Trend of the GPU Heatsink/Cooler -- From Radeon 9700 to X800 to X1900 with HD 2900 and later staying the same

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GraysonPeddie
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Hi, everyone. Pardon my curiousity, but I have a question. From looking at ATI Radeon 9700 to Radeon X800 to Radeon X1950 and to Radeon HD 2900, I've noticed that the cooler gets bigger and bigger and it went from a high-end single slot in X800 to a dual-slot in X1900.

So here's my question. Will the video cardss' high-end coolers get bigger and bigger as the trend continues? I bet there's an 80% chance that AMD will still keep the same heatsink size as with AMD Radeon 6990 and that the heatsinks for hi-end video cards will not get smaller, even if the next-generation GPUs will have a much lower 25nm manufacturing tech since AMD wants to really push for higher performance (yes, there's nothing wrong with that, but it'd be really nice to see lower power consumtptions and energy efficiency getting better over time as time progresses).

In my opinion (yes, I know what I'm about to say is wrong, as I won't be able to play high-demanding PC games, but for me, who cares?), I really consider the Radeon HD 5670 (heh... only one video card that is a single-slot in the 5750: XFX HD-575X-ZMF3) to be the "single-slot high-end" while the dual-slot high-end will be the 6990 (methinks that's a dual-GPU video card in a single PCB? My knowledge in that is pretty much rusty, though).

So, with that said, I'd be curious to know your input in the trend. Do you think the video card heatsink/cooler will get bigger, like a video card tkat takes up 3 expansion slots of your PC? Will the next-generation high-end video cards get longer generation-by-generation? Or will the heatsink/cooler ever get smaller with the GPU and memory being more efficient -- maybe only taken up by just one slot?

You can laugh at me, but as a general rule, let's try and keep the discussion civil. I just want to read your feedback. :)

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lali
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Hey, maybe one day nVidia or AMD will institute integrated water cooling into their video cards.

Gentlemen.

GraysonPeddie
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Not very possible in a one-slot configuration, wouldn't it?

Well, I'll try to keep an open mind, but I'm talking about the trends in whether the heatsink will get bigger or not; I mean, if the GPU and high-end GPU and memory becomes more efficient while still providing high performance.

HTPC: AMD Athlon X2 4050e CPU with 780G ATX motherboard running Windows 8 DP (4GB) and Ubuntu; Server: AMD AII X2 240e CPU with 880G-based ATX motherboard running Ubuntu Server 10.04 LTS (8GB)

2 pairs of Insignia NS-B2111s (front/rear), Pioneer SP-C21 Center Speaker, and 12" Velodyne Sub

Just ordered HP Pavilion dv7-6165us from QVC. Will have it by next Friday.

heavy_metal
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Well it seems to me the smaller technology is becoming the more they cram onto each board, and the higher clocks they use, which causes the temps to be the same about as previous generations because they are making it so much faster. I too hope that they could make a single slot solution for high end video cards that is not water cooling like EVGA hydrocool GTX580, for that fact that I like just being able to run air cooling. I believe that they will try to keep the video card coolers the same size, but that all depends on how many chips and how much memory they cram on the video card in my opinion.

k1llg0r3
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My Rig|CPU- i7 950@3.08ghz|CPU Cooler- Coolermaster v8|Motherboard- EVGA X58 SLI3|RAM- G.skill Trident 6gb 2000mhz|GPU- XFX HD5870|Case- HAF 932 Black Edition|PSU- Coolermaster Silent Pro 1000W

eire1274
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There are some very large designs, but you will also note that some middle of the road cards (a generation or two back from the current top end) often are re-released with very slim single slot designs. The catch here is that the design that superseded this model often was built on a smaller form factor. The old design, remade on the smaller die, generates less heat, which is very desirable for small form factor or mid-grade workstations.

The bigger and bigger heatsinks are a result of the fact that we are generating GPU capabilities faster than we are able to descale.

Nick McDermott

massau
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eum i think there is a maximum size because you have a maximum TDP. so when we can make it bigger until it doesn't cool better we should use something better than vabor chambers or use standard water cooling +vabor chambers. se we can get the heat further away. like eire 1274 said the gpu's are evolving to fast. but the manufacturer skiped a node and thats th ething we start feeling if we would be stuck another year whit 40nm than amd woudl go to globel foundries for 32nm. and Nvidia would just try to get an verry energie efficient arch otherwise thye will lose it.
but be happu 28nm is coming and TDP will be lower.

GraysonPeddie
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"Vabor?" What's a "vabor?" LOL! "Vapor," you mean? :) Pardon me; I can speak faster than I can type, but I'm not good at doing voice dictation. But vabor...vaborize...it does have a nice ring to it. :p

Thanks, everyone for your input.

HTPC: AMD Athlon X2 4050e CPU with 780G ATX motherboard running Windows 8 DP (4GB) and Ubuntu; Server: AMD AII X2 240e CPU with 880G-based ATX motherboard running Ubuntu Server 10.04 LTS (8GB)

2 pairs of Insignia NS-B2111s (front/rear), Pioneer SP-C21 Center Speaker, and 12" Velodyne Sub

Just ordered HP Pavilion dv7-6165us from QVC. Will have it by next Friday.