I recently upgraded my CPU and VGU to E8600 and XFX GTX 260 Black Edition. I am using these on 680i motherboard in Antec 180P case, with 650W power supply. The upgrade has been great, and I am really enjoying my computer's power to run games like Crysis/Warhead in 1600X1200 Enthusiast setting (I don't know about FPS...but I played Warhead for four hours and it was VERY playable).
However, I am also wondering if something is wrong here. Yesterday, when I was trying the last mission of Crysis, things got very intense on the graphic and my computer crashed. I had no idea what happened (and I still don't know for sure), but after searching and reading, I came to surmise that because the card was set to run fan at 40%, the card overheated and crashed. So I downloaded RivaTuner and set the fan to 100% now, and all games have been working very well since then. Still, I am a bit worried if same thing can happen again because the XFX card is overclocked beyond its stable configuration. I am really pleased with this setting, but I am planning on holding on this system with no upgrade at all for next 2+ years.
When I ran games like Crysis, Far Cry, Warhead, Fear 2, the highest temperature my GPU got was about 71-73 celcius at 100% fan setting. My E8600 CPU's temp got close to mid 60. I got these values when I was playing Crysis at the last mission with 1600X1200 Very High + 4AA and the same setting in Warhead. My question to you all is whether or not this is normal, and whether or not I should perhaps return the GPU and get something more stable like EVGA GTX 260. The truth is, getting a 280 would be an overkill for me, but I heard that GTX 260, regardless of the brand, has same heating issue.
I guess I am a bit excessively worried. However, I know XFX is not really well known for customer support when things go down, and I just don't want to be strangled after couple of months because my card suddenly died on me. I read many stores about XFX GTX 260 Black Edition dying suddenly because of heating issue.
Should I just get an additional cooling solution for the card/or the whole case in general, or is there any better card I could exchange my XFX 260 with, and have better stability? Sorry for being a bit long on the explaining. I am really ignorant with many of these things, so any explanation would be helpful.