Most people spend a lot of time gaming. For many, it’s a hobby or passion they love. If you’re like most gamers, you have probably experienced overheating issues on your video card. Whether the cause is an outdated cooling solution or insufficient airflow, most gamers know that heat can be annoying and expensive to control.
If you’re a gamer, then you know how important your GPU is. It’s the hardware that processes all of the information on your screen and handles the heavy lifting for your gaming rig. In this article, we’ll take a look at what factors affect GPU temperature while gaming and how you can keep your GPUs cool and quiet.
The average gpu temp while gaming
When you’re playing games, the GPU works up to 70% of it’s potential. In other words: gaming is typically a power hungry affair. While CPUs and even RAM use about 50% of operational capacity for everyday computer usage, GPUs like your i5-4670k are often pushed 100%.
So why does temperature matter? Here’s how things work in regards to their copper cores that generate heat . When these rails get too hot under load, they start losing efficiency. This can cause complaints in your games such as lag or stuttering and even crashes.
What causes video card temperature to rise under load?
Heat is generated by the GPU when it has work to do—such as rendering a game scene that requires intense lighting calculations or decoding pixels for 3-D graphics at 60 FPS . Because of this need for high performance computing capacity, gaming cards are engineered with thick thermal interface
material (TIM) that allows heat to radiate directly from the GPU’s chips. This is why they are known as “GPUs,” short for graphics processing units, and not CPUs or memory because of their focus on online gaming and video decode technology .
Factors that affect GPU temperature while gaming
Walking though the most common factors that can cause your GPU to get warm while gaming is a bit complicated.
The broad strokes: The game you’re playing c an affect temperature levels : running an MMO or 3-D shooter will result in higher temperatures than playing first person shooters. Graphics clockspeed and core count have only a slight effect . Temps can be decreased by lowering graphics clock speeds from 2700 MHz down to 1992 MHz , but the clock speed has about a 0.5C difference to impact temperature output for most purposes .
Fan factors : GPUs always have many fans on them, often with two or three fan speeds at various RPM levels (1-7). A lower max fan speed will run cooler, but it’s going to be louder and use more power due white noise like whine. While GPU hardware changes are relatively rare when they occur, motherboard revisions do occasionally need to be installed or swapped out.
Fan type and power supply design also comes into play, a larger fan socket might make audible noise unless it’s specially designed for low-noise usage . A new Power Supply will help reduce temperatures with capacity in the 0.9A – 16A contour range guaranteed to cover not just Nvidia Pascal cards.
Tricks to keep your GPUs cool and quiet
There is no one-size-fits-all answer, but here are some general tips to help keep your graphics cards cool and silent during gaming:
1. Keep them well ventilated – open up the case if possible and use fans on the side or top of the card to push air across it. Make sure there’s plenty of airflow through the system as a whole; it’s not just important for GPUs!
2. Use a quiet case and motherboard – ideally one that cuts noise output down to 20 dBA on average (consider going with an Antec or Corsair Premium Noise-Cut Box). Reasonable hardware doesn’t need sound dampening material, it only needs sufficient airflow.
3. Run PhysX where you can – not all games use physics calculations but Nvidia’s Maxwell & Pascal GPUs have good performance in 4 labs than AMD’s older HD 7000 series of cards. For
computers without fast SSDs, it’s a useful option to look into. HDD read/write performance has slower access than memory but still might be able to keep up.
4. Use CPU Power Management features correctly – choose the correct one for your needs; there are both high- and low-power variants available with each generation of cards , so it can vary depending on motherboard revision from card model release editions .
The temperature of your graphics card is one of the most important factors in your overall gaming experience. If you want to get the best performance out of your rig, it’s crucial that you’re keeping an eye on how hot your GPU gets while gaming. This can be done by monitoring your gpu temp with a tool like HWMonitor or by checking your system’s temperature with a software such as CPU-Z. Which games do you play? What hardware do you have? Let us know in the comments below if we should add any more tips for this type!