Tom’s Hardware explores the fanless frontier with a GTX 1050 Ti

Gerbils who have been following along with TR's coverage of Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti are aware of the cards' low power consumption and small thermal footprint. Companies like MSI and Gigabyte have capitalized on those characteristics by offering half-height cards suitable for use in SFF desktop systems. Nvidia and its partners have even been able to shoehorn fully-enabled GP107 silicon into mobile GTX 1050 Ti-equipped gaming laptops. The hard-working people over at Tom's Hardware wondered what would happen if a GTX 1050 Ti was run without any fans, so they rolled up their sleeves and found out.

The MSI GTX 1050 Ti that Tom's Hardware used

Toms' Igor Wallossek stuck a giant Accelero cooler onto a GTX 1050 Ti, cranked the card's power target down, generated a whole bunch of test data, then formatted it nicely for the world to digest. Spoiler alert: the switch to fanless operation takes a big bite out of the GTX 1050 Ti's performance potential, but it's fun to see how high-clocked computer components work better with even the token airflow of pair of 120-mm fans spinning at a leisurely 300 RPM.

The test methods and results are interesting. Even if you have zero interest in reduced-power computing and silent, passively-cooled systems, the article is worth checking out just for the pictures of an MSI GTX 1050 Ti card with a cooler twice its length bolted on.

Comments closed
    • HERETIC
    • 3 years ago

    The one interesting piece of info in that article (if it’s accurate) is the 21% performance loss
    at 60% power usage.
    Somewhere between that point and full power should be a sweet spot for lappies…………….

      • ch┬Áck
      • 3 years ago

      laptop parts are binned lower voltage chips. that’s typically why they cost more.

        • HERETIC
        • 3 years ago

        That has always been the practice in the past,with lower clockspeeds as well.
        What we have now is a desktop chip capable of getting close to last years 970M
        at half it’s power.

        We could end up with binned/cherrypicked in light and thin(think-40W)
        and bog standard dies running around 90% and 50W.
        anything is possible.

    • One Sick Puppy
    • 3 years ago

    Someone should design a universal heat-exchanger. There’s a need for ingenuity when the computer is overheating and the couch is too cold.

      • UberGerbil
      • 3 years ago

      It already exists: it’s called “air and a fan.” Just aim the fan exhaust at the couch. Problem solved.

    • DPete27
    • 3 years ago

    Wait….the passive heatsink with airflow maintained a lower core temp than the active cooler at all times, and yet the passive with airflow sample throttled?

    [Add] GPU boost failed after almost 1 hour of testing, even though temps had stabilized after only ~20 minutes?

      • Voldenuit
      • 3 years ago

      The VRMs were looking pretty hot in the infrared shot. That could be why.

        • Waco
        • 3 years ago

        VRMs without *any* cooling whatsoever are absolutely the problem here. I’m amazed anyone still considers aftermarket coolers that don’t cool the VRMs in any way whatsoever.

          • morphine
          • 3 years ago

          Hear hear. Especially these days with all the power tuning algorithms and “overclockable” graphics cards having beefier VRMs and power phases, one could say that the power section is where the money lies, so to speak. GPU temperatures have long [i<]not[/i<] been an issue.

            • Waco
            • 3 years ago

            The worst part is that companies still crank out these “improved” coolers that almost always create thermal problems on the cards that didn’t exist with the stock cooler.

            “BUT LOWER GPU TEMPERATURES”

            Ugh. Marketing and ignorance keeps them alive.

            • Chrispy_
            • 3 years ago

            The only graphics cards that I have seen physically die from component failure in the last decade are due to smoked VRMs, and I’ve seen [i<]a few[/i<] graphics cards in the last decade.

        • DPete27
        • 3 years ago

        This was my take-away also. When I read the TR title, I figured Toms had taken a dual fan GTX1050Ti like the MSI Gaming X (the card they used in their original 1050Ti review) and simply unplugged the fans and removed the plastic shroud. At least many/most of the stock dual fan coolers touch the RAM and VRMs.

      • JosiahBradley
      • 3 years ago

      It’s Tom’s not exactly a science reputable blog. If they can’t passively cool 75W without throttling they did something wrong. I’m passively cooling an X6 Phenom right now, which I’m sure is over 75W.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This