Originally Posted by deploylinux
I was seeing some overheating and possibly stability issues recently with my six year old main workstation running Gentoo Linux with windows 7 apps also available via vmware workstation.
I suspected that dust was building up in the system even though I clean it out whenever I can, but that the main cpu is just behind an old geoforce 8800 gts 512 card and the older pentium D 950 cpu tends to run hot even in the most optimum situation.
Anyhow, step 1 towards resolving matters was buying and installing a video card that would hopefully run a little cooler, provide higher performance, be more efficient with power, and have decent fans so that any local temp issues near the card would reduced.
This pretty much ruled out the 580 or 590, and I wasn't willing to settle for the reduced performance of the 4xx series...so that meant going with either a 560, 560ti, 560 ti 448 core, or 570. Upgrading to a quadro card was also a possibility but the lowest model quadro that I could see using was the 4000 and those were much more expensive.
After reviewing the specs, and noting that 560 ti 448 has dual fans and very good reviews for performance per watt - I went with the evga classified version of it.
It looks to have reduced the overall chassis temp by about 2 degrees and the variable fan plus powermizer auto tuning seems to rev up and down the card power usage such that the system is much less likely to overheat.
I'm not really seeing any huge benefits to video performance though...especially as adobe flash has issues under Linux. I'll try out some video editing later this week....
Note that I suspect both the system cpu is likely a limiting factor....the 8800 gts 512 might already have been maxing out the box, although my display is a 30" dell monitor running at 2500x1600 and the additional video ram has to be helpful.
My motherboards pcie slot is limited to gen 1 so x16 and the 560ti 448 core is gen 2....however x16 already provides a huge amount of bandwidth, I'm not convinced that the pci bandwidth is likely a limiting issue at least for 99% of the time.
Truthfully I think your system in general is too old in comparison to the new video card. The Pentium D is a really old and even at the time a fairly slow processor. It was immediately overshadowed by the Athlon 64 x2's and the Opterons and Core 2 Duos... Not to mention they're notorious for running hot like you said.
I really think the best "bang for your buck" would be picking up something like a GTS 450 and looking at a different cpu. I realize it'll be a little more expensive but that is probably your only option given that system.