Originally Posted by linuxjedi
Originally Posted by SabbathHB
I'll take some pics tonight and post them for ya later.
That's really nice of you, thanks! I'll look forward to seeing that. Interestingly enough, the folks at demcifilter.com say that their stuff is better than foam...because it let's in more air. Common sense tells you that means it also lets in more dust. There's obviously a tradeoff, or a spectrum whereon you find you have more flow and more dust, or less flow and less dust. I guess it's up to you to decide how much dust you can stand, based on flow requirements.
The danger I see is that if you allow too little airflow, you're going to see temperatures rise progressively as the filter fills up. With a piece of foam, it's very difficult to see if it's "full" or "clean", because the dust is trapped /inside/ the filter out of sight. You never know how much airflow you're really getting unless you constantly monitor the temperatures in your case, which nobody wants to do. I always keep the temperature of all my processor cores, vid cards, and hard drives all visible in my desktop status bar, but it's not really the best indicator of how well my filters are performing.
Over time I indeed see the average temperature of my cores begin to rise, and when it gets to a certain average temperature it's a near-certainty that it's time to clean the filters. When I clean the filters, the core temps then drop. I benefit from the fact that it's easy to see the accumulation of dust on my plain mesh filters, but I suffer because they are so difficult to access.
The demo images from the demcifilter guys look really cool, because they just stick onto any surface (even contoured surfaces) via light magnetism. To clean them, just peel them off and reattach when done. They are also mesh filters so it's easy to see dust accumulation, but they are a finer mesh than normal so you get less dust. Sadly, anyone who can think independently knows that despite the hype, you're still letting in more dust than you would with foam. Inevitably you'll have to open the case eventually and vacuum it all out, particularly the very fine dust that sticks on things and often just WILL NOT COME OFF.
It's too bad there's not a silver bullet solution to the dust problem, at least not that I've seen or heard of. Common sense also tells you that sticking something in oil doesn't protect it from dust when the oil itself is exposed to the air. Eventually the oil will get dirty too. And ultimately, given the choice, I'd rather have to clean dust off of my components than clean dusty oil
off of my components.
Your logic is faulty. For air to get through foam, it has to take multiple twists and turns whereas air going though a DEMCIfilter has a straight shot through it. The foam traps dust inside
the media, making it difficult to clean, whereas it sets on top of the DEMCIfilter's mesh, where it is easily removed. You can even lightly scrub the mesh without damage but foam won't take that kind of abuse.
From actual experience, I can tell you that the DEMCIfilters will let more air through while stopping more dust than foam will, especially over time. Yes, you will eventually have to open up the computer to blow (not vacuum!) it out but you won't have to do it nearly as often.
Vacuuming is an extremely bad idea. You can't get the nozzle of the vacuum close enough to many surfaces to be effective. Also, most vacuums generate static electricity which is easily transferred to your delicate electronic parts since such close contact with the nozzle is required. What works better than canned "air" and is safer and more convenient than a compressor is a small blower designed for clean computer parts, the DataVac ED500 (click on the second link from the bottom to go to a thread here that will tell you more about it). While a bit pricy up front, it will pay for itself pretty quickly from what you will save on the price of canned "air" (and it is better for the environment and your lungs). It is powerful enough to blow out pretty much all the dust that will get into your computer. Any that sticks can be easily loosened with an anti-static brush (do not use paint or makeup brushes; those generate static electricity). About once a year, I go over any area that dust has stuck to with a microfiber cloth moisten with LCD cleaner. It takes me about one whole minute to do that once year so I really need to find an easier way to do that.
Edit: Too high of air pressure can damage components which is why I recommend the DataVac ED500, a high volume blower. Also, when blowing out a case, take extra effort to make sure you don't spin a fan while blowing; I just use a finger to stop the blade while blowing in the area.
I also have severe allergies and I'm just old and decrepit to lug my machine outside for dusting so, about once a month before doing my regular house cleaning, I just open up my case in place, whether or not it needs it, then blow it out just before leaving the house to run an errand, chat with a neighbor, whatever. When I get back, what little dust I blew out has settled and I just dust and vacuum the room as normal. I also vacuum the filters from outside the case whenever they show signs of dust; a vacuum will not hurt the innards from outside.
While you feel otherwise, monitoring your CPU and GPU temperatures is an excellent way to determine if your computer is getting dusty inside. I use Core Temp
(use the U.S. Mirror) in the notification area of my taskbar where it takes up very little room but is easily visible.Edited by Lady Fitzgerald - 9/27/15 at 1:58pm