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Case Airflow

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August 4, 2006 6:01:02 PM

I recently bought a S939 4200+ and installed a new PSU (Ultra X-connect 550W). After I installed, I saw my CPU temp stay at an awesome 29-32 degrees. The following few days I saw the temp increase in idle temps all the way up to 42. I took off the side of my case and it dropped back down to 29C. I need advice on my case's airflow. I've included a diagram for reference.

<img src="http://homepage.mac.com/chadhorne/Images/CaseFlow.jpg" />

By the way, both front and rear case fans are 120mm stealths, and the CPU HSF is a 120mm Zalman 7700Cu.

More about : case airflow

August 4, 2006 7:48:51 PM

Quote:
I'd also recommend a diffrent HSF. anything with Heatpipes.


I suggest the Zalman CNPS9500, or Scythe SCNJ-1000 Ninja heatsink and fan. I find them to make air flow very streamlined by making air flow in, through the heatsink, and either out the back, or through your psu (if it is one of those 120mm ones that blow in). Other heatsinks blow air into your processor, which can make air go in different directions, and potentially blowing used air from your CPU back into it again.
I personally would use the Zalman beacuse it looks easier to clean, and looks nicer too :) 
August 4, 2006 8:08:56 PM

Quote:
I'd also recommend a diffrent HSF. anything with Heatpipes.


the 7700 is a very good cooler. he doesnt need a new one.

what case do u have?
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August 4, 2006 8:27:39 PM

TOSS EVERYTHING AND GO WATERCOOLING!!!!

Which is probably not an option... Sorry, I'm having a hard time deciphering your drawing... I assume air is going through the front, taking the air from the cpu, and then exhausting it through the back. I'm not exactly sure what the arrow from the psu is doing... but okay... hmmm...

I don't believe 2 fans, even 120mm are enough to cool air cool a case without added ventilation. You have any experience with a dremel tool? Would you be willing to cut some holes and add your own fans? At least one more exhaust up top, maybe a side intake for GPU... shrug... Not much else you can do when you only have that little amount of fans. You could go the brute force method and get some 104CFM Panaflo's... but thats just brute force...

The Zalman is a good cooler, but there are better. If you want, you could spend 30 bucks and get the Arctic Freezer 64 Pro. That should help a bit also.
August 4, 2006 9:40:04 PM

I have an Antec Sonata (first version). Also, the PSU I bought got great reviews. It does appear to blow air down from the PSU into the rest of my system. Is it defective?

Also, I've never heard that HSF are supposed to blow air down onto the CPU. I always thought their job was to lift hot air away from the conductive material (in my case, copper).

I would be willing to dremel saw the side of my case. It's made out of 1mm thick steel, how hard would it be to cut?
August 4, 2006 10:02:30 PM

From that image it appears as though you have 2 problems.

First the PSU is drawing air into the case. PSU's generate a LOT of heat and you don't want that blowing into your case. That by itself would be raising temps a whole heck of a lot.

Second the CPU HSF is blowing air away from your HS. It should be blowing air onto the HS. Unless you have modded something really strange with a duct or two.
August 4, 2006 10:49:35 PM

I'm with Doughboy...watercooling.. that being said...

It's easy to get a good airstream going. Draw air in from the lower front and the side, expel air in the back and at the top. If you could add a blowhole at the top that would be surpreme.

I'm confused here.. your PSU draws air in? All the PSUs I've ever owned draw air from the case and expell it out the back. That's whacked.

You need that side fan to be pulling air in. It will blow good air onto the CPU and GPU areas. You'd be set if you could add a fan expelling air at the top.
August 4, 2006 11:09:31 PM

If your cpu is the x2 4200 + then its tdp is 89w which is not much to shift i run a system of 2 130mm volt moded fans (<1000 rpm) positioned directly over the MB , one of them on the cpu heatsync and that cools my system with 75w+ athlon xp (its OCed so i dont know the true figure), 2 tv cards, passive gpu cooler, passive NB, and a wifi and sound card for what little they add and the cpu will sit at about 35 deg, pluss i have a fanless PSU so theres no air being vented from that.

wrt. your fan on the heatsync, fans and pumps tend to work best if the restriction to flow is 'downnstream' of the pump so its best for flow to blow air over the fins, and it appears you PSU might be defective as it is crazy to dump all that heat into the cpu case. things i can recomend are:

good thermal paste - arctic silver

Blow hole in the side of your case

flipping the fan on your cpu heatsync and ducting its input so it gets cool air from the outside not preheated air from the rest of the case. - you could try useing a section of 3ltr pop / cider bottle as that should be about the right size, yust make shure you dont seel it off at the bottom againsty the mobo.

also and i know this is gona sound dumb but try and keep it in the coolest part of the room, no radiators
August 5, 2006 12:34:55 AM

The Sonata should give good temps..


what PSU do u have. thats prolly the cause of the high temps
August 5, 2006 1:40:44 AM

Herr_Fritz is right; Your PSU has to blow air out from the box not in.

The front and rare fans are fine but I'm not sure if that middle fan one is your CPU fan or side case fan like mine. And it should be blowing air from the outside-in to your CPU, even if you have CPU fan already. it helps brings clod air from the outside case into your CPU.

But I think your Zalman 7700Cu blow air to your CPU not away from it.
August 5, 2006 2:54:57 PM

Dont open it. Thats just a bad idea.

If it isnt exausting air. Remove the PSU. Put it literally on top of ur case and run the cables inside from the PSU hole. This will keep ur system even cooler.
August 5, 2006 5:08:26 PM

This is my PSU: http://www.pro-clockers.com/article.php?id=99

And I'm sorry, I was wrong. The PSU is exhausting the air, not taking it in (the thread trick worked).

The arrow in the middle of the picture is what the Zalman HSF is doing (it feels like it's blowing air away from the CPU heatsink). But apparently I'm retarded when it comes to detecting airflow!

It sounds like cutting an exhaust hole on the top is my best option. Do dremmels cut easily through 1mm steel? Also, the sides of my case have NO ventilation or fans. Should I look into cutting into one of them as well?
August 5, 2006 6:22:54 PM

hmm. good idea, I'll look into it. In the meantime I'm gonna find myself a dremmel! Thanks everyone for your advice!
August 5, 2006 6:57:34 PM

Quote:
I have an Antec Sonata (first version). Also, the PSU I bought got great reviews. It does appear to blow air down from the PSU into the rest of my system. Is it defective?

Also, I've never heard that HSF are supposed to blow air down onto the CPU. I always thought their job was to lift hot air away from the conductive material (in my case, copper).

I would be willing to dremel saw the side of my case. It's made out of 1mm thick steel, how hard would it be to cut?


With heatsinks and fans, fans are supposed to blow air across the heatsink.

The heatsink acts to dissipate heat off the CPU then the air blowing across it carries it away. I guess a way to understand it a little more is wave your hand around and feel the air passing by it. Then, dip your hand in water and while wet wave your hand around and feel the difference... I'm sure there isn't truly accurate but you get the idea
August 5, 2006 8:07:22 PM

WEll the first thing to consider about air movement in a case is that there should be more air leaving the case then entering it. Yes, this causes the idea of a vacuum, but there are so many holes that it ballances out. But in the case where there is more entering, the velocity of the air is slower then when more is exausting, so make sure that more air leaves your case then enteres it.
!