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So I took the advice of installing SpeedFan (also because download.com has Editor's recommendation), and see that the temperature of my notebook's CPU (Intel Core2Duo) is about 60C and jumps up to about 69 C max for a few seconds (by looking at the chart).

So is this near the high range? What if it is 75 C or 80 C, is that too high? (come to think about it, boiling water is 100C, so 70 C is not a low temperature.

How about if it is for a desktop, is that the same values for determining whether a CPU is too hot?

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my T5250 peaks @ 86C, average is about 75-80C on load. –  Sathya Dec 10 '09 at 23:11
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4 Answers 4

up vote 4 down vote accepted

since there is a bout a gazillion of different Core 2 Duo mobile processors, that cannot be answered with certainty as the thermal specification can vary, e.g. the T9500's thermal design range goes up to 105 degree Celsius.

you can look up the thermal specification for your processor model on Intel's website.

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Start Core Temp, check "Tj Max." that's the max. temperature for your cpu. Substract 20-(40 if you want to be on the safe side) °C and consider that your "healthy" temperature under full load.

I've been running my old E6600 oc'd at 3.2 Ghz at about 60-70(in summer)°C under full load. My current Q6600 has a Tj Max. of 100, is running 30-35°C in idle and 65-70°C full load.

Or check this out.

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That's fine. It's a laptop, it doesn't have as good airflow as your average desktop, so things get a tad hotter. A CPU can run at 100C without damaging itself just fine, but if it gets too much hotter most motherboards will kill it to protect the hardware.

I'm currently idling at 35C, so perhaps give the airflow a bit of a look, see if it's a bit dusty, but the temperatures you're seeing are perfectly acceptable for a modern CPU :)

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i concure 100c is the limit for most ALL processors anything more then that then either the system will shut down or you will be buying a new processor.

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My friend put his thermal paste on badly and never thought to check his temps - his CPU ran at 100c+ for about a year, it still works. It did underclock itself quite considerably, however. –  Phoshi Dec 10 '09 at 19:17
    
that is thermal monitoring at work so you might THINK it was burning up but it kept itself at workable level. TRUST ME if he didn't have good air flow or it was a hot day ... that cpu would have shut off. But running a cpu hot for an extended amount of time is like letting a car run HOT for a long time. IT will work BUT SOONER OR LATER part failuar. –  mike Dec 11 '09 at 6:20
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