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Fan setup advice for Fractal Design Define S

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I have a Define S with a window and an NH-D14 cpu cooler on an Asus Z170A mobo.

The fans I have to work with are:
2x Fractal Design GP-14's
NF-P14 and NF-P12 that both came with the D14
3x PH-F140HP's

In my current set up I have the 3 F140's as intakes, 2 in the front and 1 in the bottom, 1 GP14 as a rear exhaust and the standard setup for the D14 (P14 in the middle, P12 in the front), leaving a spare GP14.

Current setup

I was curious if this is the ideal setup? I was thinking of putting 2 F140's onto the D14 (partly because I like the looks of the F140's better, also they seem to be the better fans?), have the P12 and another F140 as front intakes and the P14 on the bottom as an intake, since the P12 has higher static pressure/air flow. Also I may switch the GP-14 to a top back exhaust as the rear of my computer is up against a wall or just have two exhausts, one rear and one top rear.

New setup

I also notice my cpu temps are around 24-30 idle and around 65-70 under full load/stress tests with x264 (4.6GHz @ 1.315V), ambient temperature around 22-23 degrees. This seems normal right?

Any help would be appreciated.
Edited by blizzars - 8/23/16 at 10:37am
post #2 of 12
The temps seem good - is this a 4770k or 4790k or ?

It's fun to play around with cooling/air flow options. I'm not a fan of top blowhole exhausts as they can interfere with the cooler intake air flow - as in stealing some cool intake air from the cooler intake fan(s) or just causing unnecessary turbulence and noise.

Have you removed the MB i/o cover and the pcie slot covers? With 3X intakes in a front-to-back air flow, the less restrictive the rear of the case, the better.

What GPU? Is it an open cooler or rear exhaust style?
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Sorry, I guess I should have listed some other specs. I'm running a 6700k with an MSI 1080. I haven't tried removing the MB cover but I have tried leaving the PCIe slots off, another thing I will probably try is raising the case to be a bit elevated to get airflow into the bottom easier.

I noticed that even on idle my temperatures will suddenly spike from 23-25 to anywhere from 45-55 for a second then back down to the 20s, is this noemal?

Another question I have is will it wear down the life of the fans to constantly start and stop them? I have my fan control set up to stop the fans from spinning when under a certain temperature and since the temperature spikes the fans start up for a second then stop.
post #4 of 12
The temp spikes could be normal if they correspond to cpu use. Keep task manager open to see if M$ is using your computer for spontaneous mining disguised as system processes. ;-)

Does the 1080 have the aftermarket cooler or the blower style?

Wouldn't worry about shortening the fan life. Maybe the power cycle would reduce life by 10 hours over 5+ years. But, you have good fans that should run for 5-10 years without issue. Power cycling is more an issue for the motors and most fans motors will outlast their bearings by a huge margin.
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
I can't help but feel you being sarcastic about the processes.. (^: but in case you aren't.. what would I be looking for?

MSI Gaming X 1080 is my graphics card so it would be an aftermarket intake cooler I believe? Thanks for the advice!
post #6 of 12
Originally Posted by blizzars View Post

I can't help but feel you being sarcastic about the processes.. (^: but in case you aren't.. what would I be looking for?

MSI Gaming X 1080 is my graphics card so it would be an aftermarket intake cooler I believe? Thanks for the advice!

My natural tone on the internet does tend to be sarcastic. Ok, not just on the internet. biggrin.gif

That said, it's always good to determine if there are rogue (or normal) background processes that are using excessive clock cycles. Open Task Manager and select the Process tab and observe if there is a process that uses significant resources that corresponds with the temp spike. Then you can use Process Explorer to gather more detail.

The GPU cooler is dumping its exhaust heat in the case. Do you notice a big difference in cpu temps when the GPU is working hard? If so, then you may want to consider constructing some ducts to feed the GPU cool intake air and ensure the heated GPU exhaust air exits the case directly rather than via the cpu cooler intake.

The long-in-tooth, previous century ATX tower spec never considered a possible future of 250W+ spaceheater GPUs. It's not the ideal configuration for CPU AND GPU cooling.
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Just another quick question, I notice that after switching fans on the D14, the new ones kind of stick out past the heatsink. The entire fan surface area covers the heatsink but about 1/8 of the fan is... "missing" the heatsink. Will this affect temperatures?

post #8 of 12
Looks pretty normal for a pair of 140s on a D14. Possibly a few mm higher than optimum. Are the fans mounted as low as they can be? If so, your job is done. Until the next itch needs to be tweaked. biggrin.gif

What are the temps like (including MB) compared to the stock config?
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Until the next tweak... forever upgrading. Rip my wallet haha. The temps have been pretty good actually a few degrees cooler, don't know if it was worth the effort switching fan clips
post #10 of 12
The cat seems to have covered the bases quite well. thumb.gif
You might be able to improve cooler intake air temps, but to do that you probably need to monitor them.
How to monitor air temperature different places inside of case:
  • A cheap indoor/outdoor thermometer with a piece of insulated wire and a plastic clothspin works great.
  • Made up with floral wire and tape. We don't want anything to short out with metal. wink.gif
  • Clip and position sensor where I want to check the temp. Make it easy to see what the air temp going into components actually is relative to room temp. wink.gif
  • Optimum cooling is when air temps going into coolers only being 2-3c warmer than room.. 5c or less is good.

"Ways to Better Cooling" link in my sig, 5th post gives the basics of case airflow.
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