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Hardware The big air cooling investigation

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by brumgrunt, 10 Feb 2012.

  1. gazchaz

    gazchaz What's a Dremel?

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  2. Lankius Maximus

    Lankius Maximus Minimodder

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    Can only echo what has been said already. Great article and well worth a read whatever your level of build experience.
     
  3. NetSphere

    NetSphere What's a Dremel?

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    +1

    And also determine which fans are best as intakes (Air Penetrators?) vs Exhausts (Scythe GTs, Noctuas, Deltas etc...?)
     
  4. Material

    Material Soco Amaretto Lime

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    Cheers for the positive feedback guys - it was a fun article to write.

    I'll take the suggestions for further investigations on board and hopefully be able to do something along them lines in the future.
     
    David and Shirty like this.
  5. Technobod

    Technobod Minimodder

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    Really good article- enough depth to satisfy all the points made, but not so much its laborious to read.
    Great one :D
    +1 for an up to date fan comparison too.
     
  6. SchizoFrog

    SchizoFrog What's a Dremel?

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    I agree with others above. These articles are back to the basics of building well thought out PCs. It's amazing how we often forget the simple little things and articles like this bring important issues to the forefront.
     
  7. Paradigm Shifter

    Paradigm Shifter de nihilo nihil fit

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    Scythe make some 12mm thick 120mm fans.

    They're pretty pants at forcing air through heatsinks, but if you just need some airflow assistance in a certain direction without any significant obstructions to airflow, they do OK.

    http://www.scythe-usa.com/product/acc/068/sy1212sl12_detail.html

    Available from various places in the UK; QuietPC is one of them, I think.
     
  8. Sutura

    Sutura What's a Dremel?

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    Hi, all. What a long article. It's so cool when a test is conducted with the proper attention to detail. Congratulations on the hard work put in this. Really, good work.

    Would it be possible to make a small addition though? What I am thinking is now that the way for the cheap pre-fabricated liquid cooling solutions is paved with the Corsair H40 (~60 bucks)/Antec Kuhler H2O 620 (~65), I presume a lot of people will end up using their rear 120mm slot as intake. With something like this: fan (push 25mm)+rad (25mm)+fan (pull 25mm)= 75mm cooler. I am curious to see if you can test a reversed configuration, where:
    1. the rear fan is used as intake, the side is intake and top B fan is exhaust
    2. rear+top (B fan) is intake
    3. all exhaust fans (rear+top A/B) are intake and front turns into exhaust, side- intake

    I noticed that one of your starting presumptions when doing the tests was that the more air we exhaust the better (the negative pressure). But if you don't have a proper ventilation (in the form of holes, in the front of the case- "the sealed case") the PC enclosure turns into dust magnet. Does it?
    What about the factors that are significant- is convection one of them? the obstacles between the fans and the components?
    Thank you again. Your tests managed to change my mind. I used to think that front+top (no rear) is one of the best configurations based on other tests. I have never taken the side panel slots as a viable alternative. Now my new preferred configuration is rear and top B exhaust, side- intake, (A) fan slot- free of fan, front slots- free of fans. Thanks once again. I hope you can make the small addition. And have a good portion of chilly chicken wings :D
     
    Last edited: 10 Feb 2012
  9. monkiboi

    monkiboi Minimodder

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    Time to finally turn off the front fan I added to my p182 and to figure out how to fabricate a new side panel with fan(s)
     
  10. Hereisphilly

    Hereisphilly What's a Dremel?

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    Fantastic review guys, really informative, and certainly interesting! Something to consider when doing new builds!

    One thing i would mention though,is that you seem to have overlooked hard drive cooling. I know that in order to dramatically improve hard drive life (and keeping out data intact), they do need some airflow too keep cool.

    What you lose in CPU/GPU cooling by putting the second case fan in the front of the case, you would gain massively in reduced HDD temps.

    Would it be possible to add an extra bit on hard drive temps?
     
  11. SuicideNeil

    SuicideNeil What's a Dremel?

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    Lies & heresy; intakes at the front, side and bottom, exhausts in the top & rear = simples...
     
  12. Apocalypso

    Apocalypso Fully armed and operational.

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    Excellent article, it feels like you're about to head in to a similar watercooling piece soon ;)
     
  13. Material

    Material Soco Amaretto Lime

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    I've got to admit that I'd be extremely reluctant to use a H40/H80 as an intake. I know it's what Corsair suggest in their instructions but in our H80 testing we found this arrangement made the GPU run significantly hotter, which is a poor trade off for the couple of degrees you'll save on your CPU.

    As for adding the testing, its not possible at this stage. Most people use tower air coolers rather than closed loop liquid coolers, so we used an air cooler to make it as useful for as many people as possible. You should still be able to apply the conclusions yo your build though, or even do some experimenting yourself - we set out how we tested on page 2.
     
  14. Material

    Material Soco Amaretto Lime

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    In a word, no, not right now anyway. I know we missed out hard disk temps but it came down to just what i had time to actually do.

    As i said in the article though, you're all smart people - you know that removing your front fan and putting on your side panel will increase your hard disk temps and i trust you to make a judgement on whether you think its worth it or not.
     
  15. Tungil90

    Tungil90 What's a Dremel?

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    Thanks for this really interesting test! Helps me with my cooling! :)
     
  16. Shayper09

    Shayper09 Swimming in Deionized.

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    I tried different orientations of fans in my watercooled FT03, and the best set up, for some reason, was 2x120mm acting as push on the rad from the back of the case and 1x120mm exhaust at the top of the case. I'll be getting a pair of 80mm fans for the bottom as well, to see if that helps.

    Great article guys :):)
     
  17. daletur328

    daletur328 What's a Dremel?

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    great article, nice indepth and sustinct. But agree that a diagram with flow direction would have been nice. But as requested it would be great to have an in depth test of typical water cooling set up, also to include the like of the all in one H80/100 type thing. So often tests are done on benches.
     
  18. Sutura

    Sutura What's a Dremel?

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    That is exactly what I was thinking about - the Corsair instructions. 10x for the useful advice. Now I know why. Have a nice weekend.
     
  19. maverik-sg1

    maverik-sg1 Minimodder

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    So which is more efficient for cooling a case with positive pressure or a case with a negative pressure?

    Also, with all these high end air coolers around (efficient and quiet) the question has to be asked....is water cooling dead?
     
  20. Farfalho

    Farfalho Minimodder

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    Having a Zalman GS1000 myself, two exhaust fans at the top, one exhaust at the rear, one intake at the bottom coupled with the Zalman CNPS9900 Copper and after reading this article, the effects of the Top Front fan to the cpu cooler got me thinking. The Cpu cooler fan is strong enough to pull air inside the case but the fan at the top is "eating" some airflow.
    Thanks to this article, I'm prone to do something I've been willing for a while, get a 120mm fan to the three 5.25" drive bays as intake to help the cpu cooler and leave the Top Front mount fanless.
    Thank you and in due time, these type of article are a joy to read and spend time getting some knowledge.
    Anyone knows a 5.25" drive bay fan mount? That or make a custom one :D (smells like modding spirit!)
     
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