for $150. E8500 is probably a slightly better deal, but they didn't have any.


Sun Nov 30, 2008 4:12 am
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Franky, if you ever payed attention, you would notice that over the past 4 or so years, processors have been getting cooler, not hotter. Video cards are slowly starting to enter the realm of smaller chip die's too, but there taking there sweet time at it :/

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Sun Nov 30, 2008 3:45 pm
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franpa wrote:
Franky, if you ever payed attention, you would notice that over the past 4 or so years, processors have been getting cooler, not hotter. Video cards are slowly starting to enter the realm of smaller chip die's too, but there taking there sweet time at it :/


LMAO

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Sun Nov 30, 2008 9:36 pm
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funkyass wrote:
franpa wrote:
Franky, if you ever payed attention, you would notice that over the past 4 or so years, processors have been getting cooler, not hotter. Video cards are slowly starting to enter the realm of smaller chip die's too, but there taking there sweet time at it :/


LMAO

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Sun Nov 30, 2008 9:49 pm
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grinvader wrote:
Hahahahahaha


Hahahahaha

Hahaha


srsly guys

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Sun Nov 30, 2008 10:09 pm
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franpa wrote:
there taking there sweet time ...


"... over there." Third time's always a charm.


Mon Dec 01, 2008 2:54 am
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byuu wrote:
franpa wrote:
there taking there sweet time ...


"... over there." Third time's always a charm.


Probably not... the edit button doesn't fix this kind of error.

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Mon Dec 01, 2008 3:15 am
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grinvader wrote:
grinvader wrote:
Hahahahahaha


Hahahahaha

Hahaha


srsly guys


Image

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Mon Dec 01, 2008 5:12 am
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There's that new rule about not talking about the speed/optimisation debate here, remember ? Let's keep it PG-13. :)

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Mon Dec 01, 2008 7:21 am
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creaothceann wrote:
Franky wrote:
isn't it only natural that your E8400 runs at a higher temperature? I mean, it's a much more powerful processor right?

You do know that chip manufacturers are constantly searching for new methods and materials to built computers, right?

Hey, I said I'm no expert. I should probably have kept my mouth shut, but ohwell.

I don't really "pay attention" to what new hardware is available and whatnot; the only time I do that is every 6-8 years when I build/buy-prebuilt a new machine. The current machine I'm on I've had since I was 14. I'm now 17, and I can see myself quite happily using this machine until I'm like, 20.


Mon Dec 01, 2008 1:37 pm
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