Cooling System: Efficiency and Noise
The GeForce GTX 770 has the same cooler design as the GTX 780 and Titan, except that the contact spots for power system components are somewhat different.
The memory chips and MOSFETs are cooled via thermal pads whereas the GPU contacts with the vapor chamber via thermal grease. The whole arrangement is cooled with a radial fan with optimized PWM-based regulation. It can rotate at a speed of 1000 to 4300 RPM.
To check out the cards temperatures we used five runs of the Aliens vs. Predator (2010) benchmark at the highest visual quality settings, at a resolution of 2560x1440 pixels, and with 16x anisotropic filtering and MSAA 4x. We used MSI Afterburner 3.0.0 beta 10 and GPU-Z version 0.7.1 for monitoring of temperatures inside the closed system case, which configuration is discussed in detail in the corresponding chapter of the roundup. All tests were performed at 25°C room temperature.
Now let’s check out the efficiency of the GeForce GTX 770 cooler in the automatic fan regulation mode:
The peak GPU temperature is 83°C, the fan rotating at 2340 RPM. It must be noted that the fan accelerates very smoothly. You just don’t notice it until it reaches 2000 RPM, making itself audible against the background noise of our quiet testbed.
If the fan is manually set at its maximum speed, the GPU temperature lowers by as much as 23°C, to 60°C:
So the performance of the reference GeForce GTX 770 cooler seems to heavily depend on the speed of the fan but the developers tried to find a balance between temperature and noise while programming the fan's behavior. We guess they succeeded. We won't carry out noise level tests today because the card is identical to the GeForce GTX 780 in this respect, having the same cooler. We can just remind you that the cooler is quieter than the one installed on the reference AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition.