How can I add extra cooling if needed

vbimport

#1

I just bought a used Dell optiplex GX620 for a PVR project. It’s a SFF desktop with a BTX motherboard. It looks similar to this only smaller:

http://belvillconsulting.com/store/images/GX620-MAR-1-C-soft.jpg

It’s got one fan in the middle of the case that blows across the Chip and out the vents in the back of the machine. I’ve heard these are generally good PC’s but they have two problems… The PSU’s go out in them, and they generate a lot of heat. Any suggestions on how I could better handle heat issues, or maybe I shouldn’ t even be consurned?

Other heat related info: Underneath the CD drive (top left corner) are two SATA 7200 RPM hard drives. I am keeping this PC in my entertainment center. The shelf that the PC is on is open in the back. I have a riser card to fit full size PCI cards which will cut down on air flow too.

This is the first BTX I’ve ever owned so I’m not sure how I should modify this so I’m not going to cook hard drives and stuff. Thanks for any help in advance!


#2

More air flow usually equals better cooling.
So an upgrade of all fans.There are cooling towers for the CPU.
Locating the PC on the lowest shelf may help (although a side effect would be more heat on other equipment).
A small quite fan actually mounted (or set) in the entertainment center behind the PC blowing out might help move more heat.
Last a PSU upgrade.If the OEM’s are a problem then a better replacement may solve the problem


#3

Sure, you can either upgrade the current fan, or you can enlarge the hole for a 120mm fan. So that depends on how good you are with a tools like a dremel or a jig saw to enlarge the hole. Newegg has a good assortment of fans, you can search and sort by customer rating which can also help you pick one that is quiet. If you can measure the size of the fan (in milimeters) we can help pick one for you.

The other thing to do is upgrade the thermal paste under the cpu, the factory stuff will be junk. Fresh paste like Arctic Silver 5 will let the cpu run 7-10C cooler. You can also upgrade the thermal past under the other heatsink which is the northbridge. You would of course do this with the power unplugged and you clean the old thermal paste with isopropyl alcohol and let it dry. New paste is applied by putting a small dab in the center, the pressure of the heatsink will squish it evenly.

I wouldn’t worry about the PSU until it fails, I would suggest however to use a good surge protector like one from Tripp Lite they make units that clamp at 150V.


#4

I still go with replacing the PSU if the information is accurate by the OP.

[QUOTE=GLE3;2510716]I Dell optiplex GX620 . The PSU’s go out in them, and they generate a lot of heat.
[/QUOTE]
Why wait for the failure to happen.A new PSU with a better fan & better quality “transformer” probably would produce less heat.Helping with the cooling in general. I don’t think an OEM replacement PSU would do much good.
Do the reasearch & make sure the replacement is compatible in everyway possible.


#5

[QUOTE=cholla;2510723]More air flow usually equals better cooling.
So an upgrade of all fans.There are cooling towers for the CPU.
Locating the PC on the lowest shelf may help (although a side effect would be more heat on other equipment).
A small quite fan actually mounted (or set) in the entertainment center behind the PC blowing out might help move more heat.
Last a PSU upgrade.If the OEM’s are a problem then a better replacement may solve the problem[/QUOTE]

Thanks for the ideas! Although I’m quite sure what a cooling tower is??? Could I find one that would fit in a SFF desktop?

Here is my ideas: 1) I’m thinking I could mount another fan on the cage vent in the back. It is built in a crisscross pattern so I think I could get away with a small nut, washer and bolt assembly to attach it to the outside of the case. 2) Cut vents in the side access panel. One at the hard drives and one at the PCI slots/cpu in a diagonal fashion. Since I will be sitting the PC just like you see in the picture, I’m hoping the heat will rise out vents I cut.

Not real techie ideas but they seem to be the easiest most cost effective things to do. Don’t know how much it will actually help things out though….


#6

[QUOTE=eric93se;2510808]Sure, you can either upgrade the current fan, or you can enlarge the hole for a 120mm fan. So that depends on how good you are with a tools like a dremel or a jig saw to enlarge the hole. Newegg has a good assortment of fans, you can search and sort by customer rating which can also help you pick one that is quiet. If you can measure the size of the fan (in milimeters) we can help pick one for you.

The other thing to do is upgrade the thermal paste under the cpu, the factory stuff will be junk. Fresh paste like Arctic Silver 5 will let the cpu run 7-10C cooler. You can also upgrade the thermal past under the other heatsink which is the northbridge. You would of course do this with the power unplugged and you clean the old thermal paste with isopropyl alcohol and let it dry. New paste is applied by putting a small dab in the center, the pressure of the heatsink will squish it evenly.

I wouldn’t worry about the PSU until it fails, I would suggest however to use a good surge protector like one from Tripp Lite they make units that clamp at 150V.[/QUOTE]

It sounds like that could be labor intensive for a rookie like myself. What all would need to happen just to replace the fan. I’ve been inside PCs to replace hard drives, cards, and PSU’s but I have never soldered anything or did and detailed modifications. Is there any manual information you could direct me to read up on how you do these types of things?


#7

Did some googling and that thermal paste idea doesn’t seem so tough… The fan might be a one piece thing I can swap out too… I’ll look at dimensions tonight and post them… Thanks again!


#8

If you want to upgrade the cpu heatsink/fan you would want to measure how much clearance you have from the base of the cpu to the wall of the door. This is an example of a heat-pipe/tower style cooler COOLER MASTER RR-H101-22FK-RA 80mm, this one is probably only ~100mm tall.

The best option might be to upgrade the fans and upgrade the cpu heatsink thermal paste.


#9

The problem with cuttuing slots in the case is they will allow more dust & other debree to enter .
You might check this companies cooling towers:
http://www.arctic-cooling.com/catalog/main.php?cPath=1
Also Cool Master has several.