Date: July 23rd, 2007
Article by: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: XFX
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This videocard can be easily found at a price between US$165-$200.
Inside the box you have a quick install and connection guide, a driver/software CD, a DVI to VGA converter and a S-video cable. The only thing missing in this package is another DVI to VGA converter for people with two digital monitors.
And last you have the videocard itself. As you can see, this is not your everyday videocard. XFX has chosen to use a completely passive GPU cooler to keep this overclocked videocard cool. We will go over the card more in depth in the next section.
PRODUCT PICTORIAL & WALKTHROUGH
Let's see what this unique videocard has to offer.
Of course the highlight is this videocard's rather unique passive cooler. What it is comprised of is a copper plate directly over the core which is connected to the main aluminum heatsink via two heatpipes. The heatsink is then connected to itself through two more smaller heatpipe to distribute the heat throughout the whole surface area instead of just in the direct area where the main heatpipes attach.
The cooler also serves as a memory cooler as well. Through closer inspection the memory was very poorly connected the the front black heatsink. The thermal tape was not touching the memory in some cases. This leads to a chip that is not transferring its heat to the heatsink efficiently. I also found that the heatsink was not connecting the core perfectly due to a slightly warped GPU shim. If your card is overheating, this could be the cause. It can easily be fixed in about five minutes by leveling it out and re-attaching the heatsink.
To simulate a case environment, I had a 92mm case fan blowing air over the motherboard and videocard. Overall, this cooler did do its job well. With room temperatures at 23c, the videocard at idle for 3 hours only reached 47c. This may seem high to some, but for a completely passive cooler, the cooler was doing a good job. When put under load for 3 hours straight, heat saturation occurred at about 88c where it leveled off and didn't vary until the testing was stopped. Over this is still a good reading for a fanless CPU/memory cooler. GPU cores always run hotter than your standard desktop processor so direct comparisons should never be made.