5800 Ultra active cooling on backside
I recently had my GeForce FX 5800 Ultra fail on me, apparently from DRAM failure. I probably could have avoided my problem with a small fan on the rear of the card.
Although my card was RMAd smoothly by PNY tech support, I had an opportunity to discuss my problem with the NVIDIA NV30 Product Manager, Geoffrey Ballew. He suggested that I put a fan on the non-FX Flow side of my 5800U card, so the hot-running DDR2 DRAMs on the backside would have active cooling, too.
This seemed to be solid advice. My first 5800U failed in a case without air movement behind the card. My tower case has fans moving air over the Zalman flower CPU sink. These fans also move air over rear of the video card. However, the 5800U failed soon after installing it in a Shuttle SFF without such air movement across the rear of the video card.
So now I've installed a quiet Sunon 50 mm fan on the rear of my replacement 5800 Ultra. Things seem to be going well. Video card temps are reported as 42-55°C, well below the 60-70°C seen before from the SFF configuration. YMMV, but I'm going to keep a fan on the rear of my 5800U the rest of its life, most especially if I ever overclock the DDR2.
its a good idea... i have one also, after feeling how hot the backplate gets, i couldnt possibly see how that could be healthy for the card, so i threw a fan on the backplate... i had a 50mm... but i decided to throw on a 72mm just in case, it came off a heatsink from coolermaster...i have it attached to a fanbus, and i can raise and lower the fan speed, i get around 7-10c's cooler with it on full speed.
considering the card is already technically coming overclocked out of the box... it is a good idea that you are cooling the card down with an active cooler yourself actually..
it'll give you more headroom for further overclocking and certainly prevent any nastiness in terms of card failure due to heat reasons...
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