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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am putting together a really basic HTPC.


The basic components are:

Asus H87M-PRO motherboard

Intel Core i3-4130 or Intel Core i3-4130T

4GB DDR3

120 GB SSD

2 TB 5400 RPM hard drive

Silverstone ML04B case


How many fans should I install? I know the case supports 4 80mm.

What brand/models are recommended?
 

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I have a similar build...


AsRock H77M

i3-2120

4GB-DDR3

128GB SSD

LiteOn BD Burner

Silverstone ML03B

no HDDs


I use (3) ENERMAX UC-8EB 80mm Case Fans , (1) intake at the back, and (2) exhaust in the front.

(Yes, they are installed along the right side of the case)


They are quite quiet, and I would say balanced for airflow, but I would also say it might be a little excessive.


HTPC's don't really generate a lot of heat, unless you are gaming or doing additional tasks that are taxing on the processor.


I would say that the number of fans is determined by the HTPC's environment.

Is your HTPC going to be enclosed in a cabinet/entertainment center? Will there be enough airflow?


Realistically, if you're worried, you can probably get by with just one 80mm exhaust fan.

Keep in mind there are vents on the left side, back side in the slot covers, the top above the CPU, and underneath dedicated for the PSU.
 

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I just built two htpcs in that same case and here's what I found:


The case is very nice. Good looking and good quality. It supports up to 4 80mm fans which is less ideal than 120mm fans from a noise perspective but understandable given the thin micro ATX size.


In one build I used two 80mm fans I had left over from a box I bought when I changed out my Norco4220 fans. They were xigamatech SilentX fans. Cheap but reasonably quiet. They used good bearings and make very little noise at low RPM. I ran the fans off the Asrock mobo on silent mode and level 3.


The second build I used no fans. None. zero.


The case has enough ventilation that you can get by without any fans given your set up IMO so I wouldn't recommend anything yet. Build it and try it out. If it's too hot you can also add a fan or two later on with just removing the two top case screws and pulling off the top.


I doubt you'll need fans unless it's not in a vented location.
 

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I was thinking the same thing.


Looks like plenty of ventilation on the side and top. Unless you are adding a video card or Ceton tuner I would run it with no fans.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb  /t/1521223/lets-talk-about-fans/0_100#post_24451639


I was thinking the same thing.


Looks like plenty of ventilation on the side and top. Unless you are adding a video card or Ceton tuner I would run it with no fans.

I am just putting the finishing touches on this one as I speak. It's a build for a good friend that's otherwise into home theater but not so PC literate. He used to be a DirecTV installer, he's got a nice home theater. He's always jealous of my HTPC when he sees it.


I put a build together for him for $300. The case is very nice. The entire right side is open. It's mesh. The left side has a big mesh area too. Plus the back is vented. Given the fact he is only using a dual core and a locked multiplier CPU (and Intel) and that he is using a 5400rpm HDD I doubt he needs any fans at all. His entire build is already cool and efficient. A single stock CPU cooler is all he needs. I would get the normal CPU cooler and not the "T" series though. The T series cooler is smaller and might not work as good; plus it also costs more and is less powerful yet burns the same energy playing a movie. That case has plenty of height to accept the standard stock Intel Cooler.


There is also venting on the bottom (if your PSU supports this) and also on the top basically the entire back right side (which is above the CPU cooler )


Some pics (crappy phone pics)




 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by techmattr  /t/1521223/lets-talk-about-fans/0_100#post_24452564


That is a nice looking case.... does a full size atx PSU fit nicely?

Yes. This was one of the mods on the new 04 versus the original MILO 03 (which I used for my brothers HTPC)


Here is the MILO 03 (older version)











 

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You will notice I used a CHEAPO Coolermaster PSU ($25 AR) for my brothers build ^ It just barely fit in the MILO 3. I had to play with the case cover when I installed it. But it did fit pretty well. That was a problem with the milo3 which otherwise was an excellent HTPC case. I do prefer the new drop down face on the 04 though.


I also did not use any fans on it. It's installed inside a cabinet with little air flow. The HTPC likes it. No heating issues. 5400rpm Green Drive, A single SSD, and a Pentium G630 dual core CPU. Hardly stuff that needs tons of cooling. Not much different than the OP's build which is why I think he does not need any fans. I generally don't like 80mm fans anyways. Unless you run them very slow they are hard to keep quiet. Seems like everyone I find they want spin way too fast.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick  /t/1521223/lets-talk-about-fans#post_24452606


Yes. This was one of the mods on the new 04 versus the original MILO 03 (which I used for my brothers HTPC)

Could you post about 10 more pics of that build? I don't think we get the idea yet.
 

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This is the part where I suggest a SFX PSU that has a SFX-to-ATX bracket and say how I've used it in a bunch of Lian-Li mini-ITX cases, including my own server, with great success. And then I mention how quiet it is. And then I post the link to it on Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/FSP-Group-Certification-Supply-FSP300-60GH/dp/B004VF4R4U


Then I caution that if the 24-pin ATX power connection is on the opposite side of the motherboard from the PSU you might need a 24-pin power extender.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by wiley165  /t/1521223/lets-talk-about-fans#post_24448240


I have a similar build...


HTPC's don't really generate a lot of heat, unless you are gaming or doing additional tasks that are taxing on the processor.


I would say that the number of fans is determined by the HTPC's environment.

Is your HTPC going to be enclosed in a cabinet/entertainment center? Will there be enough airflow?


Realistically, if you're worried, you can probably get by with just one 80mm exhaust fan.

Keep in mind there are vents on the left side, back side in the slot covers, the top above the CPU, and underneath dedicated for the PSU.

My HTPC will be stored on a stereo rack, so it should have plenty of airflow.

I went ahead and chose the Arctic F8 PWM fan.

Now I just have wait and see how it performs.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHL  /t/1521223/lets-talk-about-fans/0_100#post_24454808


My HTPC will be stored on a stereo rack, so it should have plenty of airflow.

I went ahead and chose the Arctic F8 PWM fan.

Now I just have wait and see how it performs.

I'd run it on the lowest possible setting or disable it. You probably won't need it, but it's nice having it if you do.
 
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