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XPS 15 9570 CPU thermal issues

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EDIT: READ THE SOLUTION BELOW; THIS WAS IN FACT A CPU THERMAL PROBLEM, NOT A GPU PROBLEM.

 

A couple of weeks ago I noticed that GTA online was very laggy (about half the fps I usually get), but sometimes it would just double the fps before dropping it back.

Then I started noticing problems with CSGO as well. I play on low settings and the laptop could easily push 200fps. Now I get half of what I used to get, but as with GTA, sometimes it just randomly goes back to 200.

After futher investigation and reading many online threads I found out that for some reason, whenever the CPU is at a very high temperature (above 90*), the game runs at 200fps, but when the temperature drops and stabilizes, the game goes back to ~100fps for no reason. (You would expect the GPU to throttle if the temps are higher to lower)

This behaviour is very weird, since I have checked and yes, it's the Nvidia GPU running, not the integrated one and the GPU doesn't seem to throttle. It can maintain clock speeds ~300MHz bigger than the base clock.

Also weird is the fact that neither the CPU nor the GPU reach anywhere near 100% utilization (maybe the GPU reaches 70-80, but the CPU never goes above 30-40). 

I would like to emphasize the fact that it was working fine up until a couple of weeks ago and I do not recall installing any windows or BIOS updates before noticing the performance hit. I did however update to the newest everything (updated all drivers and the BIOS), but nothing seems to work.

This bug can be easily reproduced by starting CSGO, going into a deathmatch and waiting about one minute for the CPU temperature to drop. You can see the CPU temp go down in GPU-Z, but there is no sign of lower performance in any of the GPU graphs, it's just the fps that drops.

I've had the laptop for about 3 months now. 

Anyone else who also experiences this?

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Re: XPS 15 9570 sudden gpu problems

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I want to begin by saying that it wasn't a GPU problem, but a CPU problem. The CPU was being throttled down (somehow there was no change in clock speeds which led me to believe it wasn't in fact throttled) because of the high temperature it was reaching, therefore halving my fps.

Also note that I do still believe that DELL messed up the thermal profile with an update and hopefully they will fix it.

Now to the solution:

I decided to repaste my laptop (after seeing Dave2D's video about it) and undervolt it. For some reason, undervolting didn't have any effect for me.

After opening up the laptop I noticed that the whole thermal paste on the CPU was in fact AROUND THE CPU. There was no thermal paste on the CPU itself, so that would explain the sub-average thermal performance.

After re-applying the paste, not only did the CPU not throttle down, but I actually got a boost in fps and the temperatures dropped under 90*. Note that they are still higher than I would have expected (and that is why I think DELL messed up the thermal profiles).

 

FOR THOSE WHO DO NOT WANT TO REPASTE:

I have tried all kinds of stuff to avoid repasting. The thing that seemed to work best while in game (only tested on CSGO) is setting the thermal profile in DELL POWER MANAGER to COOL. This not only kept my fps consistent (though not as high as the machine is capable of), but kept the CPU very cool. The problem with this solution is that your machine will no longer feel so smooth: scrolling in a browser might stutter etc. So you might want to set your profile to COOL only in heavy workloads and then back to OPTIMIZED once you're done.

 

The bottomline is that repasting greatly helped and I do recommend it, even though it comes at a small risk. Here is the video I was talking about earlier: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBNP5I2y668.

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Highlighted
2 Bronze

Re: XPS 15 9570 sudden gpu problems

Jump to solution

I want to begin by saying that it wasn't a GPU problem, but a CPU problem. The CPU was being throttled down (somehow there was no change in clock speeds which led me to believe it wasn't in fact throttled) because of the high temperature it was reaching, therefore halving my fps.

Also note that I do still believe that DELL messed up the thermal profile with an update and hopefully they will fix it.

Now to the solution:

I decided to repaste my laptop (after seeing Dave2D's video about it) and undervolt it. For some reason, undervolting didn't have any effect for me.

After opening up the laptop I noticed that the whole thermal paste on the CPU was in fact AROUND THE CPU. There was no thermal paste on the CPU itself, so that would explain the sub-average thermal performance.

After re-applying the paste, not only did the CPU not throttle down, but I actually got a boost in fps and the temperatures dropped under 90*. Note that they are still higher than I would have expected (and that is why I think DELL messed up the thermal profiles).

 

FOR THOSE WHO DO NOT WANT TO REPASTE:

I have tried all kinds of stuff to avoid repasting. The thing that seemed to work best while in game (only tested on CSGO) is setting the thermal profile in DELL POWER MANAGER to COOL. This not only kept my fps consistent (though not as high as the machine is capable of), but kept the CPU very cool. The problem with this solution is that your machine will no longer feel so smooth: scrolling in a browser might stutter etc. So you might want to set your profile to COOL only in heavy workloads and then back to OPTIMIZED once you're done.

 

The bottomline is that repasting greatly helped and I do recommend it, even though it comes at a small risk. Here is the video I was talking about earlier: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBNP5I2y668.

View solution in original post

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