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Fan Help

Discussion in 'Overclocking & Cooling' started by Alsone, 1 Jan 2020.

  1. Alsone


    Joined: 26 Nov 2007

    Posts: 67


    I'm currently looking at building an air cooled rig in a Lian Li 011 Dynamic case.

    In order for the case to look "right" I think I'm going to have to populate it with 9 fans - 3 each of top, bottom, side.

    I love the the Corsair Fans but they're too expensive so think it might have to be Lian Li BR's - just hoping the noise won't be too much, I guess they could be turned down in speed with so many.

    The issue is I've never done RGB fans before and the controllers that come with them seem to only support 6 fans max. So the question is how do I control 9 fans? Do I plug 3 separate controllers into MB (assuming it has 3 fan controller ports) and lose remote control as I intend to buy 1 set remote and 2 non remote to save cash, or do I plug the remote based controller into 1 MB port then the other 2 controllers into the 1st remote controller (assuming the mb and fan plugs are the same), in which case will 1 MB port and the 1 remote controller handle the 9 fans power draw or is the whole system going to melt down, or are there other options?

    Really stuck. Cost is also horrific for fans now, but that's a separate issue. Used to be £2-3 and now they're like £20-30 each! Tough when you need 9!
  2. snips86x


    Joined: 14 Nov 2012

    Posts: 17,262

    Location: Close to Swindon, but not Swindon

    Can you daisy chain the controllers?
  3. Finners


    Joined: 27 Mar 2009

    Posts: 2,590

    I know this is off topic but thought I'd ask in case you've overlooked it. What air cooler are you going to be using with this case?

    I'm looking at going back to air cooling and nearly brought one but the max cooler height is only 155mm. You would need to buy the XL version to fit in most mod to high end air coolers
  4. Alsone


    Joined: 26 Nov 2007

    Posts: 67

    Thanks for that Information Finners. I was looking at a Noctua NH15 but it won't fit! I'm guessing now either a Dark Rock Pro (have concerns about memory clearance) or maybe I need to look to an AIO. Trouble is AIO's worry me. I can't afford to have leaks damaging MB's or blowing things up down the line. This is really a once in a decade upgrade.

    Thinking about a Taichi or Crosshair Motherboard. Again didn't want to go that expensive but it's a difficult choice when potentially going for a 3900X. I don't intend to overclock.

    System will be used for Gaming albeit not exclusively hence the 3900X choice rather than the 3700x. Was going 3700x but realised if I need to keep it for a long time, I might need 12 cores to keep up the speed for video editing etc.
  5. doyll


    Joined: 1 Jul 2011

    Posts: 8,268

    I agree, get Lian Li 011 Dynamic LX and have 167mm CPU clearance instead of 155mm .. assuming you haven't already got 011.

    Lian Li cases are great for water cooling, but not s good for air cooling. Only way to get decent airflow would be to use all 3x vents near front on right side as intakes with good pressure rated fans moving air into motherboard compartment, then remove all PCIe back slot covers to increase rear vent area at back of motherboard compartment. This will greatly increase rear vent area, especially around GPU and give better front to back airflow for moving heated air coming off of GPU back and out of case thus supplying cooler air to both CPU and GPU.

    As for what fans to use, I'm not into RGB so my suggestions are starting with the best:
    be quiet! Silent Wings 3 PWM high speed (£19.99 each & out of stock )
    Phanteks PH-F120MP (2-packs £14.99)

    While NH-D15 is a very good cooler it is also the most expensive air cooler being £84.95, also D15 is 155mm wide with fins reaching 77.5mm toward PCIe sockets from center of CPU.

    Phanteks PH-TC14PE is within a couple degrees at most and is only £52.99.
    It is 134 x 140 x 160mm (LxWxH) w/o fans and with thumb screw removed from crossbar over base the middle fan mounts flush with top of cooler. Link below is to detailed dimensional drawing of PH-TC14PE.

    Edit: posted too late. :(
    NH-D15S is good cooler
  6. Alsone


    Joined: 26 Nov 2007

    Posts: 67

    I haven't pulled the trigger yet as I thought I'd wait for CES to see what's happening with Ryzen and Nvidia. If release are close, I might change some or all of my plans or even wait longer.

    So far as cases go, from memory Gamers Nexus amongst others tested the 011 Dynamic with air and found performance to be pretty much the same as with watercooling. In fact, it performed considerably better than the 011 Dynamic Air which might explain why it appears to be being cleared. It's actually something like the 4th coolest case on the market even on air. As for the XL, I'd love one, but can't afford the extra £70 or so for the larger case. It's a big con on Lian Li's behalf if you ask me as I doubt there's anymore than a few extra pounds worth of material in the bigger case. If it was an extra £10 over the standard 011 Dynamic, I'd buy one and I'm sure they'd be flying off the shelves in preference to the standard case or other case brands around that price point. As it is, the £189 price tag just isn't justifiable in my opinion, given you're looking at another £150+ for fans, nor can I afford to spend the extra as I'm already over budget.

    Anyway, as for the original question, does anyone know how to fit 9 fans into a case with PWM and colour control maintained over all?
  7. Danny75


    Joined: 26 Aug 2013

    Posts: 8,056

    List the motherboard you've decided on, the exact fans and anything else that has RGB or ARGB/DRGB you're going to use.

    Also, I've used Lian-Li BR Lite. They look really nice but are noisy and the noise is not something you can reduce much by low spinning because it's bad design that causes it - the tips of the fan blades are inserted into a chamber along the circumference. This is produced by the aluminium sticking past the actual fan frame. The BR 120 Digital PWM also suffers from the same issue. I would not buy again. The BR120 PWM (non-digital) does not suffer the same issue because of slightly different design. I cannot tell you how quiet these are but pretty sure they won't be as noisy and lowering RPM should actually have a lot more effect than with the others that have the fan blade tips hitting air right against the aluminium.

    Anyway, depending on what you have, ideally a motherboard with two RGB headers (if fans will be RGB) or two ARGB/DRGB headers (if fans will be said type) because you don't want to RGB daisy-chain more than 6-8 fans, roughly. The PWM powering will be easy. Either get three PWM 3-way splitters, or PWM 5-way with SATA power, or look at actual PWM fan controllers.

    Most RGB or ARGB/DRGB fans come with daisy-chain functionality for the lighting. You'll have to keep an eye out for that, makes things easier.

    If you got the Lian-Li BR Lite 3-fan packs, which I don't recommend you actually get, each pack comes with PWM splitters for 6 fans. There's no SATA power for the splitter so having 6 headers is pointless (and/or dangerous if you use them all). But you can power 3 fans no problem. So if you bought 9 in 3-fan packs, you wouldn't actually need any further splitters or controller. Again, just an example not a recommendation, as it's something you can look for in the fans you browse, i.e. what comes with them as accessories.
  8. Alsone


    Joined: 26 Nov 2007

    Posts: 67

    Hi Danny, sorry for the slow response, been busy with other things.

    I've purchased nothing yet. CES, the forthcoming CPU's and GPU's have led me to hold off. I may still go the CPU route of Ryzen 3 as although Ryzen 4 is promising a 17% IPC Gain, I'm not sure how much I'll really gain from gaming or most tasks I do. As for Graphics cards, better RTX and potentially 50% gains makes a graphics card purchasable now.

    Thanks for the info on Lian-Li BR Lite. Fans are a real rip off atm. You can buy Noctua for £19.99 each. Add RGB onto a similar fan, and the price doubles for triples just because RGB is in vogue. Even RGB strips which were £5-6 a few years ago are now £40-50. There's no excuse as led's are dirt cheap.

    TBH, I probably don't need 9 fans, was just considering 9 to make the bottom of the case look better. In tests on the major youtube channels, from memory even the standard 011-dynamic performed well on air with 3 intakes in the rear side and 3 exhausts in the top. In fact from memory, I think it ranks the 3rd or 4th coolest case on the market.

    Motherboard wise I've been thinking of a Taichi or Hero viii, although the price of both is also making me baulk. I'm finding it very difficult to stomach building a £3.5k pc when in a few months there will be an Xbox and playstation with near enough the same performance for around £500. Hell you could build a £1K non gaming pc with kick ass specs and still buy an Xbox or Playstation and only have spent £1500. The PC manufacturers and retailers really have their reality screwed and are killing their own market. Anyway I diverge. Thanks for the information. I guess if I get one of those boards I'm probably good to go. I may just wait for the X670 to come out though and see how prices adjust. I may also have to scrap the case idea and go for a Kolink observatory or similar. It shows what bullsh8t fan prices are when Kolink can produce a nice glass case with 4 RGB fans included for less than the cost of most 4 RGB fans kits when purchased alone!

    Then again, I may just buy an XBox!