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54 C is pretty hot for the CPU. Maybe look at adding some more fans in your case.
My P4 regularly gets up to 75C or over without issue. While cooler is always better, I don't think 54C is any cause for concern.
> Is this cause for concern?
No. A few years ago, with P4 models, I was always between 70C and 80C, without any problem.
I have never gone over 60C... then again I had a 1.8GHz Celeron for most of my life...
My 2.4GHz Kentsfield QuadCore runs between 30C and 50C just fine. If 54C is your peak at max load, your still doing fine.
I had lots of stuff rendering the last few days on the P4 machine and it started shutting down on me with no notice. I started monitoring the CPU temp and it was hitting around 86 C. I took some additional steps to cool it all down but it was too late - fried, wouldn't even boot anymore. Good excuse to replace that processor with a dual core, but then the proc was only 2 years old anyway. :(
Bought an enormous heat sink/fan for the new dual core proc, with much better thermal paste than the last one, so this should run a bit cooler, probably down in the 50-60 C range. I think the lesson here is cooling devices...large in size and quantity where possible.
Or you could try this:
The Zalman fan should suffice.
Better than the stock fan.
I also have a Zalman, but for my next system I will have a serious look at ThermalRight Ultra 120 or Ultima 90 coolers. They are far better than Zalman.
I also have a Zalman, I'm not amazed by it's cooling but it does the job.
The ThermalRight Ultra 120 looks quite nice, fanless too.
All these coolers are active, not passive.