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Sapphire HD Radeon 6970 Graphics Card Loud and Overheating?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 9, 2014 3:20:53 AM

Hey guys I was hoping that someone here could help me out. I was reading around about other graphics cards seeing if I could figure out my problem. I found a lot of possible things so I decided to post mine in detail and hope that someone can offer some advice.

The Radeon HD 6970 is getting very loud (sounds like the two fans) and is also getting extremely hot while playing Resident Evil 5 in High Performance mode. One of my friends has the very exact same card and he said he is not experiencing the same problems as me. It gets very loud and I frequently pop the top off of my case and feel the circuit board part of the GPU and it sometimes feels very warm or hot. Sometimes in places it gets so warm that it would burn me if I kept my hand there.

Another friend told me that this is absolutely not normal. I have had it about six months now but have never put it through a task like this video game. I have two years of warranty on it and wondering if I should contact the manufacturer over it and talk to them. However I first decided I would post here and ask if this is normal? I guess this could also be my Power Supply or CPU but am almost positive that it is the graphics card. It also makes sense since it only happens when I am playing this game in High Performance mode.

Basically is it normal for Graphics Cards to get hot and loud like this? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
a c 161 U Graphics card
March 9, 2014 3:38:53 AM

Start by checking what the actual temp readings are? You can use GPU-z for this.
Also confirm that the graphics card is not dirty and the fans are spinning regularly.

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March 9, 2014 4:03:03 AM

Novuake said:
Start by checking what the actual temp readings are? You can use GPU-z for this.
Also confirm that the graphics card is not dirty and the fans are spinning regularly.



Thank you for the reply Novuake. This was my next course of action I was going to take. However unfortunately even though this is what I was going to do I do not know what to look for. In what range should it be in? Like what is considered bad? When should I check?

Like should I just run the game for awhile and after the Graphics Card has been loud for a little while should I quickly minimize and take a look at the temps? Also I am pretty sure the fans are spinning on a regular basis. Every now and then I will take the side off the case and take a look at everything and make sure all the fans are spinning and nothing looks off. I am just guessing that this sound is coming from the fans going faster to keep the card cool.
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a c 161 U Graphics card
March 9, 2014 4:10:53 AM

You just run GPU-z in the background, then play your games for a while. GPU-z will record your highest temp during your gaming session.
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a c 184 U Graphics card
March 9, 2014 4:49:00 AM

Is this a new card or one that has been in use for some time?
All cards will pick up dust/carpet fibre over time and this gradually blocks the heatsink fins, reducing cooling efficiency which forces the fans to run faster to keep things cool so it may just be it needs a clean.
Also, if you click in the boxes that actually contain the readings GPUZ will show minimum, maximum or average for that particular item.
As a general rule75C is pretty decent for an AMD/ATI card under load, I'd be a LITTLE concerned if the load temperature was 85C or over. Worry if it's hitting 100C or over.
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March 9, 2014 7:12:43 PM

coozie7 said:
Is this a new card or one that has been in use for some time?
All cards will pick up dust/carpet fibre over time and this gradually blocks the heatsink fins, reducing cooling efficiency which forces the fans to run faster to keep things cool so it may just be it needs a clean.
Also, if you click in the boxes that actually contain the readings GPUZ will show minimum, maximum or average for that particular item.
As a general rule75C is pretty decent for an AMD/ATI card under load, I'd be a LITTLE concerned if the load temperature was 85C or over. Worry if it's hitting 100C or over.


First off thank both you guys for the reply and advice. My main concern was since my friend had the same build as me that I may be having trouble with mine because he could not hear the same thing I was despite us playing the same game (Resident Evil 5). I have been playing the game for awhile and running GPU-Z in the background. The highest reading so far has been at 72.0(C) and it idles around 35.0(C) I also looked at the fan speed when it gets loud and it was at 50%. So maybe I am getting worked up over nothing. However I have not played the game hard yet like I had before either. Getting readying to play it again now and I will get back to you guys. Thanks a lot for your help.
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March 9, 2014 10:28:05 PM

I have been playing a little more now and the max temp that it has reached is 76.0(C). I am guessing this is still fine right? Like as long as it is under 80.0(C) would you say that is pretty normal? It is still very noticeably loud as well. I also found out some of this noise might be coming from the disc drive. However I am not exactly sure.
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a c 184 U Graphics card
March 10, 2014 4:41:28 AM

Don't touch the card while it is operating, 65C is hot enough to cause burns and some cards will hit 95C under load!
The temperatures are decent enough, your card is behaving normally, nothing to be concerned about.
There may be a way, or ways to quieten things down, though.
Dual fan coolers need good airflow to work at their best so have a look at the case and see if you can add better front fan/s (for intake). There is a massive selection of these things but in general look for those with ball bearings and variable speed control (three or four pin leads) as these can be plugged into the motherboard headers and their speed controlled through the BIOS.
Cable management can also help, it's surprising how much of a restriction to airflow a few cables can be, try moving them aside or cable tying them out of the way.
As a final option the stock cooler can be replaced but doing so will invalidate the warranty and can be fiddly.
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