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Cooling lessons learned and pico powersupply
Posted 22 June 2012 - 05:24 PM
The first thing to note is the pico power supply: http://mini-box.com....Power Kit.html#
Plugs direct into the motherboard, runs off a brick is cool and makes no noise at all. I've overspecced and used the 150W supply for this device where 100W would have been sufficient with the SSD instead of a regular hard drive. The original power supply is a flat type with 40mm fans at each end, a common design in networking equipment. Sounded like a plane taking off and is now in the spare parts pile. The SSD is there to remove a source of heat since electromechanical hard drives do generate a fair amount of heat. This means only one case fan is required running at 7V to cut down noise using a variable voltage harness ($5-00). At 5V the fan wouldn't start reliably which is common for 12V fans. The standard case fans were unbelievably loud, a coolermaster fan is fitted and runs quietly. The airflow is sufficient for the heatload so that the second fan is not required. Now the loudest part is the standard cpu fan. CPU is a Pentium D and runs at a cool 26C.
Here it is in its final position with the reason for attention to cooling clear.
I can recommend the pico powersupply as a consideration for smaller htpc builds to minimise heat and noise and I'll be replacing the powersupply in my htpc with one when the time comes.