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Fan Controller Wattage

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
I'm in the market for a fan controller for a water cooling setup. I'll have four groups of fans (4,4,3,3). I plan to use Gentle Typhoon AP-15s which are rated at 0.083A with a start-up amperage of 0.36A. For my groups of four fans, that's a running wattage of about 4W and a start-up of about 17W.

So my question is about the Bitfenix Recon which is rated at 10W/channel. Does that mean running wattage or 10W period? Just wondering if the controller would be able to start up my fans.
post #2 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by rfvgyhn View Post

I'm in the market for a fan controller for a water cooling setup. I'll have four groups of fans (4,4,3,3). I plan to use Gentle Typhoon AP-15s which are rated at 0.083A with a start-up amperage of 0.36A. For my groups of four fans, that's a running wattage of about 4W and a start-up of about 17W.

So my question is about the Bitfenix Recon which is rated at 10W/channel. Does that mean running wattage or 10W period? Just wondering if the controller would be able to start up my fans.
I find that when it states a maximum wattage - it means that is the expected maximum output for the voltage regulators being used on each channel. Once you start trying to consume more than the rated amount for that channel you're going to start losing out on output on that channel all while putting extra strain on the regulators. 10watts means 10 watts, it's the most you can typically get from the regulators.

The most you'll be able to load each channel with is 0.83amps at 12 volts with the Bitfenix Recon so as long as the fans on them don't try to pull over that while running you shouldn't experience any loss. To further answer your question - it should be fine on the initial rush of current to start the fans as they won't take much to do so even with less power applied but it's rated for constant supply. If you expect higher power needs in the future I would recommend looking into a fan controller that can supply more power per channel. Half decent controllers nowadays can provide 30watts per channel (2.5Amps each) without issue while providing plenty of headroom.

As an addendum - You'll be more than fine with the output as it has 5 channels for a total of 50watts. Just don't put all 4 on one a single channel and you'll be well within the limits.

Edited by Chozo4 - 11/28/13 at 1:42pm
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post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply. From what you said, I think I'll have to pick a different controller. I'm still a little confused though. You say 10W means 10W but then you say it should be OK to start the fans. The fans are rated at .36A when they initially start which is a tiny bit over 17W. I have a total of 14 fans which is what I meant by 4,4,3,3. I suppose I could have made that a bit more clear. Even if I split the 14 fans over the five channels, I'd still have a group of three somewhere which is about 13W at start-up. Their running wattage is well within the 10W limit. I'm just not sure about the initial start-up.
post #4 of 5
What I meant by it being okay to start is that even though it takes more to start-up it will still start with less wattage. The start-up ratings are the maximum possible current consumed during start-up not an absolute 'will not start at all if below this' rating. The only drawback is it will usually take a pinch longer to start them up to full speed as the power will be shared across them but is otherwise of no concern. With the group of three they will see a very minimal start-up current loss in the ballpark of only 1 watt each - which is trivial at best.
Edited by Chozo4 - 11/29/13 at 8:15pm
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post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
That cleared it up for me. Thanks for the help.
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