I'm buying a case (CM Stacker STC-T01-UW) which is ventilated on the side, with a fan mount. I believe it's an 80mm fan that's required.
Am I correct to assume that the side fan is intended to blow cool air into the case along with the front fan, while the top and rear fans move hot air out, or should the side fan be used as an exhaust?
The Newegg site says there is no side mount for a 80mm Fan...but to answer your question. Ive heard alot of stories about side fans. People get different temps using push/pull/nofan. Sometimes there can be a negative effect of having a side fan.
I am currently using that very case in my primary comp. I ended up modding the case by putting in a window with a 120mm fan mount.
Ideally, the fan is positioned so that it blows air in the area of the graphics card/NB/CPU. The case has an 80mm fanmounted on the cases ceiling blowing out. All this coupled with the 120mm fan mounts in the rear and lower front (from the HDD cage gives you a possible ideal setup whereby your intake fans are positioned lower in the front (as well as the side panel) and your exhaust fans are higher to the rear and the ceiling of the case. This kind of setup promotes a good jetstream for air circulation (depending, of course, on any obstructions like addon cards, cables and wiring.
Incidently, the grill on the side does have an 80mm fan mount. I do not recall, however, if a fan came with it.
I'll tell you, for 80mm fans to come anywhere close to moving the volume of air that a 120mm fan can move it would have to turn at a tremendous speed and that would generate ALOT of noise. If you want quiet than don't use a fan louder than, say 20 - 25 db (anything louder would probably be noticeable).
I've had one for over a year now and love the space it provides.
Kind of wish I had held out for the 810 with the dual 120's in the rear, but this does a decent job.
One thing I plan on doing is to try and find the 300mm crossflow fan they say is an option when I do my next sytem upgrade.
(***quote from the cooler master site:
CM Stacker supports up to 8 fans
- Front – Full mesh screen provides superior air flow; support up to three 12 cm fans
- Top - Ultra silent 8cm Fan * 1 (exhaust)
- Side – Mesh screen on side panels provides the maximum air ventilation
- Rear – Ultra Silent 12cm Fan * 1 + 8 cm Fan * 2 (exhaust)
- Motherboard – 300mm cross flow fan; provides superior air flow for key PC components (CPU, VGA etc.)"***.
Will be building an NLE with a quad core (of undetermined manufacturer: waiting to see what's going to be available in a year with baited breath) ;-), and a couple of raid-0's and a 1-TB drive for archiving, and either an SLI/Crossfire setup (or maybe a Quadra), etc., etc.. While I'll probably be doing watercooling for the cpu (and GPU/s) I still want maximum airflow.
I've already de-screened the blowhole fan up top and mounted it externally by reversing the screen mounting frame (the screen just about totally kills the measley airflow of the 80mm fan). And I added two 80mm fans down on the bottom rear as exhaust.
And I'll be adding a full complement of the 4-in-3 modules with 120mm fans up front.
Anyways, love the case and it's huge insides, and like that it is BTX ready (just in case).
Definitely a high-quality case in fit & finish.