The cooling system of the 55nm GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 has been updated due to the new PCB design and the more economical graphics core.
The most notable difference is the reduced size of the heatsink. It has become shorter because it now lacks the section that used to be located in front of the mounting bracket. The heat pipe that used to transfer the heat from the power circuit elements is now missing whereas the cooler’s base that contacts with the GPU die has become much smaller. The pipe that cools the NVIO chip is present, though.
These revisions must have been meant to reduce the manufacturing cost of the cooler. We don’t see any other reason to cut down the configuration of the time-tested cooler design. Of course, the revised cooler is going to have lower performance, but the G200b should produce less heat. We will check this out in the next section.
Otherwise, the concept has remained the same: the copper heat-exchanger takes heat off the GPU and transfers it to the heatsink by means of heat pipes. Traditional dark-gray thermal grease is used as a thermal interface. The heatsink is cooled by a blower, and the hot air is exhausted out of the system case through the slits in the card’s mounting bracket. The other elements that require cooling such as memory chips, NVIO chip, and power transistors of the power circuit contact with the juts in the cooler’s aluminum base through fabric pads soaked in white thermal grease.
The cooler looks good, even though simpler than the original version developed for the GeForce GTX 200 series. Its performance should be lower, but the difference will hardly be noticeable due to the use of the 55nm version of the G200 core. We’ll check this out right now.