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Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Passive Cooling Mod

Installing An Aftermarket Cooler

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Let's get back to the 1050 Ti’s previously-mentioned mounting holes. If you read our story about the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, you know that we had to modify the distance between screws by several millimeters in order to find a compatible cooler. Now we're in the same regrettable situation because the 1050 Ti's original cooler has a similar grid of drilled holes measuring 48mm. Finding a third-party heat sink with that measurement probably isn't going to happen.

But wait! The MSI card presents a unique opportunity in that it sports a grid of four, unused holes measuring 58mm. This layout proves extremely convenient, since practically every cooler conforms to it. As a result, new life is breathed into the Arctic Accelero III that we planted on a Radeon R9 290 three years ago. If you want to replicate our results using another cooler, just bear in mind that there should be at least 15mm of space between the bottom of the heat sink and the fins to prevent contact between components like coils and capacitors.

The image below is notable because half of the cooler body is hanging off MSI's card. This setup allows for optimal airflow through the process of convection. It's also one of the reasons why passively-cooled cards should not be installed in a vertical configuration; heated air rises, after all. A graphics card pointed up and down would cause that air to spend more time in contact with the fins, creating inefficiency.

The short MSI card and longer cooler paint a beautiful picture together. All that's left now is installation, after which we can put these two components to work.

SummaryThe 48mm distance between screw holes presents an issue when it comes to compatible aftermarket coolers.There are several cards with unused screw holes in a 58mm grid configuration, one of which is the MSI board we're testing today.The longer the cooler, the more it will overhang the card's PCB, increasing airflow and cooling efficiency.

  • bloodroses
    That giant cooler is so funny looking on that little card. :)
    Reply
  • FormatC
    The smallest guys have the biggest cars ;)
    Reply
  • sephirotic
    Full passive is pointless, semi passive is the way to go.
    Reply
  • AndrewJacksonZA
    Thank you for the really nice article Igor. It was an unexpected surprise and a pleasure to read. :-) Very interesting to read.
    Reply
  • Poozle
    you know setting the fans to even minimal (20-30%) where you cant detect an audible difference would be safer and nearly as quiet... but I digress
    Reply
  • FormatC
    The problem is, that the marketing is telling us that it works. I ordered an original passive card directly from a manufacturer and will check it in a short follow-up. Without any airflow in the case this must fail ;)
    Reply
  • AndrewJacksonZA
    19136703 said:
    That giant cooler is so funny looking on that little card. :)
    It immediately reminded me of Sapphire's R9 Fury Tri-X:


    Reply
  • FormatC
    Same principle, but the used cooler is 4 years old.
    It seems that Sapphire copied the idea ;)
    Reply
  • thor220
    It looks like the large tail of that Cooler isn't even doing anything. No point in making a passive cooler that big if it can't transfer the heat.

    I would much rather see a passive water cooled setup with no fans, only the pump.
    Reply
  • TJ Hooker
    19139141 said:
    It looks like the large tail of that Cooler isn't even doing anything. No point in making a passive cooler that big if it can't transfer the heat.
    What makes you say that? The heat pipes extend the length of the cooler, even the fins at the end should be absorbing and dissipating some of the heat.
    Reply