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Anybody got some lighting and airflow tips?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hey guys. I've done a bit of searching, but didn't find anything that really fit what I am looking for. I can't imagine that this hasn't been covered before though, so sorry for possibly being "one of those guys."
I have a NZXT M59 case which has quite a few places to put more fans, and some extra space for other goodies. It also has a window, which is one of the reasons I decided on this particular model. Didn't realise just how tinted the window was though. I cannot see my handywork, and that makes me sad.
Of course, that means I need to light the inside of the case. I also want to get some more fans in there; my mobo runs a little hot.
My questions are as follows:

1) Would LED fans be a sufficient enough light source to overcome the tinted window?

2) If my best option ends up being cold cathodes, (which I heard can create some heat, and that is one of the obstacles I'm trying to overcome*) what would be the best size for fit, light, and stealthiness?

3) What's a good fan recommendation for 120mm that is quiet, powerful, and cheap. 140mm is an option for 2 of the 5 spaces. Mounted horizontally, which I guess matters(?*). LEDs applicable based on answers to 1&2.

Thanks for looking!

*Feel free to correct or elaborate.
Edited by kaznai - 5/6/11 at 1:16am
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post #2 of 15
number 3:

Get some medium speed yate loons. Or get some high speed ones and get a fan controller so you can cranked em when you need some extra flow and turn them down when you watching a movie or sleeping.
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks, I've heard a lot about those around here. I guess there's a reason they're so popular. I'd still like to know a little more about lighting.

[Edit: Do they work well horizontal?]
Edited by kaznai - 5/6/11 at 11:19pm
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post #4 of 15
If you post a picture of the inside of your case then we could help a lot more!

as for a general idea on improving airflow I have listed some tips below.

*Route cables behind the motherboard to reduce airflow drag
*keep airflow directional e.g could air in through the front and hot out the back/ top
*use cable ties to reduce the length of dangling cables
*remove any unused drive bays / cages
*braiding multiple cables in to a single braid can reduce airflow drag
*try and make use of all fan mounts and if not try to cover them up
*install a fan controller if you dont require the fans be on full constantly
*if you are running SLI / Crossfire then try and keep a good gap between the graphics card and buy a longer crossfire bridge if needed
*try and use a aftermarket directional heatsink for your processor this will improve airflow in the case and keep your processor even cooler! like this http://www.ebuyer.com/product/195165
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post #5 of 15
I have the same case as you with 2 blue LED Coolermaster R4's in Push/Pull and one as the front intake. Along with the small blue light on my 5770, they barely light up the case unless it is pretty dark in my room. Having one on the side intake does make a little difference in brightness, but it doesn't sound like it would be to the level of illumination you are looking for. I would probably go with the cold cathode's unless you plan on getting all LED fans.

Be careful with getting a 140mm for the top exhaust closest to the CD/DVD drives if you have a drive in the top slot. I believe I read that they will not fit together unless you move the drive down into the second slot. Again, i'm not sure on that though.


Also, i'm interested to see how your wire management came out, for I had a very tough time trying and not succeeding to hide all the wires from my sadly non-modular PSU in the tight space behind the mobo tray.
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by smorg View Post
If you post a picture of the inside of your case then we could help a lot more!

as for a general idea on improving airflow I have listed some tips...
Sorry, pics here. I know they could be better, but I need a better camera. I'll try to take more when daylight is available.
Thank you for the tips, but I've done as much as I can cable management-wise, don't think I can pull the drive bays without cutting, and I'm shopping for heatsinks and fans as we speak. [Edit: I hadn't thought to cover the excess holes up, but I could see how that might help. Let me go fetch the masking tape.] I don't want a giant heatsink, but none of the recommended ones are below 120mm. Is 92 not good enough for actual overclocking? I want, at the very least, 3.6 GHz out of my 3.2GHz quad core (sig rig). Though I'd love to hit that 4GHz mark if possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cha0s89 View Post
I have the same case as you with 2 blue LED Coolermaster R4's in Push/Pull and one as the front intake. Along with the small blue light on my 5770, they barely light up the case unless it is pretty dark in my room. Having one on the side intake does make a little difference in brightness, but it doesn't sound like it would be to the level of illumination you are looking for. I would probably go with the cold cathode's unless you plan on getting all LED fans.

Be careful with getting a 140mm for the top exhaust closest to the CD/DVD drives...

Also, i'm interested to see how your wire management came out, for I had a very tough time trying and not succeeding to hide all the wires from my sadly non-modular PSU in the tight space behind the mobo tray.
Thanks very much! Exactly what I needed!
I was considering using all LED fans, but if I use a fan controller it'll mess up the brightness, from what I've read anyway. Cold cathodes it is, I guess.
You're very right about that top exhaust. I don't even think a 120 is going to fit with a typical size optical drive. It'd be a tight squeeze at least.

So, I'm thinking either relocate the drive or remove the stealth cover. I can't find any smaller than this.

Wire management... I too have a non-modular power supply, and I have tried a few options. I first tucked all the cables underneath my HDD, but decided that left very little airflow from the front intake. So then I shoved 'em all behind the motherboard tray, as flat as possible. Mistake. I forced the back panel on, and now I have a slight bulge that I can't get rid of. Now I've bundled all the excess cables together and set them between the PSU and hard drive cage. I think I'm going to get a box that I can fit them all in and paint it black to keep it at least looking tidy.
Edited by kaznai - 5/6/11 at 11:29pm
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post #7 of 15
No problem

Another thing to be careful on when you're looking for Heat-sinks with this case is their height. I have the CM 212+ in mine and it slightly touches the top of the side panel window.


Thankfully, when I tried to get my stealth cover off, it was being a pain so I just moved my DVD drive to the second slot and never had a problem with the 120mm fans not fitting. Then I read about that and was kinda glad I had the problem lol. A possibility for you might be to get a fan controller and place it where the stealth cover was and move your optical drive to the second slot? Also, with my LED fans and the fan controller, I don't notice much of a difference between 40% speed and 100% speed in terms of lighting. Since these are rated at 2,000 RPM's, maybe it is more pronounced on higher RPM fans?



It sounds like you went though the same problems that I did with the cable management, and came to the same conclusion I do like your idea of a box up against the PSU though, that would definitely look better than my wires all bunched up!
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cha0s89 View Post
Another thing to be careful on when you're looking for Heat-sinks with this case is their height. I have the CM 212+ in mine and it slightly touches the top of the side panel window.
Aw, man. That's the cooler I was looking at. I don't know that I'd feel comfortable with it that close to the window. How do you have it mounted, fan on bottom or on the right?
Quote:
...A possibility for you might be to get a fan controller and place it where the stealth cover was and move your optical drive to the second slot?
Good idea. Hopefully I don't have any issues taking that cover off.
Quote:
Also, with my LED fans and the fan controller, I don't notice much of a difference between 40% speed and 100% speed in terms of lighting. Since these are rated at 2,000 RPM's, maybe it is more pronounced on higher RPM fans?
Helpful!
Quote:
...I do like your idea of a box up against the PSU though, that would definitely look better than my wires all bunched up!
I know! I'll definitely post pictures when I get that set up. I guess if my PSU ever blows up, or I need an upgrade for any other reason, I won't cheap out. Of course, I could always get a new case, but... I like this one, and I wanna keep it.
Edited by kaznai - 5/7/11 at 8:09am
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Project_I
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post #9 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaznai View Post
Aw, man. That's the cooler I was looking at. I don't know that I'd feel comfortable with it that close to the window. How do you have it mounted, fan on bottom or on the right?
What about a H50? would be perfect in that case..

here is a diagram of what I would personally do..

the blue arrows are cold air and the red arrows represent hot exhausted air

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post #10 of 15
Here's a picture of how its mounted. As you can see, my wires are still all bunched up I too really like the case, I just wish that it had a bigger area behind the mobo tray to hide wires.

As Smorg said an H50 would be a very good option, but more expensive. It'll give you pretty good temps, just not as good as the top of the line air coolers such as the Venomous-X. The 212+ is a very good "bang for you buck" cooler, especially when it can be had for $25 Here.


Also, that airflow diagram is how I have my fans setup, except I have my top two as exhausts (because warm air rises) and my side as an intake.
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