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  • Gioron - Thursday, April 13, 2006 - link

    As soon as I saw the cooling system I had flashbacks to http://www.dansdata.com/aguatec.htm">this review and http://www.dansdata.com/thermagic.htm">this almost as bad review. There is almost no situation where the water cooling card is a good idea. There is no magic mystical power of water to cool things down, its just an easy way to transfer heat from one place to annother. In the case of most sane water cooling rigs, this means transfering the heat from the small CPU contact patch to the large efficient/quiet radiator elsewhere. You lose efficiency by adding water to the loop, but you more than make up for it with a huge unwieldy radiator that would never fit on the CPU under normal circumstances.

    However, in this situation (and in the first linked review) you're moving the heat from the processor contact to a radiator thats exactly the same size and efficiency as one you could attach directly to the processor, which means you lose efficiency moving the heat and then have no way to make up for it. As noted in the article, it does take a bit for the water to warm up which slows the temperature increase, but the final temperature MUST be higher than the temperature of the same heat sink just bolted directly onto the core. Anyone who even glanced at a thermodynamics textbook can tell you that. You may be able to get the water cooling system close to the efficiency of a normal heat sink, but you'll never exceed it and the marketing speel is complete and utter BS.

    There is, however, one possible use for this card. Some shuttle boxes have the GPU slot right next to the side of the case, preventing the installation of cards with dual slot coolers. You can use this card to move the heatsink on the other side of the card and get cooling almost as good as a dual slot cooler, but the real solution to this problem is just for the case to be constructed such that dual card coolers will actually fit. (And since I haven't looked at shuttle cases much since I bought mine, they may actually have figured this out by now, leaving this card to be completely pointless.)
    Reply
  • tekkstore - Monday, April 17, 2006 - link

    https://www.tekkstore.com">tekkstore.com Reply
  • tekkstore - Monday, April 17, 2006 - link

    https://www.tekkstore.com">tekkstore.com Reply
  • yacoub - Wednesday, April 12, 2006 - link

    quote:

    One of the purported benefits of the Blizzard water cooled X1900 XTX is that it will supposedly generate significantly less noise than an air cooled solution. We measured the sound levels of both cards and found that this is NOT in fact the case.


    Fixed it for you. The numbers listed indicate they are both very loud and neither would be appropriate for a quiet system or HTPC.
    Reply
  • jmke - Tuesday, April 11, 2006 - link

    Hello, are these "A" weighed? Reply
  • jmke - Tuesday, April 11, 2006 - link

    forgot to ask; at what distance? was the card inside a case? Reply
  • haelduksf - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    "Bigger reservoir = more heat capacity" is a common myth, but a myth none the less. Adding more water to a loop doesn't result in any meaningful increase in heat capacity, and a larger res usually puts more strain on your pump to boot. Reply
  • NegativeEntropy - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    I think what you menat was more water does not equal lower temps. By definition more coolant does indeed increase the total heat capacity of the system assuming the same fluid. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Exactly, which is what was intended in this article.If you have a gallon of water vs. a quart of water, both at 25 C, the gallon can absorb 4X as much heat before turning to vapor (not that you'd ever get it that hot with a computer system....) Taken to the extreme, you could have a system sucking water from the ocean and spewing back slightly warmer water into the ocean, and it would never really change the ocean's temperature. The only extra strain on a pump would be if the pump has to pull/push water through more pipes. Reply
  • z3R0C00L - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Actually adding more water can make a difference provided you have a larger heat dissipator (radiator).

    But I do agree adding more water does not mean better temps.. you need a larger dissipator to remove the heat from that extra water. At least using the logic I have an x1900XT clocked at 750/1700 using water and no voltage tweaks or increases.
    Reply
  • gersson - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Thank you for constantly deleting my posts especially if they have something completely harmless and neutral. I notice that they are usually erased when I am the 1st poster...

    This is my last post @ daily tech. Enjoy it while it still exists -_-
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Not sure if Daily Tech has deleted any of your posts or not, but I can tell you that there have been 13 comments on this article so far (this will the #14) and none of them have been deleted. None of them have been "voted down" either, so by default you should see all the comments. You might want to verify that your filter at DailyTech is set to -1 so that you can see all posts. Reply
  • LoneWolf15 - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    I think it's likely that a solution from Arctic Cooling (i.e., the Accelero X) or one of Zalman's coolers would do as good of a job, be reasonably quiet, and not have the drawbacks that a liquid-cooled setup would. It would be interesting to make a comparison as to how they would stack up.

    The Sapphire card looked interesting, but the results indicated to me it's a lot of sizzle without much steak.
    Reply
  • Questar - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    "Of course, if the GPU runs cooler it should draw less power"

    This is new to me. Can you point me to anything to back this up?
    Reply
  • NegativeEntropy - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    As you imply, the author is either mistaken (as the evidence shows) or was making a faulty assumption. For a given CMOS chip to consume less power one of two things needs to happen: lower the frequency or the voltage. This assumes no fancy technology to turn off part of the chip. Assuming this thing runs at stock voltage, it should consume slightly more power than stock due to the frequency increase (not counting the pump). Reply
  • Gioron - Thursday, April 13, 2006 - link

    Close to true, but not quite. The dynamic power of switching transistors is unnafected by temperature (its proportional to frequency and the supply voltage squared), but leakage current through an off transistor does decrease at lower temperatures and this current is a constant unaffected by the frequency. However, for most chips this isn't a huge difference... yet. As processes scale to smaller feature sizes leakage is increasing and some manufacturers have already run into problems with chips where 40% of their power is leakage and they suddenly had a chip using almost twice as much power as they expected, but most current chips see only a very small percent of their power usage as leakage current and making a small change to a small percentage of power is not likely to be noticable. Reply
  • DerekWilson - Thursday, April 13, 2006 - link

    This comment resulted from a conversation I had with Josh about temperature and power. As you have mentioned here, leakage current does vary with temperature. And, in any material, conductivity is affected by temperature as well -- which will also affect power. Two otherwise identical chips will absolutely draw different ammounts of power if one is very cold and the other very hot. Whether this ammount is significant is not addressed in this article, but the fact does remain that temperature affects power draw.

    And, as has been pointed out, with 90nm and below we will see this phenomenon increase (provided no one stumbles upon a miraculous answer to the leakage problem).
    Reply
  • Sunrise089 - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    The Sapphire card seems pretty dissapointing. You give up an extra slot (right?) and pay ~$50 more to get almost no decrease in noise, almost no more of an overclock, and no less heat. Read that again: NO LESS HEAT! To me, a watercooling setup that runs equally hot as an air cooled setup isnt worth the leak risk, slight as it may be. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Two things: it takes longer to get to the same temperatures. Second, standard XT/XTX cards are two-slot solutions, so this just makes the second slot movable to either side of the GPU. But yeah, it's a bit underwhelming. At least it's a bit quieter - X1900XTX cards aren't very good on noise levels. Reply
  • mkruer - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Does this seem completely pointless? Why not use heat pipes to draw more heat away from the core of the GPU and keep the fan heat sync in one assembly? This seems totally pointless unless you like having the possibility of your graphic card spring a leak. Reply
  • haelduksf - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Because a well-designed water-cooling setup is more efficient than any heatpipe-based air cooler. See any overclocker's forum on the internet for proof. Reply
  • NullSubroutine - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    i could have been mistaken, but i thought the x1900xtx and the 7900 gtx xo edition from evga were pretty much tied? Reply
  • z3R0C00L - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    Not really..

    The x1900XTX has more features, performs better in newer games and also support HDR+AA. There are no extra's over the x1900 series that you can get with the 7900GTX.. save maybe 5FPS more in OpenGL games... but not many people play those games.

    The x1900XTX is the better card for HighEnd buyer's.. better drivers, better performance and more features.
    Reply
  • NullSubroutine - Monday, April 10, 2006 - link

    i know it was the inquirer, but the did an article on the overclocked 7900 and it showed they pretty much tied in most situations. granted, it came factory overclocked. i still personally would take x1900xtx for a single card solution, but would take the 7900 for sli (if you can actually find two cards). Reply

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