Just yesterday I was speaking with a colleague about some graphics cards on the test bench in the PCSTATS labs, and specifically about how large, loud, and bulky the cooling packages were. As I tried to describe these bulky contraptions with a combination of animated sounds and hand gestures, it struck me that most people really don't think of videocards as a major source of heat in the computer. But if you think about the number of transistors in a modern-day GPU, it becomes quite apparent that cutting edge videocard GPUs are often more complex than the computer processor!
Considering the lack of real estate around a PCI
or AGP 8x videocard, adequately cooling the graphics processor will always be a challenge. It's a question of space, and considering the slight amount of space to play with, some pretty inventive VGA heatsinks have been developed. The trend 'du jour' is to use a VGA heatsink that occupies two expansion slots worth of space; that extra 20mm space goes an amazingly long way. Equipping a videocard with dual slot cooling solution can reduce GPU temperatures, or the noise produced by the GPU fan, however the newest generation videocards are already starting to push that envelope...
Large fans, or simply faster spinning ones help boost cooling capacity,
with a catch. Adding a bigger fan is a simple solution, and the downside
is the noise those nice large fan blades stir up. While one could argue
whether gamers would notice when fragging away at 300fps with 7.1 channel
speakers fully raging... quieting down the videocard for every other waking
minute the computer is on is certainly going to get noticed.
ASUS has caught on to all of
this, so instead of shipping its Geforce 7800GT videocard with a noisy VGA
heatsink and putting consumers in a position where they'll spend another
$50 on a silent after market heatsink, this Geforce 7800GT comes completely
silent right out of the box. The new ASUS EN7800GT Top Silent 2DHTV/256M
costs a bit more than the stock ASUS EN7800GT 2DHTV/256M/OSP/A, but with its 'SilentCool'
heatsink it's well worth it.
Asus EN7800GT TOP
Quick Setup Guide, Leather CD Wallet, Driver
CD, PowerDirector CD, Medi@ Show CD, Manual CD, King
Kong CD, Project Snowblind CD, three game bonus
pack, VIVO/Component Out Break Out Box, DVI to Analog
Behind the mass of metal is an nVidia GeForce
7800GT GPU and 256MB of 1.6ns GDDR3 memory - the Asus
EN7800GT TOP Silent/2DHTV/256M is guaranteed to be fast with a package
like that. The nVidia Geforce 7800GT graphics engine runs at 420MHz, and
the GDDR3 memory follow suit with a clock speed of 1.24GHz (620MHz DDR3).
Utilizing a standard PCI
Express x16 slot, the max resolution supported by this GPU is 2048x1536
pixels. The EN7800GT Top Silent supports the usual GeForce 7800GT stuff like
dual DVI output, VIVO capabilities, component output (Y, Pb, Pr) and a decent
software package is bundled in. Care of its innovative 'SilentCool' VGA heatsink,
it's technically a dead silent videocard too.
The Asus EN7800GT TOP Silent/2DHTV/256M is fully SLI
capable, so if you can run two of these
silent assassins together. The only other question to
bare in mind is what kind of power supply will you need to run a single
EN7800GT Top? Well, let's dig down through the features