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Cooling Setup Positioning: Fractal Design Define R4 w/ 2 extra NF-A14 FLX fans

Hello all,

As I am writing this, I am assembling my PC*.

Due to the video card I am using, heat management will be vital.

I need help with the placement of the two extra fans inside the R4 case.

After reading tons, I was initially planning on having this configuration: 1 rear exhaust fan, 1 top exhaust fan, 1 front intake fan and 1 intake fan (either front or side if cooler permits, bottom blocked by the big PSU)

However, the more I read, the more confused I am.
Particularly, SilverStone's point #6, creates great confusion.

Every other thread I have read, say to place exhaust fans on top and rear, however the article above say otherwise.

Please help me out with my fan setup.

Thanks,
Paul

*System Specs:
- Fractal Desine Define R4 windowless (removed HDD bottom and middle trays)
- 2x 140mm NF-A14 FLX fans
- i7-4930k
- ASRock x79 Extreme6
- Noctua NH-D14
- 64GB G.Skill Ripjaws Z Series
- Radeon R9 290 (original cooler)
- 250GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD
- Optical Drive
- 3TB Toshiba HDD (goes in the top 5" tray under the Optical drive, no fan blowing on it)
- 1050W SeaSonic X-series
8 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about cooling setup positioning fractal design define extra a14 flx fans
  1. Best answer
    For your R4, Use the two fans that come with the case as front intake fans, and one A14FLX exhaust at the back.
    Then, watch (monitor) the temperatures under load.
    I believe your temperatures will be good; however, if they end up being higher that you want, simply add the other A14FLX and see (measure) what its effect is in any configuration you want (top exhaust or side intake).
    Let the observed data determine the best placement for your remaining fan.
  2. Do you have the side panel fan mount option?
    Please post a picture of the open side of the case for reference and exact equipment layout.
  3. 2x4b said:
    For your R4, Use the two fans that come with the case as front intake fans, and one A14FLX exhaust at the back.
    Then, watch (monitor) the temperatures under load.
    I believe your temperatures will be good; however, if they end up being higher that you want, simply add the other A14FLX and see (measure) what its effect is in any configuration you want (top exhaust or side intake).
    Let the observed data determine the best placement for your remaining fan.

    Fans have been moved. Not sure if I should leave the top grill opened or close it up.
    http://s11.postimg.org/mdhayt12n/IMG_20140101_130514.jpg

    giltyler said:
    Do you have the side panel fan mount option?
    Please post a picture of the open side of the case for reference and exact equipment layout.

    The case has a side panel fan mounting option. However, until I assemble everything, I can't say if the cooler will allow for a side fan. I am posting two pics to get an idea. The height of the cooler is ~16cm, the height of the case, leaving some space for the motherboard is ~18cm. The fan height is ~2.5cm. This leaves me with a negative 0.5cm for the side fan. Maybe more once I install everything.

    http://s28.postimg.org/kw8xnehxl/IMG_20140101_123737.jpg

    http://s28.postimg.org/49vys2edl/IMG_20140101_123800.jpg
  4. It looks like you should have good air flow to start with.
    can you draw air in from the bottom in front of the PS
  5. giltyler said:
    [..]can you draw air in from the bottom in front of the PS

    Not sure I understand, but yes, the PSU can draw air from the bottom of the case ~90% of the fan aligns with the grill.

    For the remaining space, the PCIe/CPU power slot on the PSU will block any installation of a bottom fan. However, there is space for air to pass by.
  6. The bottom is a place more cases have available for fans lately.
    Having that option is a plus.
  7. cbpx said:

    Fans have been moved. Not sure if I should leave the top grill opened or close it up.

    I would leave it closed. My thinking is to allow any extra air pressure generated by the two front fans to force the air across the GPU towards the rear, rather than allow it to flow up.

    cbpx said:

    I can't say if the cooler will allow for a side fan.

    I know on my R4, there wasn't much room above my heatsink. I was able to fit a fan on the floor in front of the PSU (but it was only an old 80mm that I had laying around doing nothing).
  8. 2x4b said:
    I would leave it closed. My thinking is to allow any extra air pressure generated by the two front fans to force the air across the GPU towards the rear, rather than allow it to flow up.
    [..]
    I know on my R4, there wasn't much room above my heatsink. I was able to fit a fan on the floor in front of the PSU (but it was only an old 80mm that I had laying around doing nothing).

    Thanks for your help. I will close them up.

    With the remaining fan, I will try to put it on the side and see how it behaves. As for a bottom fan, I will look for something smaller, maybe a 120mm will fit.

    As of now the system is booting and all looks ok.

    Word of WARNING: The end sliders on the PCIe slots slide. I broke one thinking it would move sideways like on my old setup.

    NOTE: The PCIe 1 slot is blocked by the Cooler fan snapping metals. Either bend those or use the other slots.
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