New Fan? Which Way Should It Blow?

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Thrall

Since Maximum PC made an article on where the heat of some computers come from would it be possible to show airflow or some computers and what often blocks the air?

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MantaBase

That's a bit much for the Mod_Blog if I understand what you are asking - but I'll look into it and pass the question along. It's a good question.

A while back the magazine did do some smoke tests on systems.

Some things that come to mind though are ribbon cables. They act as blocks and routers for airflow in a case. With S-ATA, you will see less of them. Also, IME, simply dust blocked vents are pretty common - and easy to fix. The ATX mainboard design itself blocks/inhibits good airflow. Not much you can do about that - BTX is better but rare. Fan placement can make a difference as well.

Good question....I'll see if I can come up with something.

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oldmanandthec

industrial cabinets, diesel engines, and the like use positive inflow pressure to keep the innards of the machinery clean as well as cooled. Filter the air on the way in, keep the input pressure higher than the atmosphere, and your box stays cleaner. If one fan doesn't change the air fast enough to keep the parts cool, add more. Nice, quiet fans.

oldmanandthec++

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Jeffery

Reverse ATX seems to make more sense to me, as it places some of the hottest components down near the bottom of the case. I would like to see what thermal difference, if any, such a chassis design has to offer.

My setup:

http://img257.imageshack.us/img257/2962/wkmeupgrade017ys9.jpg

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MantaBase

Actually, that looks like a BTX with just a glance. Much better for air flow. Do you know which board that is?

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Jeffery

Its a regular full size ATX board (BFG Nforce 4 Ultra).

I am running an Athlon X2 4200+ @ 2.6GHz. I can get it up to 2.8GHz stable, but the voltage requirements are absurd.
At 2.6GHz it idles around 38C. Not bad for a 939 system on air!

I mainly like the reverse ATX design because I can see the top side of my GPU.

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pcfxer

Okay but if you have four fans then there can be 2^4 combinations which means you have sixteen different combinations to test!

PS, sorry, I was trying to live up to the big words-users. Anyway, you're totally right, no single person has the exact same install. Cables never seem to naturally go the same way-manufacturing changes, materials. Everything can change.

EXPERIMENT! That's what this hobby is about isn't it?

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MantaBase

"Okay but if you have four fans then there can be 2^4 combinations which means you have sixteen different combinations to test!"

Yep - you are correct - and I glossed that point. A bit of "theory" here can help.

"EXPERIMENT! That's what this hobby is about isn't it?"

And right again. I love getting into theory arguments. It stimulates the mind and is fun. But at some point you need a test. With so much variation in cable management and general case design - there are too many variables to know for sure - even with good theory. I hail to negative pressure case setups. But, are they always right?

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