[Techtalk] AMD cooler fans (wsa: Asking for new PC recommended specs)

Hamster hamster at hamsternet.org
Wed Oct 1 11:47:16 EST 2003

On Tue, 30 Sep 2003 23:16:05 -0700
Karen Locke <karenl at scrserv.com> wrote:

> I shopped around for a quieter fan,  but couldn't find one.  I was
> repeatedly told that AMDs run hot, they need bigger fans, and I'd have to
> live with it.  And so I have... but reluctantly.  If I were building
> another system today, I'd think about noise as an issue.  (But otherwise,
> I'm really happy with my system.)

It's true that AMD cpus dissipate more heat, but as for having to live with
the noise, unfortunately those salespeople have led you up the garden path.

The fans that come with the AMDs are a touch on the noisy side, I'm sitting
next to one right now, but there are lots of things you can do about it.

First option is voltage regulation on the fan. You can do this in two ways.
First off you can buy a premade regulator, something like
<http://www.dealsonic.com/suflfanmasff.html> (my favourite) or 
<http://www.zalman.co.kr/english/product/zm-mfc1.htm> (my second favourite).

Alternatively, you can just solder one up yourself, its not that difficult
and I've even made one myself.

The next option is to buy a quieter fan. Anything from Zalman
<http://www.zalman.co.kr/english/intro.htm> has a good reputation as being
quiet, or the fan called a Whisper Rock IV
<http://www.ocmelbourne.com/reviews/whisper4/> is currently sitting in my
SO's machine and its so quiet we didnt bother putting a voltage regulator on

The interesting thing is that bigger fans actually mean quieter fans. If you
have two fans of differing sizes, and ask them both to move the same volume
of air per second, the smaller fan has to rotate much faster to meet that
requirement, and hence makes much more noise.

In my experience, cooling is an art as much as a science :-) But its loads
of fun (well I think so anyway ;-)

The case your computer is mounted in is also a fairly important factor in
the total noise your system makes. There's also the water cooling option
should you wish to go down that path.

In all cases though where you play with the cooling system of your computer,
be aware of the dangers of heat, know the limits of your CPU, and where
possible use the features of your bios (if present) to shut down the system
once it reaches a certain temp. I know some of the earlier AMDs had no
on-die thermistor, TomsHardware.com has a nice video of some melting CPUs.

Hope this has helped a little, the bottom line is you do NOT have to "put up
with" the racket that boxed AMD CPUs make.


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