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Discussion Starter #1
After 1 year of ownership my XFX R9 290 DD card started having temp issues:



This (obviously) resulted in the card throttling down which resulted in sudden frame drops and (of course) made for nonfun gameplay.

So I called XFX tech support and after a chat with them we determined that maybe it would behoove me to remove the Double D cooler and do some cleaning. While I had them on the phone I confirmed their claim (stated on their website) that as long as I can return my card to stock form I could install a 3rd party cooler and still retain my Lifetime warranty.

So off I went searching for the least intrusive (easy to return to stock) after-market cooling solution and came up with the Artic Accelero Hybrid III 140 kit. Link below:

Listing on Amazon.

Being able to return the card to stock was a primary concern so this is the kite I went with after looking at quite a few alternatives.

The installation of this was a royal PITA since I did it without a extra set of hands. Trying to hold the backplate and the GPU waterblock in place while getting the screws started was frustrating (unless your an octopus) to the point of almost saying SCREW THIS and returning it to Amazon. But in the end I FINALLY got the damn thing installed. If I ever do this again I WILL have a friend over to help,,,,,,
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One thing I goofed on was ordering the 140 size kit instead of the 120 kit. The bummer with this is I have NO place to mount a 140mm radiator anywhere in my existing case whereas the 120 would have been a easy-peasy bolt in solution. So for now the 140mm radiator is perched on the outside of my case.

My birthday is in 2 weeks so maybe a new case is in my future,,,,,
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Anywho onto the results:



The drop in temps on the GPU and VRM1 was beyond my expectations!!! I have never tried to push the clocks very far on my card but will be doing so in short order as well as taking a crack at flashing it to a 390 or (GASP) maybe even a 390X!!!!
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One final note in all this is the VRM2 temps. While they are not too bad, they are still higher than what they were with the stock cooler. XFX utilized a heatplate that covered all the ram chips as well as the VRM1 and VRM2 regulators. Now I suppose I could carve up my stock heatplate but then I lose my ability to return the card back to stock form in the event of a warranty claim.

Hmmmm,,,,,, Should I even worry about the (slightly) higher VRM2 temps or should I leave well enough alone since I can now game my buns off and NEVER come close to having the card throttle itself?

Thanks for reading!!!
 

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Yeah that is the purpose of card sized stock heatsink block's and most water blocks that the thermal pads to stick on to, to transfer the heat of the memory else aside from the GPU . . . else you'll have a well cooled GPU and overheating memory chips.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Quote:
Originally Posted by psychophat View Post

Yeah that is the purpose of card sized stock heatsink block's and most water blocks that the thermal pads to stick on to, to transfer the heat of the memory else aside from the GPU . . . else you'll have a well cooled GPU and overheating memory chips.
Yup, yup, got that.

But will still ask: Should I worry about the higher temps on VRM2? or is 80c nothing to be concerned about?
 

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Yes if your not finicky about proper temp and you don't intent to overclock too much, if not it'll live although it's not correct. But if you are you just need to take care of that and replace the pads so that it'll properly have good heat transfer and dissipate properly. VRM2 normally is about half of the VRM1.

Read this guide for using the best available pad (it's what I use too). This is just for your referrence to the type of block you'll be using (water, stock or custom), the sizes are upon your discretion, you may buy just the exact size for 1 card use or bigger for several uses.

Fujipoly Premium Thermal Pad - VGA Block - 60 x 50 x 1.0 - Thermal Conductivity 6.0 W/mK = $8.49
Fujipoly Extreme System Builder Thermal Pad - 60 x 50 x 1.0 - Thermal Conductivity 11.0 W/mK = $10.99
Fujipoly Ultra Extreme System Builder Thermal Pad - 60 x 50 x 1.0 - Thermal Conductivity 17.0 W/mK = $19.99
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Just an update: I have incorporated an additional fan that blows across the VRM2 area of the card and now and am happy to report that just doing that keeps my VRM2 from ever exceeding 65C. In most cases the VRM2 runs around 50C.

I am getting a Fractal Design R5 for my birthday to replace my kludged-together system. This case has the side case fan PERFECTLY aligned with the position of the R9 290's VRM2. So yah,,,,, BONUS!

I am now comfortable overclocking the GPU to 1100 Mhz from the stock 947 Mhz setting since the whole card is still WAAAAY below the usual temps I was getting with the stock cooler.

Yay!!!!!
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