Calling all gamers ahoi! I’m thinking of updating my rig a bit. For me music and the occasional gaming happen on the same PC, so I was wondering if you fellas know any nice silent PCI-E graphics cards? Looks like most of them have these huge (!) fans now and I wouldn’t want my PC to get any noisier after this update, so I’m looking for something that’s passively cooled, but would still suit gaming.
Currently I have a few years old passively cooled GeForce 8600 GT from Asus that doesn’t cut it anymore, but I’ve felt very comfortable with NVIDIA drivers… So I’m thinkin NVIDIA would be my primary option here…
Important: not looking for the most expensive solutions, so it should be around 150-250€ or so… Would be a plus if it can handle Skyrim next fall… Just a good all-round workhorse… Maybe getting an Intel i5 quad (should suit Renoising OK, right?) to accompany it and trying to keep the overall budget as reasonable as I can.
I think that’s quite hard, because the more powerfull chipsets do require active cooling. However if you want silent, perhaps watercooling is your thing or Oil…
Well, I will have to try to get you to reconsider getting a passive card. The best chip you’re going to get in a passive card is most likely an AMD 5750. Better yet, I’ll tell the best card on the market with that chip - Gigabyte Radeon HD 5750 Silent Cell. Great price and great performance but it’s totally multimedia orientated. If you’re OK with setting everything on Low, then maybe it’ll go.
If you’ll change your mind, get the Sapphire Radeon HD 5850 Toxic 1024MB GDDR5. If you really need Nvidia, get the Geforce GTX 470. EVGA, MSI or ASUS - it’s your call. A bit more expensive but it has PhysX.
And liquid cooling will definitely pop your budget.
EDIT: Done some research and found a newer Gigabyte Radeon HD 5770 Silent Cell. Maybe a bit faster.
Active cooling cards with those “big fans” are not necessarily loud. While idling or Renoising (neither requires much GPU juice), they run pretty low speeds and are not really noticeable over CPU fan and case fans (if you got them).
GTX 470 will definitely run loud, hot, because it’s power hungry, being from the first Fermi batch. I’d suggest getting GTX 560 Ti or waiting a bit for GTX 550 custom fansinks to appear on the market.
For example, check this one: http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/MSI/GeForce_GTX_550_Ti_Cyclone_II/22.html
I would get a Nvidia GTX 560 Ti. Here’s a video review of it: part1 - part2
Huge thanks for the input guys…! Going to look into all of the mentioned later tonight.