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PSU, Fan Control, and Temps


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#1
Mr_Midnight

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Hi All!

I would like to start off by saying that even though this is my first post, you guys have already been a VERY big help to me! I'm building my first computer and by searching through your forums you have answered most of my questions already! However I do still have a few questions just to clarify. Sorry if they have already been answered somewhere! I tried to search through the forums, but some of the answers are rather confusing and I'm a bit overwhelmed. I don't know too much about computers and have been trying to learn as much as I can in as short a time as possible.


1. I don't really know if the PSU I'm going to get will provide the right power on the rails.

I think I said that right. There's a lot of numbers I've seen about 12 volt rails and output voltages and numbers that look like this: +12V2@25A. Which honestly don't mean a lot to me. I'll post the specs to the machine I'm building at the bottom of the screen. As a side note, thanks to a guy named, Digerati for posting a link to the eXtreme Power Supply Calculator which helped me decide which PSU to get.


2. What's the best and easiest way to control the speed of fans?

I've seen some posts about using the Motherboard BIOS (which I've never seen and have a very vague understanding about), and some posts about using a program called SpeedFan, and I've seen some cool touch screen fan controllers on Newegg. Is the BIOS easy to use? Or should I just shell out some extra money and buy a fan controller?


3. How do you guys find out all your temperatures?

I've seen a lot of people posting their temperatures of the CPU, the Video Cards, the Hard drives, stuff like that. Do you all use one of those cool laser thermometer handgun things? Do you use magic? Or are there temperature sensors I should buy and place inside my computer? I'm just worried about my case not having enough airflow/cooling capabilities. I don't want to fry my parts or put any unnecessary strain on them.


Computer Specs:
Antec TPQ-850 850W Continuous Power ATX12V / EPS12V The PSU in question. I know I should only need around 700W, but I figure having an 850W PSU will give me some wiggle room.
COOLER MASTER Elite 330 Case Got free from a friend, slightly used
AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition Currently being shipped to me
GIGABYTE GA-890FXA-UD5 AM3 AMD 890FX Currently being shipped to me
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Currently being shipped to me. Planning to eventually buy another set and have 16GB of Ram total.
G.SKILL Phoenix Pro Series 60GB SSD Currently being shipped to me. Not the best SSD from the comments but its coming in a combo deal with the CPU, MoBo, and Ram
ASUS Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW
SAPPHIRE Toxic 100282-2GTXSR Radeon HD 5850 (Cypress Pro) 2GB Eventually planning on buying another one and figuring out how to Crossfire them.
2TB Western Digital Caviar Green Internal Hard Drive. Free from Grandparents for Birthday. Not sure exactly which model it is. Apparently they got it from Best Buy.
Also a few extra fans I'm going to stick in and then Windows 7 Ultimate.


As an ending note, sorry for the wall of text. I hope I didn't break any forum rules by linking so much or anything.

And thank you VERY VERY much for your time!!! You guys are awesome!!!

Edited by Mr_Midnight, 09 December 2010 - 03:58 AM.

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#2
D-Berd

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The video card needs 1 six pin connector and 1 eight pin connector. The power supply offers two of each. I would say you're covered.

What is odd tho is that the mother board shows a 8 pin connector in the picture but the tech details make no mention of it. Unless I missed it.
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#3
Digerati

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Hi Mr_Midnight and welcome.

1. Your PSU of choice is just fine. Antec is a quality brand and 850W should give you plenty of wiggle room.

2. I just let the motherboard control fan speeds - assuming the fans support it.

3. Gigabyte boards come with a hardware monitor but there are other programs like Speedfan, Motherboard Monitor, Real Temp, or my monitor of choice Core Temp. The CPU, graphics card/GPU, and motherboard will all have internal sensors for temperatures.

Your case supports 2 fans, one 120mm in back and another fan in front (not sure of the size in front). You should use both and have the front draw cool air in, and the back exhaust hot air out. Use the largest fans the case will support as they will move the most air, and are generally quieter.
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#4
Spyderturbo007

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1. I don't really know if the PSU I'm going to get will provide the right power on the rails.

I think I said that right. There's a lot of numbers I've seen about 12 volt rails and output voltages and numbers that look like this: +12V2@25A. Which honestly don't mean a lot to me. I'll post the specs to the machine I'm building at the bottom of the screen. As a side note, thanks to a guy named, Digerati for posting a link to the eXtreme Power Supply Calculator which helped me decide which PSU to get.


The numbers following the ATX designation are for different hardware revision requirement, such as presence of SATA power connector, recommended minimum efficiency, etc. To be honest, I really don't even look at the revision number. I only make sure it has enough power plugs for the devices I'm installing and verify that it has enough power for the system I'm building. You also want to make sure that the power supply you buy is Certified 80 Plus, but your link indicates that the one you have chosen is certified.

You can read about the actual ATX revisions here if you want.

2. What's the best and easiest way to control the speed of fans?

I've seen some posts about using the Motherboard BIOS (which I've never seen and have a very vague understanding about), and some posts about using a program called SpeedFan, and I've seen some cool touch screen fan controllers on Newegg. Is the BIOS easy to use? Or should I just shell out some extra money and buy a fan controller?


Once again, this is something I really don't even bother with. Everything I've had an experience with lately is self controlled. The mother board will adjust the fan speed based on need automatically. You might want one of those fancy speed controllers, but I don't bother wasting the money. On the other hand, my buddy just build a beast and thought it would look cool. He had the extra money, so he figured why not. :D

As you said, using a program like SpeedFan is also an option.

3. How do you guys find out all your temperatures?

I've seen a lot of people posting their temperatures of the CPU, the Video Cards, the Hard drives, stuff like that. Do you all use one of those cool laser thermometer handgun things? Do you use magic? Or are there temperature sensors I should buy and place inside my computer? I'm just worried about my case not having enough airflow/cooling capabilities. I don't want to fry my parts or put any unnecessary strain on them.


I use a program called System Information Works, but there are a host of programs that will do the same thing. If you scroll down to the bottom of the page in my link, you will see the free version. I like the one without the installer, but they all have the same functionality. It will give you the temperature of all the sensors on your motherboard. You would have to check the motherboard user manual to determine what sensors the motherboard supplies.

It looks like the case you linked to only supports one (1) 120mm fan, which shouldn't be a problem. I read a couple of the reviews and there were some comments that referred to the case having excellent airflow. I do also see a side duct, which can be replaced with a fan if you so desire. My machine only has one fan and does just fine. Unless you plan on overclocking or locking it in a closet, I don't see a problem. ;)

The only thing I don't like about your build is the 2TB WD Green drive, but this is just personal preference. I don't like the green drives unless you are using them for storage. They are designed to provide low power consumption and less noise. But to obtain these features, there is a performance sacrifice. The drive will throttle itself between 5,400 rpm and 7,200 rpm, but I suspect they are on the lower end of that range most of the time. In my experience, they have a high latency than their higher performance counterparts, which is fine for storage, but not for an OS. You might want to do something similar to what I do at home. I use a high performance drive for the OS and then store all my "stuff" on a larger drive. My OS drive is a WD Raptor which is designed for pure performance and spins at a mind boggling 10,000rpm. I don't think they make the "regular" raptor drive anymore, but they do have a VelociRaptor drive which is just as nice. You can check one out here if you want.

You might also want to look at a SSD (Solid State Drive) as you primary. When I built my machine years ago, the SSD's were still terribly expensive, but now you can pick them up for a song. Keep in mind, they might looks small, but you have the green drive for storage, so you only need enough space for the OS and your programs.

These are only my opinions and building a machine is a matter of personal preference, so others may have different opinions. Good luck!

Edited by Spyderturbo007, 09 December 2010 - 08:33 AM.

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#5
Mr_Midnight

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Awesome!! Thank you all for the quick responses! I know the Caviar Green isn't the best, but it is going to only be storage. I'm starting school soon, so a lot of school work will be stored there, plus all my music, videos, and games. The G.Skill Phoenix Pro SSD will be for my OS and maybe a few other things.
It's great to know that the fans are self controlled! The case I have has one 120mm fan in the back, space for another one in the front. The air duct on the side is about the size of an 80mm fan so I'm putting one there too. I don't plan on overclocking for a while, especially since this is my first build. I'll only overclock, add another Video card and more RAM when I need a speed boost to continue playing games. Then I might have to consider a new case.

Awesome! Thank you all again for your time!!! Knowing my luck, even though I've been trying to research a bunch of stuff beforehand, I'll end up back here when something goes catastrophically wrong!! Thanks again!
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#6
Spyderturbo007

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The G.Skill Phoenix Pro SSD will be for my OS and maybe a few other things.


I completely missed that when looking through your list. Sorry about that. :D
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#7
iammykyl

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I advise first running your system for a while WITHOUT the side fan installed and make notes of the temps and fan speeds, then install the fan and note the temps and fan speeds again.

You may be surprised by the results. A side fan can disrupt the airflow inside the case giving you higher temps.
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#8
iammykyl

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Hi,

Installing a side fan can disrupt the smooth airflow of a case resulting in higher temps, I would advise running the system for a while WITHOUT the fan and take notes of the temps then install the fan and compare the results.
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#9
Mr_Midnight

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Hmmm, I never would have thought of that. Thanks for the tip! I'm going to have to do that for sure!

Edited by Mr_Midnight, 10 December 2010 - 03:05 PM.

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