EK shows first watercooled backplate for GPUs

Posted on Wednesday, Jan 13 2021 @ 14:29 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
EK showed off various new products today, you can check out an overview at the firm's website. One of the interesting new product developments is the first actively-cooled video card backplate. So basically, a second waterblock for the video card's back. EK argues this is a good idea for high-wattage cards like the RTX 3090, especially because this model has memory chips on both sides of the PCB.
To show that they are still the king in the ring when it comes to custom loop PC liquid cooling, during the EXPO, EK will also show their approach to active backplate cooling for graphics cards. They have the first proper active backplate cooling solution that is integrated seamlessly, in a way that doesn’t require awkward soft tubing connections.

Since the PCB itself is basically a huge heatsink – it has several layers of copper that make up all electrical traces – it is great at absorbing heat from all of the components on the PCB. Removing excess heat from the PCB will lower the overall temperature of all the components on it, even those that are not directly cooled.

With the newest power-hungry GPUs that have their components densely packed, every additional cooling is very welcome since lower temperatures also allow higher overclocks and more GPU boost. And with flagship graphics cards, like the RTX 3090 that has video memory placed on the PCB’s backside, it makes even more sense to use additional cooling.

Another thing is the benefit of thermal pads between the PCB and the backplate since it reduces coil whine. Thermal pads act as absorbers – they are soft and could lessen the coil whine caused by the vibration of the inductor coils. Having a small water block on the backside of the GPU makes the whole assembly sturdier compared to only having a standard backplate, which in turn acts as a better absorber of vibrations.
Active Backplate Cooling Solution

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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