View Full Version : FAO Computer techy people, a question about fans..

02-21-2006, 03:52 AM
Are there any case fans on the market that are better than others and do they have a better cfm than standard ones, and also what are the best heat sink fans?

Over the last few months I have noticed that my case temp and CPU temp have been creeping up, 43 c and 75.3 c respectively, and personally I'd like to get them both a bit lower. My case has 4 inflow and 3 outflow fans all of the standard type and I have got a cooler master heatsink radial inflow fan, one of the ones that sits on it's side. Am I able to get better cooling than this or do I have to live with it or get a liquid set up?

It's all clean and dust free too.

Any ideas chaps?

Located in the uk

02-21-2006, 04:01 AM
I have 2 Papst 80mm case fans and a CPU heatsink from Zalman. Silent&Cool.


I've got this one on my CPU



02-21-2006, 04:43 AM
After about 40 minutes playing I had a CPU temp of 57 c but the cpu fan ran at 5200rpm which was more annoying. I fitted a heat pipe radiator plus fan see link.


This brought the temp down by 15 c with the fan running at 2000rpm (i didn't fitt the fan speed controler.

The graphics card has a heat pipe fanless heatsink, the power supply has two fans and i have one inlet and one exhaust fan.

Make sure you have the correct airflow direction, lower front of the case to upper rear in a atx tower system.

02-21-2006, 04:54 AM
Actually the whole concept is more important than single fans. The best cooler helps nothing if you don't have a constant airflow through the case.

It's best to have a fan near the HardDrivers, sucking in cold air. Many people don't know HDDs need cooling, too. Then, near the top, place another fan to blow the warm air out of the case.
Usuall there is a space for at least one fan at the back of the case, some have an additional on the top, which is actually the best method, as it supports the natural movement.

Overall it's all a matter of how much you want to invest and how silent you want the case. You can choose Papst-fans, for example, which are very silent, but quite expensive. Others are silent, but only transport a minimum of air.

I have 3 120mm fans and my passive cooled 7800GT and my A64 Venice 3200+ CPU never get above 50?C.

02-21-2006, 05:10 AM
Allot of the ambient case tempreture problems come from hard drives. If at all possible HDD's need to be seperate (i.e. not next to each other) and have air blowing over them, as they act like radiators inside a most cases.

02-21-2006, 06:56 AM
Originally posted by WOLFMondo:
Allot of the ambient case tempreture problems come from hard drives. If at all possible HDD's need to be seperate (i.e. not next to each other) and have air blowing over them, as they act like radiators inside a most cases.


A radical option that may fix this is to reverse all the fan plugs in your case. This would mean that you are now pulling cool air in from the back and out the front. This way, the heat from your hard drive(s) will be exhausted directly from the case and not circulated over the CPU/GPU before exiting.

Might be worth a shot, even if it goes against conventional wisdom.

Edit: Uh...Now that I think about it a little more. That may not work. I'm not 100% sure that reversing the polarity will reverse the fan direction. You may have to physicaly flip the fans around. this would require more work than I at first thought.

02-21-2006, 08:25 AM
This is a bit more complex then you realize.....

ex.: Consider this........The more fans, the more heat that is generated from electric motors....More so, you take the hot air and pump it out into the room....Yet where do you get your "fresh" air from?....Same room http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

My setup is actually working quite well, yet is not very practical for many folks..However here is what I suggest trying in the following order....

1. CLEAN IT YOU PIG!!......Ok that was rash, but true. It's important no matter how filtered you have your case that you clean inside every so often, the more often the better. Check in the heat sink grooves especially, as very fine dust will coat them. Yet get it as clean as possible....This also includes "fan blades" as the heavier they are the harder the motor works and the more heat is generated.

2. Filter your intakes....To aid in #1 above add filters to your intakes...You can purchase them...or you can even make them by getting simple medical gauze and taping it over...The gauze will actually help collect dust and when dirty, throw it away....You can also by "static plastic filters"...these filters get charged by the PC running and attract dust.....On the more exotic end you can make "intake baffle boxes". Literally, the air will as it snakes through the baffles changing directions cause the dust to fall before reaching the PC (some of it http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif ).

3. Re-route your wires......This is a primary cause of overheating for many. (Often a major source of dust too as they work like the baffles above). Try to get your wires attached with zip ties/whatever as close as possible to the sides of the case or to unmovable supports...If done perfectly it will "almost" look as though you have little to no wires inside...More realistically very few packed tight to area's away from airflow. You can even if you have bundles of wires running the same way (cheap way) tape them up into one single larger cable, single leads coming off where needed.

Pausing a moment.......I've yet to see many cases that are really "well" designed for cooling. In fact most are nothing more then a box designed to fit components in as best as possible disregarding cooling.......What you want to consider here is as follows....

A. Getting "cool" air in "smoothly"
B. Directing it to Components
C. Flowing over components YET not then over others as much as possible.
D. Not disrupting the flow with other fans or components (wires a good example).
E. Getting the hot air out as fast as possible.

4. DO NOT JUST OPEN YOUR CASE AND BLOW A HUGE FAN ON EVERYTHING......If you do this you'll find hot spots where air just lingers....A well designed case acts like a conduit of sorts actually routing the air where needed then out. If you just open it up it just sits there.

5. Out fans are more important then intake....If you just push air in the case, it will try and find the easiest way out often not routing over what you need cooled. In kind you might have area's where the heated air in the case just flows around a spot over and over...getting ever more heated....Lastly, just in could possibly mean the fans deadhead as the outgoing air is not as great as the intake...So essentially just making heat but moving little air............If given the "choice" of either intake or exhaust....Choose exhaust. If you can have both make the exhaust volume greater then the intake to INSURE heat is sucked out.

6. Add Heatsinks.....You can purchase very inexpensively heatsinks to directly attach to chips....Determine what gets hot...Processor, Ram, Video, etc.....Mount a heatsink to it as it will work like a radiator....You can even take this a step further by mounting the small 25-30mm older processor fans over them........In kind for processors mostly you can consider a "better" heatsink/fan combo......(as a side not here you can also "sandwich" both sides of cards that get very hot like video cards")

7. Consider "Component Fan Flow"....You probably have a fan over your processor, your video card chip side, maybe even your sound card. Also consider any other little component fans you have added or are elsewhere......Now determine how they flow. Most will flow down (drawing air in) on the heatsinks where it then is dispersed in all directions...Consider how that air is flowing...and where it flows to.

You can also consider "scoops"...Simple air scoops that draw from assured cool air area's. As silly as it sounds get creative...and make these.

8. Intake air......Consider how many intake "fans" you will have and where they are placed. You know where hot air is moving around in your case, so consider how you can get the cool air to those areas as smoothly as possible. Next once to those area's you want that "heated" air to be directed away from all other components as best as possible.

This will take some thought, yet consider compensating with some intake venting. One simple method is open up the bay slot on the fan side of your Graphics card. This allows cool air to suck in past where it is needed, and actually will help alter the flow of the intake air as it will adjust it's path possibly (think of little creeks flowing to an ever larger river of air)....Many intake fans now blow over the hard drives....THIS IS A GOOD thing as they need to be cooled. This is a BAD thing in that it heats up the air to cool other components. So consider other intake locations that will help get cool air to those other components ALONG WITH the standard over HD intakes.

9. Mother Board.....You're blowing air over the top of your motherboard.....What about the backside?....I've actually had the paint on a case burn where the backside of the motherboard was near....Consider how you can vent that area (for me it took some cutting)....Yet drawing air off the backside of the MB can help a lot.

10. Exhaust....Ok, Now you have routed your cool air in and over components where needed HOPEFULLY considering a smooth flow out...Make the volume of air that can be moved out more then in....This is actually simple to figure (naturally if all fans have the same rated volume CFM/R.)....3 80mm fans in...4 out.....OR 3 80mm fans in, 1 80mm & 2 120mm out....and so on. Consider your venting openings as well as you need to make up for their intake volume as well. Remember as well you also have the PS fan going for you. So place your exhaust fans to help continue that flow you envisioned when you planned it all out....and it doesn't hurt also exhaust near the top to get lingering heat out of the box.

........From here on out it can get even more exotic....Where does the cool intake air come from...where does the hot air go?...If you can, consider routing your exhaust air out of the room (this will also cut down on fan noise)...In kind you might think of a clever way to route it in.

You can do all this long before "liquid cooling" systems and so on....Up to you as to how far you might take it.

My system is as follows:

I run a separate power supply to power ALL my fans except the processor mounted outside of the case....that's now 16 more (3/80mm in, 3/80+1/120 out (plus internal PS exhaust), 2 small over ram heatsinks, 1 chipset heatsink, 2 AGP card sandwiched, 2 voodoo card, 1 sound card, 1 special routing to primary power supply) all exhaust routed out of the room, intake through a chiller box (really nothing more then sealed round aluminum ducting 8' into the ground then up).....Like a hurricane http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

02-21-2006, 09:08 AM
As a follow-up, replace all those EIDE/ATA ribbon cables with the round kind to promote better airflow, find a PCI slot exhaust fan & possibly, a set of input fans to go into a spare 5-1/2 inch drive slot.

I've found that where you place your case can have a big effect too. If you have it in an enclosed, semi-enclosed space, desk or cabinet with no cool air coming in or a means of expelling hot air, bad things will eventually happen. You might want to point a room fan in the direction of your case on warm days (and every day in a heated room is a warm day) to promote air flow in & out of your case.



02-21-2006, 04:23 PM
Water Cooling...
quiet and cool