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Looking for very quiet, air-cooled, powerful GPU

avaya

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#1
I'm going for a below 30dBa gaming system (up to 35 dBa at load) and I definitely don't want to do water. I need a rig that can play starcraft 2 at full resolution with 2xAA with settings on "ultra" while streaming.

Right now I'm closest to going with the powercolor 7950 pcs+, but many message boards have reports of spotty components being used by on this version and poor customer service from powercolor. The powercolor version seems to be the only one quiet enough according to the techpowerup reviews. I would love if some version of the 7970 was 35 dBa or less @ load out of the box.

I could also crossfire 7770's since they are only 80 watts @load each, but it seems silly to buy 2 older cards for this.

The Arctic Cooling Accelero is another option, but I'd have to figure out how to replace the non-standard sized fans on the 78xx version. The 6990 Accelero has 120mm fans but buying a 6990, $130 accelero, and $30 in fans (that may be difficult to install) doesn't seem like a great option. I'm going to start buying components in about a month when ivy processors are released. If anyone has a GPU suggestion please let me know! For reference here is my planned rig:

Fractal Design Define Mini Case
Mobo: Asus Maximux IV Gene-Z LGA 1155 z68 (or Maximus V gene, although don't see much benefit)
Processor: Ivy Bridge 3570K unless 3770K perform better in practical benchmarks
CPU Cooling: Something big with slipstream 120mm fans
Memory: Samsung Green PC3-12800 30nm
PSU: KINGWIN STR-500 500W ATX Passive; if 500 watt not enough Seasonic 860w (80+ Platinum)
SSD: Intel 520 240gb Sata III
NZXT Fan Controller @$25 (unless anyone has better suggestion?)
generic blu-ray/dvd/CDRW
6x to 8x Slipstream 1200rpm fans
 

brandonwh64

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#2
Have you though about similar nvidia products? like 670?
 
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#3
have you considered buying a reference 7870 and replacing the fan as it is a standard fan? I know HIS is selling a reference 7870.
 
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#5
buy a 680 - that thing is quiet like a mouse... a dead mouse.
 

avaya

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#7
have you considered buying a reference 7870 and replacing the fan as it is a standard fan? I know HIS is selling a reference 7870.
+thanks I had not considered buying a card and just replacing the fan. Do you know of any threads/people that have done that? I need to start searching.
 
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#8
7970 DCII or wait for a 680 DCII
 

Fitseries3

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#9
im selling my asus 6950 2gb dcuii thats unlocked to 6970. its pretty damn quiet and runs everything currently out pretty well
 
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Cooling Noctua D14 // Intel HSF
Memory 16GB Samsung // 16GB VengeanceLP
Video Card(s) Deciding // 660 DC2
Storage OS (X25-M), Data (Seagate 1TB) // Samsung 840 120GB & bunch of drives
Display(s) Samsung T240HD // LG TV
Case TJ08e // Grandia GD08
Audio Device(s) DT880 Pro 250 ohm // TV speakers
Power Supply Seasonic Plat 1000 // Seasonic Gold 760
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#12
Holy crap I didn't know how good this thing is since DCII hasn't been reviewed on here in quite a while... 30db at load is insane!! I'm gonna go for 7970 DCII or 680 DCII if it gets released soon enough.
jelly :toast:
 
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System Name Sovereign // HTPC
Processor i7 3770k 4.2 // i7 3770k 4.2
Motherboard Maximus V Gene // Sabertooth Z77
Cooling Noctua D14 // Intel HSF
Memory 16GB Samsung // 16GB VengeanceLP
Video Card(s) Deciding // 660 DC2
Storage OS (X25-M), Data (Seagate 1TB) // Samsung 840 120GB & bunch of drives
Display(s) Samsung T240HD // LG TV
Case TJ08e // Grandia GD08
Audio Device(s) DT880 Pro 250 ohm // TV speakers
Power Supply Seasonic Plat 1000 // Seasonic Gold 760
Software Windows 8 Pro x64 // Windows 7 Pro x64
#14
But these cards have already aftermaket coolers on them!
And you dont need to dangerously disassemble the card and you save money too.