Originally Posted by particleman
This may not be an issue for noncrossfire users, but for me one of the minor complaints with my 4870 crossfire system is that it heats up my room even when idle. These cards generate a ton of heat, and until ATi gets powerplay working properly they will continue to do so. Upping the Fan speed will not help with the fact that they generate so much heat that it raises your room temperature, it just makes it worse since it expels even more of the hot air into gets expelled into the room. Having 2 4870s is like having the furnace on, which is fine in the winter, but this is the summer!
Any two high-end graphics cards on the market will do this, though. When I had my two 8800GTXs in SLI, the paint would start dripping off the walls.
High end cards run hot. That's all there is to it. The 4870 chip doesn't run any hotter than its predecessors; it's just that the fan speed is scaled down to account for low noise levels. If you want to fix that, then it'll take you all of 2 minutes to create a profile that will boot every time Windows does. It's a very quick and easy solution.
As for which card you should get, well my vote is obvious. The 4870. It's more technologically advanced and is much faster than the 260 in several games--even scaling as high as the 280. I don't get where some say it's a "similar performer"; they aren't looking at the big picture and are ignoring the times it blows the 260 out of the water at a high res with AA enabled.