Troubleshooting Intel® Core™ i7-4790K / i5-4690K overheating

Version 1

    This document will provide assistance on achieving normal processor operation within Intel factory specifications on motherboards with certain BIOS power settings.



    • Overheating occurs quickly (typically less than 1 minute) when running stress test utilities on motherboards with particular BIOS power settings. 
    • Overheating occurs very quickly on motherboard products with certain BIOS settings when running the Small FFT test that is part of the Prime95* application, version 28.5
      • Overheating is not as severe with earlier versions of Prime95* or with other stress test utilities such as Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility and AIDA64*


    • Overheating is reported when a system is at the ‘default settings’ for the BIOS


    The following steps have solved the issue for a majority of customers.  Try these steps before correcting BIOS settings:

    1. Update the BIOS to the most recent version for your motherboard.
    2. Verify that your thermal solution is correctly installed and working properly.
    3. Verify that your BIOS does not automatically implement an XMP profile for your installed RAM.  Use of XMP profiles will increase the power needed by the processors memory controller.

    If the above steps do not resolve your issue, it may be necessary to correct the BIOS power settings as they may not be optimized to Intel specifications. Tuning for some settings might be required. The goal is to set the BIOS power settings to meet Intel’s TDP (Thermal Design Power) specifications. The TDP for the i5-4690K / i7-4790K is 88 Watts. The TDP for these and other processors can be found at

    In order to find out at what TDP your system is running, which power settings need to be adjusted and to monitor your system’s temperature please download the Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility (XTU) tool. In most cases the XTU tool will be able to show all the different power settings of the system and also allow you to change them. The XTU can be downloaded from: Intel XTU download.


    Once the XTU tool has been downloaded and installed, run it and you can find the processors current TDP value being displayed at the bottom right of the window (CPU Total TDP).


    You might need to adjust some or all of the BIOS power settings in order to achieve an 88 Watt TDP. In Screenshot1 the XTU tool was used to change the Core Voltage, Core Voltage Offset, Turbo Boost Power Max, Turbo Boost Short Power Max, and Processor Current Limits to the settings shown. These settings seem to work fine for that system. The settings for your system may vary from the settings shown in Screenshot1.


    Some important notes:

    1. The settings available in XTU are dependent on what your systems BIOS exposes to the tool.  The settings available in the XTU may be different on your system.
    2. Be sure to clear the CMOS on your system before using XTU to correct the BIOS settings.  See the documentation for your motherboard for instructions on clearing the CMOS.

    3. The voltage, power and current settings that will work for you may vary.  See the section titled Customer Reported Settings for additional information.

    Screenshot 1


    The Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility (XTU) was used to monitor the wattage/temperatures while performing the stress test.  You may need to turn ON the Wattage monitor by clicking the wrench icon just right of the graph section (see screenshot 2 below).


    Screenshot 2



    Customer Reported Settings


    As mentioned earlier, settings for your system may vary from the settings shown above.


    Here are some settings that worked for other customers.   This section will be updated as new information becomes available.



    Reported Settings

    Gigabyte Z97 Gaming 5

    • The Processor Current Limit may need to be set to 256A or higher to avoid excessive frequency throttling (3.6GHz max)
    • The TurboBoost Short Power Max Limit may need to be set to 160W.
    • Other settings should follow Screenshot 1
    • Core Voltage is not available in XTU.  Use the BIOS to correct this setting

    Gigabyte GA-Z97X-UD3H

    • Core Voltage can be set to  1.190v