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Home > Hardware Reviews > Cooling Systems

Tuesday, March 22, 2005
Thermaltake Big Typhoon

3. Performance/Overclocking

Thermaltake Big Typhoon - 03 - Performance/Overclocking

To measure the CPU's temperature, we used SpeedFan v4.21 which provided us with real time monitoring and created a graph of the temperature over time. After letting the processor cool down in idle mode, we fired up Prime95 and ran the In-place large FFT test to heat it up to its maximum level. This is the graph of the temperature with the original Intel fansink:

The temperature starts at 36C and reaches 58C when running the stress test.

After installing the Big Typhoon, we again ran SpeedFan and watched as it produced the graph again.

As you can see from the graph, the idle temperature is around 29 degrees Celsius. That's an amazing 7C drop for starters, and as the CPU started computing the Prime95 in-place FFT test, the temperature increased only up to 40 degrees, 18 degrees less than with the original Intel fansink.

Overclocking

The default settings for our Intel P4 LGA775 were 15 x 200MHz = 3.0GHz. In order to overclock our processor, we entered the BIOS and played around with the FSB clock and CPU Voltage settings. After some time experimenting with the FSB value, we concluded at setting the voltage to 1.6V and the FSB at 260MHz. This means the 3.0GHz P4 was now running at 15 x 260MHz = 3.9GHz.

At that speed, the system was able to boot and when running Prime95, which is very sensitive and hence ideal for identifying errors, reported all correct calculations. However, when trying to run 3D applications, the system would stall after a while and pop up an error message saying that the graphics card stopped responding.

So, we rebooted into the BIOS once again and set the FSB a little lower to 255MHz. The processor was now running excellently at 3.825GHz and both computational and 3D applications ran troublefree. Let's see the graph showing the temperature of the CPU starting from idle up to the same Prime95 torture test.

The idle temperature now starts from 35C due to the increased Voltage for the CPU. As we run the torture test, the line climbs up exponentially, stabilizing at around 55C.

With the installation of the Big Typhoon, we achieved a 825MHz increase in CPU clock while keeping the temperature at a lower level (2°C lower to be exact).




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