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Need advice on fan intake/exhaust configuration.


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I am now using Corsair Carbide 678c case which came with 3 140mm fans with max 1200RPM. I also installed an H115i Platinum RGB AIO. The configuration I have been using is as follows:

 

2 front fans as intake (140mm, 1200RPM)

 

2 Radiator exhaust fans at top (140mm, up to 2000RPM)

 

1 Exhaust fan at rear (140mm, 1200RPM)

 

As far as I've read, most people prefer neutral or positive pressure and my setup seems to have quite a negative pressure, 3 vs 2 fans, and the radiator fans are even more powerful than the intake ones.

 

Do you think I should try to make my PC case more neutral or positive-pressured? I am thinking of 5 options:

 

1. Leave it as it is.

 

2. Turn my rear fan to intake. It will be very close to the radiator exhaust, would that be a problem?

 

3. Move the radiator to the front, and make 3 1200RPM fans at top and rear exhaust, so that it's more balanced (2 powerful intakes vs 3 less powerful exhaust). Not sure how much it will make motherboard / gpu inside warmer though.

 

4. Add an additional 140mm fan at the bottom. (My case only allow 2 front 140mm fans).

 

5. Add an additional 140mm intake fan at the top (nearest to the front). (My case only allow 2 front 140mm fans). This might be a bit weird as an exhaust and an intake fan are next to each other

 

My PC temps are currently fine, and I have no concern about them, but if rearranging my fans can improve dust buildups I would like to try them. How much do you think these options will improve dust buildups from negative pressure?

 

Thanks in advance!

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Run your benchmark and then try rear intake. I'd probably go with rear intake and add a bottom intake. Unless you have pets, in which case I'd run a bottom fan as exhaust to push dander/fur away.

 

Positive pressure helps with dust. If you have pets, it's a must.

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You don't have negative pressure right now. The radiator fans up top will move about half their "free air CFM" on the specs when radiator restricted. I doubt you spend much time at 2000 rpm with them (nor should you), so you are a lot closer to 2 fans vs 2 than you think. Remember, you always can manipulate this by changing fan speed rather than direction.

 

 

Aside from pet hair concerns... turning the top to intake may be the most helpful. You may not getting much airflow through the front. It is case door restricted. Using the top as intake hopefully creates enough flow to push everything out the back venting. This also forces GPU waste straight out the back versus pulling it into the center of the case.

 

You can try rear intake and top exhaust as well. My experience with this is you take a hit on central hardware temps - things like RAM, VRM, or anything else in the central MB area as the GPU heat is pulled across them. This things are always specific to each case and I have not tested the 678©, so your results could be different, but I would never do this with a top mounted radiator.

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Thanks for your comments! I don't have pets (yet) so maybe I could run with balanced / slightly positive pressure~

 

You don't have negative pressure right now. The radiator fans up top will move about half their "free air CFM" on the specs when radiator restricted. I doubt you spend much time at 2000 rpm with them (nor should you), so you are a lot closer to 2 fans vs 2 than you think. Remember, you always can manipulate this by changing fan speed rather than direction.

 

 

Aside from pet hair concerns... turning the top to intake may be the most helpful. You may not getting much airflow through the front. It is case door restricted. Using the top as intake hopefully creates enough flow to push everything out the back venting. This also forces GPU waste straight out the back versus pulling it into the center of the case.

 

You can try rear intake and top exhaust as well. My experience with this is you take a hit on central hardware temps - things like RAM, VRM, or anything else in the central MB area as the GPU heat is pulled across them. This things are always specific to each case and I have not tested the 678©, so your results could be different, but I would never do this with a top mounted radiator.

 

You have a good point about radiator's CFM. I will try adjusting the fan curve first then (Maybe the rear exhaust at half speed as 2 intakes) and test the pressure first :)

 

I might try top intake too because of the closed front case door as you said. The thing that is bothering me is that H115i RGB fans looks better with push configuration. (I think I will do pull config if I'm going for top intake, I want to keep my RGB fans visible XD)

Edited by isarun
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I might try top intake too because of the closed front case door as you said. The thing that is bothering me is that H115i RGB fans looks better with push configuration. (I think I will do pull config if I'm going for top intake, I want to keep my RGB fans visible XD)

 

I've done a few rounds of this with other cases. One thing to be aware of with the ML-RGB is their 4 LEDs are exposed on the rear side. Depending on your eye position relative to the case, it can hit you in an unfortunate way. Had one case were the dual bottom/top intake was highly efficient, but the glare drove me insane within 1 day. Ended up hiding them with the radiators, but slipping the fan between case and radiator tends to be noisier.

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