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Why is my graphics card getting so hot?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 2, 2012 4:19:01 PM

I have an XFX HD 5770. I was just playing Smite, which isnt graphics intensive at all, and I decided to check my temperatures when I was playing.



I just took the video card out and cleaned it out with a can of air. There wasn't really all that much dust at all.. I don't see how that little amount of dust could cause that big of a jump in temperature. Anyone have any idea why this is happening? The card is less then 2 years old.

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a b U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 4:27:17 PM

Can you hear your gpu fan kick up or does it even spin at all? Reinstall drivers download a gpu benchmark software set your fan speed to manual 70%, run the bench and monitor you temps. You might need to clean your card get out all the dust.
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a b U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 4:30:54 PM

Anytime you are using the graphics card to render video images it's going to warm up. 82 degrees seems a little more than normal but warming up while playing a game is not. Try upping the fan speed or get MSIafterburner and setup the fan profiles to keep it cooler.
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a b U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 4:30:54 PM

That temperature isn't really ridiculous. Make sure you have vsync on though, since vsync off will run your card a lot harder than necessary to render beyond the 60FPS your monitor is displaying. Keep in mind that a game doesn't have to be graphically impressive to use a lot of computing power.

Also, you have manually set your fan to 60%, any reason for that?
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July 2, 2012 4:33:34 PM

djscribbles said:
That temperature isn't really rediculous. Make sure you have vsync on though, since vsync off will run your card alot harder than neccessary.

Also, you have manually set your fan to 60%, any reason for that?


Well yesterday I noticed the temps were around 70, which is hotter then its been in the past, so I upped it, it was only at 44% for some reason, so I put it at 60.. It is on manual now.. Is setting the fan speed higher bad for the fan?
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a b U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 4:33:54 PM

Are you saying that after cleaning it you got higher temps?

If yes then: you must reseat the thermal compound on the gpu and heat sink.

If no then: Yes dust plays a major role in temps. Even just the slightest dust can change your temps by a few C. I have seen it for my self. Which is why i keep my case cleaned out almost every two weeks
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July 2, 2012 5:46:15 PM

I changed the speed of the fan to 75%, the fan got a lot louder, so the fan works. My temps are around 48-50 now while playing games. Is it bad to run the fan at 75% at all times, or should I turn manual off when im done gaming?
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a b U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 7:14:04 PM

Well noise wise yes... But bad on the fan? not really
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a b U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 7:18:22 PM

I would just let it run on auto all the time. Unless you are very concerned about temps. For a GPU 80 degC isn't really a big deal, when it get's up there your fan should kick on higher (become audible) to cool it back down.

My guess is you haven't paid much attention in the past, and were shocked by the high temperature when you saw it, and now you are watching it like a hawk, becoming more concerned at these temps. The on-board fan controller automatically adjusts the fan speed based on the temperature that it's seeing, and keeps it within the ranges the GPU is designed to operate.

By manually setting the speed, you force it to run the fan harder all the time, so your PC will be louder and your GPU cooler. If you do this, you should make sure to keep an eye out for fan failure, as it's going to be working a lot harder when it's under small loads (like if you leave a game paused and go for a meal or something), which can add up over a year or two and cause premature failure (depending on the fan quality and how unlucky you are).

I wouldn't be worried letting it stay on auto if I were you. It's good to clean the card out once in a while to get your max temps down and reduce the strain on the fan, but the fan controller will still let it get up to the same temp before kicking into high gear. The only time you get into danger is when the fan can't dissipate all the heat the GPU generates, which likely isn't what you are seeing (if your temps were 90+ then it's time to worry).
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July 2, 2012 9:50:38 PM

Okay, well when I set my fan speed to automatic, it idles around 50c, is that normal? Just seems warm for idle..
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July 2, 2012 9:57:38 PM

djscribbles said:
That temperature isn't really ridiculous. Make sure you have vsync on though, since vsync off will run your card a lot harder than necessary to render beyond the 60FPS your monitor is displaying. Keep in mind that a game doesn't have to be graphically impressive to use a lot of computing power.

Also, you have manually set your fan to 60%, any reason for that?


Wouldn't setting the game's FPS cap at 60 be sufficient (assuming it supports the cap)? I know Team Fortress 2 allows the FPS cap.
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a c 107 U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 10:11:55 PM

One thing i would like to know is does your card idle at 157mhz or 400?

I think some of the 5770's have a higher idle clock speed(400, just like with 2 screens). That would make the idles higher.

May be worth looking at. I do not remember that high idle.

82 will not kill the card but does seem a bit warm. When you cleaned it did you blow air from the fan to vent then vent to fan back and forth?
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July 2, 2012 11:01:08 PM

I really dont think dust is the problem, it wasn't dirty at all. before I cleaned it.
My clock speeds idle show 400mhz GPU and 900mhz Memory clock, 49 degrees Celsius. These temps are higher then they were when I first got the card.. Im thinking it may need new thermal paste? Its only 2 years old, if that.. Probably about a year and a half old
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July 2, 2012 11:06:50 PM

How hot is the room you're in, and also how's your case ventilation?
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a c 107 U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 11:26:18 PM

49c is right in line for a 400mhz clock. You will see users with lower because the first cards idled at 157. This helps allot.

I actually had XFX send me a new cooler and not a new card when my first cooler fan was noisy just because I wanted the lower idle power/temps.

I do not think thermal paste breaks down that fast. I have had cards far longer, but, no harm in trying.
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July 2, 2012 11:36:01 PM

Well, I live in seattle, so the temps here arent hot at all. My room is normal temp, prolly 50-65degrees. Now as far as ventilation goes, I haven't moved anything in years.. haven't upgraded anything or changed anything since I bought my new GPU and PSU. So ventilation really shouldnt of changed at all since I got the card.. I just dont want my GPU dying on me. Thats all lol, and im sure alot of people feels the same way.

So 50c idle is okay temps? Should I keep it on automatic fan speeds? Or put it on manual. I currently have automatic fan speeds enabled, and it has my speed at 35% idle. Currently at 52c.(Idle)
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a b U Graphics card
July 2, 2012 11:55:20 PM

a 5770 a hard card to keep cool
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a c 107 U Graphics card
July 3, 2012 12:02:55 AM

logging some 5770 temps, be back later :) 
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July 3, 2012 12:16:50 AM

Well if I set my fan to manual and put it at 60%, they stay like 60-65..
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a c 107 U Graphics card
July 3, 2012 12:46:16 AM

Watch the manual speeds just in case it needs more.

So far about 73c on SC2 custom map/game with auto fan. I do not think you need to worry until at least 90c(at least from a damage standpoint). The case it is in has plenty of air flow.

What game do you test with?
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July 3, 2012 4:40:16 AM

I have just been playing Smite, which isnt graphics intensive at all.. Well, its good to know that my card isn't dying lol..
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