Install Procedure: NVIDIA Quadro CX / FX 4800 1.5GB One of our workhorses finally gave up: the fan went bust. Luckily, here's Prolimatech to the rescue.
The second board today to receive the Prolimatech MK-13 treatment was nVidia Quadro CX, followed by another FX 4800. However, we'll only show pictures of CX, given that the boards are identical: 55nm GT200b GPU, 1.5GB GDDR3 memory, 192 cores. All performance results come from FX 4800, though - as the fan on CX was broken.
Unlike the consumer brothers, GT200b GL chip in this Quadro board operates just like newer Fermi-based GPUs: 1:2 ratio. Quadro's GPU ticks at 602MHz, while the 192 cores operate at 1,204 MHz, i.e. 1.2 GHz. Memory clock is identical to almost every Quadro board in the past couple of years: 1.5GB of GDDR3 memory operate at 800MHz in DDR mode, resulting in 102.4GB/s of video memory bandwidth.
The only real difference between the two was the bundle anyways [and the price]: CX originally shipped with Elemental Accelerator
, professional transcoder for Adobe Creative Suite 4, developed by Elemental Technologies
. After the introduction of Mercury Playback Engine
, the product was discontinued and replaced with FX 4800.Removing the backplate isn't easy as it seems...removing the screws is easy, but you need to use physical force for plate removal.
The board isn't physically different than regular GT200-based GeForce cards: the two plastic covers are firmed with 12 screws, but the removal of them is just the beginning of the process - you have to use certain level of physical force to separate the two plates.
After the backplate is removed, you need to liberate the front heatsink, which is nearly glued to the GPU surface thanks to the amount of thermal interface material nVidia used. In case anyone is interested, thermal paste was identical to the one used by GeForce GTX 285 1GB.In case of nVidia boards, Prolimatech advises that you use lower memory heatsinks for the memory and the NVIO chip, while use the tall ones for the power regulators.
Unlike the FirePro V8800, which utilizes 2GB highly-clocked GDDR5 memory, Prolimatech advises owners of GT200b-based boards to use low heatsink, and use nine tall heatsinks for the power circuitry. The manual is well-laid out and it is easy to see where to position the heatsinks.The 55nm GT200B chip takes a lot of paste, make sure you spread it thinly across the whole IHS [Integrated Heat Spreader]
nVidia's design decision to go with an IHS is a clear evidence that the company is fighting "hot spots", present on almost all CPUs and certain GPUs. That's the consequence of architectural design, with processing cores working at a higher clock than the rest of the chip. If you see an heatspreader on your GPU, you have to apply the thermal material across the whole heatspreader.Putting the MK-13 on the GPU was very simple: position it properly, turn it upside down, firm the bolts and that's it.
Overall, the replacement of the stock heatsink to a completely modified board lasted for 14 minutes on an AMD FirePro V8800 and around 16 minutes on nVidia Quadro CX/FX 4800. The difference is solely the amount of time required to put the thermal paste onto the very large piece of copper [nickel-plated].
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