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Graphics HOWTO: Cooling HD4870 with Thermalright T-Rad2

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by BradShort, 25 Apr 2009.

  1. BradShort

    BradShort Familyman - Fraggin when allowed :P

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    Cooling HD4870 with Thermalright T-Rad2 - 30 mins

    Hi, this is my first post on Bit Tech and its something i have never done before. Over the years i have got a lot of help from the Custom PC forums so its payback!

    I had to move my PC into the living room and i realised that my Force 3D HD4870 was very noisy with the DHT after market cooler that came with it. I was getting some great temps with it however with 36 degrees idle and 50 degrees under load, so i wanted to achieve somewhere around these temps whilst also making my PC as silent as it could be. I already had a Arctic Freezer 7 for my Q6600 so that was already very quiet. My Antec 900 case already has fantastic air flow, so all i needed was a kick ass cooler!


    [​IMG]

    So after some great advice from Custom PC forums i went for the Thermalright T-Rad2 VGA cooler and 2 x Akasa Amber 18db 90mm fans to mount on it.

    When i was researching this, i read on a lot of forums that the VRM's tend to get very hot on the HD4870, however i had never experienced this and the VRM's do not have heatsink on anyway as you can see, on my card.


    [​IMG]

    Step1

    Right Turn the card over and undo the four screws that hold you fan assembly in place. Be careful as the fan assembly can just fall off so lay it flat on a table. Remember to remove the Fan lead if your assembly had one!

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    You now have a messy VGA chip to contend with! To clean this i use TIM cleaner and lint free screen wipes. It can be tricky with the Paste getting sticky with the resistors around the chip, but stick with it!

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Right stick your little Heatsinks on the RAMs (black sqaures) around the VGA chip. Just peel the back of the blighters and they stick on fine! As someone has pointed out further down, you can also add sinks to the VRAMS ( although my stock did not have any on)

    Step 2

    Right, now for the T-Rad2. It looks big, but it should do the trick. Make sure you have enough room in the case before continuing tho!

    You need to find the threaded rods and screw them into the four holes on the underside of the cooler, also adding the black washers to them too!

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Step 3

    Add a little bit of thermal paste to both the VGA and the T-Rad2 as shown, use and old credit card to spread if you have one (in this day and age i'm sure its maxed out anyway!)

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Step 4

    Assembly! Be careful here. Leave the radiator face down and spin the graphics card over and place over the threaded rods so they slip through the four holes and are sticking through the backside of the graphics card. Add the white washers and then tighten with the thumbscrews CAREFULLY! Not too tight and watch to make sure the card does not bend, cos mine started too and that means its overtightened.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Its all fitted now! Just check that ther is clearance between the VRM's and the t-Rad2 but you shouldn't have a problem


    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Step 5

    Add the fans! Easy this, just screw them on! They sit nicely over the holes and screw them in! WARNING! Do not press down too hard else the T-Rad2 starts to bend the card. Hold the first fan and then gently screw the second one in.

    [​IMG]

    Step 6

    FIT THE CARD! I found two 3-pin fan adapters on the motherboard but they came with molex adapters so no probs there!

    CONCLUSION

    The Machine is now very quiet and i am extremely happy with it. Temps are really low with 30 degrees idle and 40 degrees under load!! This was a lot lower than i had expected so a bonus.

    I had a few issues with the cabling under the graphics card as the sata cables were a little bunched up but i bought some right angled sata cables to combat that. So below you can see the arrangement after installation and my pathetic attempt at tidying the cabling LOL

    I hope this guide will be of use to someone cos i find them invaluable when i am embarking on new mini projects that i have not done before. It really was easy and only tool 30 mins in total.

    Tips for newbies: Just take is slowly and read instructions and you wont go far wrong!


    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]


    _____

    BradShort :thumb:
     
    Last edited: 25 Apr 2009
    pimonserry and mm vr like this.
  2. perplekks45

    perplekks45 LIKE AN ANIMAL!

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    You sure used a lot of thermal paste there... :p

    Anyways, nice howto and thanks for the effort. :thumb:

    Oh, and welcome to the forums!
     
  3. BradShort

    BradShort Familyman - Fraggin when allowed :P

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    lol thx! Yeh i thought i had used too much too, but the temps seem great so i guess not. Its quite thin although a large area. :jawdrop:

    PS - How do i add a signature !!
     
  4. Snubbs

    Snubbs CustomPC Migration victim....

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    Mate, those black things are RAMs!

    VRMS on the 4870 are these:
    [​IMG]

    You deffo want them heatsinked.
    Get GPU-Z and see what temps there at - probably 140c under load without Heatsinks.
    They are rated at MAX for 120c, however idealy they should be no more than 80c iirc.

    I should know... I broke my HD4870.... :p

    James

    P.S. Some aftermarket style 4870's don't allow for VRM temp monitoring.
     
    Last edited: 25 Apr 2009
  5. BradShort

    BradShort Familyman - Fraggin when allowed :P

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    Hey thx mate, post edited! Like i say i'm quite new to this. :rock:
     
  6. Snubbs

    Snubbs CustomPC Migration victim....

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    No problem. Those temps for the core are very nice, just watch the VRMs dont get to hot. A sign they are (if you can't get VRM temps within GPU-Z) is artifacting iirc.

    I too chase after a quiet PC.... atm its very quiet, until the dead of the night, and i can still hear 4 fans @600rpm!!! :p

    The quest continues....

    P.S. The VRMs = Voltage Regulation Module (or something to that effect, not VRAMs :p - VRAMs is generally what people call RAM on graphics cards (as its video ram)...)
     
  7. Snubbs

    Snubbs CustomPC Migration victim....

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    You need 10+ posts.

    If you had many on the CPC forums, you can post a request in the "CPC renames" thread asking for them to be moved accross (quicker than posting spam :p)

    James
     
  8. BradShort

    BradShort Familyman - Fraggin when allowed :P

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    Cheers mate. Just did 10 mins gaming and VRM was 50 idle and 65 under load so i guess the fans are doing the biz. I'll keep an eye out during longer sessions. Although i have card ages and the stock cooling did not touch em and card was fine. Like i said, this Antec 900 is great at cooling. Best case i've had.
     
  9. Snubbs

    Snubbs CustomPC Migration victim....

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    Thats quite good, maybe they're using higher quality/cooler VRMs these days, as back at the start (july last year), people were 'scared' of using aftermarket cooling due to VRMs being uncontrollably hot!

    I'm waiting for an Antec 900/902 (I do a bit of reviewing for a website), looks like it'll take a while thou, till then I have an Antec 300... :)

    Nice guide.

    James
     
  10. mm vr

    mm vr The cheesecake is a lie

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    The VRMs on my 4870 will (most likely) melt if I leave FurMark on for some time. :eeek: In about 10 seconds they get to 100°C and they reach 115°C in 45 secs! After that I stop...

    (I've renamed FurMark.exe in this case to stop the GPU from slowing down)

    This all is on stock, think about overclocking!
     
  11. bagman

    bagman Well-Known Member

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    i think we should make a how to sticky with lots of usefull links step by step like this, which is very well done. but only a how to with special stuff like this or makeing wc loops and stuff like that, because must of us know how to change mobo or psu that is general. we need a sticky for speacalist stuff
     
  12. BradShort

    BradShort Familyman - Fraggin when allowed :P

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    Whilst i agree, i think we should not forget those would be tweakers who are just starting out and need a step by step just to reassure them they are not gonna fry their kit :)
     

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