It’s a regular temperature while under loads, however, it’s definitely on the higher end and we would recommend trying to fix any issues that might be causing the GPU to reach this temperature, as such, you might be interested in checking out our free GPU cooling guide.
It’s pretty extensive and covers most of what you’re asking about here (though not exactly).
The short version goes like this:
Yes, running at elevated temperatures can damage your GPU; but if you have adequate ventilation, keeping temps under 90°C should be fine with proper airflow.
GPUs generate a lot of heat when they operate, which makes them unsuitable for long periods of time sitting directly next to an open fire or a heater or somewhere with poor airflow.
Let’s also assume that your rig has been working great until recently. You haven’t changed anything major on the hardware side, yet somehow you seem to run hotter than ever. What could possibly cause this?
Well, it may sound strange, but the problem can actually boil down to something very simple: dust buildup on your heatsink fins.
As anyone who’s tried cleaning their computer case knows, dust builds up over time. When dust accumulates on your cooler, its surface area increases dramatically.
With greater surface area comes increased thermal resistance — meaning less efficient transfer of heat energy away from your GPU core. And since GPUs require lots of power, even small amounts of waste can quickly become big problems.
This creates two conditions:
1) temperature rises faster than normal.
2) wasted energy due to inefficient cooling.
So how do you fix it?
Simple: clean off the dust!
How can I tell whether my GPU is getting hot?
Most modern laptops feature built-in sensors meant specifically for monitoring internal components’ temperatures. On desktops, however, you usually have no idea whether the processor or GPU itself is warm or not.
A quick way to test this is to hold your hand against the chip while watching for any changes in skin coloration. Another option is to install a program called Core Temp, which lets you monitor multiple CPUs simultaneously.
Once you’ve done either of those steps, take note of what readings you get. They should roughly correlate with ambient room temperature.
What causes thermal throttling?
Thermal throttling occurs when excess waste heat builds up inside the GPU core, causing the temperature to drop suddenly.
This happens because the voltage supplied to the GPU gets reduced, making the core work harder to stay stable. Unfortunately, the solution to this is rather difficult: reducing voltage wastes electricity, which leads us back into the whole process of increasing temperature. Also, lowering voltages lowers performance, which is undesirable.
Finally, the voltage required by today’s high-end products is extremely precise, meaning lower voltages are impractical.
Is overclocking likely to exacerbate the situation?
Yes, overclocked processors tend to produce more waste heat. However, you shouldn’t worry too much about this since modern chips already employ sophisticated mechanisms designed to prevent overheating.
Overclocking tends to occur during initial testing anyway, so it’s easy to avoid. Plus, having higher speeds doesn’t mean you need to run them longer – simply put, if your CPU was going above 75% utilization while idle, you’d still be okay.
If you’re looking for more information, please visit our dedicated section on GPU overclocking.
There you’ll learn everything possible about tweaking settings, troubleshooting errors, and preventing potential risks.
Since this topic is somewhat broad, we recommend taking a look at it once you’ve finished learning about the basic principles behind overclocking.
So, to summarize, yes 80 degrees Celsius is a little bit hot for a GPU. How does this happen? Well, unfortunately, there aren’t really many reasons why this might happen.
Usually, it boils down to dust accumulation on heatsinks, leading to poor heat dissipation.
Fortunately, this is easily fixed with regular maintenance and care.
If you suspect that your GPU is being damaged by excessive heat, it’s best to consult a professional technician.
John has been a gamer since the early age of 7, playing a huge variety of single-player games, and MMOs, and even participating in LAN Tournaments for FPS games such as Counter-Strike Global Offensive. Ever since he found his passion in gaming & in technology in general, he has continuously increased his knowledge in software, programming & hardware and is now working at TechReviewTeam helping readers, answering questions, writing articles & reviews for the team.