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Side fans on a case?

Last response: in Overclocking
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April 19, 2011 9:16:26 PM

hi everyone,
i will be purchasing either the haf 912 or the haf 922 this upcoming weekend and i wanted to know if its worth it to put in a side fan to intake air directly onto the motherboard and components?
I've researched it a bit and i always hear about different points of view about how a side fan will decrease temps quite a bit and i also hear the other end of the spectrum about how a side fan will only disrupt turbulence in the case and will just be a waste of money.

heres what ill be puttung in the case:
core i3 CPU with stock fans but will be purchasing this fan in a while (unless theres on u can recommend in that price point)
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...
4GB ddr3 ram
Sapphire hd 6870
1TB HDD, 7200rpm
550watt ultra PSU
DVD-ROM DRIVE
WI-FI pci-e card

so will a side fan help? or disturb the airflow from front to back and ruin the cooling process?

thanks in advance!

More about : side fans case

a b K Overclocking
April 19, 2011 9:25:08 PM

vibrantxxninjas said:
hi everyone,
i will be purchasing either the haf 912 or the haf 922 this upcoming weekend and i wanted to know if its worth it to put in a side fan to intake air directly onto the motherboard and components?
I've researched it a bit and i always hear about different points of view about how a side fan will decrease temps quite a bit and i also hear the other end of the spectrum about how a side fan will only disrupt turbulence in the case and will just be a waste of money.

heres what ill be puttung in the case:
core i3 CPU with stock fans but will be purchasing this fan in a while (unless theres on u can recommend in that price point)
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...
4GB ddr3 ram
Sapphire hd 6870
1TB HDD, 7200rpm
550watt ultra PSU
DVD-ROM DRIVE
WI-FI pci-e card

so will a side fan help? or disturb the airflow from front to back and ruin the cooling process?

thanks in advance!


Primary reason for a side fan is to supply fresh air to the video card, which is bound to be the hottest component in the PC. This usually works well, however I have had a build or two where the side fan actually raised CPU tmeps a degree or two.

I believe that was the case for a cheaper case. The Antec 900 has always benefitted from a side panel fan. Really though, the main benefit is for the video card. If your video card runs cool and has adequate cooling on its own, there certainly isn't any reason a side fan is required. Disruption of airflow from front to rear should be minimal in a well built case. The HAF cases have great air flow as their name suggests.
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April 19, 2011 9:41:43 PM

buzznut said:
Primary reason for a side fan is to supply fresh air to the video card, which is bound to be the hottest component in the PC. This usually works well, however I have had a build or two where the side fan actually raised CPU tmeps a degree or two.

I believe that was the case for a cheaper case. The Antec 900 has always benefitted from a side panel fan. Really though, the main benefit is for the video card. If your video card runs cool and has adequate cooling on its own, there certainly isn't any reason a side fan is required. Disruption of airflow from front to rear should be minimal in a well built case. The HAF cases have great air flow as their name suggests.


well ive heard that cases with really good airflow from front to back arent benefitting from a side fan and the fan actually ruins it if it has really good airflow but does help if the airflow from front to back already isnt so great but idk if this is true?

also i was looking at this case which has a massive 250mm fan on the side and a 120 at the front and another 120 at the back.. i will probably get that iinstead if it actually benefits from the huge side fan but i am not really sure
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/SearchTools/item...
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a c 163 K Overclocking
April 19, 2011 9:52:36 PM

I have enjoyed my builds with the HAF-922 but it's become a bit long in the tooth and in dire need of an upgrade. No front USB ports ????? sorry, doesn't cut it in today's market.

As for the side fan issue, I was testing how high I could OC the GFX cards a day or two ago. Antec DF-85 high air flow full tower case, all fans set to lowest speed position and essentially inaudible. System equipped with twin factory overclocked (900MHz) 560 Ti's with SLI NOT enabled ... again, goal was to test the individual cards with OCCT GPU test (went to 1000MHz) .... fan data was just a by product

Side Fan Off: Didn't test
Side Fan at (1200 rpm) setting: 80C
Side Fan at (1600 rpm) setting: Didn't test
Side Fan at (2000 rpm) setting: 75C

Essentially, w/ standard case air flow design, the area above the PSU and below or between the GFX cards is a bit of dead spot .... apparently, even adding just 800 rpm dropped GFX card temps by a full 5C .... I expect dropping that 1st 1200 rpm would have an eve greater effect.....and 75C at a 22% OC over the reference card settings under full load is pretty impressive.
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April 20, 2011 7:35:38 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
I have enjoyed my builds with the HAF-922 but it's become a bit long in the tooth and in dire need of an upgrade. No front USB ports ????? sorry, doesn't cut it in today's market.

As for the side fan issue, I was testing how high I could OC the GFX cards a day or two ago. Antec DF-85 high air flow full tower case, all fans set to lowest speed position and essentially inaudible. System equipped with twin factory overclocked (900MHz) 560 Ti's with SLI NOT enabled ... again, goal was to test the individual cards with OCCT GPU test (went to 1000MHz) .... fan data was just a by product

Side Fan Off: Didn't test
Side Fan at (1200 rpm) setting: 80C
Side Fan at (1600 rpm) setting: Didn't test
Side Fan at (2000 rpm) setting: 75C

Essentially, w/ standard case air flow design, the area above the PSU and below or between the GFX cards is a bit of dead spot .... apparently, even adding just 800 rpm dropped GFX card temps by a full 5C .... I expect dropping that 1st 1200 rpm would have an eve greater effect.....and 75C at a 22% OC over the reference card settings under full load is pretty impressive.


thanks for the reply,
wow thats a mighty case you got there!
also thanks for the actual temp difference you saw, looks like i will be getting a side fan for the case, as my primary concern is to overclock the my 6870 while keeping temps on it down because right now i have basically no room for overclocking on my crappy HTPC case with no airflow whatsoever and rats nest of cables. my temps on my GPU is hitting mid 85 - 90C in temps on stock settings depending on the game.
thanks everyone for your help.
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April 20, 2011 7:35:49 PM

Best answer selected by vibrantxxninjas.
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