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Old 2013-11-17, 02:35   #1
TheMawn's Avatar
May 2013
East. Always East.

6BF16 Posts
Default Remember kids, compressed air.

This was an evening well spent. My Christmas present to myself this year is going to be a custom liquid cooling loop. My shrouded GTX 670 is by far the biggest source of noise and I'm looking at getting it, my CPU and my VRMs under water (I have the Maximus V Evo and it came with a hybrid VRM cooler and I've always wanted to use water on it). In preparation I've done a bit of exploration surgery on my case.

While I had it open, I decided it was time for the massive cleaning. Both GPUs came out, all fans came out, all wires were unplugged from the PSU and the PSU itself was half taken out so I could access the air intake on the bottom and vacuum it out. I vacuumed everything and tried compressed air for the first time.

Oh. My. God.

The dust that came out of places I had no idea were so dusty was eye-opening. Particularly the shroud cooler. Now that everything has been re-installed, both GPUs report temperatures 10C lower than before (load) so I was actually able to decrease the GPU noise a bit.

The PSU has this neat "feature" where the fan runs at 0% when the components inside are not too hot, which would allow for extremely low noise in the case of something like an HTPC with an undervolted underclocked CPU and only one or two very-low RPM fans.

The fan only spins when it has to but unfortunately it revs up very high and then drops back to inaudible within seconds. Apparently it only understands 100%, 70% and 0%, or something like that. There really is no in-between. Lately it has been maintaining a slightly lower but constant RPM which is also unfortunate because the bearing isn't great and there's a somewhat annoying grinding noise. This was the main motivation for the deep cleaning.

Last weekend while tidying up my trinkets box, I discovered an old 80mm Noctua fan I had purchased by mistake (I mixed up the 92mm and 80mm fans I had wanted on an old computer a number of years ago). I bought a roll of two-sided foam tape while I was out getting my compressed air, and I stuck this fan to the PSU air outlet on the back of the case and so I now have a small, silent but deadly fan sucking air through the power supply even if its own fan is not spinning.

While I write this, my CPU is drawing 75W, my GTX 670 is drawing 140W and my GTX 660 Ti is drawing 120W, plus whatever other things are drawing power. The PSU fan has yet to even spin up after twenty minutes of running under a rather heavy load.

Last fiddled with by TheMawn on 2013-11-17 at 02:37
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Old 2013-11-17, 08:53   #2
xilman's Avatar
May 2003
Down not across

22×3×941 Posts

Originally Posted by TheMawn View Post
The dust that came out of places I had no idea were so dusty was eye-opening.
I hope you flushed them out well before continuing.

Last fiddled with by xilman on 2013-11-20 at 16:21 Reason: Fix tag
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