I am redesigning my antec 1200 fan layout and direction and wanted to know what is my best bet.
My current setup consists of 7 3000RPM 133CFM Scythe Ultra Kaze 120mm x 38mm fans 3 in front bays blowing over hard drives into main compartment of case. I then have two blowing in from the side panel onto the motherboard, I have 2 rears blowing in as well only using the top 200mm fan as exhaust. I also have a 60mm fan for my north bridge and 2 more 60mm that are on a zalman ram cooler as well as the 110mm zalman 9700 cpu cooler aiming up at top fan.
My main heat source is my CPU and ati 5970. I do plan on OCing my q9400 back to 3.6-3.8ghz at stock 2.66 to 3.4 my idles where high 20'sC low 30's full load never passed 45C with stock fans and zalman cooler So I'm assuming with these monster fans it should be lower
I'm waiting on my replacement motherboard for a few more days and wanted to get it right before hand but will be changing as needed when installed and up and running.
I was talking with a computer tech at Fry's about directionality of airflow and he through me a curve ball by suggesting using all but the top fan as intake. He said to try it like that and then with the rear and top being exhaust since essentially you want only one place for intake and one for exhaust to keep proper airflow instead of pushing ind pulling from a few spots. I wanted to get some other people perspectives and thoughts before I make a final position on airflow layout. I do plan on adding quite a few cold cathode 12" lights as well as 2 12" meteor LED lights if that make a difference in this question.
My motherboard is a Gigabyte EP-45 UD3P 775 chipset
8gigs ddr2 1066 gskill
Antec CP-850watt PSU
6 SATA II HDDs 7TB
1 30GB OCZ Vertex SSD
2X 27" ASUS HD monitors
I disagree with your air flow setup as you are not creating a balance air flow (to much coming in and not enough out so the hot air will be blowing around in the case). My recommendation is keep the back two fans and the top fans as exhaust and have the side case fans and three front fans blowing into the case. This would be my recommendation for better air flow. You want that balance of postive to negative air flow.
The Antec designers make the airflow the way they did for a reason. I suspect they know a little more about airflow than any salesman working in a computer store.
I have Antec 900 cases and I had 4 decisions to make about airflow:
1. PSU fan facing upward or downward? Upward - exhaust air is about 3 C warmer than ambient.
2. Push-pull fans on a TRUE HSF? Two fans did not improve cooling, removed one.
3. HSF oriented horizontally or vertically? Didn't do any testing (that's a later project). Oriented the HSF vertically. Although you can force air in any direction with fans and ducts, warm air really wants rise. Why fight physics.
4. Fan speed? I set them on Low. Running them faster did not improve cooling.
I recommend that you put the fans back to their stock orientation.
I have blown smoke into my 1200 case and decided to turn down the two back fans.
The back fans pulled the air away from the CPU fan (at bottom of cpu, pointed up)
When turned down I got more flow thru the cpu fins & more heat from the top.
CPU temp dropped 1 to 2 deg. C.
go there to see my setup in HD as well as specs and my OC stats. I currently have my i7-930 OC'd at 4Ghz with lots of room to keep going up. I plan on going all water cooling and removing my mobo and hardware from my case and mounting it on my desk since my mobo has a power button and reset switch built in.
Hardware post: http://www.therandomtechblog.com/?p=299
* Intel i7-930
* Asus P6X58D Premium
* Corsair H50 Water Cooler (using push/pull setup)
* Kingston Tri-Channel 1600 6GB
* Cold Cathodes and LED meteor lights