So I picked up my ASUS direct CU TOP GTX 670 a couple weeks ago to replace my faulty Gigabyte 680 reference design and after playing around with the direct CU I'm beginning to reason that maybe I should have stuck to a reference design.
After having fired up some sessions of BF3 I noticed that my CPU temp is 3-6C higher under the same load when I was using the GTX 680. I knew that non reference designs were clearly going to dump hot air into the case but I didn't think it would have this kind of effect. I guess my concern is my ability to push CPU overclocking on air while gaming since that's quite a bit of heat going around inside. GPU temps operate at pretty much the same level, maybe 2-3C in favor of my 670.
My case, NZXT tempest 210, has 6 fans (3 exhaust top/back, 3 intake bottom/front) installed but no side fan as it will be a tight/can't fit unless I rig a fan on the outside making it look a bit off.
So I guess that begs the question, is non-reference style really better for someone who has an air cooled setup like mine? Full disclosure, I do live in a hot area of California
By no means am I experiencing issues, my operating temps are still very good while playing BF3. I just thought I'd open up a discussion on this matter. Thanks guys
EDIT: This Thread is about CPU temp moreso than GPU
Maybe the fan settings / fan curve are not similar. The reference card might have a more aggressive settings. This could mean more noise and less overclocking potential.
Second reason could be that you are using stock clocks with both cards and the non-reference card is running at a higher Core Clock and therefore runs hotter. With the 600 series this can be a bit tricky because even if you have set the same Core Clock the dynamic Core Boost can still be different. Especially as non-reference cards usually have more headroom in terms of power consumption and cooling capability. Assuming that you have not already done that, you can look up you max Core Clock / max TDP with Gpu-z.
Reference design is better for overall case temp.
Say the GPU is displacing 200w of power into heat, and we'll say it's coming out at 85*C.
Well regardless of the cooler on it, this will always be the situation. One might more effectively take the heat off of the GPU, but it's all still there.
The reference design blows this heat outside of the case.
The non-reference design blows this heat into the case, then your case blows it out.
Non-reference is quieter, and makes the GPU run cooler.
Reference takes all the heat out of the case.
1-3 degrees isn't terrible though. You're most likely well under max safe temp, so I wouldn't worry.
I was actually focusing my thread towards CPU temps since they have risen noticeably so. Very good points about the GPU but I am more concerned about my CPU temps as opposed to gpu. Thanks for the feedback guys.
Right, my point is that the same amount of heat is being produced by the GPU, one takes it out of the case, the other blows it into the case which is causing the overall case temp, and thus the CPU temp, to raise drastically.