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 Post subject: Automatic fan control
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 11:46 am 
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I'm toying with an idea and want to see how feasible it may be.

I have a file / video (tversity) / game server for an in-home network running Win 7 x64

The rig setup is:

Gigabyte GA-X48-DS5
Q6600 @ 9 x 333 (3.0 ghz)
Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro Rev 2
2 x 2GB OCZ XTC Platinum (OCZ2P10662G)
1 x Samsung HD501LJ 500gb SATA II (OS Drive)
3 x Segate ST31999349AS 1000 gb SATA II
2 x Segate ST3500641AS 500 gb SATA II
Antec 900 case
Rosewill Xtreme RX850-D-B 850w

As you may know, the fans included with the Antec 900 have switches that can change the fan speed, but manually only.

I've noticed that, mainly when transcoding video to watch on an XBOX 360, the CPU fan ramps up. If I don't adjust the other fans, the CPU fan ramps up to 100%.
(I have recently disassembled the rig, cleaned it out, installed filters, cleaned and re-applied thermal paste and reseated the sink.)

If I turn up the speed from L - M or from M - H on the case fans, the CPU fan settles back down.

What I'd like to do would be link all the case fans to the CPU fan, so when that ramps up, they all do.

I was thinking of connecting them all to the CPU header, but I'm worried about the draw that adding another 2 x 120 mm + 1 x 250 mm fans would create.

I'm not sure what the capacity of one fan header is.

The second part of this, is how to hook up the fans. I'd assume that to do this without buying new fans, i'd need to put them all on the high setting and the header will do the rest. The CPU fan has 3 leads, where these only have two. The third lead is for speed measurement, so i'd only need to hook up the pos/neg, correct?

What are your thoughts and suggestions?


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 12:07 pm 
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Get a MUCH better CPU cooler for about $40 shipped. It's quieter, not to mention fantastically better than the ACF7.

Yes, I have both. :wink:

You'll likely burn up a fan header at best. Short the mobo at worst.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 12:28 pm 
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That's what I figured/feared.

I'll look into that cooler, might be a possibility and good solution.

Know of any devices that might do what i'm looking for? ie plug multiple fans into the unit, which draw off the PS directly, and the header regulates the fans but doesn't need to supply power?


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 12:38 pm 
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That's something I'd need to look into. I've never had that requirement. I simply used a fan controller. I've put the Antec 900 fans on high in my son's computer, then used the fan controller to set them to a level of noise I could live with that's below maximum.

But that fan controller is more than a new heatsink. And the first thing I would do in your position is put the fans all on medium with a better heatsink like the one I linked to above. That is what I discovered with my son's computer. I still use the fan controller, but I replaced the CNPS9500 that was on it with the Hyper 212+. Now the CPU stays cool enough. I leave the fan on the Hyper 212+ on high all the time, it isn't even controlled by temps now, and I can't hear it.

I've also got a Hyper 212+ on another Q6600 machine. I've left that one on temp controlled in the BIOS and even when it kicks up, you can't hear it over the other fans in that case and the GPU fan.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 12:59 pm 
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I'll def give the Hyper 212 a look, and as i'm going to pick up some stuff from NE soon anyhow, I'll most likely include it.

I was looking for a more 'automatic' solution.

Actually, I've been thinking about designing that unit, seeing as I'm an EE, but I haven't used any of that in over 10 years.

The whole idea of this 'quieting' project is due to the wife complaining about the noise the computer makes when she's in MY office. I tried reminding her that she invaded MY office, but that didn't go over well....


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 6:22 pm 
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Based on what you mention I am not so sure I would be too quick to replace the HSF for the CPU.

Quote:
I've noticed that, mainly when transcoding video to watch on an XBOX 360, the CPU fan ramps up. If I don't adjust the other fans, the CPU fan ramps up to 100%.
(I have recently disassembled the rig, cleaned it out, installed filters, cleaned and re-applied thermal paste and reseated the sink.)


That tells me when doing CPU intensive task the CPU gets hot which is to be expected. Then the CPU fan speed ramps up which says that is doing as expected. The problem I see is that the heat being removed from the CPU isn't able to exit the case as easily as it should. When you manually ramp up those case fans and get the heat out of the box then things work as they should.

Fans are relatively inexpensive as would be a front panel fan speed controller kit. I might think about replacing those 3 speed internal fans. Personally I have several around here I yanked out of systems.

As to using the CPU header to control other fans? That can be done but you would have to add a small home brew circuit. A 3 wire (or 4 wire for that matter) fan header uses PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) to control the CPU fan speed. You could use that PWM signal to drive maybe a MOSFET and let the added MOSFET hack the load of additional fans. Power the circuit with 12 Volts off the PSU that isn't used. When the CPU ramps up in speed all the fans slaved to it would ramp up in speed.

Overall I think the problem is when the CPU HSF does its job the hot air isn't being moved out of the box enough. Hot air in the box would also contribute to the CPU heating up quicker.

Just My Take
Ron


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:14 am 
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The CPU header is controlling only the CPU cooler atm.

Your suggestion of the home brew circuit is the path I'm looking to take. It's been a long time since my circuit design classes so it's going to take some research and patience. I'll have to dig up Electronics Workbench and play around a little!

I could crank up the fans manually, but if you've seen the Antec 900, the two front fan switches aren't easily relocatable to an easily accessible location, and would most likely require I leave the right side off. The top and rear fan i could snake out the back, but that looks kinda hacked imho. I'd rather do something a little more self contained.

I wonder if i could use a 4 port fan controller and use the homebrew circuit to bypass the potentiometers on it and let the pwm signal drive that....


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 1:19 pm 
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sgaggerj wrote:
The CPU header is controlling only the CPU cooler atm.

Your suggestion of the home brew circuit is the path I'm looking to take. It's been a long time since my circuit design classes so it's going to take some research and patience. I'll have to dig up Electronics Workbench and play around a little!

I could crank up the fans manually, but if you've seen the Antec 900, the two front fan switches aren't easily relocatable to an easily accessible location, and would most likely require I leave the right side off. The top and rear fan i could snake out the back, but that looks kinda hacked imho. I'd rather do something a little more self contained.

I wonder if i could use a 4 port fan controller and use the homebrew circuit to bypass the potentiometers on it and let the pwm signal drive that....


If you want the home brew route you want a circuit like this one:

Image

The parts are easily had at Radio Shack and they also sell small PC boards that everything can easily fit on. The IRF510 is a TO220 case and capable of driving 4 Amps which is about 16 fans so I think you would be good on that note. :lol:

All you want to do is tap into the Red (+) and Black (-) fan leads going to the CPU HSF. Transistor Q2 may not even be needed but the MOSFET looked lonely so I gave it a driver. I have not tried the circuit or even simulated it but it should work just fine as drawn.

All fans on the circuit will run at the same speed depending on the PWM signal. Any questions just ask...

<EDIT> If you wanted to you could make a small 555 timer circuit and drive the fan speed control circuit using that. Don't connect to the HSF fan doing that and let the 555 control the speed of a bunch of case fans. The possibilities of fan speed control are really endless </EDIT>

Ron


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 2:18 pm 
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He shouldn't have any problem with heat escaping on an antec 900 new heatsink would be the way to go.


edit:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product

The fan on this is quieter, similar design and performance to the hyper 212+


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 2:46 pm 
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Danthrax66 wrote:
He shouldn't have any problem with heat escaping on an antec 900 new heatsink would be the way to go.


edit:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product

The fan on this is quieter, similar design and performance to the hyper 212+


OK, so out of curiosity what will a new HSF get him? My original thoughts were what difference does the HSF make in a case that is not moving ambient hot case air out of the case?

When the original posters cpu gets busy it warms up as would be expected. The system senses the warming of the CPU and in turn ramps up the HSF fan speed just like it should. When the original poster increases the speed of his case fans the HSF fan speed settles down. Now I assume that is because the case ambient dropped and the HSF has cooler air to cool the processor or more like remove heat from the processor.

My take is the best HSF out there is only as good as the ambient air surrounding it? So exactly what would a new HSF do for things?

Ron


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 4:23 pm 
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Reloadron wrote:
Danthrax66 wrote:
He shouldn't have any problem with heat escaping on an antec 900 new heatsink would be the way to go.


edit:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product

The fan on this is quieter, similar design and performance to the hyper 212+


OK, so out of curiosity what will a new HSF get him? My original thoughts were what difference does the HSF make in a case that is not moving ambient hot case air out of the case?

When the original posters cpu gets busy it warms up as would be expected. The system senses the warming of the CPU and in turn ramps up the HSF fan speed just like it should. When the original poster increases the speed of his case fans the HSF fan speed settles down. Now I assume that is because the case ambient dropped and the HSF has cooler air to cool the processor or more like remove heat from the processor.

My take is the best HSF out there is only as good as the ambient air surrounding it? So exactly what would a new HSF do for things?

Ron


Because he has the same case as me the Antec 900 has no problem getting air out of the case it has a rear 120mm exhuast and a top 200mm exhaust plus there is a side hole for a fan that air can escape through so yeah I'm saying he needs a new heatsink because it isn't an airflow problem it's a fan is too damn loud problem.

Model
Brand ARCTIC COOLING
Model Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2
Spec
Type Fan & Heatsinks
Fan Size 92mm
Compatibility Intel CPU LGA 1366 / LGA 1156 / LGA 775

AMD CPU Socket AM3 / AM2+ / AM2 / 939 / 754

(Up to 130 Watts)
Bearing Type Fluid Dynamic
RPM 900 - 2500 RPM(PWM)
Air Flow 45 CFM
Noise Level 0.8 Sone
Power Connector 4 Pin
Color Black

The arctic cooling hs he has now is a 92mm fan that goes up to 2500rpm which would make it insanely loud and only puts out 45 cfm getting a bigger heatsink with a quiet fan would fix this problem. You need to look at all the variables not just the one that stands out the most.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 5:27 pm 
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Danthrax66 wrote:
Reloadron wrote:
Danthrax66 wrote:
He shouldn't have any problem with heat escaping on an antec 900 new heatsink would be the way to go.


edit:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product

The fan on this is quieter, similar design and performance to the hyper 212+


OK, so out of curiosity what will a new HSF get him? My original thoughts were what difference does the HSF make in a case that is not moving ambient hot case air out of the case?

When the original posters cpu gets busy it warms up as would be expected. The system senses the warming of the CPU and in turn ramps up the HSF fan speed just like it should. When the original poster increases the speed of his case fans the HSF fan speed settles down. Now I assume that is because the case ambient dropped and the HSF has cooler air to cool the processor or more like remove heat from the processor.

My take is the best HSF out there is only as good as the ambient air surrounding it? So exactly what would a new HSF do for things?

Ron


Because he has the same case as me the Antec 900 has no problem getting air out of the case it has a rear 120mm exhuast and a top 200mm exhaust plus there is a side hole for a fan that air can escape through so yeah I'm saying he needs a new heatsink because it isn't an airflow problem it's a fan is too damn loud problem.

Model
Brand ARCTIC COOLING
Model Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2
Spec
Type Fan & Heatsinks
Fan Size 92mm
Compatibility Intel CPU LGA 1366 / LGA 1156 / LGA 775

AMD CPU Socket AM3 / AM2+ / AM2 / 939 / 754

(Up to 130 Watts)
Bearing Type Fluid Dynamic
RPM 900 - 2500 RPM(PWM)
Air Flow 45 CFM
Noise Level 0.8 Sone
Power Connector 4 Pin
Color Black

The arctic cooling hs he has now is a 92mm fan that goes up to 2500rpm which would make it insanely loud and only puts out 45 cfm getting a bigger heatsink with a quiet fan would fix this problem. You need to look at all the variables not just the one that stands out the most.


OK, personally I am not fond of a HSF that specs noise as the Sone unit of measure. Yes, obviously a 120mm fan should move more air with less noise if designed right at a given RPM.

Therefore if the original poster wants to change the HSF then go for it as it sure as hell won't hurt and will make for quieter.

My main focus was on fan speed control for case fans and what I posted should work fine and the original poster did mention home brew solutions.

Ron


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 6:08 pm 
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All the fans in the antec have a control for speed they are switches you need to adjust but he won't need to do that if he gets a different HS.

And the heatsink I suggested isn't in units of sone.

Model
Brand XIGMATEK
Model HDT-RS1283
Spec
Type Fan & Heatsinks
Fan Size 120mm
Compatibility All Intel Socket 775 CPU
Core 2 Extreme / Quad / Duo
Pentium Extreme Edition / D
Celeron D
All AMD Socket AM2 / 754 / 939 / 940 CPU
Athlon 64 / FX / X2 / Opteron / Sempron
RPM 800 - 1500 RPM
Air Flow 61.375 CFM
Noise Level 20.6 dBA
Color Red
LED 4 white LED
Heatsink Material Aluminum Alloy
Physical Spec
Fan Dimensions 120 x 120 x 25mm
Heatsink Dimensions 120 x 50 x 159mm
Weight 600g (w/fan)


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 6:19 pm 
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Ron, I really love your simple to build circuit! I've saved this information for use in cases that don't have the natural, great airflow of the Antec 900.

The reason I was going first off with a new HSF is because I've got the ACF7Pro on one computer and the Hyper212+ on three. The AC7Pro works decent enough, it's surely better than the stock fan, but it just can't keep the CPU as cool as the 212+ does. My train of thought being, if the CPU is running cooler in the first place, the outer fans won't even need to spool up.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 6:26 pm 
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I know that. The HSF he has are in units of Sone. Thus the refrence to 0.8 Sone which depending on how you read (calculate) it is between 27 and 32 dB. That when moving 45 CFM of air. Your suggested HSF with a 120mm fan @ 1500 RPM produces 20.6 Dba moving 61 CFM of air. Sone is based purely on a 1 Kc frequency and in my opinion is a suck unit of measure.Just my take.

The fans in that case in my opinion and just my opinion suck as there is no easy way to control fan speed with those useless switches. I love the cases but again those switches for speed suck unless you can find a way to extend the switches from the case. What good is a fan speed switch embedded in a closed case. They are about as useless as tits on a bull. That is likely why I have a pile of them. Again, strictly my opinion but what good is a variable speed fan when the variable is inside the case.

Anyway when the OP returns he can decide what he wants to do.

Ron


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 6:32 pm 
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Quakindude wrote:
Ron, I really love your simple to build circuit! I've saved this information for use in cases that don't have the natural, great airflow of the Antec 900.

The reason I was going first off with a new HSF is because I've got the ACF7Pro on one computer and the Hyper212+ on three. The AC7Pro works decent enough, it's surely better than the stock fan, but it just can't keep the CPU as cool as the 212+ does. My train of thought being, if the CPU is running cooler in the first place, the outer fans won't even need to spool up.


Hey Tom

Overall I figure he has nothing to lose going to a different HSF. Hell it can't hurt. I don't know his HSF is the root cause of his problem but what the hell? I was more enmeshed in the fan speed thing. :)

Ron


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 6:52 pm 
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Reloadron wrote:
Quakindude wrote:
Ron, I really love your simple to build circuit! I've saved this information for use in cases that don't have the natural, great airflow of the Antec 900.

The reason I was going first off with a new HSF is because I've got the ACF7Pro on one computer and the Hyper212+ on three. The AC7Pro works decent enough, it's surely better than the stock fan, but it just can't keep the CPU as cool as the 212+ does. My train of thought being, if the CPU is running cooler in the first place, the outer fans won't even need to spool up.


Hey Tom

Overall I figure he has nothing to lose going to a different HSF. Hell it can't hurt. I don't know his HSF is the root cause of his problem but what the hell? I was more enmeshed in the fan speed thing. :)

Ron


This is one of those things you never knew you needed. You should build a shitload of them and start selling them. Professionally built, the water cooling community would go wild over it. :idea:

When you make your first $100k, remember me for giving you the initial push to make a go of it. :lol: :wink:


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:48 am 
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Quake Said:

Quote:
This is one of those things you never knew you needed. You should build a shitload of them and start selling them. Professionally built, the water cooling community would go wild over it. Idea

When you make your first $100k, remember me for giving you the initial push to make a go of it. Laughing Wink


Sometimes I think computers have become like the performance auto parts market. There is no shortage of gadgets and gizmos out there, Some work well and some I think are little more than snake oil for the bearings. When we were both more active at HL I got a good understanding of new whistles and bells. There is no shortage of temperature & voltage measuring devices out there.

Work does continue on my Matter Transfer Device so I can beam an ex-wife into the center of a concrete wall. Once that works I figure there will be a good market for the units. :lol:

Ron


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:44 am 
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Yeah bruddah.

Put me on your short list. :wink:

You still active over there?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 4:13 am 
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Quakindude wrote:
Yeah bruddah.

Put me on your short list. :wink:

You still active over there?


You have mail! :)

Ron


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