Unsure if memory pads from ek wb are hitting my 980Ti

clayton006

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Jan 4, 2005
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So I've got three 980TIs on EK waterblocks in my main rig. My concern is that it didn't look like all of the thermal pads for my memory modules were making good contact between the block and the card. I tried to have a memory overclock of +100 but (the only game) Fallout 4 would crash every couple of hours until I removed that clock. I know that overclocking three cards at once produces lower results, but I have a feeling that my memory may not be getting cooled properly?

A) Is it worth pulling all this apart to repaste my GPU and try out new memory pads?

B) If so, any suggestion on what kinds of thermal pads I should use?
 

skline00

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May 23, 2012
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Did you follow the instructions for the installation of the pads? What EK blocks did you use?.

I installed an EK Titan X block on my EVGA GTX980TI SC but made sure the block was totally compatible with my specific gpu. I see from your specs that you have the same video card. Of course I only have a single gpu so heat in the loop is much less.

Since you have three gpus installed do you have any fans blowing on the area where you have the gpus?

How much radiator capacity do you have? Do you monitor the water temp of the loop during idle and during max game play?
 

clayton006

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I don't monitor the water temp of my loop. That being said, all temps of my 5960x and my GPUs are in a decent place. The GPUs set at the low 40's and my CPU hits a spike of 70c at 4.5GHz.

I purchase the exact compatible block from EK for the GTX 980Ti. Everything lines up properly, just the termal pads are super thin and as a result I think some of the modules aren't touching fully. That's why I was asking for a different thermal pad to try. The ones they supply are super thin. I have not purchased their backplates for the card.

I do have fans blowing across the VRM's, but I don't have any issues now that I removed my GPU ram clock. I have two radiators, one thick BlackIce GTX480 radiator in push pull and another XPSC thin radiator in push. I plan on putting this radiator in the front of my Corsair 900D and putting another BlackIce GTX 480 on the side.

So I'm okay with leaving my GPU vram clocks alone, just wondering if its worth the hassle to repaste (remove my arctic ceramic 2 and use my Noctuna TH-1) and replace the thermal pads on each card.
 

Koween

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May 24, 2012
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Is there any way to see the thermal pads from the side? If it was possible to shine some light from behind you would easily see if there is a gap between the pads and vram chips. Also, I've read some guides overclocking 980tis, seems they may be fickle and unstable if you increase the memory clock by even a single MHz over whatever is stable. So, +100MHz may be unstable, but something like +99MHz or +98MHz may be stable and it may have nothing to do with memory temperature.
 

clayton006

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Is there any way to see the thermal pads from the side? If it was possible to shine some light from behind you would easily see if there is a gap between the pads and vram chips. Also, I've read some guides overclocking 980tis, seems they may be fickle and unstable if you increase the memory clock by even a single MHz over whatever is stable. So, +100MHz may be unstable, but something like +99MHz or +98MHz may be stable and it may have nothing to do with memory temperature.

There looks like there may be a tiny gap on two of the cards from the memory modules I can see on the outside edge. I noticed this when I was putting them together. It seemed like the other vram modules would touch except the ones that were facing me.

It may be time for different thermal pads. Suggestions?
 

Koween

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May 24, 2012
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Just measure what you have and order thicker from EK or somewhere else. Doubt there is a large difference between manufacturers. As long as you get thicker pads it should be okay.
 

clayton006

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Yeah I was just looking to see if someone had a link to a known good brand or material of thermal pad. I'll go on the hunt then. Thanks.
 

JesseDeya

n00b
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Mar 7, 2016
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I have the same block and I think the same might be occurring with mine (1 card only).

When I installed it, I could hold the card up to the light and see a faint gap between the thermal pad and memory modules. I used thermal paste on both sides of my thermal pads though (just a smidge) so it is probably making some contact that way. I can get a +400 memory overlock as it is, but any higher and I get problems.

Card is a Gigabyte 980ti Gaming OC.

I might email EK and see what they say.
 

clayton006

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I emailed them on Wednesday and they replied back that they weren't sure what was going on but wanted the exact model of video card and waterblock (which makes sense). I replied back and will let you all know if / when I hear more.
 
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