I've read multiple opinions on both whether to mount your PSU facing up or down in a bottom mount case as well as whether to have the Corsair H50 blowing in or out of the case. Most opinions varied on the specific type of case. So I figured I'd give you a rundown of my setup and hopefully you can help me decide what would be the best.
Case: AzzA Fantom 900 (similar to Antec 900)
- 230mm Top Exhaust
- 230mm Side Intake
- 140mm Front Intake
- will most likely add a bottom mounted 120mm fan as well.
CPU Cooler: Corsair H50
- Adding 2 Aerocool 120mm Aluminum Fans (Push/Pull)
- Exhaust/Intakes through back 120mm mount
GPU: 2 Sapphire HD4850s
RAM Cooler: OCZ Dual Fans
Motherboard: MSI 790fx-GD70
Now that you know what I'm working with here are my options:
Mount the fan facing up:
- Pro: Helps suck hot air out of case
- Con: Using hot air to cool PSU
- Con: May steal air from GPUs Mount the fan facing down:
- Pro: Using outside air to cool PSU
- Con: Not helping case airflow
- Con: Possibility of dust getting in my PSU
- Con: Heat may even rise from PSU into case???
Note: The big debate here has always been dependent on 2 things.
- Whether or not you have a side intake on your case. Some argue that if you have a side intake on your case it may not be as necessary to put the PSU facing down since it can get fresh cool air from the side fan instead of the bottom of the case.
- Whether or not you have good flow in your case. The argument here is that if you already have poor flow in your case you should use your PSU to help augment the front to back airflow in your case.
That all being said I do have a side fan and do have decent flow throw my case with or without the PSU helping. So what would you do? I'm leaning toward facing upwards right now due simply to the dust factor.
Mount the system so it pulls air in from the rear:
- Pro: Coolest possible air running through the radiator
- Con: Causes internal temps of case to be higher, causing other components to be hotter
- Con: Disrupts natural air flow of the case Mount the system so it exhausts air from rear:
- Pro: Helps normal front to back airflow of case
- Con: Using hotter case air to cool radiator
Note: There are 2 big factors when it comes to the debate here as well.
- The largest is whether or not you have a blow hole or not. Many claim that with a blow hole it isn't as bad to have the corsair vent back in to teh case since it just gets sucked right back out the blow hole. This is especially true if you attach some special baffle to help direct the air up toward the blowhole as well (which I would definitely do).
- Whether on not you have a side fan is the second factor. If you have a side fan potentially you won'r have as big of an advantage drawing air from the back of the case cause you would be supplying the cooling system with fresh air via the side fan.
Personally I'm still not really sure which setup I want to use for the H50 yet. This case tends to work well in both scenarios so it makes it a pretty hard decision. If I'm leaning toward anything it would be what the manufacturer does not suggest (exhausting from the rear) simply so I do not disrupt proper airflow. Pulling air from the back of my PC doesn't seem like the greatest idea anyway since that's where my PSU and GPUS are blowing all their excess heat. I can't imagine there would be that big of a difference in cooling when you have a side fan. What would you do? Any info or suggestions are much appreciated.
There is only one thing you still need to do. Test each possible configuration. Take measurements and record the results. Decide which configuration works for you. It may be time consuming but it is easy to do. It beats the heck out of going around in circles trying to decide which configuration is appropriate for your own system.