Changing fan on the HD6950

They make noise, too.

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doveman
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by doveman » Mon Apr 11, 2011 4:56 am

Thanks guys. I'll avoid the MSI then.

So is the Powercolor a reference design and a good choice? If not, how do I find a reference design card?

twit
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by twit » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:40 am

doveman wrote:So is the Powercolor a reference design and a good choice? If not, how do I find a reference design card?
Seems to be a reference board with a different cooler, the standard cooler looks like this.
As long as you're buying a reference card which manufacturer you go for is of little relevance unless you're looking for something special in the bundle or want a specific brand due to warranty terms or somesuch. No point going for anything but one of the cheapest reference boards as you'll be swapping the cooler anyways.

Regarding the shader unlocking just be aware there's no guarantee it'll work even if you grab a reference card.

doveman
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by doveman » Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:54 am

Yeah, I realise the shader unlocking might not work but it wouldn't bother me that much.

I still don't know how I tell if a board is reference or not. I might not buy the cheapest as other things such as warranty come into play, as you mentioned, but I can't really compare my choices if I don't know which boards are reference.

Is Powercolor a good brand in terms of warranty, etc. If so, I might just get that board as they all seem to be about £200 at the moment.

Omoe
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by Omoe » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:04 pm

Tealc99 wrote:Brilliant. Was a tad concerned about the VRMs.

With my recently installed Shaman using stock fan profile reaches just 730 rpm fan speed at 75 degrees GPU and <90 degrees VReg. Maybe a touch hot but this thing is seriously quiet considering it's running Kombustor. The stock fan sounded like a hoover at this point.

I should modify the fan profile so the Shaman spins up a touch more than 730 rpm.

Just goes to show that the stock Thermalright VRM heatsinks aren't all bad. I wonder what they'd be with Enzotech MOS-C1 stuck on them and a bit more fan speed.

Hey Teal is around 90degrees Vreg not a bit too hot? I get max 60 with the stock cooler at around 40% fan speed. Running Furmark. Thinking of removing the thermalpads and add just a bit of artic silver with artic glue stuff :) Maybe the cooling is a bit better. Need to buy the glue sometime this week.
Still worried about the vrm, if you say the get around 90 degrees, that is HOT :(

twit
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by twit » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:48 pm

doveman wrote:I still don't know how I tell if a board is reference or not. I might not buy the cheapest as other things such as warranty come into play, as you mentioned, but I can't really compare my choices if I don't know which boards are reference.

Is Powercolor a good brand in terms of warranty, etc. If so, I might just get that board as they all seem to be about £200 at the moment.
All the cards that are available on release day are reference designs, a little later you see cards with alternative coolers and then with non-reference pcbs. Essentially if the card looks the same (with another sticker slapped onto it) as the first ones that were released it's a reference design. The more wonky 'HIS DiCu SC yada yada super better triple-XXX' the name is the less likely it's a reference design. Or just use your favouritest search engine :)
My 6970 is a Powercolor, they've been around a long time and usually have amongst the lower prices, the manufacturers that offer warranties that cover you replacing the cooler are (afaik) limited to XFX and eVGA and there's been some hubbub about those extended warranties only beeing applicable in NA, where it stands right now I have no idea. Irregardless the Powercolor one will do you just fine.
Omoe wrote: Hey Teal is around 90degrees Vreg not a bit too hot? I get max 60 with the stock cooler at around 40% fan speed. Running Furmark. Thinking of removing the thermalpads and add just a bit of artic silver with artic glue stuff :) Maybe the cooling is a bit better. Need to buy the glue sometime this week.
Still worried about the vrm, if you say the get around 90 degrees, that is HOT :(
The Vregs are rated to 130ºC, the overtemp protection kicks in at 125ºC, so yeah they're hot but should be fine as long as they're not building up heat, and Furmark is after all somewhat insane. For the GPU the overtemp is set to 104ºC unless my memory fails me. As long as you're not running heavily modified BIOS's or disabling PowerTune it should be near impossible to fry teh card due to high temperatures.

twit
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by twit » Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:02 pm

twit wrote:The Vregs are rated to 130ºC, the overtemp protection kicks in at 125ºC, so yeah they're hot but should be fine as long as they're not building up heat, and Furmark is after all somewhat insane. For the GPU the overtemp is set to 104ºC unless my memory fails me. As long as you're not running heavily modified BIOS's or disabling PowerTune it should be near impossible to fry teh card due to high temperatures.
Or actually sorry, forgot that's a 6950 you're talking about. What I posted applies to the 6970 which supposedly has different vrm circuitry.

Tealc99
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by Tealc99 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:49 pm

I'm not overly concerned about the VRMs as they are rated to run very hot, indeed the VRM unisink on my 4890 was blisteringly hot to the touch even under idle conditions. I'm thinking about increasing the fan speed curve so that the fan spins up a bit more than 750rpm as this is a primary factor in keeping those VRMs cooled down or swapping the stock sinks for the Enzotech MOS-C1. If I do this then I will need to slow down the rear positioned fan a bit as it does get noisier before the Shaman. Still I've no issues so is it really worth worrying about? I suppose it might be if I flash to a 6970 speeds.

doveman
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by doveman » Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:08 am

twit wrote:All the cards that are available on release day are reference designs, a little later you see cards with alternative coolers and then with non-reference pcbs. Essentially if the card looks the same (with another sticker slapped onto it) as the first ones that were released it's a reference design. The more wonky 'HIS DiCu SC yada yada super better triple-XXX' the name is the less likely it's a reference design. Or just use your favouritest search engine :)
Duh, seems rather obvious now you've explained it. I'll probably end up getting the Powercolor anyway, just wanted to be able to do a quick search to see if there's any good deals on other brands first.

Omoe
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by Omoe » Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:51 am

Bah Twit and Tealc99 :)
You took away all reason not to change the cooling on my hd6950, apart from me being a bit lazy :P
I do want to flash my HD6950, but I do not want the potential noise of the stock cooler.
Do you guys think that thermal paste wil conduct heat better than the thermal pads on the vrm and ram heatsinks?

Thinking of applying artic silver 5 on the ram chips with a drop of artic thermal adhesive in the middle so they heatsink stick, but not permantly.

Teal, problem for me is. The enzo heatsinks are most likely too high to place under the Trad2. But it is ok i think i generate more airflow on the VRM's because i have 2 100mm fans on the Trad.

Mousemagician
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by Mousemagician » Tue Apr 12, 2011 5:03 am

Omoe wrote:Bah Twit and Tealc99 :)
You took away all reason not to change the cooling on my hd6950, apart from me being a bit lazy :P
I do want to flash my HD6950, but I do not want the potential noise of the stock cooler.
Do you guys think that thermal paste wil conduct heat better than the thermal pads on the vrm and ram heatsinks?

Thinking of applying artic silver 5 on the ram chips with a drop of artic thermal adhesive in the middle so they heatsink stick, but not permantly.

Teal, problem for me is. The enzo heatsinks are most likely too high to place under the Trad2. But it is ok i think i generate more airflow on the VRM's because i have 2 100mm fans on the Trad.
I installed these low-profile Enzotechs:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6835708009
They fitted perfectly under a Scythe Setsugen 2, on a XFX HD6950 2GB!
Very happy with them! :D

Tealc99
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by Tealc99 » Tue Apr 12, 2011 5:39 am

I just measured the stock Thermalright heatsinks and they are 7mm high for the RAM sinks and 6mm high for the VRM mosfet sinks.

Will have to check but I might not have 12mm+ clearance for the Enzotech either as the cooler is bent at an angle to the board.

Honestly changing the cooler on the HD6950 is one of the best mods for quiet I have ever done (up there with HDD suspension and PSU fan swaps). It's totally changed the sound of my machine from the wife saying that she thought someone was vacuuming in the street to hardly knowing the thing is switched on. I swapped a GPU cooler on a 9500pro before and it ended up being noisier than the stock solution (thanks Zalman, not).

It only took me a couple of hours and I really took my time over it.

m0002a
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by m0002a » Tue Apr 12, 2011 5:49 am

Omoe wrote:Thinking of applying artic silver 5 on the ram chips with a drop of artic thermal adhesive in the middle so they heatsink stick, but not permantly.
I would strongly recommend that you not use AS5 on such devices. Instead use a non-conductive paste such as AS Ceramique or AC MX4. I have seen too many reports of people shorting out components with AS5 or other conductive pastes (not talking about CPU's which are much harder to short out).

Omoe
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by Omoe » Tue Apr 12, 2011 6:29 am

Goodone Moo!
especially with the vrm's being so small.
I do have ceramique too, but instead of Artic Silver Thermal Adhesive you recommend me buying Arctic Alumina Thermal Adhesive?
http://www.arcticsilver.com/arctic_alum ... hesive.htm
instead of
http://www.arcticsilver.com/arctic_silv ... hesive.htm

m0002a
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by m0002a » Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:06 am

Anyone know of a source for Thermalright Shaman or Thermalright T-RAD 2 GTX?

m0002a
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by m0002a » Tue Apr 12, 2011 7:09 am

Omoe wrote:Goodone Moo!
especially with the vrm's being so small.
I do have ceramique too, but instead of Artic Silver Thermal Adhesive you recommend me buying Arctic Alumina Thermal Adhesive?
http://www.arcticsilver.com/arctic_alum ... hesive.htm
instead of
http://www.arcticsilver.com/arctic_silv ... hesive.htm
According to their website:

"Arctic Alumina Adhesive is a pure electrical insulator, neither electrically conductive nor capacitive."

So it sounds good if you need adhesive paste.

twit
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by twit » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:23 am

Omoe wrote:Thinking of applying artic silver 5 on the ram chips with a drop of artic thermal adhesive in the middle so they heatsink stick, but not permantly.
Bad idea, you're pretty much guaranteed to end up with higher thermal resistance than simply using a pad. You'll get air between the two componds as they won't mix, there's the possibility of some form of reaction between the grease and the glue that could lead to either compound expanding.

A pad is actually quite fine in a non-critical application such as for ram sinks or the vrm circuitry. The ram doesn't get hot enough to warrant bending over backwards to shave a few degrees off and if you're overvolting the vrm so much you need those 4-5ºC you should be watercooling already.
If your cooling solution is insufficient to keep the ram/vrm at safe temperatures no grease in the world will fix what a pad cannot.

And my Shaman just arrived, modding day tomorrow \o/

Omoe
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by Omoe » Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:37 pm

Yoyo Twit,

Goodluck with the MOD, if you can post some pics :D

Thing is with my Trad2, I already used some mem heatsinks on my old HD3870.
So the pads are a bit dusty on the sides. I have Arctic cleaner, but doubt they will stick on nicely.
That is why i want to use a drop of glue.

doveman
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Re: Changing fan on the HD6950

Post by doveman » Tue Apr 26, 2011 2:24 pm

Well I finally made a decision and ordered the (twin-fan) Powercolor 6950, which arrived today.

At first I was stressing because I couldn't find the BIOS switch and was thinking I'd have to return it as it's not such great value without the option to flash it to a 6970, but I found it eventually! :)

But OMG, this thing is loud. Even at idle, with the fan only at 27%, it sounds about as loud as my (not particularly quiet) Optiarc 7260S DVD drive with a disc spinning slowly/idling (not at full speed, that's leafblower territory).

And OMG, now I've got cables all over the place, going to the Molex socket on the motherboard to power the PCI-E slot, not to mention the two PCI-E power cables to the card (one of which is via an adapter from two Molexes, as my PSU only has one PCI-E connector). I'll just have to keep the side on the case and try and forget about the mess.

Anyway, gonna have to mod this card pretty soon, 'cos this isn't a SPC (or even a Quiet PC) anymore!

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