Generally low performance on HP Laptop, possible thermal throttling.

Mar 14, 2017
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Hey guys, I need some serious help with my laptop. It's a HP Beats Special Edition 15-p010nm. Specifications are as follows:
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CPU: AMD® Richland APU Quad Core Processor A8-5545M clocked at 1.7GHz, Turbo up to 2.7GHz I believe

GPU: AMD Radeon HD8510G Integrated graphics processor

RAM: 8GB, 7.19GB is reported as usable

OS: Windows 10 64bit, legit copy obtained via MS' upgrade program back when it was active, originally it ran Windows 8.1 64bit

Screen resolution is 1920x1080
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Now, here's my problem: It's unbearably slow! Firefox and Chrome lag like hell, YouTube freezes a lot, Facebook as well, and the OS takes a pretty long time to start. Also I have really low FPS in literally every game, including those flash games on the internet. Not newer games, mind you, I was trying to play TES 3: Morrowind and it ran pretty bad, as well as Oblivion, Fallout 3 and New Vegas, Unturned, Minecraft, DiRT Showdown, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, the original Counter-Strike, GTA:SA , Starbound et cetera, most of which can run on potatoes, and I am aware of the fact that my laptop is REALLY underpowered, but some of these run ridiculously bad for what they are. I was also experiencing some sudden shutdowns.

My first suspicion was thermal throttling, so I brought the laptop to the shop, and told them about the issue. They fixed it a couple of weeks later, and they told me that they had to replace the thermal module, which was faulty. The laptop stopped shutting down at random, but the performance was still pretty bad. In the meantime, I had upgraded from Windows 8.1 to 10 legitimately, still no difference, and I had also tried several Linux distros, namely Mint, Ubuntu and Fedora, which ran exactly the same, if not worse than Windows. I had wiped the HDD several times, and I never really pirated any games, as all my software is either purchased or free, so I really don't have viruses on my system. Bloatware that came with the unit is also out of the question, because I did fresh OS installs several times.

I did run HWMonitor to check the lap's temperature:

http://prntscr.com/ek0ccj

I'm not a hardware expert, but I think 100+ degrees is a bit too much for a CPU, especially on a laptop. Could it be the dust accumulation inside of the vents? I honestly doubt that such temperatures are normal, but I could be wrong.

Now if someone with knowledge about this could help me out and give me an advice or two on how to fix this, I'd greatly appreciate it! Thanks in advance!



P.S. I apologize for any grammar mistakes I most likely made, English is not my first language. :)







 
Holy smokes! 118 degrees peak temp? That isn't normal at all. Likely dust has clogged the fan and heat sink fins. If opening it to clean it out, I'd also remove the old thermal compound from the cpu/gpu, and replace it with new stuff.
 
Mar 14, 2017
4
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Okay, thanks! But the problem is that I can't open the laptop myself. The case has a really weird shape that's making opening the laptop very challenging, and the keyboard has to be removed from the device in order for me to reach the motherboard, which is just something I can't really do on my own without messing up, as I've never really worked on a laptop, only standard desktops a couple of times and I lack the experience needed for such a thing, so only solution is for me to bring the laptop to the service shop again and have it cleaned there. I can get a can of compressed air and try to blow the dust out of the vents and try to reduce the struggle a bit, but that's as much as I can do at home. I'll stop by the repair shop and they'll be able to open it and do the necessary maintenance on it.

Thanks a lot for replying!

 


You're welcome, even though I wasn't much help. Yeah, I looked up a disassembly video for your model, and it's a real bear to take apart (I had a Tosh Satellite a few years ago that was almost as bad). The compressed air might be worth a try, and it's only a few bucks. But the fins and fan may be clogged so bad that compressed air won't do the trick. Once you have the shop clean it all out, I would take compressed air to it every three months, just to keep it from building up again. A few cans of compressed air is cheap insurance to possibly avoid another expensive trip to the shop.

Here's the link to the disassembly video I watched:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gKiHupi_jd0

And he doesn't even tear it down completely. At about 3:10,he just points to the screws and other connections that still need to be dealt with to remove the motherboard.

 
Mar 14, 2017
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Hey, I did some additional research, and here's what I found out:

My GPU temperature is only averaging at about 48-50°C right now as I write this, which seems weird to me, since the CPU itself is over 100°C. It would be logical to me that they'd both have similar temperatures in the case of my CPU, because, if I understand this correctly, graphics unit is located in the CPU itself in APU models. However, that is not the case. Which brings me to another thing I learned.

Apparently, all CPUs have a threshold temperature, "Tjunction temperature", which is the highest allowed temperature the CPU is allowed to have by design, and after it goes above that, the CPU sends an automatic shutdown signal to prevent damage. According to ALCPU Core Temp 1.6 (Another program I installed that does the exact same thing as HWMonitor because I wanted to compare the temperatures given by each program to get a better idea on how accurate the readings actually are), and it reports that maximum tjunction temperature on my CPU is only 97°C. Now that'd mean that my laptop would shutdown shortly after booting up because, according to HWMonitor, the CPU is about 88°C hot immediately after cold start and soon reaches 100+ degrees, but... that's not the case.

Also, it was kind of dumb on my side to forget to mention this: when I place my hand on the vents (Both the side vent and the bottom ones), the laptop feels a bit warm at best, and the fan is fairly quiet. I remember before the thermal module (same thing as heat sink, right? Sorry, some of this stuff is new to me, so forgive me for my 'noobness') was replaced the heat was so high it'd actually burn me if I held my hand on the vents for too long, but right now it doesn't feel like 100+degrees, it's just pleasantly warm.

Now, there's another thing, when I compared the temperatures given by each program, the HWMonitor reports 100+°C on CPU while the Core Temp 1.6 reports only about 54°C. That temperature is really similar to my GPU and motherboard temperature:

http://prntscr.com/ekb5hi

Now that could mean that the HWMonitor is not giving the correct readings, but I really don't know what to make of it, since, as I've already mentioned, I am pretty much a complete noob when it comes to this stuff, or maybe I'm just too dumb and/or missing something crucial here.

http://prntscr.com/ekbi5m

Could the thermal sensor on my 'board be damaged/faulty and giving out wrong readings? Maybe that's the reason why the CPU is throttling, because the sensor thinks that the machine is running above designated temperature limits and thus throttling down the device? Again, I'm not sure if I get this right, but throttling down the CPU means lowering it's clock speed? Both HWMonitor and the CT 1.6 say that the CPU clock stays at about 2395MHz, and occasionally it drops down to 1098MHz for all 4 cores (It's plugged into the mains).

http://prnt.sc/ekbagu

I'm sorry if all this is a bit confusing, I'm not very good at explaining things, and I've never really used forums like this one before.
 
Yes, the thermal module (HP likes to call them that) would be referring to the heat sink assembly. And now that I think about it (duh), replacing the heat sink would have taken care of any previous dust issue, assuming they also cleaned the fan while in there.

As for the rest, I'm sitting here with my mouth hanging open with a dumb look on my face. I'm no expert in these things either. Hopefully someone comes along that has a better understanding of this.

In the meantime, I'd take it back to the shop and show them these posts so they get a better idea what is still going on with your laptop.
 
Mar 14, 2017
4
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510
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Yeah, I think taking it back to the repair shop and having them to examine it would be the best. Thanks a lot for your help!

 


I really was no help. But you're very welcome anyway, LOL. :D

 
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