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How to Monitor CPU and GPU Temp While Gaming?

In the common scenario, all gamers and graphic designers frequently encounter a temperature rise in their CPU processor and GPU during their daily routines. This issue, however, is not limited to just gamers or designers, as every user can potentially face it, though it appears more prevalent in these specific groups.

It is crucial not to ignore this problem anymore since the increased temperature can significantly impact various hardware components of the PC, such as SSD, sensors, and hard disk. The heat transfers to other parameters as all computer components are closely interconnected within the CPU, resulting in reduced cooling efficiency for the system.

As we have learned over time, the ultimate solution is that prevention is better than cure. Implementing a reliable monitoring system before potential damages occur due to temperature rise will always be the wiser choice. This article aims to provide comprehensive information about how to check CPU and GPU temperatures, the possible causes of temperature rise, and other related topics. So, let’s delve deeper into understanding all this information.

Monitoring of CPU and GPU Temperature While Gaming

We all know the CPU is solely responsible for all operations and providing a high-end gaming experience on your system. The same applies to the GPU (Graphics Processing Unit), which takes the forefront regarding the user’s graphical experience, offering high resolution and seamless gameplay.

Consequently, it becomes essential to monitor and maintain these two resources’ health continuously. However, the conventional method of switching windows while playing games can be frustrating. Fortunately, technology has provided us with convenient solutions to ease our work. Now, you can easily monitor your system’s temperature during gameplay without disrupting your gaming performance, thanks to certain tools that display the information at the top of your screen.

These Three are the best utilities you should surely try to check your CPU and GPU temperature, and most importantly, they are Free for everyone are mentioned below:

1. MSI-After Burner– For Both CPU and GPU

We would like to introduce you to a great recommendation: utilities developed by MSI, a well-known company in the gaming PC industry. These utilities come with RivaTuner, which enhances compatibility with graphic cards, including Nvidia GPUs. This temp monitoring tool is particularly appealing and an advantage for overclocking users. Moreover, it offers valuable insights into your CPU and GPU properties, allowing you to monitor them effortlessly during gameplay.

To begin, follow these steps to download and install the utility properly (It will be downloaded as a compressed zip file, so you need to extract it using any suitable tool).

  1. Click on the Download link to acquire the utility and proceed with the installation.
  2. Once the installation is complete, access your taskbar at the bottom of the screen and open the notification panel (displayed as an upward arrow symbol).
  3. Look for the Afterburner Icon, recently added after the installation, and click on it.
  4. You will be directed to the Afterburner home page, which presents various menu options. Proceed to click on the Settings Icon. (Note: By default, you will see the GPU temperature on your homepage. If you only want to monitor GPU temperature, you’re all set. However, if you wish to add CPU temperature, follow the next steps.)
  5. Navigate to the “Monitoring” tab after entering the Properties menu. Select the CPU temperature from the list and enable the corresponding checkbox.
  6. Additionally, tick the “Show in On-Screen Display” option.
  7. Apply the changes by clicking the Apply button, and the modifications will be reflected accordingly.
  8. Finally, start your gameplay, and you will notice that your CPU temperature is now visible on your screen.

Pro Tips: While choosing the CPU Temperature, you will find CPU1, and CPU2, respectively. These sensors are related to individual cores, as modern systems come with multi-core CPUs. You can select a specific CPU and monitor it individually during gameplay according to your preference. In this case, we have selected the package of all cores to provide an overall result of the CPU temperature.

2. CPU-Temp – For CPU

If you are highly focused on monitoring only the CPU temperature, then Core Temp is your best option. It is a free download with the simplest user interface and monitoring tools. It also allows you to monitor each CPU core individually, which can be very beneficial if you want to target a specific core.

Here is the step-by-step procedure to utilize this utility:

  1. Download and install this utility by clicking on this link: Core Temp.
  2. (Tip: While installing, uncheck the “Build your Kingdom with Goodgame Empire” checkbox. This will prevent the Goodgame Empire games shortcut from being added to your desktop, which many users do not desire).
  3. After installing, run the application by right-clicking on it.
  4. A menu will open; go to the bottom and check under the “Temperature Reading” section.
  5. All the temperature details are in front of you, corresponding to each CPU core.

As you can see, the temperature reading section comes with minimum and maximum temperature values and tells you about the working capacity in percentage. The “Max” row indicates the maximum temperature reached by the CPU, considering all the cores. These clear and informative numbers will give you a good idea about temperature usage.

3. GPU-Z Temp – For GPU

The GPU-Z is better if you prefer a less complex panel than Afterburner for monitoring your GPU temperature. Monitoring temperature is not the only capability of GPU-Z; it also allows you to customize monitoring options such as checking your RAM usage, clock speed, and other information. The standard version is freely available for everyone and can be easily downloaded.

One notable feature that I personally appreciate is its graphical representation of all the information, making it visually appealing.

To install and benefit from the features of GPU-Z utilities, follow these steps:

  1. Download GPU-Z from the link provided, “GPU-Z.”
  2. After installing the app, open it by right-clicking on it.
  3. Then, click on the “Sensor” tab to access all the details of your GPU.
  4. Now, engage in some activity, like gaming or running a designing tool, and check the GPU-Z sensor section again.
  5. You will observe updated values of every parameter, including your GPU clock and GPU temperature.

Besides these, many other useful details can be monitored. This is how you can achieve your temperature-checking goal using GPU-Z.

Why is the CPU Temperature So High?

As you may know, computers undergo thousands of command executions every second, putting a significant load on your CPU. Consequently, there is a gradual increase in temperature being observed. Several factors can contribute to this temperature rise, such as GPU overclocking, system compatibility issues, outdated system configurations, inadequate cooling arrangements, and dust accumulation.

The normal temperature range for a CPU typically falls between 40°C to 50°C. However, during heavy tasks or operations, the temperature can rise to 40°C to 80°C. Engaging in intense gaming with insufficient cooling can push the temperature beyond 80°C, which is detrimental to your system. Such high temperatures can potentially damage not only the CPU but other components as well.

Reasons For CPU High Temperature:

As discussed earlier, multiple reasons can lead to high CPU temperatures. We have identified the primary factors responsible for this issue:

1. High-End and Frequent Operations

If you continuously run complex program files, high-end applications, or high-resolution games without sufficient cooling arrangements, you may experience surges in temperature. The processor will forcefully initiate Thermal throttling when the CPU temperature exceeds the threshold value. Throttling is a process where the CPU reduces its performance to counter the rise in temperature caused by inadequate cooling or other factors.

2. Overclocking Clock Rate

GPU overclocking involves increasing the clock speed of your GPU beyond the manufacturer’s provided speed. While this can boost performance by allowing more operations to be handled in the same time frame, it can also overload your CPU and result in higher temperatures. If you engage in overclocking, monitoring your CPU’s and GPU’s temperature should be your top priority.

3. A Faulty or Lack of Cooling System

A reliable cooling arrangement or highly efficient exhaust fans are essential to ensure a controlled temperature rise in your system. However, there are instances when your fan stops working or loses speed synchronization, failing to respond to CPU usage. This issue might also arise when your CPU capabilities are stretched beyond the fan’s capacity. In such cases, checking your task manager and stopping high-intensive and unnecessary tasks would be the only viable option.

4. Dust Accumulation

While we cannot prevent natural occurrences, we can certainly take better care of our systems by ensuring regular cleaning. Often, excessive dust accumulation obstructs cooling vessels and slows the cooling process, leading to potential overheating issues. Changing cooling gears periodically or cleaning all hardware components frequently by opening your CPU is advisable.

5. Limited Ventilation Space

If your system is positioned in a way that restricts proper air circulation to the CPU, it is crucial to reposition it for better airflow. For instance, laptop users with thin machines may encounter difficulties managing adequate air circulation due to limited space for ventilation. Always ensure a well-ventilated area with good air circulation to avoid overheating, especially when handling high-end tasks.

Benefits of Using CPU Temperature Monitor:

You can always benefit in various ways by maintaining your system temperature within a safe range. There are several advantages of doing so, and some of them are listed below:

1. It Improves Computer Performance

As discussed earlier, when the CPU temperature crosses a certain threshold limit, throttling occurs, which lowers your CPU performance to protect the system from potential damage. We can avoid this degradation by monitoring the CPU temperature effectively and enhancing our system’s performance.

2. Ensures the Reliability of the Data Center

To prevent downtime and maintain a reliable data center, certain factors are essential, such as maintaining a healthy temperature and humidity control, and implementing efficient power management. Keeping a close eye on the temperature and ensuring it stays within a safe range contributes to the system’s overall reliability.

3. Longer Life Span of System

As all know that running the system on the standard configuration gives better results and increases the lifespan of the computer. So by keeping your CPU temperature in control, you surely long for your machine’s life.

Lowering of CPU and GPU Temperature

Now let’s discuss the solution to your system’s continuous temperature rise issue, in case you are unaware of the underlying reasons. Below are the solutions that can help lower your CPU Temparature and GPU temperature:

1. Ensure Proper Ventilation

Adequate air circulation around the processor is essential, depending on your usage. Check if the vents of your computer are blocked. Occasionally, you may find a small amount of dust accumulated, which can be cleared using an Air gun or blower. This action will increase the fans’ air intake, allowing fresh air to supply to the processor and other components.

2. Upgrade the CPU Fan

In some cases, heavy usage of your processor and GPU can lead to a temperature rise. If the existing fan capacity or unit is insufficient to meet the cooling requirements, especially in gaming PCs, consider adding one more fan in parallel or upgrading the existing one with a higher capacity fan. This step is highly recommended to ensure effective cooling.

3. Apply the New Thermal Paste

If your processor is constantly running hot and the fans are generating more noise, it is advisable to replace the thermal paste. Swapping the old thermal paste with a new one has the potential to enhance efficiency, and if you are also upgrading to a cooler option, it becomes even more beneficial. Additionally, this change will contribute to the increased longevity of other computer components.

4. Replace Your Heat Sink

Heat sinks are solid components primarily designed to absorb heat from electrical components, especially the processor, and disperse it into the surrounding environment. Considering the vital role heat sinks play in cooling and reducing temperatures, opting to replace your current heat sink with a new one is always prudent.

CPU and GPU Temp Gaming – FAQs

1. How can I monitor my CPU and GPU temperature?

Ans: You can use the basic built-in feature provided by the Windows system. To use it, open your task manager or press the Ctrl+Shift+Esc shortcut on the keyboard. Then go to the “Performance” Tab, select your GPU, click on it, and it’s all set for you. Here you can check your realistic temperature. You can go for MSI After burner for more precise and high-end features.

2. Is there any CPU and GPU monitoring app?

Ans: You can utilize various utilities readily available in the market to monitor the temperature of your CPU and GPU. If your primary concern is checking CPU temperature, CoreTemp, NZXT CAM, and Speccy are top performers in this segment. For monitoring GPU temperature, our highly recommended choices are MSI Afterburner and GPU-Z. In addition, we have provided concise instructions on using and installing some of the utilities mentioned above in the article.

3. What is the normal temperature of a GPU while gaming?

Ans: The acceptable or normal temperature for a GPU should be considered as 65 to 85°C. However, this decision varies from company to company and their models. According to standard guidelines, the GPU temperature should never exceed 85°C. Exceeding this limit can lead to significant consequences and costs.

4. What is a safe temperature for a GPU?

Ans: As mentioned before, if you are using your GPU for intensive tasks and managing to keep its temperature between 60°C to 85°C, you are operating within a safe temperature range. However, if you exceed this limit, you must be mindful of potential consequences. It’s always best to ensure your GPU stays within the recommended temperature range for optimal performance and longevity.


After delving into this comprehensive article, we conclude that surpassing the recommended temperature threshold will invariably harm your processor, as well as have an impact on other related components. The underlying causes for such damage could be attributed to dust, a faulty cooling system, or overclocking of your GPU. Therefore, it is crucial to be vigilant about monitoring the CPU and GPU’s temperature.

We trust that you have found the mentioned utilities highly beneficial, considering that all of them are free to use. You can confidently rely on these tools to check the temperature of your CPU and GPU.

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