Does a modern 7200rpm drive _NEED_ dedicated cooling?

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

I'm finally building myself a newer PC and am confused about whether or
not my 80gig WD 7200rpm S-ATA drive needs its own dedicated cooling.
According to WD's site, not really. According to sites devoted to
gaming PCs, yes.

The case already has one intake fan, one exhaust fan, and a twin-fan
power supply. It IS an older case, though, so there is no provision for
mounting the drive directly in the airflow of the intake fan (like I
see on most other cases).

I'd _like_ to stay away from yet more fans. A lot of the "hard drive
coolers" I see look like they just churn a bunch of already hot air.
Others seem to be large heatsink/fan combinations that pull in air from
the front bezel, but again it's more noise.

Thoughts? Opinions? Will the drive live a shorter life if I just mount
it in the 3-1/2 bay below the floppy?

Thank you.
3 answers Last reply
More about does modern 7200rpm drive _need_ dedicated cooling
  1. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    terrancedrith@yahoo.com wrote:

    > I'm finally building myself a newer PC and am confused about whether or
    > not my 80gig WD 7200rpm S-ATA drive needs its own dedicated cooling.
    > According to WD's site, not really. According to sites devoted to
    > gaming PCs, yes.
    >
    > The case already has one intake fan, one exhaust fan, and a twin-fan
    > power supply. It IS an older case, though, so there is no provision for
    > mounting the drive directly in the airflow of the intake fan (like I
    > see on most other cases).
    >
    > I'd _like_ to stay away from yet more fans. A lot of the "hard drive
    > coolers" I see look like they just churn a bunch of already hot air.
    > Others seem to be large heatsink/fan combinations that pull in air from
    > the front bezel, but again it's more noise.
    >
    > Thoughts? Opinions? Will the drive live a shorter life if I just mount
    > it in the 3-1/2 bay below the floppy?

    All drives need some kind of cooling. How much depends on the drive and
    whether they need dedicated cooling depends on the enclosure.

    As for coolers that "churn a bunch of already hot air", hot air forced to
    move past the drive will keep it cooler than equally hot air that is
    stagnant around the drive.

    Get a good SMART tool, stick the drive in, run it hard, watch the
    temperature, see what happens. If it stays cool you've got no problem, if
    it gets hot then you need more cooling.

    If you want to be hardcore then get spend the ten bucks for a 62C Tempilstik
    <http://store.weldingdepot.com/cgi/weldingdepot/TS0144.html?id=MPUqKsfw>
    (one should last you the rest of your life), put a mark on the case (see
    your drive manufacturer's installation manual for the location--if you
    can't find one the Seagate manual is typical
    <http://www.seagate.com/support/disc/manuals/ata/cuda_72008_pm.pdf>), run
    it for a while, again hard as you can, pull it, and if the mark has melted
    add cooling.

    > Thank you.

    --
    --John
    Reply to jclarke at ae tee tee global dot net
    (was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)
  2. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    Nope, some dont, particularly when used in a case with
    a spare bay on either side of it and decent case cooling.

    <terrancedrith@yahoo.com> wrote in message
    news:1106770998.195517.27000@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com...

    > I'm finally building myself a newer PC and am confused about
    > whether or not my 80gig WD 7200rpm S-ATA drive needs its
    > own dedicated cooling. According to WD's site, not really.

    They're right.

    > According to sites devoted to gaming PCs, yes.

    They're wrong, and its completely trivial to prove by
    monitoring the internal drive temp using a SMART ute.

    > The case already has one intake fan, one
    > exhaust fan, and a twin-fan power supply.

    What matters much more is whether the drive will be
    rammed right up against another drive, particularly
    another 7200 rpm drive. That cuts the airflow over
    the drive even in a case with fans like that.

    > It IS an older case, though, so there is no provision
    > for mounting the drive directly in the airflow of the
    > intake fan (like I see on most other cases).

    A new case doesnt cost much.

    > I'd _like_ to stay away from yet more fans.

    Yeah, I prefer a very quiet system myself, so
    I dont even have that many fans in it myself.

    Just have a very quiet power supply fan and a
    very quiet Samsung drive, monitor the drive temp,
    see it stay well within specs, even in the hottest
    days in summer, and revel in the piece and quiet.

    > A lot of the "hard drive coolers" I see look
    > like they just churn a bunch of already hot air.

    Nope, they can be useful.

    > Others seem to be large heatsink/fan combinations that
    > pull in air from the front bezel, but again it's more noise.

    Yep.

    > Thoughts? Opinions? Will the drive live a shorter life
    > if I just mount it in the 3-1/2 bay below the floppy?

    Generally best to have a free slot between them.

    Thats normally fine with a case with that many fans.
  3. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

    Previously terrancedrith@yahoo.com wrote:
    > I'm finally building myself a newer PC and am confused about whether or
    > not my 80gig WD 7200rpm S-ATA drive needs its own dedicated cooling.
    > According to WD's site, not really. According to sites devoted to
    > gaming PCs, yes.

    Depends. If it has its own airstream from the outside, it will be
    o.k. in most cases. If not, it depends on usage pattern, mounting
    method, air-temperature, airflow in the case, etc.. You cannot cool a
    HDD too much. But you can cool it too little, severely shortening its
    life and many people do so without knowing or understanding the
    problem.

    > The case already has one intake fan, one exhaust fan, and a twin-fan
    > power supply. It IS an older case, though, so there is no provision for
    > mounting the drive directly in the airflow of the intake fan (like I
    > see on most other cases).

    The problem with that is that air from the outside is cool. Air alrerady
    inside the case may not be.

    > I'd _like_ to stay away from yet more fans. A lot of the "hard drive
    > coolers" I see look like they just churn a bunch of already hot air.
    > Others seem to be large heatsink/fan combinations that pull in air from
    > the front bezel, but again it's more noise.

    > Thoughts? Opinions? Will the drive live a shorter life if I just mount
    > it in the 3-1/2 bay below the floppy?

    Depends. Single drives firmly screwed into metal bays can be
    surprisingly well cooled. The only good way to tell is to
    measure:

    - Run the drive at your expected maximum load. Personally I found
    that modern drives don't take much more energy during seek than
    during mixed r/w operation, so you can just copy a large number
    of files around. Do this for at leat 10 minutes, better half an
    hour.
    - Measure temperature with a SMART utility (e.g. the smartmontools).
    - Measure your room temperature and add the difference between current
    temperature and maximum expected tempereature you want to run the
    computer in to the measured HDD temperature.

    If the result is over 55C you should definitely get better cooling.
    Mosts HDDs will start to have significantly shorter lifes when run
    over 55C...60C.

    If you find this procedure is too complicated, the just get reasonable
    airflow from the outside to your drive. Since most people are not
    willing or able to do reasonable measurements, the general recomendation
    is more cooling than strictly necessary.

    Arno
    --
    For email address: lastname AT tik DOT ee DOT ethz DOT ch
    GnuPG: ID:1E25338F FP:0C30 5782 9D93 F785 E79C 0296 797F 6B50 1E25 338F
    "The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws" - Tacitus
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