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Old October 27, 2009, 08:03 PM
Surfer_2099 Surfer_2099 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: St. Catharines, ON
Posts: 315

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I would venture that the goal of an aftermarket cooler is to:

A- Increase cooling performance
B- Decrease cooler noise
C- Take advantage of different PCB layouts

Now, for A, a larger Heatsink using fins and heatpipes, raising the cooling higher off of the board means that things would have difficulty lining up with any type of rear PCI exhaust system. So from a logistical standpoint, it is preferable to benefit from a bigger, higher cooler and dissipate heat into the case, than it would be to try and reroute the heat out of the case in an effective manner.

For B, a larger Heatsink means a larger fan. A larger fan means lower RPMs and therfore lower fan noise. Also, most aftermarket GPU coolers don't throttle, so you don't have variations in speed. Lastly, most shrouded coolers that exhaust heat outside of the case via the rear have fenestrated grills and a small opening. Right now, take a deep breath and exhale with your mouth wide open. Now, take another deep breath and purse your lips, then exhale. Hear the difference? Now, take a deep breath, purse your lips and place your finger about 2.5cm away from your lips. Now exhale. Hear that crazy amount of noise? That's turbulence and that`s what exhausting heat oou of the back of the case does.

For C, many if not most custom cooled video cards have been redesigned from the PCB up in order to increase voltage, frequencies, etc. Now, I would submit that most coolers are heatsink / fins / large fan combinations. Since that new PCB means the ram and whatnot is not in the same place, it would be cost prohibitive (notwithsanding A and B) to create an effective shrouded, rear exhausting, cooler.

That said... have you ever cranked a rear exhausting cooler to the max? I've got a Gigabye 5850 and on auto, the fan spins quietly at 33% at 100% load, but if I crank that fan to 100%, sure I've now got a hair dryer under my desk, but it cools my card like nobody's buisness.

Anyhow, I was in the mood to answer something while I watched the news so there's my theory.


Cheers!
Conjecture_Canuck :)
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