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Dust On HD 6850

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March 1, 2012 11:31:38 AM

I bought my Sapphire HD 6850 in August 2011 after asking this very forum.It has been a fantastic upgrade from my Biostar 9400GT.Thanks a lot!
Now,the temperatures of the card at idle are 44-45 degree Celsius and 72 degrees maximum while playing games.The room temperature in my city is 28-29' C .I opened up my case and noticed that a lot of dust had accumulated inside(I had never fully cleaned my PC since I purchased it in 2009 in fear of breaking/damaging something,just a timid swipe here and there). My processor was also hitting 57-60'C max so the first thing I did was call an engineer and get the fan and heatsink cleaned out.Now,the processor doesn't cross the 35-36 mark,even while gaming.(Is that okay,or something is wrong?)
After a lot of head scratching,I have ordered two cans of compressed air(against the advice of my GPU's Service Center,who told me to use a soft paint-brush).
My question is-which one to use?Should I keep the cans for use later(as none are available in the city in which I live),when my card hits 85-90'C?My Service Center told me that the HD 6850 operates safely at 85-90'C.Or should I ignore them and go ahead with the compressed air?Please keep in mind that I have never used an air can and any instructions/precautions for using them would be welcome,since all I found on the internet was for cleaning single slot cards and the 6850 is dual-slot.I don't even know how to seat/unseat a Dual-slot GPU(I got an engineer to do that too :(  ) and I would be using the cans to clean out the card as it is.Any help?

More about : dust 6850

March 1, 2012 11:42:53 AM

First of all stop with the engineers XD

cleaning pc cases is really easy and quite safe (short of you ramming a hoover and watergun in there)

The temperature can largely depend on your case, the fans and air flow direction. could you provide a bit more information on any of these?

GPU's can operate under massive heatloads, some people are ok with temps around 90ish but most would like to stay below 70/80 at full load.

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March 1, 2012 12:07:36 PM

:D  :D  :lol:  .Guess my journey with "The Engineers" ends and the one with "The Experts"starts here!!!

1)My case is a Mid-Size ATX HP with the following dimensions:-

Height: 38.7 cm (15.23 inches)
Width: 17.5 cm (6.89 inches)
Length: 41.4 cm (16.29 inches)

2)There are two fans currently showing in HW Monitor
Value Min. Max.
-FANIN0 1400 1359 1421
-FANIN1 1063 1061 1081
and something called FANS PWM which shows System Fan 1,2,3 as 39%,60%,60%.

3)Don't know about air flow direction,but in HW Monitor,it's
Air Flow-30'C.

But I still didn't get my answer about whether I should use air cans or a paint brush?And how to use the air cans for a dual-slot GPU?
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a b U Graphics card
March 1, 2012 12:56:34 PM

I have been using compressed air to clean computers for 14 years. It is completely safe. Some people will not recommend using cans of air because if you don’t hold the can straight up and down, the compressed gas can spray out as a liquid. To avoid this keep the can level and don’t shake it.

You can also spin the fans to fast with a can of air. It’s a good idea to use a pencil or you finger to hold the fan while you blow out the air ports.

There is no way a soft brush can get in between the fins of the heat sinks the way air can. Many video cards have a shroud over the heat sink so a brush would be useless unless you’re willing to take the assembly apart.

I have a HD4850 and it does run in the high 80s and the fan is only at 40%. This indicates to me that the card was intended to run that hot. If the manufacturer wanted the card to be cooler they would make the fan spin up faster, so it would be at 60-70% when the card was in the 80s.

The PWM reading you see is Pulse Width Modulation. In short it is the %of power out of a possible 100 being sent to the fans. So if that shows 50% computer is only sending half of the available electricity to that fan making that fan run at half speed. As the temp goes up those numbers should go up as well making the fan go faster to compensate for the rise in temp. Manufactures like to run fans at slower speeds when they are not needed because it makes the computer quieter, it saves electricity and it extends the life of the fan.

I do some auto work as well as computers, so I have a 180psi compressor in my garage. That thing is capable of pushing a jet of compressed air strong enough to blow the ram chips out of the mother board. It can spin led fans so fast they light up, and eventually spin right off the armature. I have been using this compressor on computers for the least 5 years (I set it at 50 PSI) Never had any issue.
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March 3, 2012 1:51:18 PM

Quote:
You can also spin the fans to fast with a can of air. It’s a good idea to use a pencil or you finger to hold the fan while you blow out the air ports.


Why is it necessary to hold the fan in place while blowing out the air ports?Does it matter if I don't/allow the fan to spin freely?

Quote:
There is no way a soft brush can get in between the fins of the heat sinks the way air can.


I tried fitting in a painting-brush (the one that is used to paint portraits)between the fan blades(I had switched off my PC completely while doing this) but after a bit of cleaning,the temperature at which it's idling is a constant 46'C. :(  (Even though the room temperature is still 28'C). Any guesses on why that has happened?Did static electricity damage my card?Here are my GPU-Z readings,if that helps-

http://gpuz.techpowerup.com/12/03/03/hm9.png

Another thing,how to clean out the PSU with an air can?I read somewhere on the internet that "Allow the air to flow through the direction of air flow in the PSU". Is that okay?(Am assuming that I have to open up the case and do it via the fan that is visible just facing the Graphic Card,not just spray through the outlet of the PSU.Is that correct?)
And can I use the paint-brush to clean out other components of my PC?Air-cans are in very short supply in the city in which I live and online sites are useless because I don't own a credit card,plus they are expensive as they have to be imported.Will I damage anything?
And,last of all,please tell me if it's okay for a 6850 to idle at 46'C at 28'C room temperature and hit 72'C.I am asking because I am running the HD 6850 on a 460w CoolerMaster and AMD asks for at least a 500w PSU.Should I change my PSU,even though it's running fine now,for another higher capacity,better quality PSU?Also,the voltage readings on GPU-Z occasionally dips to 12.06V from 12.13V.Is that safe?
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a b U Graphics card
March 3, 2012 2:42:50 PM

Your 6850 is running in the normal temp range. The manufacture keeps the fan spinning much slower than it needs to to keep it quite and save power. When playing games or doing other like tasks the computer will automatically speed up the fans to compensate for the extra heat. The HD 6800s are safe to run into the 90s. Anything over 95-100 is a problem, at 110 they will shut down to prevent damage.

The PSU should be fine as well. They always recomend huge PSUs, but in reality your computer will only pull 300watts from the wall.

You can spin the fan with the can of air, but if you hear the fan spinning so fast it whines then you are going to fast, you can actually spin the fans so fast that you damage the bearings, or bushings. Its hard to damage a fan in that way but possible.

Take the side off the case and go to town with both the paint brush and a can of air you wont damage anything just be carefull and gentile. point the can of air right into the vents inside the computer, all the dust should fly our the back.
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March 3, 2012 2:51:21 PM

Best answer selected by absxiith.
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March 3, 2012 2:52:45 PM

Thanks a LOT,BuckNutty!
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