Radeon R9 290X Cooling
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Author:  dontknow [ Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:52 pm ]
Post subject:  Radeon R9 290X Cooling

Due to some miracle, I won a Radeon R9 290X some time ago. Performs great.

However, like many people on the Internet, I have found the heat and noise this GPU generates to be insane! Not even gaming, I see the card go up to 94C. Turning up the fan to 80-90% brings the temperature down significantly, but the noise is like a hair dryer.

After some reading, I stumbled upon Fixing The Radeon R9 290 With Arctic's Accelero Xtreme III at Tom's Hardware. The Arctic Accelero Xtreme III seems like a very good solution for both the heat and noise. Based on the article, I see that the configuration is just a little to long to fit in my case. If I remember right, a Fractal Design R3 has enough room to fit a 300mm card. The R9 290x with the Accelero Xtreme III comes out to be 320mm.

I was wondering if anyone else had any recommendations on an after market cooler that would perform well, be compatible with the R9 290X, and also be under 300mm.

Author:  boost [ Fri Jan 10, 2014 2:09 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

Prolimatech MK-26 is the best GPU cooler you can buy. It fits nicely without adding to the overall length of the card. With two very low RPM 120mm fans the card will be near inaudible and very cool. This comes at a price: the MK-26 is 85$ +two fans you're in the neiborhood of 100$.
According to this Youtube video the Arctic Accelero Twin Turbo II works, in the comments someone writes works for gaming, but not mining.
There's "the mod" or the Arctic Accelero Hybrid, using an Asetek OEM closed waterloop on the graphics card. This solution should have the lowest teperatures, but it introduces pump noise and the fan(s) are not as quiet as the ones you can use on the Prolimatech MK-26.
I bought Thermalright Spitfire and Shaman coolers on ebay because they can cope with any graphics card and they are no longer sold elsewhere. You need patience and maybe some luck for this.

Author:  JazzJackRabbit [ Fri Jan 10, 2014 1:50 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

I can vouch for "the mod". Yes, it does introduce water pump noise, and unfortunately in my experience the pump noise has a lot of sample variance. The asetek (round type) coolers are more convenient for "the mod" because they do not cover the GPU mounting holes, however they're louder than CoolIT and have more variance. The CoolIt pumps (square, mainly used by Corsair) are quieter, but are far less convenient to mount on a GPU. Since DWOOD no longer makes the brackets for square pumps, I would have to say the only choice for the mod is round Asetek AIO's. The pump noise, depending on how bad it is, may mean that your overall system noise is going to be higher at idle, but at full load it is going to be the quietest solution you can buy. It only takes a single 1200RPM fan to cool 290X to 50-65 degrees depending on the quality of mount and the case, that is far far quieter than any other aftermarket fan. And if can stack two fans on each side of the radiator or get 240mm radiator or if you're willing to live with 70 degrees you can go even lower than 1200RPM.

Author:  Abula [ Fri Jan 10, 2014 7:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

I agree with boost, MK-26 is by far the best aftermarket cooler, but you do need a case that can fit it, and you will load with a very heavy cooler the PCIe slot. Im pretty happy with my Artic Accelero III Extreme, the only thing bad is the way nvidia design the pwm of the card doesnt work with the artic fans very well, so i have it running at 7v where is very quiet and still have very good temps.

The manufacturer aftermarket cards are starting to show up, the windforce seems like a decent alternative, Gigabyte Radeon R9-290X WindForce 3X OC review, but the card still goes over 80s, if the MK-26 works would be a good bet imo to tame such a hot card.

Author:  Shobai [ Wed Jan 15, 2014 1:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

I went custom water cooling for my R9 290 after using a dwood bracket and AIO cooler for my HD6950, but if the idea of "The Mod" interests you NZXT is producing the G10 bracket which is a commercial kit to adapt any Asetek cooler to a GPU.

As I see it, the main benefit of going this route [water, whether AIO or custom] as opposed to a heatsink is to get the weight off the card; most cases have the cards hanging parallel with the ground, which puts a lot of stress of the PCIE socket unless you can support the card by, for example, tying the power connector corner of the card to the top of the case with a fine cable.

Author:  dontknow [ Sun Jan 19, 2014 5:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

Thanks for the suggestions. I did not think to consider the weight/stress on the PCIe slot. I'll have to remember to take that into consideration as I shop around.

Author:  Abula [ Sun Jan 19, 2014 6:50 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

If you wish to see the results of R9 290X + MK-26, check Redvineal post#7950, idles at 35C loads at 66C, pretty good for a card that on stock goes over 90C.

Author:  swaaye [ Fri Apr 25, 2014 11:26 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

Raijintek Morpheus

http://www.tomshardware.de/raijintek-mo ... 41525.html (review in German)

It reminds me of the old Thermalright T-RAD2, which I actually have mounted to my 290X right now. T-RAD2 is superior to the OEM cooler in both cooling and noise, but it can't keep the GPU below 95C for long when there's 100% utilization.

Author:  halcyon [ Sat Aug 23, 2014 1:16 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

Raijintek Morpeus looks good.

Here's a comparison against Prolimatech MK-26:
http://www.insidehardware.it/hardware/c ... ia?start=4

And another vs stock and MK-26:
http://www.pcaxe.com/hardver/hladjenja/ ... s/strana-9

Looks like we have a new king, regardless of fan speeds, for both GPU & VRM1 temps.

Author:  dontknow [ Sat Sep 13, 2014 7:09 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

I finally got around to getting an after-market cooler. I decided to go with the Prolimatech MK-26 and two Noctua 120mm PWM fans.



Some initial thoughts:
- Installation had some troubles, especially placement of memory heatsinks.
- I have a Fractal Design R3. Length was no issue as previously mentioned, but the height of the card forced me to remove the sound dampening material on the side panel.
- Haven't pushed it hard yet, but it idles around 40C, better than 63C previously. I haven't seen it go past 55C yet.
- I don't hear as much noise as before. At 100% fan speeds, not even near the "hair dryer" noise I heard before and still cooler.

I really appreciate the recommendations. It worked out really well. I have pictures of the whole process if anyone would like me to upload some more.

Author:  Abula [ Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

Nice upgreade.

Btw a couple of questions,

1) are you connecting the NF-S12A PWM to the R9 290 4pin PWM with the supplied converter?

2) Are you able to control the the rpms with the software of the card? and if so whats the lowest you are able to set it up?

Author:  nagi [ Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:52 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

Hi guys, I just popped in to talk about my Arctic Xtreme IV equipped 290X I finished a couple months back...

So, the main problem is that the Xtreme IV doesn't have really adequate VRM cooling (only some passive cooling by the backplate through the PCB and some thermal pads directly between the PCB and the backplate), and the same is true for the memory. While the memory isn't that much of a problem, the VRM does get quite hot (it does go towards 90-100°C during gaming, though I did my test about half a year before, so my memory is a bit sketchy.)

The solution was to get the original aluminum cooling board that came with my VGA and cut it in about half, thus getting a new heatsink over the VRM chips at the back end of the card closer to the PSU connectors. (Yes, this voids your warranty in every way possible.) Now it never goes above 65 for one, and 75°C for the other. Right now it is idling with my dual monitor setup at 45°C (I mean the VRM, not the GPU, the cooling of which never posed a problem to the setup.)

I also put some small heatsinks on the memory chips, but the adhesive on a few of these gave way, so I might redo them with contact cement or something stronger, although I haven't had any overheats during my long playing hours, and I don't think these extras are necessary.

Well, anyways, the finished product is an absolute beast, it absolutely needs the brace in the package, and it almost brushes against my Mugen II. In the R4, length is definitely an issue if you want to use all the drive cages. Of course, it is not entirely silent while gaming on max, but it is on a really acceptable level of whoosing even playing a sneaking game and listening on the speakers.

Here are some shots:
The added extra heatsink is an uncoated aluminum piece without heatpipes, you can spot it in some shots between the PCB and the bottom heatsink that only cools the GPU itself

Author:  dontknow [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 1:12 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Radeon R9 290X Cooling

1) are you connecting the NF-S12A PWM to the R9 290 4pin PWM with the supplied converter?

2) Are you able to control the the rpms with the software of the card? and if so whats the lowest you are able to set it up?

1) Yup, I was able to connect the fans with the converter.
2) Yup, I'm controlling the fans with MSI Afterburner. The lowest it goes to is 20% (about 300 RPM) on auto mode. Interestingly MSI Afterburner set to manual goes to 25% as the lowest setting.

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