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Help with 250D Airflow


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Hey, recently got a 250D, loving the case, been able to fit the monster known as the MSI R9 390 into it. However I wasn't really able to afford to liquid-cool my computer (nor really needed to, since I'm not planning on OCing), and most discussions about airflow are related to the H100i, which I am aware the 250D was designed for.


I'm having some issues with the idle temp of my r9 390. I know that it has the 0 dB technology where fans turn off below 60C, but my card keeps going on/off on/off since my idles (even when im just web browsing and using windows explorer) hover around 58-61. It's really annoying to watch it turn on and off repeatedly, so I think it's related to airflow since other owners are reporting 45-50 C idle temps.


So I recently went out and bought 2 AF120 LED fans, and I'm not sure how to install them on the side of the case. I read that the 250D is designed for positive pressure, but then that would be all intakes and no exhaust... Especially with a CPU cooler that is top-down (GeminII S524 rev 2), I'm not sure how to orient my side fans:




Maybe I should try making them both intake and turn around the stock 140mm fan to exhaust at the front? Or make them both exhaust? Or would that make it too negatively pressured inside the case? Or maybe have 1 exh 1 intake?


I hope I don't have to buy 2 80mm fans, I'm on a tight budget now and my mobo only has 1 header, so 5 fans on a single header is meh....


Any help would be appreciated

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The AF120's can help with your general case temperatures, including all your other components, but they won't do much for the 390's temperature. The GPU circuity that produces those temp readings is inside the housing. Only it's own fans are going to make a difference on the GPU diode temperature. You can poison the well to some extent by having horrible airflow and the entire case heats up an extra 5+ degrees, but there may be an easier, immediate solution to the throttle on/off issue.


My 970's also the have the same "no spin" technology until the diode hits 60C. I think I went three days before I fully hated it. Quiet and then the fans shoot straight up to 60% trying to contain a heavy load. The quick fix is download something like MSI Afterburner (or any of the GPU tweaking tools). You don't need to overclock the GPU, but it will allow you to set a manual fan profile. Even setting a very low fan speed like 20% keeps my GPU 15C cooler than if I let go in the horrid silent mode. You'll have to experiment a little to find the settings that is perfect for you, but I use a 10% curve starting at 45C and slowly building up to 30% at 65C for my work applications. For games I click into a different profile with a 20% baseline that rises to 60% at 70C - a temperature I never reach at 1440p. 60% is the irritating line for me on these Asus Strix 970x2. You'll need to find out where your point is and keep it just below that. Left in silent mode, gaming swings from 50-80C so fast the fans can never catch up. With the above fan setting, most AAA games in Ultra never make it past 65C with only a moderate 40% on the fans.


As for the what to do with your the AF120's, it looks like your CPU cooler stays perpendicular and can't help with the front to back flow. And since you're not happy with the current results, go ahead and make the AF120's on top the intake fans and the front 120 the exhaust. That might also keep some the GPU waste heat out the CPU cooler stream. However, try the GPU fan speed curve first to get a baseline. Then you hopefully can make a better comparison.

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Ah, I see. I've looked into the fan curve solution before but I didn't really tinker around with it because I was in denial that that was the only solution but that's what it seems like. I liked the 0 dB idea until it got annoying with its constant turning on/off, since I read that the fan bearings wear out quicker than the card will idling at 60C.


I have heard bad things about the cooling on Strix 390 cards, idk if it's as bad as the 970s.


Also, with your suggestion on the AF120 orientation, even without the fan curve my 390 is beginning to idle at 50-55 degrees until I do something like open a video or a 60 fps gify, so that's a relief. Only issue that bothers me is that my LED's dont match anymore which is a shame.


I also decided instead of asking for help, I went to experiment with all combinations of orientations for the fans. I found that double intake gives the best idle temps but atrocious load temps (I'm guessing because all the hot air gets trapped in the case, for some reason the positive pressure doesn't have the hot air vent towards the rear, too bad the 250D doesn't have openings on the top), double exhaust causes negative pressure but best load temps. One exh/one intake actually produce similar results in both orientations, which gives the best balance.


Now I'm upset that the leds don't match but function over form, for a moment i considered switching the 140mm to exhaust but I felt like it would be a bad idea.

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