9800 GX2 / 932 HAF Case

Hi all.

From my subject line, inside of my 932 HAF case I have a BFG GeForce 9800 GX2 graphics card. Cable management is great inside the HAF case, so, nothing is restricting my air flow.

As you probably know, the GX2 is like two GPU's sandwiched into one "brick", and, it can generate quite a bit of heat. The HAF case has four massive fans. The front and the side fans are intake fans, blowing air into the case. The rear and ceiling/ roof fans are exhaust, sucking the air out.

The ambient temp for me is around 20 to 25C. When I check the temps on my GX2, they're usually around the high 60'sC when system is idle. The fan speed is around 45%. I've seen posts around the 'Net with people claiming to get in the 40's to mid 50's with a GX2 when idle. I use EVGA Precision to monitor my GX2 card. And, I know, I can always increase my fan speed using this tool.

But shouldn't I be getting lower idling temps? This GX2 is a brand new card; I just had it RMA'd recently and this is the new one now in my system.

I came across a post over on Overclock.net about someone who reversed the direction of their side case fan to help with temps on a GX2; here's the link:


They seem to think that turning the side case fan from an intake to an exhaust will help, because the GX2 has those side fins that blow out heated air, and if the side case fan is blowing in, then it kind of defeats the purpose when these two "air flows" meet. Do you think there's anything to this? Should I try reversing the direction of my side case fan?

Or how about this: The HAF case's manual shows that if you want you can replace the fans that the case comes with with multiple fans instead of the "big" ones it comes with. What do you think of replacing the 230mm side case fan with four 120mm fans?

I just think I should be getting lower temps for my GX2: It's brand new, my ambient temps aren't too high, I've got good cable management for good air-flow from front to back, and the letters "HAF" stand for High Air Flow.

Please let me know what you think. Should I try the side fan direction reversal thing, from intake to exhaust? Replace the one 230mm fan with four 120mm fans?

Thanks for your input!
9 answers Last reply
More about 9800 case
  1. GX2's run real hot, my buddy used to have on in a Thermaltake case, I think that the 230MM --> 4 120mm wont make a substansial difference unless its a fan like Scythe or Noctua, Scythe makes a fan with more than 30+ CFM I think
  2. You can try the side fan and see if it changes easily. Just remove it and flip it over, then screw it back in. You could also try just disconnecting it, allowing it to act as a simple vent, allowing the system to use it as it sees fit. It would relieve the turbulent air that may be surrounding or stuffing up the card.

    More fans isn't always a good thing as their currents can cross and create pockets of dead air.

    Also, the vent that runs alongside the card slots on the back... In my CM RC-690 case (similar to yours), I covered it completely to make sure that no fan was pulling in any of the warm air being vented by the bottom-mount power supply.

    eVGA Precision = The Win!
  3. Now I'm starting to think you might want a side fan right close by the card to blow air on it, I'm sure Startech makes one. It just screws in with the expansion slot bracket.
  4. He's already got a HUGE 230mm fan blowing on it... What he wants to do is make sure the case is actually exhausting the warm air from the side exhaust vent of the card. Aside from fabricating some sort of ductwork enclosure for the card's exhaust vent, side-fan reversal or open venting is worth a shot. (Custom exhaust duct... There's an idea. Push it right out the vent I said I covered up.)
  5. Well add that fan and use the 230mm fan to suck the hot air out. This will make one heck of an exhaust lol.
  6. Have you bothered to look at this case's design? LINK
  7. Ahh I see, your idea fits perfectly with this. lol.
  8. VGA cards run hot, but they are designed to tolerate such heat. The 9800GX2 is no exception.
    Unless your system shuts down, it might be best to just not worry about it.

    Verify that the vga fan is running at the proper speed.

    The cooler desigh if the 9800GX2 does not send much of the heated air directly out the back like good double slot coolers do. It recirculates much of the hot air inside of the case.

    Your biggest task is to get a good airflow through your case.
    In general, this means having about the same intake capability as exhaust capability.

    If you reverse the flow of the side fan, only the front 120mm fan will be intake.
    Still, it might be worth trying, particularly since some others claim good results.

    You might be able to add some front intake capability by using a kama bay unit where 3 front 5.25" slots go:

    Or, at the expense of higher noise, look at installing higher cfm 120 mm fans for intake and exhaust.

    I would not try to use 4 120mm fans in place of a 230mm fan, If you do the math, the fan surface area is about the same.
  9. Wow, some great replies here, everyone!!

    Yup, I've heard that GX2's run hot as a rule. I tried reversing the side fan from an intake to an exhaust; nope, no real noticeable or discernable difference. So, I put it back to an intake.

    AKM880: I looked up those Scythe fans you mentioned; pretty pricey!! :ouch:

    RazberyBandit: The only reason I was thinking four 120's was because the one 230 that's in there doesn't blow "strong". I thought that some good quality 120's would create a strong current and provide more effecient cooling for the graphics card. Overall, the four fans that come with the 932 HAF are doing a nice job. My system temp is low & comfortable. And that thing you mentioned about a "custom duct": Is that really "do-able"?? Do they sell items like that in the store? Or is that something I'd need to jerry-rig together? Some kind of (cardboard??) duct that leads from the side vents of the GX2 toward the side of the case fan?

    geofelt: The fan inside the GX2 is running like it's supposed to. I just RMA'd it recently so this is a new one in my system. I believe the previous card was faulty, running too hot, and the fan speed on it would jump up to 100% max speed after gaming for just five minutes. Now my idle temps seem better than before, fan speed is at 45%, and after a long period of gaming, the temps only get into the 70's or so with fan speed in the 50% area. And I know the surface area is basically the same with four 120 fans as compared to the one 230. I just thought that with four 120's - four quality 120's - that I'd get more effecient cooling onto the GX2 with better CFM.

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