When graphics cards produce a lot of heat, usually that heat needs to be transported away from the hot core as fast as possible. Often you'll see massive active fan solutions that can indeed get rid of the heat, yet all the fans these days make the PC, a noisy son of a gun. Do remember that the test we do is extremely subjective. We bought a certified dBA meter and will start measuring how many dBA originate from the PC. Why is this subjective you ask? Well, there is always noise in the background, from the streets, from the HDD, PSU fan, etc, so this is by a mile or two an imprecise measurement. You could only achieve objective measurement in a sound test chamber.
Examples of Sounds Levels
Jet takeoff (200 feet)
Shout (5 feet)
Heavy truck (50 feet)
Normal conversation (3 feet)
Bedroom at night
The human hearing system has different sensitivities at different frequencies. This means that the perception of noise is not at all equal at every frequency. Noise with significant measured levels (in dB) at high or low frequencies will not be as annoying as it would be when its energy is concentrated in the middle frequencies. In other words, the measured noise levels in dB will not reflect the actual human perception of the loudness of the noise. That's why we measure the dBA level. A specific circuit is added to the sound level meter to correct its reading in regard to this concept. This reading is the noise level in dBA. The letter A is added to indicate the correction that was made in the measurement. Frequencies below 1kHz and above 6kHz are attenuated, whereas frequencies between 1kHz and 6kHz are amplified by the A weighting.
There are a lot of differences in measurements amongst websites. Some even place the dBA meter 10cm away from the card. Considering that's not where your ear is located, we do it our way. 75cm away from the setup, above an example photo.
For each dBA test we close the PC/chassis and move the dBA gun 75 cm away from the PC. Roughly the same proximity you'll have from a PC in a real-world situation. Above, the IDLE (desktop mode) results where the GPU hardly has to do anything.
One card in a fully stressed status (in-game) reaches roughly 40 dBA. Now that remains silent. Under stress you can hear a tiny bit of noise, nothing annoying though.
EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 SC Gaming review We review the EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 SC Gaming armed with 8GB GDDR5 graphics memory. Now we all like the reference founders edition cards, but let's face it, aren't the proper board partner cards so...
EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti SC SuperClocked ACX Review In this review we test the EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti SC SuperClocked ACX review, armed with that 450W cooler and our FLIR camera we'll see if it really is good cooling. Oh and hey, SC means a factory o...
EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Classified review We review the EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Classified, this graphics card is equipped with NVIDIA's second to best flagship GPU. Combined with an all custom PCB design and a lot of tweaking features this product will be enticing for a lot of you guys.
EVGA GeForce GTX 760 SC ACX review In this article we review the EVGA GeForce GTX 760 SC ACX edition, this particular model comes with a dual-slot two fan ACX cooling solution. That boils down to a more silent product versus and great cooling performance. EVA offers the card factory overclocked at some pretty impressive clock frequencies. Join us in this review and let's see if the 269 USD ACX model will be worth it for you.