Question Replacing Gainward GTX 970 Heatsink/Fan

Vellaura

Commendable
Nov 30, 2020
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Hey all!

I have the Gainward GTX 970 (https://www.pccasegear.com/products/29359/gainward-geforce-gtx-970-4gb) link for details. I was looking to upgrade the heatsink and fan as I'm not a fan of the blower style cooler. I was wondering if anyone could help me with compatibility on what kind of other heatsinks I could use on it. How easy or hard is it to replace one heatsink for another. How can I confirm. Dimensions of PCB? Ports?

A quick ebay search and I found this, would this work for example? https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/183139936293

Thank you :)
 

Aeacus

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A quick ebay search and I found this, would this work for example? https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/183139936293
No. MSI open-air cooler isn't compatible with Gainward GPU, since cooler mounting holes, for the most times, are different. And with this, you also doesn't have proper mounting bracket.

what kind of other heatsinks I could use on it.
There are some, universal GPU heatsinks, like Arctic Accelero Xtreme IV, which is compatible with GTX 970, among other GPUs (it has proper mounting bracket),
specs: https://www.arctic.de/en/ax4

But even then, there are caveats:
  • Please ensure your graphics card does not come with a stacked power socket.
  • Accelero Xtreme IV is compatible only with the graphics card using a standard size PCB with a width of 98mm.
  • Graphics cards with different dimensions will not be compatible with this cooler. This includes: -Low profile Graphics card -Graphics cards with extended PCB (such as : ASUS DirectCU II R9 290, GTX780-DC2OC-3GD5) The compatibility list is based on AMD Radeon and NVIDIA's reference board layout only. Please check the height restriction drawing before purchase. In most cases it is not possible to install the cooler when the graphics card is mounted in the first PCI slot of the motherboard.
How easy or hard is it to replace one heatsink for another.
Well, it won't be easy. Here's one video showcasing it:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WT3Vn0R2RkM


How can I confirm. Dimensions of PCB? Ports?
Open up the GPU and measure. No other way.
 
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Vellaura

Commendable
Nov 30, 2020
140
5
1,585
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No. MSI open-air cooler isn't compatible with Gainward GPU, since cooler mounting holes, for the most times, are different. And with this, you also doesn't have proper mounting bracket.



There are some, universal GPU heatsinks, like Arctic Accelero Xtreme IV, which is compatible with GTX 970, among other GPUs (it has proper mounting bracket),
specs: https://www.arctic.de/en/ax4

But even then, there are caveats:
  • Please ensure your graphics card does not come with a stacked power socket.
  • Accelero Xtreme IV is compatible only with the graphics card using a standard size PCB with a width of 98mm.
  • Graphics cards with different dimensions will not be compatible with this cooler. This includes: -Low profile Graphics card -Graphics cards with extended PCB (such as : ASUS DirectCU II R9 290, GTX780-DC2OC-3GD5) The compatibility list is based on AMD Radeon and NVIDIA's reference board layout only. Please check the height restriction drawing before purchase. In most cases it is not possible to install the cooler when the graphics card is mounted in the first PCI slot of the motherboard.

Well, it won't be easy. Here's one video showcasing it:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WT3Vn0R2RkM




Open up the GPU and measure. No other way.
Honestly sounds like its just better to get a new graphics card, for the money and effort that is going to go into it.
 

Aeacus

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Ambassador
Honestly sounds like its just better to get a new graphics card, for the money and effort that is going to go into it.
Well, if you're casual user, without any prior knowledge in taking GPU apart, then yes, replacing GPU heatsink is too much of an ordeal, especially since there's a chance that you might screw something up (due to inexperience) and kill your GPU.

But if you're power user and like to tinker with PC hardware and/or doesn't care if the GPU dies, then it can be quite an interesting experience.

Regarding GPU, GTX 1660 and up would be nice upgrade,
comparison: https://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GTX-970-vs-Nvidia-GTX-1660/2577vs4038
 
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Vellaura

Commendable
Nov 30, 2020
140
5
1,585
0
Well, if you're casual user, without any prior knowledge in taking GPU apart, then yes, replacing GPU heatsink is too much of an ordeal, especially since there's a chance that you might screw something up (due to inexperience) and kill your GPU.

But if you're power user and like to tinker with PC hardware and/or doesn't care if the GPU dies, then it can be quite an interesting experience.

Regarding GPU, GTX 1660 and up would be nice upgrade,
comparison: https://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GTX-970-vs-Nvidia-GTX-1660/2577vs4038
I don't mind tinkering at all actually. I'm totally down to do it, i've done a lot of research and have watched plenty of videos from my favourite tech tubers putting cards apart. Just seems like a massive ordeal trying to find a compatible cooler for the card. If I could be certain a cooler/heatsink would be compatible I would definetely go ahead and replace it.

Thank you for your responses so far :)
 

Aeacus

Champion
Ambassador
Aftermarket universal GPU coolers are very niche products. Especially since we already have aftermarket GPUs to buy.

The only two such aftermarket universal GPU coolers, that i know of, are;
air cooler - Arctic Accelero Xtreme IV (linked above)
AIO cooler - NZXT Kraken G12, specs: https://nzxt.com/product/kraken-g12

Kraken G12 also needs Kraken AIO to complete the GPU cooling system.

Both do support GTX 970, with caveats of course. And without you taking your blower GPU apart, there's no telling if the PCB/power connectors are compatible or not, for the caveats required by those universal coolers.

And if you are getting non-universal heatsink (e.g like the one in above video), then all bets are off, regarding compatibility. At that point, only way to know the compatibility, is when you have both GPUs, yours and donor, open both up and try if new heatsink fits your GPU. There isn't any guarantee of compatibility and risk you have to take, is great.
 

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