What about this? I need the graphics card to last at least 3 years, preferably 4, by which time if it goes kerplunk I could convince my dad to replace it.
Once again, Crysis uses 100% fan, the rest uses auto. The highest I've seen it go on auto is on Burnout- Paradise. 1024, 4xAA, 16xAF, 78, 47% fan. Crysis usually gets 78-80 at 1024, very high, DX10, 4xAA, ATI AAA on high, 16x AF.
With the side off, it idles at 49, fan off, and with Crysis, same settings as above, 68.
Side off not an option. Own a dog. A pug. Bugger sheds fur all over the place. My old P4 workhorse, which I replaced with my current rig last month, had the side off all the time. Net result- the GeForce 5500 would (according to speed fan) idle ar 78 due to fur and dust cloggint the heat sink. My proccy would do the high 60's with nothing running. I would continually get artefacts and corrupted polygons. No amount of cleaning could fix it.