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Fan Controller for Antec 900 case?

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October 15, 2007 3:23:00 PM

I have an Antec 900, I am not too keen on the 4 tiny fan switches that I have to open the case to adjust. Would it be possible to install a proper fan controller panel such as the scythe kama meter to control all the fan settings? I am a bit of a noob so if it is complicated then I will make do.
October 15, 2007 3:57:48 PM

Installing this fan controller shouldn't be a problem, but since it takes up a full bay, you should make sure that you have a free bay in which to put it.
a c 83 ) Power supply
October 15, 2007 4:57:32 PM

You can use a fan controller on the 900 with some limitations

1. You need some kind of 3 pin to molex Adapter(a backwards one since you are not running a fan on a molex, you are telling a 3 pin fan controller to be a molex) since the Tricool fans only us the 4 pin molix.

2. Getting a fan controller with RPM monitoring is unless with the fans in the 900 as they do not send any kind of speed signal.

So? What to do?

First off get a controller with a voltage variance of 5 to 12 volts(this is to stop you from shutting the fans off)

Next if you can not get a reversed 3 to 4 pin adapter you can just use 3 pin extension cable cut off the 3 pin male end

the one on the right is the make end(for obvious reasons:)  )

Now cut off the molex from the fan and you will have 2 wires(Red = Positive , Black = Negative)

Now skin the wires and connect(twist, and solder if you can, if not just be careful not to pull then apart in the future) red to red and black to black....tape(electrical tape) up the yellow wire as there is nowhere to connect it to, but you do not want it loose. carefully tape up your wires in a way so they do not touch. first electrical tape the red one, then around the black one then tape them together(make sure they are well covered before this.). Last tape the yellow wire to them to keep it out of the way....

Now you can plug the tricool fan into any fan controller(3 pin) and vary it's speed.

Note:

Some fan controllers(zalman MFC 1) will not light up without a speed signal. It will control the speed but you will get no pretty light.

There may be a fan controller on the market that lets you use 4 pin molex right away. This would be a good option as it avoids any need to mod the fans.

due to the 900s open design i have found there to be little temp difference from low to med and almost none med to high.....so maybe you could just try low and see how it fairs....

EDIT
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Some Vantec fan controllers come with a reverse adapter....may be worth a look
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October 15, 2007 4:58:24 PM

Thanks, Apart from the molex for power, what does the fan controller connect up to?
a c 83 ) Power supply
October 15, 2007 5:06:13 PM

it connects to the molex for power as you said....then it has multiple plugs to connect fans. between this they have a way to lower the voltage(resistors of some kind :)  )


they all look similar to this...

from left to right

We are going to ignore the green terminals as they are not on all controllers.

First Molex. This is where the power comes in
Next you see 4 plugs....those are for the fans
Under each part of the speed control electronics..they all look slightly different...
October 16, 2007 12:44:41 PM

Thanks Nukemaster! I've noticed that there is a warning in the Antec 900 manual which says that connecting up the "tricool" fans on a low/medium setting to a fan controller may result in the fans not starting because the lowered voltage from the fan controller may reduce the voltage below 5V which is the minimum required to start the fans.

I am not sure about investing in a fan controller unless I am sure that it has the ability to use low/medium settings as I doubt I will ever use the high setting.
a c 83 ) Power supply
October 16, 2007 4:26:23 PM

they say this because the tri cool switch lowers the voltage. i knew i forgot to mention something

Fan controllers do work(i use the antec psu built in one on tri cools without an issue..)

When you plug in the fan it gets 12 volts to run.... the tricool fan has a switch to lower this voltage. high lets all 12 volts through med lets about 7 through and low lets about 5 through(med-low voltages are a guess)

Either way when you use a fan controller that can vary the voltage from 12 down to 5 with a try cool fan you have to set it to high so that all the voltage from the controller goes to the fan.

If you are say on low (low on tricool - 5 volts) and you feed the fan 5 volts from the controller. the voltage will be somewhere in the 2 volt range and not run(there is a math formula for this but i do not know it off the top of my head...)

Either way this causes the fan to get lower voltage then it was designed to run on....setting the switch to hi speed when running a controller(make sure it goes 5-12) will stop this from happening...
October 17, 2007 1:03:30 PM

Thanks again Nukemaster, I won't ever need to use the high speed fan setting so I it doesn't seem like I would gain much from a fan controller

Cheers Nuke!
a c 83 ) Power supply
October 17, 2007 5:10:49 PM

the only thing you do gain is the ability to control the fans from outside the case, and better control(not 3 speeds but all speeds in between. nice if you want to tweak).

I stopped using my controller when i got my 900 because with all the fans on low(med for the top 200mm one) it performs good enough for me and is reasonably quiet.
December 20, 2009 1:28:13 AM

I dont mean to bump a really old post, but I also have a antec 900 case and am looking at having a fan controller so I can more easily adjust the fan speed. Does anyone have any recomendations? I've been reading a lot of mixed reviews about various controllers, and many dont seem to have the 5v-12v variance described in the thread. Many complaints have been about poor manufacturing quality as well.

So. Any suggestions for me ? :) 
!