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31 Posts

06-18-2010

Texas, USA

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  • Registered: ‎06-18-2010
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M92p SFF Cooling with Upgraded Graphics Card

2014-01-20, 5:26 AM

I just upgraded the stock Radeon HD 7450 video card in my M92p with a Sapphire Radeon HD 7750 video card. The Sapphire card has the exact same form factor/dimensions as the stock card and fits perfectly in place of the original card (and it doesn't require any additional power connections). The system runs like a champ under normal load and I can't even tell a difference with the new card (as expected). However, when I load up a graphics-intensive game like Skyrim, I gradually start to hear the fan on the video card spin up until, about 15 min into gameplay, it sounds like the GPU fan is running at nearly full speed. When I reach around the back of the PC, the whole back panel around the video card is noticably hot.

 

I realize these faster GPUs will run hot when taxed, and I would expect to hear some additional fan noise. But the fact that the GPU fan is maxing out tells me that it's being starved of cooler air in the case. I would have expected the front fan to spin up higher to help with this, but it didn't seem to be spinning any faster than normal.

 

Can the front fan on the M92p throttle its speed to meet thermal demand in the case (just like CPU/GPU fans do)? Are GPUs designed so that the fan runs at full speed when the GPU is in use--or does that indicate a larger cooling problem?

 

Thanks.

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4330 Posts

01-01-2012

US

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Re: M92p SFF Cooling with Upgraded Graphics Card

2014-01-20, 15:33 PM

I faced a similar issue when I added a passively cooled HD 6670 to my M91p mini-tower, since passively cooled GPUs rely on decent case airflow for it's cooling.    (I work in a very quiet environment, and GPU fan noise was distracting.)  

 

I added a PWM fan to the front of the case, and vented PCI slot covers to the back, but, as you're seeing, the BIOS was not ramping the speed of the fans to compensate for the GPU heat.    I tried the SpeedFan program to vary the fan speeds, but the BIOS does not allow for that.  

 

I solved it by installing fixed-speed, quiet-design fans (3-pin, non-PWM) to the front and rear of my case, and bypassing the BIOS for control of the case fans.    I tried a couple different brands, but have settled on Noctua.  

 

http://www.noctua.at/main.php?show=produkte&lng=en#fans

 

I was put off at first by the price, but found it took the guess work out of trying and finding the right fan for my application.   I'm using the NF-B9 fan, and it comes with 2 in-line voltage adapters that provide for 3 possible fan speeds.   I'm using mine at the medium speed.    The downside is that they run at the one speed, at a speed to cool my system worst case.  The other benefit of the Noctuas is that they are among the quietest fans for the air volume, and the tonal quality of the sound is the least annoying.   

 

Another possible option is to use a fan controller to control the speed of fan (usually a 3-pin.)   This can allow for a granular adjustment.   

 

I suggest using GPU-Z to monitor your graphics card:     http://www.techpowerup.com/gpuz/

 

And I use CPUID HWMonitor (free non-pro) to monitor system-wide temps:  http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/hwmonitor.html

 

 

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2458 Posts

06-13-2013

US

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Re: M92p SFF Cooling with Upgraded Graphics Card

2014-01-21, 9:43 AM

wrote:
I tried a couple different brands, but have settled on Noctua.  

 

http://www.noctua.at/main.php?show=produkte&lng=en#fans

 

I was put off at first by the price, but found it took the guess work out of trying and finding the right fan for my application.   I'm using the NF-B9 fan, and it comes with 2 in-line voltage adapters that provide for 3 possible fan speeds.   I'm using mine at the medium speed.    The other benefit of the Noctuas is that they are among the quietest fans for the air volume, and the tonal quality of the sound is the least annoying. 


I've been using Noctua fans in my custom machines for about five years.  The Acousticase mid-tower cases I use support 120mm chassis fans front and rear, so that's what I go with, in support of my ASUS boards.

 

I always use the 120mm Noctua NF-P12 PWM version as their spin speed is controllable from the BIOS (not Lenovo, but ASUS).  And as you mention, they are SUPER quiet while pushing lots of air.  Took me a few tries to learn how to mount the fans using the "rubber feet" pushing them into the fan correctly and then getting the other end properly seated in the matching holes on the chassis, but the result is ZERO vibration and noise.  I find that in my properly ventilated cases they generally run at about 890rpm at the rear "exhaust" and about 940rpm at the front "intake".  Of course their speeds will vary.

 

On my most recent machine build in late 2012 (ASUS P8Z77-V Pro board) I also went with a Noctua CPU cooler, the NH-U12P SE2.  This is sandwiches the actual cooler between two of the same NF-P12 PWM fans, oriented so that one is doing "air pushing" through the cooler and out the back, and the other is doing "air pulling" from the cooler and ejecting it out the rear of the case (back through the other P12 "exhaust" fan on the rear of the chassis).  Again, remarkably efficient in blowing lots of air, virtually silent, and PWM controlled by Q-Fan feature of the BIOS.

 

I use nothing but Noctua fans, though I've never used the inline resistors to "throttle" the fan speed as my ASUS motherboards have all had fan-control capability.

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