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Is It Too Windy In Here?

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March 27, 2011 6:53:32 AM

Hi all,

I am soon to purchase goods for a 2600K rig to be overclocked. Initially I was going to get the Corsair 650D case but it is too expensive. I have opted for the upcoming BitFenix Shinobi Window case which looks very tidy.

I have done a little overclocking in the past but have always run into problems with too much heat in the case. The problem other than cable management and a good CPU cooler has always been the crappy case and fans. The specs for the fan positions on the Shinobi are:

1. Two 120mm fans at the front. (1 included with case)
2. Two 140mm fans at the top.
3. One 120mm fan at the bottom.
4. One 120mm fan at the rear. (1 included with case)
5. One 120mm fan at the side for graphics.

Couple of questions I have are:

1. Should I fill every position available with case fans?
2. Is it likely that the few case fans that come shipped are lame?
3. What is the best brand of fans to buy?
4. I presume you need motherboard connectors for all the fans?
5. What's you view on CPU fans blowing air upwards not towards the rear?
6. Lastly, what is the desired fan RPM for a good combination of performance vs noise?

I can imagine this thing with all the fans installed being (no pun intended) like a bee-hive. And a cyclone!

Let me know what you think. Thanks heaps.

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March 27, 2011 7:17:44 AM

In my opinion

1.Atleast front,rear,side fans
2.They will do the job but usually you can buy better.
3.Akasa,Antec,Zalman
4.You can get ones that just connect to a power supply
5.Cases are designed to have air coming through the front and out the rear so id stick with that.
6.1200-1500RPM.

This is what id usually stick with and is just my opinion and preferred way :) 
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Best solution

March 27, 2011 10:03:39 AM

The fans that come with the case should suffice for a non-overclocked configuration. Airflow enters the bottom front of the case, and exits out the top and back. Everything you overclock will benefit from additional airflow, so add fans to enhance that flow.

The most important flow is across your heatsink for overclocking your CPU. If you can, point your heat sink towards the top of the case, and add a fan to exhaust out the top.

Video cards going to be overclocked? Add a side fan, pushing air into the case. Are you going to include your memory in your overclocking? Maybe add another top fan, although this is not really needed, because memory does not generate a lot of heat.

You can spend a lot of money on Scythe, Yate Loon or Noctua fans. I like to install a fan controller and connect lots of cheap 120 mm fans with high flow/high speed (70 to 80 CFM/1800 to 2000 RPM). When benchmarking turn them up full blast - sure they are noisy, but hey, its science, right? When finished, just throttle them down so they are barely audible, and you have an everyday quiet PC.

Couple of other notes:

- The only fan that needs to be connected to the motherboard is the heatsink fan.

- Even a $5 fan usually comes with both 3 pin (to connect to the motherboard) and 4 pin (fat molex) to connect directly to your power supply.

- Around 20 dBA is an acceptable noise level for a fan. If you just want to get quieter fans and fill in the extra slots, that would probably do for just a mild overclock. The larger the fan, the quieter it is per CFM so use 140 mm wherever you can for this option.


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a b K Overclocking
March 27, 2011 6:28:10 PM

rainwilds said:
Hi all,
.
.
.
Couple of questions I have are:

1. Should I fill every position available with case fans?
2. Is it likely that the few case fans that come shipped are lame?
3. What is the best brand of fans to buy?
4. I presume you need motherboard connectors for all the fans?
5. What's you view on CPU fans blowing air upwards not towards the rear?
6. Lastly, what is the desired fan RPM for a good combination of performance vs noise?
.
.
.

1. Create a balanced airflow (don't forget the PSU is an exhaust), and don't fight physics. Usually bottom-front to top-rear works well. Use filters on intake fans if possible.
2. Lame, no, but noisy, probably. That may or may not bother you. If it does, you can buy quieter fans, and/or silicon mounting pegs for the ones you have. These look a little like big nails, and isolate the fan from the case. I've found they work well.
3. I've had excellent results from Scythe fans. They sell models with different rated RPM. My overclocks are mild, so I value quiet; I usually buy the low RPM versions. If you will use a fan controller, get a higher RPM version, since you can always turn them down.
4. No. Most fans either use a molex-style connector, or come with an adapter for molex.
5. If you have a top exhaust, blowing up will work well, as hot air wants to rise anyway.
6. My own overclocks are mild, and I prefer quiet, so 800RPM fans work well for me. If you think you'll be going more extreme, you might want more. Unless you have a fan controller, I would not get anything over 1500 RPM unless you want people asking you if your PC is cleared for takeoff.
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March 27, 2011 6:28:36 PM

I would go with the stock config and add as necessary.

I am using an NZXT Phantom and I've added every fan I could to it. What I noticed was a marginal improvement in temps with all fans on their lowest setting. But it was not enough to make a difference in my overclocking, nor was it enough to justify the costs of the additional fans.

I think what eloric said was good: "Airflow enters the bottom front of the case, and exits out the top and back." My case came with a 200mm on top, a 120 in the upper rear, and 2x120 in the lower front side. Air comes in the lower front and exits the top rear. Pretty simple and effective.

something else I learned: Too much exhaust causes air to be pulled in from any available location. If these locations weren't designed to be an air intake you end up with lots of dust inside the case (assuming your intakes have filters).
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March 28, 2011 12:21:35 AM

Great comments everyone, thanks. The case side fan for graphics does not have a filter. Would you glue some mesh onto the fan for a filter?
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March 28, 2011 1:06:51 AM

If you have a flat exterior surface upon which to attach, consider this: Rosewill RFT-120 120mm Fan Filter. You can find them cheaper and without the $2 shipping if you have a local brick and mortar.
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a b K Overclocking
March 28, 2011 1:48:23 AM

I've got a couple of those. Although they do significantly decrease airflow, they don't cut it off, and they do collect a lot of dust that would otherwise end up in your case.
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March 28, 2011 2:08:00 AM

Onus said:
I've got a couple of those. Although they do significantly decrease airflow, they don't cut it off, and they do collect a lot of dust that would otherwise end up in your case.


I might just get a better fan with higher RPM for the side as a recent review of the case showed a huge decrease overall in temps when a side fan is installed.
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April 4, 2011 3:26:27 AM

Best answer selected by rainwilds.
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