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Complete n00b looking for some fan controller help!

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
Hi guys,

The pros on this forum know so much, I am hoping maybe some of you could help me out. Sorry for the long explanation but I'm hoping maybe it will make it easier for you to answer my questions.

I have a Cooler Master HAF X case with the following fans in it:

2x 200mm Cooler Master MegaFlo Red LED fans on top
1x 200mm Cooler Master MegaFlo Red LED fan on side door
1x 230mm Cooler Master Red LED fan in front
1x 120mm Cooler Master SickleFlo Red LED fan for rear exhaust
Noctua NH-D14 on CPU.

So I have a total of 5 case fans plus the 2 fans on the Noctua NH-D14.

Currently when I use SpeedFan, I am only able to control the fan speed on my case's rear exhaust fan (the 120mm) which SpeedFan labels CPU fan. I can't control any of the speeds of the other fans. This might be due to my own mistake in wiring the fans, or I may not have wired them all to the motherboard and may have just wired them to the power supply. I'm not sure but I will take a look inside.

My question is this, with the Cooler Master fans I have, if I was to buy a fan controller, would I be able to have the fan controller automatically manage my fan speeds and would it be able to read temperatures off these fans? To my knowledge all of these Cooler Master fans are only 3 pin connectors. Does that mean I will not be able to have any automatic control or temperature readings? I have heard the PWM term be thrown around and how it needs 4 pin connections. Am I screwed? Do I need to buy brand new replacement fans to get any type of automatic control or temperature sensing?

The fan controller I was looking at was this one because of how it looks like it will be the best fit into the look of the red HAF X case. I am totally open to suggestions for other ones but blending in with the look of the HAF X is important to me.

Thank you so much for reading -- and thank you in advance for any help you can provide!
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post #2 of 35
If the fans are 2 or 3 pin fans then you won't be able to adjust the fan speed automatically from the motherboard, only 4 pin fans will allow you to do that. You can get a fan controller to manually adjust your fan speed for the 2/3 pin fans.
   
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post #3 of 35
Use a SunbeamTech RheoSmart 6 channel fan controller. You can use the mobo CPU 4 pin PWM fan header to drive the all the fans based off the bios smart control signal, or individually drive each fan circuit via RPM knob if needed.
     
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post #4 of 35
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ezveedub View Post
Use a SunbeamTech RheoSmart 6 channel fan controller. You can use the mobo CPU 4 pin PWM fan header to drive the all the fans based off the bios smart control signal, or individually drive each fan circuit via RPM knob if needed.
Sorry for my noobness, but can you explain in a little more detail what this means?
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post #5 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by GasMan320 View Post
Sorry for my noobness, but can you explain in a little more detail what this means?
In a nut shell, if the fan has 4 wires (4-pin), red/black/yellow/blue (typical color scheme), then plugging it into the motherboard will allow the motherboard to control the fan's speed. If the fan does not have the blue wire (PWM) then the motherboard cannot control it.

Red = + lead
Black = - lead
Yellow = reports fan speed (in rpm)
Blue = PWM, allows the fan speed to be controlled
Edited by Canis-X - 7/21/11 at 12:20pm
   
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post #6 of 35
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Canis-X View Post
In a nut shell, if the fan has 4 wires (4-pin), red/black/yellow/blue (typical color scheme), then plugging it into the motherboard will allow the motherboard to control the fan's speed. If the fan does not have the blue wire (PWM) then the motherboard cannot control it.
Thanks, that was really helpful! All of my fans are cooler master fans and none of them have PWM control. However, somehow I'm able to slow down the speed of the rear 120mm all the way to 0 RPM via SpeedFan. Could I get this sort of functionality with the rest of them? Would it require me daisy chaining them all together and then connecting them to the same motherboard socket? Or am I missing some obvious alternative?

Also, if I had a fan controller and I don't have PWM fans, would I see any temperature or RPM readings on the controller?

Sorry for the onslaught of questions -- just want to get my fans under my control and am getting excited about the possibilities. Thank you again!
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post #7 of 35
What is the model number of the rear 120mm fan? If it doesn't have the PWM wire then it should not change fan speed at all.

Do not daisy chain them and plug them into one port on your motherboard, you will burn it up. The more fans you plug in the more amps they will draw off of that port, if you exceed the amp limit of the port it will literally melt that area.

If your motherboard and/or fan controller has temp sensor ports (two pin ports) then you can monitor temp readings, my motherboard has several temp sensor ports on it (you have to plug in a temp sensor wire though, separate purchase). Most fan headers are 3 pin so if your fan controller has a 3 pin/wire cable and has a display for rpms you will be able to monitor the speed of the fans from the fan controller.
   
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MSI R9 290X LIGHTNING Kingston HyperX Predator 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR4 2666 Intel 400GB 750 Series NVMe PCIe (OS drive) Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB (2 in RAID 0) 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOptical DriveCooling
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CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
CPU Cooler [Winter-Time] = Custom 300W ss phase... Hardware Labs Black Ice GTX 480 Radiator (4 x 1... Feser X-Changer Triple (3 x 120mm) Swiftech MCP655 (x2) 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
Koolance RP-452X2 Dual 5.25" Reservoir EK MSI R9 290X Lightning - Full Cover VGA Water... EK MSI R9 290X Lightning - Full Cover VGA Water... EK MSI R9 290X Lightning - Full Cover VGA Water... 
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Intel Core i7 3930k RAMPAGE IV EXTREME ASUS GTX 590 Samsung 30nm 4 x 4GB sticks 
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post #8 of 35
Thread Starter 

Thank you so much for your continued help!

I have a ASRock P67 Extreme4 motherboard.

Here is the rear fan that I have:

. It is definitely only 3 pin but for some reason SpeedFan can make it come to a complete stop when I put in a 0% setting on it. The LED turns off and the fan slowly stops spinning. It labels it as the CPU fan in SpeedFan.

Also, the Rheosmart 6 Fan controller says this in its description:
Quote:
Smart Way Controlling of all Fans & Airflow. The Rheosmart 6 Fan Controller is designed to make any existing 3-pin fan automatically regularized by the PWM signal from the Motherboard! With six independent channels at a maximum of 30W/channel, a wide selection of fans can be supported.

The Rheosmart 6 Fan Controller operates in two different modes; when connected to a PWM-enabled motherboard, you can allow the system to auto-adjust fan speed through the motherboard's temperature sensor. When switched onto manual mode by pressing the small button below each knob, you turn that specific channel into manual control mode.
Does this mean I could use this with my non-PWM fans and still get PWM like control?
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post #9 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Canis-X View Post
In a nut shell, if the fan has 4 wires (4-pin), red/black/yellow/blue (typical color scheme), then plugging it into the motherboard will allow the motherboard to control the fan's speed. If the fan does not have the blue wire (PWM) then the motherboard cannot control it.

Red = + lead
Black = - lead
Yellow = reports fan speed (in rpm)
Blue = PWM, allows the fan speed to be controlled
Actually this is not universally true. Many motherboards have speed controlled fan headers that can be controlled via software, like my DFI X58. I can control each header using the software provided with the mobo. Some BIOS allow for various headers to be controlled as well.
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post #10 of 35
Interesting on that one fan. I'm not sure what to tell you there, but I would think that it couldn't, unless it was acting as a rheostat on its own. Typically there would need to be a small heat sink near that fan port to dissipate the heat.

Yes, the Rheosmart controller will allow the motherboard to control the fan speed regardless of whether or not the fan itself has a PWM wire.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CyberDruid View Post
Actually this is not universally true. Many motherboards have speed controlled fan headers that can be controlled via software, like my DFI X58. I can control each header using the software provided with the mobo. Some BIOS allow for various headers to be controlled as well.
My apologies, I may have over stepped my knowledge base on this one then. Thanks for the enlightenment!
Edited by Canis-X - 7/21/11 at 12:50pm
   
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COOTER [HTPC]
(14 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 5960X ASUS RAMPAGE V EXTREME/U3.1 MSI R9 290X LIGHTNING MSI R9 290X LIGHTNING 
GraphicsRAMHard DriveHard Drive
MSI R9 290X LIGHTNING Kingston HyperX Predator 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR4 2666 Intel 400GB 750 Series NVMe PCIe (OS drive) Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB (2 in RAID 0) 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOptical DriveCooling
Seagate Barracuda 3TB 7200RPM SATA3 64MB LG Super Multi Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD-ROM Drive LG GH24NS90B 24X SATA Internal Super Multi DVD ... CPU Cooler [Summer-Time] = Watercool HEATKILLER... 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
CPU Cooler [Winter-Time] = Custom 300W ss phase... Hardware Labs Black Ice GTX 480 Radiator (4 x 1... Feser X-Changer Triple (3 x 120mm) Swiftech MCP655 (x2) 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
Koolance RP-452X2 Dual 5.25" Reservoir EK MSI R9 290X Lightning - Full Cover VGA Water... EK MSI R9 290X Lightning - Full Cover VGA Water... EK MSI R9 290X Lightning - Full Cover VGA Water... 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows 10 Pro x64 (3) ASUS VG248QE 24-Inch Screen LED-lit Monitor Ducky Mini PC Power & Cooling Turbo-Cool 1200 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Xigmatek Elysium [Black w/ Window] Razer Naga Hex MOBA Perixx DX-2000XXL Boston Acoustics MicroMediaSpeaker System 
AudioOther
Sennheiser PC 363D EVGA Supernova 1300G2 - 1300W PSU (second PSU) 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 3930k RAMPAGE IV EXTREME ASUS GTX 590 Samsung 30nm 4 x 4GB sticks 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveOptical Drive
SAMSUNG 850 EVO 250GB 1TB WD Green 300GB WD Velociraptor (4 in RAID 0) LG GH24NS90B 24X SATA Internal Super Multi DVD ... 
Optical DriveCoolingOSMonitor
LG GH24NS90B 24X SATA Internal Super Multi DVD ... Corsair H110i GT Windows 10 Pro x64 LG 24" Flatron 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Ducky Shine II - w/ Brown Cherry MX w/ English ... Corsair TX650 Nanoxia Deep Silence 2 RAZER DeathAdder 
Mouse PadAudioAudio
X Trac Ripper HT| OMEGA eCLARO  TRITTON AX Pro Dolby Digital 5.1 True Surround ... 
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AMD A6-3650 ASUS F1A75-M-PRO R2.0 EVGA GeForce GTX 960 4GB Superclocked Samsung 30nm 2 x 4GB sticks 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
120GB Samsung 840 Western Digital Red 3TB SATA3 64MB Cache 3.5in ... LG Super Multi Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD-ROM Drive Cooler Master GeminII M4 - CPU Cooler 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
Noctua NF-R8 80mm Fans Win7 SP1 64bit Visio 50" Plasma Logitech Mini Controller for Logitech Revue and... 
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PC Power & Cooling Silencer Mk III 400W ATX Mod... Silverstone Sugo 
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