With the TES 1326 Infrared Thermometer literally in hand we found ourselves getting real-world temperatures from the products we test at load (3D clock speeds).
There are two places we pull temperature from - the back of the card directly behind the core and if the card is dual slot and has an exhaust point we also pull a temperate from there, as seen in the picture.
Heat output doesn't show anything too worrying; the cores do run a bit hotter than the standard HD 5870, but nothing that we're concerned about.
Pulling out the TES 1350A Sound Level Meter we find ourselves quickly yelling into the top of it to see how loud we can be.
After five minutes of that we get a bit more serious and place the device two CM away from the fan on the card to find the maximum noise level of the card when idle (2D mode) and in load (3D mode).
Noise across the board on the ATI offerings is pretty good. The HD 5970 did manage to idle a little lower, but load noises are all pretty much in line with the only card standing out being the GTX 295 in a more negative light than any other.