SLI 480's. Very hot, is this ok?


I just bought another GTX 480 for SLI. Been using it for a few days with no problems. No freezing, or anything like that. Cards are almost on top of each other inside a Full tower gaming case.

One card idles around 60C, the other around 40C. While playing Battlefield 3 max they have gone up to 90C! I know the 400 GPU's ran hot, but I also read they are designed to run hot. Is this ok? I already tweak fan speeds with EVGA precision, but cranking it above a certain point for adequate cooling is loud and Im afraid Im going to wear out the fan.

Should I worry about the fan? Are these temps ok? THank you in advance for any help you can offer :)


Sep 5, 2010
I think they fixed the heat problem in the 500 series as the 400 series is known to get very hot when under load even when idle i have heard of it getting about to 50C - 70C depending on if you overclocked it and how good of a heatsink and fan or water cooling system you have. so yes it is normal but it is probably not ok for it to get so hot even though the board and chips can take it the other parts in your case might not be able to. Taking that into mind you if you can you can probably move one of them a slot over to increase the amount of air flow between them or replace the cooling solution on the cards with a better one then came with it. another solution to heat is to underclock the card but i really do not recommend this as it will lower the performance and SLI is all about boosting the performance of the card.


They are definitely running too hot,
1.crank them up to 100% constant while gaming ?
2.How much space is between the cards ?
3.How's the ventilation in your case?

Side Notes:

1. Have u tried cooking with them ? eggs boil @70C :D
2. Maybe you can generate steam power with them

Hmmm actually water boils at 100 C...... your eggs would be too runny : P


haha very funny fellas :p

I have a very good full tower monolith case with good airflow. The cards are almost touching, there is about 1/2 an inch dividing them. My motherboard supports 3 way SLI, but putting the card in the third slot would not solve it because the third slot is close to the bottom of the case, so the same problem would occur.

I can jack up the fan speed I guess. Ive read that the 480 can go to 100C and still be operational and not damage anything. Im seeing similar results across 480 benchmarks, this one in particular:

Again thanks for the help guys, Ill tinker around with it and see what works :)

that was yet another complaint over the 4xx series was the noise. 75% fan speed should help quite a bit though in your sitation. just crank up the volume!


Will an after-market cooler work? Idle end one is at 45C while other is 62C. There is about 1/2" between cards, if that even. That space is killing me :( Moving it to the 3rd slot to free room between them wont work because the end will just be facing the case bottom and still be cramped.

On a side note the HEC 1080W had no problem powering the cards. It was a cheaper not as known PSU, but man its handling 2X 480's. Really great PSU :D
We call them the Grillforce for a reason and yes some as a joke have even tried to fry eggs on these. The saddest thing I have seen is one youtuber held a piece of meat to one of the heatpipes while looping uniengine. High temps are normal but not good in the long run though. They won't short out or catch on fire like some other models but Fermi cards have a bad habit of going bad after a few months to little more than a year of daily use. As for me well I rerolled and went with a gtx 280 after dealing with a gtx 460 for 10 months. Bought two more gtx 280 today, sure they aren't dx11 or do million fps in bf3 but at least they will hold me out long enough to wait out two or three generations.


Two gtx 480 > gtx 590 = the way its meant to explode ;)


Sep 12, 2011
i had GTX 470s and 480s. They run hot, as high as 92*C at full load. It's absolutely fine. Let it run, and if it dies, you RMA it. They will probably send you a GTX 570 in its place anyway.

But this "Thermy" and "Grillforce" thing is absolute BS. Right now I have a pair of reference HD 6950 cards and these things run just as hot and sometimes hotter then either the 470s and 480 I had in SLI previously. I've hit 96*C on the top HD 6950 after 2 hours of Metro 2033. They get pretty damn loud too.

I don't favor any card maker over the other because they are all equally worthless. But stop spreading nonsense about nVidia bieng the devil because both nVidia and ATI have problems.

If anything, my GPU experience with ATI cards has been far worse then with nVidia's cards because of ATI's sh!tty drivers. The micro stuttering in Crysis is unbearable when using crossfire.


One of them I had to get off ebay because nobody sells the 480 anymore. That one I dont think I can RMA unless I lie and say its the original first one I bought from newegg that had the lifetime warranty.

I just want these to last. When I bought the 480 when it came out it was about 500 bucks, and combined with the second one off e-bay thats 800 bucks in just graphics. It runs the BF3 beta all max with no dip in FPS, so I think Im future proof for at least a couple years with this rig as long as it lasts....hopefully.


CPU: I7 950
GPU: 2x GTX 480
RAM: 8 Gig 1333mhz
OS: W7-64 bit
Well then manually keep the fan around 60-80% regardless of load or use and change the compound when it is needed. If you can do that it will likely last two years. Be sure that there is one or more fan blowing onto and between the cards to help keep them cool.

Get one for each of your gtx480 and buy a few packs of thermal pads that are slightly thicker than the gap and apply them on the reverse side of the vram and power vrm. A backplate can go a long way when it comes to protecting your cards when they are outside the case and helps with the temps.