Cooling & Noise
Cooling System & Backplate
Of course, this card's hybrid approach is what makes it unique from all of the other GeForce GTX 1080 Tis we've reviewed. You can choose for yourself whether you want water or air cooling. The advantage of this flexibility is that you don't have to sacrifice warranty coverage by swapping coolers if you start using the heat sink and fan, and later decide to incorporate a custom loop.
|Cooling System Overview|
|Type||Hybrid thermal solution, supporting air and water cooling|
|Heat Sink||Copper sink with mounting frame Water cooling via attached U-shaped heat pipe to guide flow No micro-channels or other contact cooling|
|Cooling Fins||Aluminum, horizontal orientation Very narrow configuration Low depth|
|Heat Pipes||2x 8mm, flat, and nickel-plated|
|VRM Cooling||Integrated onto the sinkOnly MOSFETs are cooled|
|RAM Cooling||Via mounting frame on heat sink|
|Fans||2x 10cm fan modules 9.6cm rotor diameter 13 rotor blades, optimized for static pressure Semi-passive regulation|
|Backplate||Aluminum, blackened Foil-lined inside Does not aid cooling performanceIncludes back-lit logo|
The backplate is purely aesthetic. While it does sport a snazzy-looking ROG logo, it does nothing for cooling performance.
The thermal solution utilizes a copper sink that doubles as a block for water cooling (by guiding liquid through the hollow heat pipe). Its front and back both have outlets with standard screw threads, either of which can be used to connect hoses. It has to be mentioned, however, that depending on your cooler, Asus' narrow heat pipe may limit your flow rate. The company does claim its DirectCU H2O's in-channel throughput is 22% greater than the previous generation. But compared to a dedicated water block, performance isn't as high.
The big heat sink is based on a vapor chamber with a built-in water channel. Two additional heat pipes help transfer thermal energy to the array of aluminum fins. Asus says its 2.5-slot cooler provides 40% more surface area than its previous two-slot designs.
The inside radius of the heat pipes is narrow, and their quality is sub-optimal. Again, simple, flat pipes like these tend to limit performance by slowing down flow.
Fan Speeds And Noise
The fan curves indicate a conservative, volume-optimized setup. At GPU temperatures under 55°C, the fans don't spin at all.
|Fan Speed And Noise Output|
|Fan Speed (Open Test Bench, Maximum)||1884 RPM|
|Fan Speed (Open Test Bench, Average)||1631 RPM|
|Fan Speed (Closed Case, Maximum)||1801 RPM|
|Fan Speed (Closed Case, Average)||1822 RPM|
|Noise (Air Cooling, Maximum)||41.8 dB(A)|
|Noise (Air Cooling, Average)||41.2 dB(A)|
|Noise ( Air Cooling, Idle)||0 dB(A)|
|Acoustic Characteristics||Low-frequency bearing noise Audible motor noise <1HzBroadband bearing noise (clacking) Hardly any coil buzzing noise Audible air/tearing noise|
This snapshot illustrates the entire frequency range of our laboratory measurements, adding some data to our subjective observations.
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