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Fan controller or no.

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April 18, 2010 5:10:04 PM

Hey guys I have a question for you...

I am in my newest build and I am really debating about using a fan controller. The build I am doing is a
-CoolerMaster HAF 932- which has 4 fans, side, front, top and rear
-Asus P6X58D Premium- which has the CPU Fan, 1 x 4 pin and 2 x 3 pin connectors.
Add to this
-Corsair Hydro H50- uses the CPU Fan plug and a 3 pin fan plug
-Corsair Airflow- uses the 2nd 3 pin fan plug
So I have 1 mobo fan pin unused.

I am planning on getting a gtx 480 which runs rather hot.

So it is either use a fan controller or hook up all of the case fans to the molex adapters, which I hate using, and have the case fans running at full speed. Now I have already fired this thing up and the noise is not bad so it is not a noise factor that has me concerned as much as monitoring the internal heat and airflow.

I have looked at a lot of reviews on fan controllers but am undecided. If I get one I would like something that has the following
-RPM and Heat display
-4 to 6 fan channels
- direct power to the controller from PSU (a number I looked at used batteries which seemed to die rather fast)

So any suggestions? Or should I just go ahead and keep the case fans connected to the molex.

More about : fan controller

a c 93 ) Power supply
April 19, 2010 1:30:01 AM

I have a HAF 932 and I installed a Scythe fans controller. In retrospect, I think that just connecting these fans to the mobo pins would have worked fine. However, the fans controller impresses people who have no idea about computers! Its a small cost to make the front of the computer look impressive!
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April 19, 2010 10:50:17 AM

Ubrales said:
I have a HAF 932 and I installed a Scythe fans controller. In retrospect, I think that just connecting these fans to the mobo pins would have worked fine. However, the fans controller impresses people who have no idea about computers! Its a small cost to make the front of the computer look impressive!



Yeah I looked at the Scythe controllers and read some bad reviews about them. My problem is that most of my mobo pins are already taken up by the H50 Hydro (which replaces the rear case fan) and the DIMM fan I have mounted over my RAM. I pretty much only have one 4 pin mobo fan contoller left and 3 case fans to work with.

I was looking at the Lamptron Fan-atic F5 mainly because it has a high watts per channel, I think its 30W per channel iirc. But this item is new, I cant find it in stock or even listed at most sites I normally use, and there are not many reviews out on it yet.
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a c 93 ) Power supply
April 19, 2010 1:34:05 PM

Another alternative to consider, and I have done this, is to connect some of the fans directly to the PSU - you will need a Molex adapter to do this, and a Y-splitter will help.

In fact, I added a 120mm fan to the bottom of the HAF 932 case and it is connected directly to the PSU power cables. I have fan pins on my mobo that I have not used yet.

Good luck
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a b ) Power supply
April 19, 2010 3:36:15 PM

The advantage of using a fan port on a mobo is that it may (some don't!) provide "automatic" control of the fan speed. More specifically, it may provide a feedback control loop in which the fan speed is varied according to temperature actually measured by a sensor placed somewhere. The two most common versions of this are the CPU cooling and Case cooling systems. CPU cooling is driven by a sensor built into the CPU itself and fed out through one of its pins for the mobo BIOS to monitor. Case cooling fans often are driven by a temperature sensor built into the mobo and monitored by the BIOS. There MAY also be fan speed control systems on some mobo pinouts that are simply based on a fan speed setting manually entered in a BIOS screen. However, if a particular fan does NOT need variable speed, your best power source for it is one of the 4-pin Molex power output connectors from the PSU itself, often using some adapter to connect its 12-volt (Yellow +, Black ground) source to the connector your fan has. Other adapters can proliferate one Molex into several so that many fans that use modest power can be connected to one Molex output from the PSU.

In OP's case, the Corsair Hydroflow H50 instructions specifically say that, of the two power supplies it needs, the one for the pump unit (mounted on the CPU) should ALWAYS have full 12 VDC supplied - no speed reduction needed; the larger fan mounted on the radiator should be connected to the mobo's CPU_FAN connector so its speed IS controlled in BIOS by the feedback loop driven by the actual CPU temperature. Now, the Corsair Airflow unit is a cooling fan system for the RAM modules. I have not delved really deeply, but I know of no temperature sensor for RAM that a BIOS uses to drive a fan speed control for those modules. So I'm presuming that this system, also, should always have full +12 VDC supplied. That makes two fans you should connect via adapters to one Molex 4-pin PSU output, and NOT to any mobo fan port. The CPU_FAN port will be used for the CPU cooling system's radiator fan. That leaves all three other mobo fan pinouts free for fans whose speed should actually be dependent on the temperature measured inside the case, such as front, top and side fans.
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