I plan on buying a new nVidia video card and have the following question in mind. As silence is more important than performance for me I have narrowed my search to four cooling solutions, each considered quiet:
- Asus DirectCUII (loud under load ?)
- MSI Twin Frozr (best cooling, disputed quietness)
- Gigabyte Windforce (not really that silent)
- Gainward Phantom (silent overall, but there's a high chance to have coil noise)
Again, the card model itself is irrelevant (gtx 560 /ti), what matters is that the card is mainly as silent as possible in idle and decently quiet in gaming (@ 1920x1080). The impressions written in parentheses are the averaged opinions I read on the web.
I consider it a tricky question, but, from your experience, is the Gainward Phantom the best solution for my needs, or is there a better one ?
P.S. I'm not a hardcore gamer so I don't care about huge AA and high FPS :)
Then try to find a card with passive cooling (no fan). I think there are GTS 450 and GTX 550 with passive cooling; should be enough for a casual gamer...
Perhaps installing sound dampening foam in your case is a better option than sacrificing cooling performance?
Sound dampening foam is always an option like Razear replied, there's also cases specifically made for quiet computing as well, however most have no or poor case airflow as they're mostly enclosed.
I doubt you'll find a GTX 560 or greater with any type of passive cooling (fanless). Most cards are pretty quiet when they're idle, its normally when they're under load and the fan speed kicks up when they're noisy... I have my card put manually at 10% speed because it never gets over 50C even under load, it just depends on the card and how well the heatsink on it performs really. At 1920x1080 gaming, I can't really recommend anything under AMD 6850/GTX 550TI either.
Likely the best solution is buying any random GTX 560/560 TI and looking for an 3rd party heatsink designed specifically for quiet operation or replacing the fans on the heatsink with lower RPM fans that you can control manually with a controller.
go and buy a 3rd cooler for you card like the ARCTIC COOLING one's
i had a Accelero Twin Turbo Pro on a HD 4890 and now i have a Accelero Xtreme PLUS II on a GTX 480 and they are VERY VERY quite and you get very good temps with them
Thanks for the replies.
First of all I do have foam (Fractal Design R3), but the sound from the video card comes out the back of the case and gets reflected around the room. Maybe I should put some carpets on the walls to absorb the noise. Second, is a 3rd party VGA cooler (much) better than the cooling systems mentioned ? All have 2 or 3 fans. Of course, my actual card (gts 450) only has one which sometimes makes coil noise.
yes the 3rd party VGA coolers like the Artic cooling its much better and very quite
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