After a few unlucky experiments with coolers for top-end graphics cards, Nvidia has come to a unified cooler design. It is one of the best in the history of 3D graphics hardware in terms of noise and cooling performance. This design was first employed on the GeForce 8800 GTX/GTS and then on the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB. Now, with minor changes, this cooler is installed on the GeForce 9800 GTX.
The cooler has an aluminum base with a large heatsink consisting of thin aluminum plates joined together. There is a copper sole above the GPU that is connected to the heatsink with three heat pipes. The pipes help distribute the heat uniformly in the heatsink.
Fiber pads soaked in white thermal grease are used as a thermal interface between the memory chips and the load-bearing elements of the power circuit. There are special juts in the base for that. A layer of dark-gray thermal grease is between the copper sole and the GPU die.
The cooler is equipped with a Delta BFB1012L blower that is employed in every dual-slot reference cooler from Nvidia. The fan uses a 4-pin connection with PWM-based speed management. The airflow from the fan goes through the heatsink and is exhausted out of the system case through the slits in the mounting bracket. This improves the thermal conditions inside your system case. The cooler’s casing is made from black glossy plastic and decorated with a silver-and-green GeForce logo. Our sample of GeForce 9800 GTX is from Gainward which is indicated by an appropriate sticker. The whole arrangement is fastened tight to the PCB with 14 spring-loaded screws. The casing is additionally fixed with three screws.
This cooler should cope with the GeForce 9800 GTX quite well at comfortable level of noise because the new card can hardly generate much more heat than the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB which is almost silent.