Top positive review
Great value but loud under load
on 23 April 2012
I like my PCs quiet and go to great effort on this. You're potentially hearing the thing at your feet for years so a few hours toning it down are well worth it.
Although this graphics card was great value for money I wouldn't call it quiet. From desktop to gaming the fans would ramp up a level. As they make a higher pitch than the typical case or CPU fan this is noticeable. If there was lots of onscreen action the fans would ramp up again and become a distraction. Put the card under load using something like OCCT and I would describe the noise as well past my tolerance.
I ended up modding this card with the ARCTIC Accelero Twin Turbo Pro (fits no problem). I don't expect a card like this to come with a Twin Frozr II but that stock lightweight cooler with a single fan was bare minimum.
After modding this card it was so quiet I threw on a 20% overclock and still couldn't get it louder than my case fans under OCCT. My temperature and fan speeds (from Catalyst Control Center using OCCT to load) are idle 38c fan speed 20% going to 70c with fan speed 33% at 100% load after 10mins. These temperatures are great and 33% fan is still pretty much inaudible from where I sit. The stock cooler would have been like a mini vacuum cleaner under this load.
I take a star off for this review as the stock cooling was bare minimum. I would have taken more off due to the hassle the Catalyst drivers gave me, but the noise, performance, overclockability when modded are so fine I'm now very happy with my Asus 6850 ;-)