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Intel Mini Temperatures

Message #1 - Posted 2007/12/20 - The New guy

CPU A heatsink 24/75F
CPU A Temperature Diode 30/86F
CPU Core 1 26/79F
Northbridge Position 1 26/79F
Northbridge Position 2 26/79F
Hard drive 23/73F

The first number of course is Celsius.
I was wondering how these compare with stock Intel Mini readings using Temperature Monitor. Presently there is 2 gbs of ram (not that that would influence the temps) but the Mini is being run without the top, and without the plastic housing. Then I put a 120mm fan blowing down on to the whole motherboard. This fan also, very conveniently, cools the hard drive which sits beside it, bottom facing the fan, as the bottom gives off far more heat than the top. Positioning the hard drive in this fashion lowered the temp substantially. I ran a memory tester to stress it and the temps, while definitely going up a lot, remained low comparatively it would seem. I Googled this but couldn't find much in the way of other people's temps. Ambient temp is about 18 - 20 C so that does give me an advantage. I wonder if any of these sensors are close to the reading of the ambient air?
Flickr ID is keeping.cool
Pictures here:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/9433215@N03/

Message #2 - Posted 2007/12/20 - wm_walsh

Hi!

I was wondering how these compare with stock Intel Mini readings using Temperature Monitor.

The stock Mac mini readings (on several units--one that I own and several that I administer) are much higher. Temperatures for the CPU are about 120-150 degrees (F) and the hard drive is usually around 90 or so.

Temperature concern was one of the things I mentioned when I typed up a review:
http://12.206.251.215/mmintelreview/

I don't remember seeing chipset temp being reported anywhere.

What you might try instead of the 120mm fan is the smcFanControl utility. It allows you to turn up the speed of the built in fan, and that in turn lets you put your mini back together so it looks right. Seriously--turning the fan up to maybe 2500-3000 RPM cooled all of mine down quite significantly.

I wonder if any of these sensors are close to the reading of the ambient air? =A0

I really don't know for sure. Every bit of information I've ever picked up about the temperature sensors state that the readings are approximate. I'm not so sure I agree with that. They seem pretty close to reality, assuming my IR thermometer is accurate.

William

Message #3 - Posted 2007/12/21 - MNP

I was wondering how these compare with stock Intel Mini readings using Temperature Monitor.

The stock Mac mini readings (on several units--one that I own and several that I administer) are much higher. Temperatures for the CPU are about 120-150 degrees (F) and the hard drive is usually around 90 or so.

And you're using the same program - Temperature Monitor? Are the temps similar with different Mini models I wonder?
Right now ambient temp is around 65 F. Its about 2 feet off the ground yet the temp of the CPU Core 1 is 53 F.
CPU A Heatsink 68 F
CPU A Temperature Diode 77 F
Northbridge Position 1 73 F
Northbridge Position 2 71 F
Hard drive 71 F.

Temperature concern was one of the things I mentioned when I typed up a review:
http://12.206.251.215/mmintelreview/

I think you're spot on about the high temperature of the exhausted air. There was an extensive discussion here with many intelligent and well educated people not able to grasp the simple concept of linking high heat inside with high heat being expelled. One indicates the other.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/9433215@N03/ Here it shows how the fan cools the hard drive and everything else, except the bottom of course. But I purposely put it on the DVDrom. Cool metal makes a nice cooling environment for that heatpad (as I rarely use the DVD. Later I'll get a slab of aluminum or an old heatsink for it. But what would be far preferable is to chuck the bottom completely and put a heatsink (say from a chipset) on the video component that is generating the heat.

What you might try instead of the 120mm fan is the smcFanControl utility. It allows you to turn up the speed of the built in fan, and that in turn lets you put your mini back together so it looks right. Seriously--turning the fan up to maybe 2500-3000 RPM cooled all of mine down quite significantly.

The internal fan did a poor job of cooling and made a racket if it was ramped up. Not an option unless I worked in a facility with a deafening amount of ambient noise! :) The 120mm fan is great. What I need now is to replace that tiny heatsink of the Mini with something else. I was looking and looking but couldn't find any CPU heatsinks that had a small enough mounting area to fit. Then I thought of a video card heatsink. Something like this should be able to fit.
http://www.thermalright.com/new_a_page/product_page/vga/hr03gt/product_vg a_cooler_hr03gt.htm
I would have to modify the mounting clips but that shouldn't be difficult. The heatpipes may get in the way in that one but there are others that should work. That should certainly pull a lot more heat away from that cpu than the stock one that has so little surface area. Then I can overclock it safely.

I wonder if any of these sensors are close to the reading of the ambient air? †

I really don't know for sure. Every bit of information I've ever picked up about the temperature sensors state that the readings are approximate. I'm not so sure I agree with that. They seem pretty close to reality, assuming my IR thermometer is accurate.

I still haven't sourced a laser thermometer. Guess I'll have to go Ebay for that since my area is pretty useless for anything interesting. That way I can detect small temperature changes fast to know if I'm on the right track when I'm experimenting with things. If one could mount the hard drive in a frame in the same plane as the video chipset heatsink (on the bottom of the Mini's motherboard) you could cool both extremely well. With the GPU heatsink on the CPU you could probably run both fans at 5 volts for total inaudibility. The whine of the hard drive would be the only noise at all. And I'm working on a design to squash that - for a multi drive 10k rpm Raid 0 system which would really put out a significant whine, to be sure. But with 10k drives dropping in price it sure is great performance for the money. Especially as OS X has great software Raid 0 performance. 4 x 36gb Raptors should be able to be acquired for $150. That is stunning performance for the money. But that's for a different machine. Or the Mini if Apple adds Sata hub replicator compatibility later.

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