So I got this wild and whacky idea to make a tiny HTPCesque computer with a 7850K APU.
My chosen case was the Minibox M350 and I am guessing that this choice was not a good one because I am having what can only be described as a thermal nightmare. The very kind that keep engineers awake at night.
With bone stock BIOS settings, this monster idles at damn near 60C, even outside of the case. After aggressive underclocking and undervolting, I managed to get this computational thermite reaction to a “mere” 40C.
But when I do anything at all in Windows 8.1, this CPU reignites its hateful flames once more. Downloading updates sends it to 75C. This is all based on Speccy readings which I have fairly good confidence in as idling in Windows is pretty close to BIOS.
My Noctua NH-L9a just simply can’t do the job, even when I crank its fan speeds to 100% at all times.
Just for fun, I tried to play Lost Coast. And at a mere 1024x768, with many texture errors and artifacting this hellish APU hit 101C, so I figured that was enough of that.
What the shit is wrong here?
Before you offend me and point to my paste application or heatsink mounting as faulty, I will assure you it has been done correctly. It has been done correctly, and then redone correctly twice.
The only thing I can really think of at this point is somehow the PicoPSU, being components that inherently heat up, being so near to the APU is a factor. Maybe everything about this build is simply unfeasible.
I’m starting to think that this is just “normal”. I’ve read that 40-50C idling with a stock cooler is pretty usual, and that this Noctua is really no better than stock, just shorter and quieter.
The only other thing I can imagine is a defective unit; displaying temperatures that are not right. The fact that this APU should not even be able to hit 100C supports this.