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Swapping a cooler fan

Discussion in 'AMD Overclocking' started by Seasidepeter, Jun 21, 2012.

  1. Seasidepeter

    Seasidepeter Guest

    Hi all - I recently upgraded my asus m2n68 motherboard with a Phenom 2 x4 955
    cpu - a decent step up from the original Athlon 64x2 2.7Ghz.

    Everything runs great - but the supplied cooler for the Phenom has a really
    noisy fan.

    Any reason I can't swap just the fan, leaving the heatsink in place? They look
    about the same size...?
    Seasidepeter, Jun 21, 2012
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  2. Seasidepeter

    Paul Guest

    That depends on the CFM rating of each fan.

    In general terms, if you look at catalog listings for computer fans,
    they come in "low", "medium", "high", and "ultra". "Low" and "medium"
    are the ones you can live with. The noise from an "ultra", will send
    you into the next room. If you had a "high" or "ultra", you'd use a
    voltage reducer with them (like a Zalman Fanmate), to crank down
    the speed, and the noise. On my other computer, I have a 110CFM
    fan, which I run at 7V, so the noise isn't quite as bad. That's
    the rear exhaust fan.

    If you drop the fan by one "size", then the CPU temp is going to
    increase by a bit, say 10C. You have to use a tool like Speedfan,
    see what the current temp is. Then, read up on what other AMD
    processor users consider a stable operating temperature to be.

    For example, my CPU runs at 43C, when room temp is quite cool. Maybe
    my processor can run up to 65C socket temp, without a problem. I have
    22C of headroom to work with. In my computer room, a hot summer day
    (i.e. yesterday!), the temp shoots up by an additional 12C.
    So my estimate for how hot the computer gets (before I shut down
    and exit the room), would be 43C+12C = 55C at the CPU. I have
    about 10C left of headroom, which might be just enough to downsize
    one fan grade.

    The above fan grades, are for the same size fan. In the catalog,
    I might see four 120mm fans, with those four designations. If my
    CPU was cooled by a "high", then I might be able to move down to
    a "medium" and stay within my desired 65C limit.

    When you do that kind of testing (CPU max temp), you need to run
    a CPU loading program. That would simulate a real usage scenario.
    For example, if I do a two hour video render, with all four cores,
    then walk out of the room, I want to be sure if I come back in
    two hours, the CPU stays under 65C. To simulate that, I can run
    Prime95 torture test, wait ten minutes, and that test case will
    give me an estimate of how hot the CPU would get. (The ten minutes,
    is to give the computer case internal air temperature time to settle
    down. It takes a while, and even ten minutes might not be enough.)
    You want to work with "worst case" conditions, so you don't underestimate
    your headroom remaining. If you're doing the experiment on a
    winter day, you need to know the summer to winter room temp
    differential, and add that in to the experimental results. If
    you're doing the experiment on the hottest day in the summer,
    then no further correction is needed.

    Speedfan from almico.com, can be used to read out your
    temperature sensors. Other available tools would be
    Asus Probe, one of the MSI or Gigabyte utilities, CoreTemp,
    MBM5 or the like. Whatever utility that knows the hardware
    monitor best.

    I have no idea what a Phenom II x4 can take in terms of temperatures,
    but they do use a few watts, and need a decent cooling solution.
    My processor is only a dual core, and flat out, uses about 36 watts of
    electricity (as measured). So I don't need that much of a fan. I
    actually replaced the fan on my cooler, but it was because I
    broke the original one (doh!). You can't be too rough with them,
    when cleaning the dust off. Some spring inside mine, slipped out
    of place, and it was ruined. Mine was a Coolermaster brand.
    Replaced it with a Vantec Stealth.

    I don't clean the computer that often, but was thinking about
    it just now, because yesterday was so hot. And today is
    going to be another stinker.

    So your first step, is researching the "max stable temp" for
    a Phenom II x4.

    Paul, Jun 21, 2012
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  3. Seasidepeter

    Seasidepeter Guest

    Thank you Paul - a really helpful response. I've downloaded the programs you
    suggested, and gone ahead and swapped the two fans. The old one is exactly the
    same size, but the blades are thinner, which probably limits to amount of air it
    can pull.

    With no overclocking, the cpu seems to idle at around 42/43C. Under the torture
    test it rises to 62, at which point I stopped the test. Call me a chicken, but I
    don't want to blow it up just yet!

    Under ordinary conditions - word processing, web browsing, emailing, running
    Black Ops in a window (purely for research, you understand!), it seems to run at
    a steady-ish 55C.

    The plus side is the wonderful silence; the negative side is that I suspect it
    needs a bigger fan...time to check those catalogues I guess.
    Seasidepeter, Jun 21, 2012
  4. Seasidepeter

    Wes Newell Guest

    Wes Newell, Jun 21, 2012
  5. Seasidepeter

    Wes Newell Guest

    Using the TR2-R1 my X4 idles at <1C above room temp, and has never went
    over 40C. I also have a 120mm fan in the side cover, which helps
    tremendously feeding room air direct to cpu and case. The largest cpu fan
    in the world won't help if it's sucking 40C case air.
    Wes Newell, Jun 21, 2012
  6. Seasidepeter

    Paul Guest

    The processor has automated protection features. The
    absolute cutoff is provided by THERMTRIP, which will turn
    off the power to the PC instantly. (That will cause
    a dirty shutdown on your file system, and then CHKDSK
    could start running on the next startup.)

    So the processor should be protected against any
    short term problems. I don't know what AMD uses for
    throttling, and whether they change multipliers
    if the processor gets too hot. But I believe both
    AMD and Intel have THERMTRIP. And the trip point is
    established purely in hardware, so a software crash
    won't prevent the protection feature from working.


    You have to go out and do some data mining, to get a
    reasonable safe value. Remembering that some laptops,
    their hardware runs at close to 100C... :) That would be
    the silicon die temperature. The silicon itself, can
    withstand 135C or so without parameter drift, and lower
    temperature limits are caused by damage to the package
    that holds the silicon die. If the processor came in
    multi-layer ceramic (MLC), it might have been good up to the
    135C number. The logic simulation of the CPU (i.e. proof
    the design works), stops at around 105C or 110C.
    Nobody does design verification at 135C or anything.
    It would be too hard to close timing that high up.
    The logic is proved to work at around 105-110C. And the
    organic packaging used on chips now, probably can't take
    that temperature, and a little less than that is safe
    for the chip.



    There is a difference between silicon die temperature, and
    socket temperature. On older hardware setups, the temperature
    being monitored, was measured underneath the socket of the CPU.
    Let's pretend that was 65C, just to make a numeric example.

    The silicon die has a temperature differential to the outside
    world. It could be around 25-35C higher than the socket
    temperature. So if you were using a silicon die based measurement,
    it would be 90-100C die temp.

    So when you're looking for the "stable max", keep in mind
    that the guys could be talking about socket or die temps
    and could be implying different things. Socket temperature
    may also be referred to in the documentation as Tcase_max.

    I'm not going to do the data mining for you... because I'm
    "lazy" :) And it's getting hot here again.

    Paul, Jun 21, 2012
  7. Seasidepeter

    Seasidepeter Guest

    Seasidepeter, Jun 22, 2012
  8. Seasidepeter

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    You'll have to remove the heatsink to remove its fan anyways. Why not
    just get a full heatsink/fan combo?

    Yousuf Khan
    Yousuf Khan, Jun 23, 2012
  9. Seasidepeter

    Seasidepeter Guest

    Actually, the fan on the AMD supplied unit simply clicks into place behind four
    small tabs on the heatsink.

    And I'm ashamed to say I don't want to replace the whole thing because I'm lazy
    and don't want all that mucking about with thermal paste again.

    As a ps: I swapped the fan for my quieter one, and it put ten degrees on the cpu
    temperature. So I turned up one of the case fans - and all is well again with
    minimal noise. Hooray...
    Seasidepeter, Jun 23, 2012
  10. Seasidepeter

    rms Guest

    So the processor should be protected against any
    Most bioses have a thermal shutdown option under PC Health. I set my X4
    and X6 to 60C for a beep alarm, and 65C for shutdown. Also most
    motherboards have a auto-fanspeed utility of some sort, that even works with
    3pin fan headers, I'd set that to go to 100% fanspeed around 55C.

    rms, Jun 25, 2012
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