New to these forums - my specs are in my sig.
I built my whole machine of course
I think a bit after last christmas. Its been pretty stable, but I'm wondering about cooling.
A month or 2 ago I decided to connect two of my fans in series to quiet em down. probably a bad idea but o well, it worked. Recently I noticed my gfx card getting really hot, so I decided to add the smallest fan I could find on the side vent on the case. This was a really bad idea because the little sucker was LOUD. louder than the other two fans ever were. So I connected it to the other fans, so I've got 3 in series, each running at ok i guess speeds and very quiet. At first there was a very scary moment when the computer didn't work or anything. For about 10 minutes nothing. no beep from the mobo on boot or anything. Then I applied pressure to all my connectors, and it suddenly worked. I'm guessing the main PS-mobo connection.
The side fan is blowing air directly into the CPU via a tube, and the back fan is blowing out. The mini fan by the gfx card is sucking in, in hopes that the air will flow up and out the back. Sadly the front has no spot for a fan. Actually, there is a spot on the interior, but its part of the metal chassis and the font is covered by plastic (no, not any of those ones that look like diablo made out of really cheap plastic or something). The PS has two nice fans pumping air out. The CPU fan/sink was the one included with the CPU. There may be a problem with the thermal paste though. The AMD lock down system was not designed for ease. I tried locking it down and took it off a few times, thermal paste obviously disrupted and a bit smeared on the CPU. Very freaky moment there because you are applying tons of force to a several hundred dollar piece of metal, silicon, and transistors. Since this was my first computer build, I didn't know that it was a bad idea to try again, or ever take it off after putting the sink on once. In retrospect (after watching the DVD that came with this hardware book) I realized that it was a really bad idea and probably degraded the thermal coupling. The temps aren't too bad though. reasonably idle, normal apps run it at 38C, 100% usage long term (United Devices) 49C. I'd like it a bit cooler though. The 'system' temp is 42C now so that might have something to do with it.
So, anyway, do you think I should get some new fans? (recomendations on quiet yet powerful enough ones welcome). What about a new fan/heatsink combo? Should I get new thermal paste? It might be a good idea but then again, I dont really want to go taking off the heatsink/fan for a new one and risk installing (and screwing up) a new one unless its necessary and could allow me to safely overclock a bit
Oh yeah, and how do i measure the size of the spots to put my fans? diagonols with a metric ruler?