Question 3 pin fan cable splitter to 4 pin fan connector?

Apr 16, 2020
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So the 3 fans on the front of my case are only 3 pin connections and my motherboard only has 4 pin fan headers, I know you can plug 3 pin fan cables into 4 pin headers however the 3 fans are all connected to a single splitter that connects to 1 fan header, I have heard that it is not wise to connect multiple 3 pin fans to a 4 pin header as it can overload the connector however the problem is that my fan cables are too short and dont reach the fan header without the cable

Just wondering if there is any truth to this and if I should be worried about it?
 
Apr 16, 2020
20
0
10
0
So the 3 fans on the front of my case are only 3 pin connections and my motherboard only has 4 pin fan headers, I know you can plug 3 pin fan cables into 4 pin headers however the 3 fans are all connected to a single splitter that connects to 1 fan header, I have heard that it is not wise to connect multiple 3 pin fans to a 4 pin header as it can overload the connector however the problem is that my fan cables are too short and dont reach the fan header without the cable

Just wondering if there is any truth to this and if I should be worried about it?
 

Paperdoc

Glorious
Ambassador
For most plain fans this is not a problem. The background to this is that most mobo fan headers can supply up to 1.0 A max current to the total load connected to that header using a Splitter. Some years ago that might be a problem because one fan might consume up to 0.4 A. But today's fans are much more efficient and typical plain fan current max out from 0.07 to 0.30 A. Some high-power fans exceed that, but you do not appear to have those.

However, the first lighted fans on the market, called LED fans, can get you close to the limit. That fan type has lights of only ONE colour in the frame, and has a SINGLE wire cable coming from it to plug into a mobo header. The LED's in that fan type are in parallel with the motor and draw their power from the mobo fan header, increasing the fan unit max current. The newer RGB fans that can do multiple changing colours use TWO separate cables and are NOT a problem.

To be quite sure, post back here the maker and model number of your mobo so we can look up its specs. Then we need to know what fans you have at the front. Either tell us the maker and model of the fan if you can, or tell us the maker and model of the caase that included those fans.
 

Paperdoc

Glorious
Ambassador
That case's web page says it comes with 120mm ARGB fans. although exactly which model that is, is not specified, it is likely to be their SickleFlow 120 ARGB model or something very similar. That fan, like all other of that basic design, has separate cables for the motor and lights that plug ito separate mobo headers. So you need to concentrate solely on the max amps used by each motor and can ignore the lights for now. That fan I cited has a spec of max 0.15 A per fan, typical for a fan of that size. So three of them most certainly CAN be connected to one fan header using a simple Splitter. (The fan also has a higher Safety Amp Spec which is related to an internal limiter if the fan ever is stalled for any reason, and it will protect itself from burnout in that odd case; this does NOT have a bearing on these load calculations.)

A Splitter is a simple device that has only one input that plugs into a mobo fan header, and two or more outputs (male connectors with pins) to plug your fans into. Unlike a Hub, a Splitter does NOT have an additional cable that must connect to a PSU power output. Do not get a Hub. An example of a simple 2-output Splitter is this

https://www.amazon.com/JBtek-Black-Sleeved-Splitter-Converter/dp/B01EF9OI0O/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=fan+splitter&qid=1588908042&sr=8-3

Now, 2 outputs does not feed 3 fans. But that comes as a 2-pack, so you plug the second one into one of the outputs of the first and make a "mini-stack" to give three outputs.
 

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