Originally Posted by Kaguya
Please keep us posted on what you find wrt your fans and temps.
I understand the point of the auto fan, but I much prefer to find a good 'reasonable' manual setting. On auto, the GPU gets the chance to get really hot, and then the fan has to work extra hard to cool it back down - if you have the fan set at a decent click from the get go, it will go up more slowly and even stay cooler.
I find that my 260s stay much cooler with my fan locked at 50% even with a moderate overclock. Plus 50% fan is very tolerable hearing-wise. I do have a manual hotkey trigger to flip to 75% on hot days, and that is noticeably loud.
I'm still heavily leaning toward a pair of 470s, but can't find any EVGAs in stock. There are a couple MSIs, though - perhaps I should jump vendors? I've heard good things about MSI's answer to Precision.
That's up to you. Precision will work with other cards. Most reference cards are manufactured in a few locations then dispersed. The reason to have an EVGA card would be support. If you want a lifetime warranty, official support of overclocking under warranty and the ability to replace your HSF without voiding your warranty, EVGA is the way to go.
Zotac has a "limited lifetime" warranty on their cards and I'm not sure what that entails. They are also a flat 350usd on Newegg in the US.
Zotac's limited lifetime warranty is detailed below.
The Zotac 8800 GT I had that was 700|2000 out of the box was a work horse. It was very well made. I've been told the same folks that make ATi cards for Sapphire make these for Zotac. (PC Partner) From an old 2007 article.
"Despite being a relatively new player in the graphics card market, Zotac also has huge manufacturing power behind it, being a subsidiary of PC Partner, the company that is also behind Sapphire – ATI’s largest graphics card partner. In addition to manufacturing both Zotac’s and Sapphire’s graphics cards, PC Partner is also still contracted to produce most of the ATI graphics cards on the market for AMD’s various add-in board partners."
Yes, I'll let you know how temps go. I'll have some Shin-Etsu X23 7783D on my GPU by the weekend.