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Adding fans to Fractal Design R3 case; which direction for optimal airflow?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I recently received some additional FD case fans (1-120mm silent series and 2-140mm silent series) and could use some guidance as to the proper direction or placement to achieve a balance of optimal airflow and cooling, without increasing the noise considerably.

Currently the airflow for my R3 looks as follows:

fdfansairflow.png

The blue arrrow indicates the original fans (and direction of airflow) that are presently in the case, and the red arrows indicate the ones that I am planning to put in (and airflow), in their possible locations.

Basically, at minimal, I would be putting another 120mm in the front to match the existing 120mm that came with the case, but for the 140mm, I'm uncertain as to where to put it. On the top of the case, or bottom? Which direction for the airflow? (hence the dual arrows). Should I even bother with putting additional fans for the top and/or bottom, or the additional 120mm one on the front will be sufficient?

Thanks in advance!
post #2 of 12
its usually front intake/side intake/top exhaust/rear fan exhaust. if you're going to put the 120 in the front, i think top exhaust would be optimal as I think you're supposed to try to keep them even. You can always try one way and when your bored try it in other directions and see if its cooler that way.
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post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by karsa_orlong;13789095 
its usually front intake/side intake/top exhaust/rear fan exhaust. if you're going to put the 120 in the front, i think top exhaust would be optimal as I think you're supposed to try to keep them even. You can always try one way and when your bored try it in other directions and see if its cooler that way.

Thanks, and that's what I ended up doing actually! smile.gif
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Update: Got the additional fans installed in my R3!

I've decided to add some additional fans to my R3 case to aid in the cooling/airflow and received some Fractal Design's Silent Series fans recently:

img5143c.jpg
FD Silent Series fans

After debating over the location and number of fans to install, I've decided to install an additional 120mm fan to the front (to supplement the existing 120mm that came with the case) and a 140mm fan at the back/top of the case.

img5144p.jpg
Front - 120mm Silent Series fan (additional is on the top)


img5150o.jpg
Top rear of the case - 140mm Silent Series fan

Note: The top rear fan (140mm) is controlled and powered by the FD fan controller that came with the case.

img5151r.jpg
View showing the top fan (140mm, exhausts to the top) installed

r3additionalfans.jpg
Airflow

The picture above illustrates the overall direction of the airflow inside the R3 case. The red arrows are the original fans and airflow (including the one that came with the CM212+) and the blue arrows are the additional fans that were installed, and the direction of their airflow. Note: this picture was taken before the additional fans were installed. I had forgotten to take the picture after I had put the covers back on. smile.gif

While I don't have any other fans on hand to compare with, overall, I'm very happy with how quiet these FD fans are. I have the rear top fan set to maximum (via the fan controller knob) and I still can't hear it with the case being under my desk unless I put my ears right on top of the fan. Even then, it's audibly quiet. smile.gif
post #5 of 12
Try switching the top rear exhaust to a top front intake. People have seen significant temp drops in CPU, GPU, and mobo. It's not 100% guaranteed, but try it. You never know. Just be sure to filter that top fan.

attachment.php?attachmentid=216373&stc=1&d=1308707949
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post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by spaceballsrules;13957942 
Try switching the top rear exhaust to a top front intake. People have seen significant temp drops in CPU, GPU, and mobo. It's not 100% guaranteed, but try it. You never know. Just be sure to filter that top fan.

attachment.php?attachmentid=216373&stc=1&d=1308707949

Interesting, I would have thought that since warm/hot air rises, it would be better to have the fan exhausts it out rather than as an intake. But I do see the point of having air blowing inside into the case where the CPU, MB, GPU, etc. is. I'll have to try it out the next time I open up my case.

How about a fan blowing from the bottom of the case (as an intake)? I do also have a spot for a fan to the front of the power supply.
post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by onedollarinmywallet;13786764 
Should I even bother with putting additional fans for the top and/or bottom, or the additional 120mm one on the front will be sufficient?

You did the right thing but (although a bit late in the game) may I suggest you add a fan in the bottom blowing upwards. This would give you positive pressure (possibly less dust) and also benefit your graphics card, IMHO.

Anyway, nice build !
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post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by onedollarinmywallet;13962619 
Interesting, I would have thought that since warm/hot air rises, it would be better to have the fan exhausts it out rather than as an intake. But I do see the point of having air blowing inside into the case where the CPU, MB, GPU, etc. is. I'll have to try it out the next time I open up my case.

How about a fan blowing from the bottom of the case (as an intake)? I do also have a spot for a fan to the front of the power supply.

In an uncontrolled environment, heat does rise, but in the case of a, well, case, the airflow is controlled by the fans, so the chimney effect doesn't really apply. The air goes where the fans tell it to go.
It would be better to put one more fan on the back of the HDD cage blowing air onto the GPU. A fan in the bottom would add too much positive pressure for no reason.
It just occurred to me that you may want to remove the PCI slot covers. It will allow any air "stuck" in the case to escape freely.
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post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by onedollarinmywallet;13955741 
Update: Got the additional fans installed in my R3!

r3additionalfans.jpg
Airflow

The picture above illustrates the overall direction of the airflow inside the R3 case. The red arrows are the original fans and airflow (including the one that came with the CM212+) and the blue arrows are the additional fans that were installed, and the direction of their airflow. Note: this picture was taken before the additional fans were installed. I had forgotten to take the picture after I had put the covers back on. smile.gif

While I don't have any other fans on hand to compare with, overall, I'm very happy with how quiet these FD fans are. I have the rear top fan set to maximum (via the fan controller knob) and I still can't hear it with the case being under my desk unless I put my ears right on top of the fan. Even then, it's audibly quiet. smile.gif

You still run it like that? Didn't try to add a fan in bottom blowing up? How did you connect the fans to the PSU?

I'm thinking of adding some fans to my R2 aswell but now sure if I got power to the fans? Is there some converter for the powerpins?

It's this system(my server): http://www.overclock.net/system.php?i=73604
Edited by sabertooth - 7/5/11 at 1:15pm
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post #10 of 12
How quiet are the 120mm fans you bought from Fractal? The ones that came with my R3 didn't seem very quiet. Are they the same fans as the stock ones that come with the R3 or are they different?
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