so i removed the fan and pulled the stick-on heatsinks off the memory chips, stuck on the zalman blue stick-on memory heatsinks and fitted the gpu heatblock. at which point i discovered that the heat block obscures one of the pci slots. that’s worth knowing!
it gets a bit tight in there fitting that lot and you probably don’t want to tighten everything up until it’s all in place. (you have to make sure the heat pipes are at an incline. see how mine are inclined? i’m so good ) so this is where your trusty coin comes in handy – it’s the easiest way of tightening the thumb/coin screws which hold the clamp onto the gpu heat block.
if you look carefully (and look back at the earlier pictures) you might notice that i’ve also found another cable to plug in – between the two power connectors on the left. everything seemed to work without it but i guess it ought to be plugged in.
the gpu runs significantly cooler with the heatpipe than it did with the fan. i suspect that’s mainly because of the lack of any other fans in the system. heat builds up inside the case so the fan is just blowing hot air onto the gpu. now that everything’s on heatpipes the cpu is the coolest thing in the case, followed by the gpu – even when they’re both under full load (or as full as i can get)
speaking of which, i don’t know how much i can load the gpu. i bought it on the basis that:
1) zalman’s site claims the three heat pipes which run from the gpu can shift 75W of heat between them and
2) according to the specs, a pci-e slot can only supply 75W of power.
therefore, any card which doesn’t require an additional power connector (which includes any 7600 i think) should be fine.
but that card is way off zalman’s list of supported cards.
i’m running nvidia’s linux drivers with Xgl, compiz, cgwd (with the blur plugin running over the whole of each window and the water plugin raining everywhere), FlightGear and watching DVB-T on xine and i can’t even get the gpu warm. (in fact, the warmest i’ve got it is just playing FlightGear fullscreen with all the other stuff switched off .. still didn’t really manage ‘hot’)
even so, it’s possible that it’d all go wrong if i played a big DirectX 9.0c game for a while. i might give that a go sometime.