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Why Static Pressure & Air Flow Suck At Providing Real World Fan Performance - Page 2

post #11 of 22
This is great stuff Martin. Lots of information and a great read! thumb.gif
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post #12 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hasdrubal View Post

Hardware.fr completed recently 3 large fan reviews (CFM and dBa), comparing fans on air and on a radiator (Hardware Labs SR1):
- 120 mm non-PWM fans: http://www.hardware.fr/articles/874-35/recapitulatif-db-a-vs-cfm.html
- 120 mm PWN fans: http://www.hardware.fr/articles/867-23/graphique-recapitulatif.html
- 140 mm fans (with or without PWM): http://www.hardware.fr/articles/886-26/recapitulatif-db-a-vs-cfm.html

As it's in French, I'll summarize the key conclusions briefly (focusing on radiator use as opposed to case fan use)
- The Gentle Typhoon is as close to the perfect 120 mm fan as possible, but is handicapped by a bearing rattle noise (also confirmed by Silent PC Review, which blames the poor quality of the fan's noise at certain speeds)
- BeQuiet! 120 are very good all rounders
- Noiseblockers PS/PL and M12 series are good all rounders and are except of any sort of parasite noise
- Nanoxia FX-Evo series are except from parasite noise and good for sub-1000RPM users
- no 140 mm fan is able to beat their reference 12o fan (BeQuiet!) on the noise/CFM benchmark, although cooling surface should also be considered
- Cougar CF-T14S et CF-V14H are more perforamnce oriented, but present a very good noise/CFM ratio
- Noctua NF-A14 FLX et NF-A15 PWM are too unstable (ie. pike frequencies based on RPM) for their own good, but can be great if the selected RPM range avoids those frequencies)
- the Corsair SP120 has poor performance and is bested by the AF series, even on radiator

Hope it will help and generate an interesting discussion thread! I for sure was surprised by the SP120 results.

If you guys are interested, I'll translate their methodology page into English for your reading over the week-end.

Awesome, thanks for the links...looks like some great work and reading to go through ..smile.gif
    
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post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hasdrubal View Post

Hardware.fr completed recently 3 large fan reviews (CFM and dBa), comparing fans on air and on a radiator (Hardware Labs SR1):
- 120 mm non-PWM fans: http://www.hardware.fr/articles/874-35/recapitulatif-db-a-vs-cfm.html
- 120 mm PWN fans: http://www.hardware.fr/articles/867-23/graphique-recapitulatif.html
- 140 mm fans (with or without PWM): http://www.hardware.fr/articles/886-26/recapitulatif-db-a-vs-cfm.html

Great links Hasdrubal! I love how you can turn fans off and on in the comparison. Makes it easy to compare.

Thanks Martin for bringing this up! Great info on the fan stats. Hopefully it will make some people's decision making easier.
post #14 of 22
Nice work as always. thumb.gif
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post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hasdrubal View Post

Hardware.fr completed recently 3 large fan reviews (CFM and dBa), comparing fans on air and on a radiator (Hardware Labs SR1):
- 120 mm non-PWM fans: http://www.hardware.fr/articles/874-35/recapitulatif-db-a-vs-cfm.html
- 120 mm PWN fans: http://www.hardware.fr/articles/867-23/graphique-recapitulatif.html
- 140 mm fans (with or without PWM): http://www.hardware.fr/articles/886-26/recapitulatif-db-a-vs-cfm.html

As it's in French, I'll summarize the key conclusions briefly (focusing on radiator use as opposed to case fan use)
- The Gentle Typhoon is as close to the perfect 120 mm fan as possible, but is handicapped by a bearing rattle noise (also confirmed by Silent PC Review, which blames the poor quality of the fan's noise at certain speeds)
- BeQuiet! 120 are very good all rounders
- Noiseblockers PS/PL and M12 series are good all rounders and are except of any sort of parasite noise
- Nanoxia FX-Evo series are except from parasite noise and good for sub-1000RPM users
- no 140 mm fan is able to beat their reference 12o fan (BeQuiet!) on the noise/CFM benchmark, although cooling surface should also be considered
- Cougar CF-T14S et CF-V14H are more perforamnce oriented, but present a very good noise/CFM ratio
- Noctua NF-A14 FLX et NF-A15 PWM are too unstable (ie. pike frequencies based on RPM) for their own good, but can be great if the selected RPM range avoids those frequencies)
- the Corsair SP120 has poor performance and is bested by the AF series, even on radiator

Hope it will help and generate an interesting discussion thread! I for sure was surprised by the SP120 results.

If you guys are interested, I'll translate their methodology page into English for your reading over the week-end.

That would be awesome Hasdrubal, I have a hard enough time with english (my native) much less french.
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post #16 of 22
Was faster than expected, less text that I had anticipated! Enjoy:
Quote:
In order to benchmark the different fans included in this review, we have used 2 sort of metrics:
1. Airflow, measuring that of the different models, was as an open fan, then on a Hardware Lab SR1 radiator [Hasdrubal's comment: 120.1 for 120 fans, 140.1 for 140 fans]. We used aTSI 5725 anemometer, placed at the end of 1m long/20 cm diameter PVC tube. Foams are rigged within a foam block at the other end of the tube.
Data on radiator tests are gathered using the same protocol, the fan being affixed to the rad and encased at the exit of the PVC tube. In order to minimize airleaks between the fan and radiator, we used a silicon gasket between the radiator and fan.
To ensure data consistency, airflow results are the average of 5 successive 5 seconds measurements. Fans were started 10 minutes before data was gathered.

2. Noise levels are measured using a Cirrus Optimus CR152A Class 2 sonometer. It can detect sound levels as low as 20 dB(a), at sound level that can be achieved in the room used for the benchmark.
Fans are encased within a foam block in order to minimize vibrations, and the sonometer is placed 25 cm away from the fan in order to avoid impact from the air turbulance generated bu the fan. Setting a small distance was deliberate in order to best differentiate fans throughout the benchmark.
Data on radiator tests are gathered using the same protocol, the fan being affixed to the radiator, then encased within a foam block. In order to minimize potential vibrations, we used, whenever possible (depending on the form factor of the fan frame), a slilicon gasket between the fan and the radiator. Whenever not possible, silicon spacers where used to the same effect.

A noise level in the 20 to 25 dB(A) range can be deemed silent when used within a case, but they effectively because inaudible on ly when reaching the bottom of the range. Up the 28 dB(A), cooling is very quiet, and will be qualified quiet between 28 an 31 dB(A). A dB(A) level up to 37 is considered standard for a computer, beyond cooling is noisy. Beyond 45 dB(A) the sound level becomes very noisy, and can bceome difficult to cope with unless drowned by music, altough this threshold is, as the other ones, very subjective and wil be impacted by several factors such as the auditor's sensitivity to noise, as well as the smoothness and regularity of the noise or the environment in which the computer is operated.

Fans have been fed from 2.5 to 12 V, with 0.5 V increments, using a ELC AL942 stabilised PSU, that allows for a continuous tension calibration, and delivers up to 2A, which hopefully was never required!

RPM measurements as well as PWM speeds have been gathered using a Zalman ZM-MFC3 fan controller, fed froma passive PSU in order not to add up unwanted noise.

We still gathered data using PWM fans using 3 different set speeds: 600, 900, 1200 RPM, in oredre to get an eaiser comparison, even though these 3 speeds couldn't be reached by all fans of this review when in PWM mode.

FYI, hardware.fr can be deemed one of the reference french-speaking computer fans. Their reviews and test articles aren't the most numerous ones, but certainly among the most thorough and documented ones.
post #17 of 22
Quote:
And I'm not trying to pick on the Cougar fans either, I want to try some myself.
Make sure that includes the 140mm HDB. In the 120mm market, I haven't found anything to beat the AP-15 in CFM/Noise through a rad, but at 140mm the Cougar gives the AP-15 w/ adapter a run for the money. I've also been curious of a few of the more odd-ball Delta fans, but they make soooo many models and most aren't carried by normal retailers.
post #18 of 22
Thread Starter 
Yeah, thinking of picking up some cougars. That is an impressive CFM/RPM ratio although i wonder how much loss there is with the open frame on a rad too. A lot of people seem to like them so I expect good things. I especially like the PWM control but have yet to find a fan really comparable to the GT on a rad too. GT definitely has it's own issues with harmonics too though because of those harmonic spikes they don't smoothly ramp up and down. if the cougars are good and smooth plus have PWM, they might make great fans for auto speed PWM users. I just have too many projects already..smile.gif
    
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post #19 of 22
Hardware.info did a roundup with...I think 393 fans (80, 120, and 140mm). The Cougar 140mm was second place right behind the NZXT FX-140LB for efficiency (airflow in CFM per decibel). very impressive. I went through their list and picked out some of the top fans, calculating the efficiency.

Case Fans.txt 1k .txt file

They should have all of the original results listed in their fan database.
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post #20 of 22
Here is a vid detailing some more on fans. its well worth the watch for people looking for information.
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