Fanless RTX 3080? Redditor Goes on a Wild GPU Modding Quest!

rtx 3080 passive cooling mod by gpu heatsink modder on reddit
Image Courtesy: /u/Everynametaken9 via Reddit
In Short
  • One Redditor is on a quest to make his RTX 3080 completely fanless and passively cooled.
  • His idea revolves around Monster Labo's silent PC case, which can cool down 450W of CPU+GPU heat.
  • The project is ongoing, as the modder is considering feedback from the online community.

Tinkering and soldering in the PC building community is nothing new. Several PC builders go wild and think of crazy concepts for their next project. One particular Reddit user, u/Everynametaken9, ramped it up a bit. The user shared his modded RTX 3080 GPU on the Nvidia subreddit. Since then, the post has received several hundred upvotes and garnered the attention of many enthusiasts.

What exactly has this Reddit user done? He has tried to create an RTX 3080 but passively cooled without any fans. You heard that right, this PC builder wants to have a fanless RTX 3080 which would essentially make zero noise. The Redditor has been inspired by MonsterLabo for this project.

The fanless PC case, known as “The Beast,” was demonstrated by MonsterLabo much earlier. Pre-orders for this case are shipping in Q1 2024. It features 400W of cooling potential for the entire system, with a 250W GPU being recommended for a ‘fanless‘ experience.

fanless RTX 3080 mod by redditor
Image Courtesy: /u/Everynametaken9 via Reddit

If the Redditor chooses to continue with his quest, his custom GPU cooling solution has to meet the RTX 3080’s stock power of 320W. I imagine that it could be possible to undervolt the GPU to lower the power requirement further while maintaining performance. Currently, the Redditor’s project is in a “Prototype” state. Reportedly, he has not tested the functionality of the GPU cooler yet and is looking for feedback. He added,

“My strategy with this prototype is a massive copper bar as a heatsink, 2″x3″x12″ with coolers strapped to it. In the Pic you can see I have a copper VRAM plate that covers them all, but as many of you are aware the die is slightly higher than the plate.”

While the aspirational PC builder claims to be a non-expert in hardware, he has previously made a prototype that got him 125W of cooling power for an i7-10700K. He says that this particular setup had too many thermal gaps.

rtx 3080 passive cooling project by redditor
Image Courtesy: /u/Everynametaken9 via Reddit

This next project intends to cool an RTX 3080 Founders Edition & AMD Ryzen 5 7600X together. At load and when being used together, this CPU and GPU combo can generate around 400-450W of heat.

Modder Concerns and Community Responses

The Redditor has shared several concerns regarding his aspirational GPU mod, which is yet to be tested. He says that the copper bar being used could get “too hot” and cause the VRAM to overheat. However, one theory suggests the size of the entire heatsink could make this aspect irrelevant.

Next, he is worried about the GPU board components, such as the conductors and inductors, heating up. Lastly, the modder theorizes whether or not the massively sized thermal pad that was received with his copper backplate can be used on the graphics card.

Various media fraternities, along with the Reddit community, found this project super interesting. One Reddit user commented, “My 3080 can’t even be cooled by a 4-slot 3 fan design,” with some comments replying about how he needs new thermal paste on his GPU.

Another Redditor said, “I seriously question how you got that many heatsinks,” which was the first thing on my mind. Another hilarious response from a Reddit user calls the project a ‘cursed space heater.’

rtx 3080 passive cooling project by redditor
Image Courtesy: /u/Everynametaken9 via Reddit

It will be interesting to see this prototype develop. Some Redditors are positive it could work. Others are less convinced, recommending different materials or sharing their knowledge on the best kind of products to use for this project. Personally, no matter how weird this mod is, I want it to succeed.

It would set a new baseline for what’s possible in the field of passive PC cooling projects! I sincerely hope that the overall footprint of the project does not grow to become “too big.” It’s quite crazy what people are ready to do just to eliminate fan noise.

What are your thoughts on this fanless RTX 3080 GPU mod? Let us know in the comments below.

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