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GPU and Case Side Fan

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Just built a new rig and went for a combo of good cooling and silence. Everything runs the way that I'd expect but I do hear my GPU fans really spool up while gaming. I checked with my monitoring software so I'm sure that it is not the case fans. My question is, what are the thoughts on a side fan and would the preference be to do it as an intake or exhaust? I was thinking exhaust as it may help move the hot air away from the GPU and keep less of it from moving towards the top of the case? Airflow is great as I have no drive cages and all cables are routed well out of the way. Thoughts or suggestions? (Rig info below)

Fractal Design R5 (non-window)
i7-6800k (mild OC to 4.2)
Asus X99 Deluxe II
32GB Corsair Vengeance (3200)
Samsung 1TB 850 Pro
EVGA GTX 970 SC (cannibalized from old system and to be replaced eventually by 1080)
EVGA Supernova 750 G2
Noctua NH-D15
3x Noctua NF-A14 PWM (2 Front Intake / 1 Rear Exhuast)
post #2 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RVJ22 View Post

Just built a new rig and went for a combo of good cooling and silence. Everything runs the way that I'd expect but I do hear my GPU fans really spool up while gaming. I checked with my monitoring software so I'm sure that it is not the case fans. My question is, what are the thoughts on a side fan and would the preference be to do it as an intake or exhaust? I was thinking exhaust as it may help move the hot air away from the GPU and keep less of it from moving towards the top of the case? Airflow is great as I have no drive cages and all cables are routed well out of the way. Thoughts or suggestions? (Rig info below)

Fractal Design R5 (non-window)
i7-6800k (mild OC to 4.2)
Asus X99 Deluxe II
32GB Corsair Vengeance (3200)
Samsung 1TB 850 Pro
EVGA GTX 970 SC (cannibalized from old system and to be replaced eventually by 1080)
EVGA Supernova 750 G2
Noctua NH-D15
3x Noctua NF-A14 PWM (2 Front Intake / 1 Rear Exhuast)

It depends of your configuration, you should try it both ways, for me side fan works better when it's exhaust.
post #3 of 14
I had the same issue on my Air 540 using the same GPU. I eventually went with water cooling for a totally silent build. Wasn't cheap though. That R5 case doesn't look like it will pull enough cool air in the front for the GPU. Have you added a second fan in the front yet? How are your other case fans configured?
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
Yes, I've got 2 Noctua NF-A14 PWM fans in front and 1 as a rear exhaust. They're all controlled by the MB and at idle my cores are all sitting at about 26.
My MB will allow me to map fans to specific heat sensors. I was thinking about the side fan with it mapped specifically to the GPU.


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post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RVJ22 View Post

Just built a new rig and went for a combo of good cooling and silence. Everything runs the way that I'd expect but I do hear my GPU fans really spool up while gaming. I checked with my monitoring software so I'm sure that it is not the case fans. My question is, what are the thoughts on a side fan and would the preference be to do it as an intake or exhaust? I was thinking exhaust as it may help move the hot air away from the GPU and keep less of it from moving towards the top of the case? Airflow is great as I have no drive cages and all cables are routed well out of the way. Thoughts or suggestions? (Rig info below)

Fractal Design R5 (non-window)
i7-6800k (mild OC to 4.2)
Asus X99 Deluxe II
32GB Corsair Vengeance (3200)
Samsung 1TB 850 Pro
EVGA GTX 970 SC (cannibalized from old system and to be replaced eventually by 1080)
EVGA Supernova 750 G2
Noctua NH-D15
3x Noctua NF-A14 PWM (2 Front Intake / 1 Rear Exhuast)
Using NF-A14 PWM fans I would use 2x front and 1x bottom intake. You will get better airflow that way. Bottom intake flow directly into GPU. wink.gif
Remove all unused PCIe back slot covers. I know, they are vented covers, but removing them doubles the airflow area. wink.gif

You might find "Ways to Better Cooling" link in my sig of interest. 1st post is index, click on topic to see it. 5th is a good place to start.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Yep, actually have been reading it.

I actually thought about the bottom mount already for a few reasons: 1. It has a filter 2. It is already open so there is no additional openings for noise to escape the case

The issue that I have is that the ideal fan bay would be the center, right next to the PSU. As good as my cable management is, that area is really the main junction for all of them. The third bay is wide open though since I've removed all of the drive cages. I'll have to take another look at it.

Thanks for the tip on the PCIs slot covers...given the lessened restriction and the location I'd think that would greatly improve the airflow past the GPU and also result in less natural convection toward the top of the case and the CPU.


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post #7 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RVJ22 View Post

Yep, actually have been reading it.

I actually thought about the bottom mount already for a few reasons: 1. It has a filter 2. It is already open so there is no additional openings for noise to escape the case

The issue that I have is that the ideal fan bay would be the center, right next to the PSU. As good as my cable management is, that area is really the main junction for all of them. The third bay is wide open though since I've removed all of the drive cages. I'll have to take another look at it.

Thanks for the tip on the PCIs slot covers...given the lessened restriction and the location I'd think that would greatly improve the airflow past the GPU and also result in less natural convection toward the top of the case and the CPU.


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I don't know how you managed your cables from PSU to behind motherboard, but I immediately turn them to behind mobo with no slack. This usually leaves more than half of the middle vent / fan unobstructed .. dependent on how big PSU is of course.

My experience is case side vents hurt more often then help case airflow and cooling. We already have fans on GPU moving airflow up with front fans pushing front to back. Adding a bottom intake pushing up is usually better than a side fine added a 3rd direction to the case airflow. Reason is basically every time air changes direction it creates swirls and eddies in it's flow and lowers it's efficiency.

'Natural convection' does not rise. it radiates in all directions. As for heated /expanded air rising, this is non-existent when fans are being used.
Edited by doyll - 7/9/16 at 8:59am
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Yeah, it might not be as cluttered as I'm thinking because that's exactly how I ran the cables. I'll have to pull the side off and take a look.

On the plus side, temps have been pretty good. Under load the CPU hasn't gone above 63 and the GPU hasn't gone above 75. Granted I haven't done any torture tests but I'm not a big believer in those anyway since real world applications rarely approach that kind of abuse.

I'll take a look at that bay though and thanks for the PCIe slot tip. Going to run down and pull those now.


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post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RVJ22 View Post

Yeah, it might not be as cluttered as I'm thinking because that's exactly how I ran the cables. I'll have to pull the side off and take a look.

On the plus side, temps have been pretty good. Under load the CPU hasn't gone above 63 and the GPU hasn't gone above 75. Granted I haven't done any torture tests but I'm not a big believer in those anyway since real world applications rarely approach that kind of abuse.

I'll take a look at that bay though and thanks for the PCIe slot tip. Going to run down and pull those now.


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Depending on how much case intake airflow you have the PCIe covers may let air (and dust) in instead of out .. meaning more intake airflow is needed. This is more of a problem when case fans are not variable speed controlled the same as CPU and GPU.
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
All good there...case fans are MB controlled and right now I have 2 intake / 1 exhaust. If I add a bottom fan I'll have 3 intake so I should always have positive pressure.


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