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Thread: Just how important is the fan on an ATI video card, anyway

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2000
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    I didn't even know video cards had fans, but after a client kept complaining that their G4 intermittently sounded like a pickup truck painfully climbing a mountainous dirt road, I investigated.

    It did sound bad. Like a drive failing.

    After eliminating all the drives and system fan as culprits, I discovered the ATI video card has a tiny fan integrated into its heatsink. Most of you probably knew that, but it was news to me until I stuck my finger in it....

    The thing was so amazingly loud, and because the machine is being used in a sound studio the noise had to go. So I just disconnected the fan.

    Seems to me that

    A) at worst, the card burns out.

    B) at best, the card lives a long, happy, quiet life.

    Since the noise is unacceptable, the card will either be replaced now or later, if it dies. I

    t's very cool inside this machine, and I figure the card will last a while yet no matter what. Also, maybe the only reason it comes on inside a cool machine is that its temp sensor is shot (along with its tiny but sonically powerfully bearings).

    Thoughts? Can these dumb little heatsink/fans be replaced? Or should I just leave it without fan and see if it fries?

  2. #2
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    Search thru Mike Breedeen's site. I vaguely remember when the noisey ATI fan problem surfaced months ago that some new machines had cards with fans and some had no fans. Whatever, Breeden had quite a bit about it.

  3. #3
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    Sep 2000
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    Thanks, Louie. I'll check that out.

  4. #4
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    that's odd...I've got a few of those boards here, Bill, and none of them are loud like that.

    maybe you need to hit that particular fan with some silicon lube?

  5. #5
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    Jan 2001
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    Chicago, IL, USA
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    perhaps this reply is too late but it has been asked a couple of times after this elsewhere too... ?

    ATI chipsets run very cool & you can safely unplug the fan (I have). I believe the Radeon chipset gives off less than 5W and there is a pretty widespread belief (among PC Radeon owners anyway) that the fan is just for show. Can't have the GeForce 2's sport a huge HSF and not the Radeon, right?

    Of course, this changes if you are overclocking the Radeon's RAM...

    [This message has been edited by benkim (edited 15 June 2001).]

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