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Corsair One i160 motherboard swap - dip in performance

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Hey guys,


I use my i160 primarily as a workstation & wanted to install 64gb of ram. This meant the need to upgrade to a z390 chipset board as the stock z370 is maxed out at 32gb.


I went with the MSI gaming edge, as all of the connections are in the same location as the stock board. The swap was straight forward, I only needed an extension cable for the fan that was connected to the CPU header.


I didn't do a lot of benchmarking before the swap, but just going by the BIOS front page, my CPU idle temp has gone up by 5-10 degrees (it sits around 45-50 degrees).


The Tomb Raider bench was hitting 144 fps before & is now peaking at 104 fps. The biggest drop in performance looks to be the GPU rendered frames, but the 'GPU bound' value has gone up from 35 to 75%. I'm not sure if that means that the CPU is throttling & sending more work to the GPU to compensate?


Any ideas on what I missed? I haven't done a clean install yet as everything was showing up & seemingly working. Do I need to adjust some things in the BIOS to limit the voltage?


Big thanks in advance!

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Hi there,


Generally a motherboard swap isn't recommended due to a variety of factors that can effect system performance and official support options.


Since you've done the swap anyway, I'll treat this as a typical DIY SFF build in terms of the logic I'll be going through.


CPU idle temp does go up naturally from a cold boot. This is going to be more noticeable on a SFF build. With the CORSAIR ONE cooling system, you may need to set an aggressive system fan curve in BIOS if you connect the system fan to a motherboard fan header to compensate when using an aftermarket board. An easy check would be to set the CPU fan to 100% fan duty and see if the behavior persists, then proceed to set a custom curve using your motherboard BIOS fan utility (I'm unfamiliar with the MSI Gaming Edge board, but there should be some form of custom fan curve available on MSI retail boards).


More information will be needed to determine if you're running into CPU thermal throttling or if it's a power issue that needs additional troubleshooting for your particular board.


Some additional things to try as you've already shown that you've opened up your system for the motherboard swap would be to:


Double check your thermal paste application and ensure that the CPU cooler has been mounted properly with even pressure to the CPU socket.


Check the tubing coming from the CPU cooler to ensure that it isn't kinked at an extreme angle when you close up the system as that could effect the flow of coolant through the CPU pump/radiator.


Disable any motherboard auto-overclocking options, this will require additional research on your end to determine which setting is what, however many retail boards offer some sort of "gaming" mode that performs a mild overclock with a rich amount of voltage that could lead to increased heat being put out by the CPU (these auto-overclocking/game modes seem to only really be tested in standard build configs with much larger cases that typically have more fans in the system).


As a last resort, try unplugging the USB 2.0 cable temporarily on the CPU cooler and see how the cooler behaves when relying solely on firmware. This will generally be a validated safe setting based on coolant temperature rather than reported CPU temps. (I'd only try this after verifying that the fan you connected to the CPU header is responding to any custom curve or fixed duty cycle settings in the BIOS fan utility for your motherboard, if you set to a fixed fan speed for troubleshooting I can only recommend setting to 100% to be extra safe)

Note: unplugging the USB2.0 cable will result in no longer being able to control the RGB lighting on the system since iCUE won't have a means to communicate to the cooler (which is tied to the front panel lighting).

Edited by Corsair CJ
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Hi CJ, big thanks for your detailed response.


The fan curve appears to be the culprit I was looking for - cranking it to 100% in iCue brought my temperatures down greatly. I get a similar 3DMark score now to what I have seen in online reviews, so I'm convinced that everything is working as expected.


Oddly though, iCue registers 1500rpm as the maximum where as the bios (& HWMonitor) clock the fan at around 400rpm. Not sure if that is an issue?




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