Nvidia’s reference card comes with a compact single-slot cooling system similar to the second version of the GeForce 8800 GT cooler, but Gainward installed an original dual-slot cooling device on its card.
Well, this design seems original only at first sight. In fact, it represents a simplified and smaller version of the reference cooler of the GeForce 7900 GTX. Two heat pipes connect the copper base with the heatsink consisting of thin aluminum plates. There is a depression in the center of the heatsink in which an ordinary axial fan is installed.
The airflow from the fan goes to both sections of the heatsink. Only part of the hot air is thus exhausted out of the system case. With the Bliss 9600 GT 512MB GS, this is aggravated by the fact that the second DVI connector occupies some space of the second storey of the mounting bracket, so there are fewer slits for exhausting the hot air. The fan uses a 4-pin connection with a PWM-based regulation of speed, which has become a de facto standard already.
The aluminum heatsink is not very large and not heavy. It is fastened to the PCB with four screws only. The plastic casing with a Gainward logo is fastened individually. There is light-gray thermal grease between the GPU die and the cooler’s copper sole. The heat from the memory chips is taken off by means of an aluminum plate with elastic thermal pads.
This cooler doesn’t seem to be as efficiency as the one Gainward installed on some models of Bliss 8800, but it must be capable of cooling the simpler G94 chip without much fuss. We’ll check this out in the next section.