Question Cooler not fitting in case

Feb 14, 2020
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Hello all, i recently got a be quiet dark rock 4, i currenlt have a dell inspirion 3670 and the cooler is too big it doesnt fit, is there any way to help this, are they are exention panels for the side of the computer? Thanks
 

Darkbreeze

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No, there isn't. And it won't work anyhow. Dell does not use standard pinouts on their motherboards and fan headers. You need to return the cooler.

If you want something with more performance and better cooling, you will need to start from scratch with a standard ATX mid tower case and standard hardware. OEM systems suck for this exact reason unless all you are doing with them is using them for internet browsing or as basic office workstations.

https://www.dell.com/community/Inspiron-Desktops/Inspiron-3670-CPU-cooler-case-fan-upgrade-compatibility/td-p/6127094
 
Feb 14, 2020
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No, there isn't. And it won't work anyhow. Dell does not use standard pinouts on their motherboards and fan headers. You need to return the cooler.

If you want something with more performance and better cooling, you will need to start from scratch with a standard ATX mid tower case and standard hardware. OEM systems suck for this exact reason unless all you are doing with them is using them for internet browsing or as basic office workstations.

https://www.dell.com/community/Inspiron-Desktops/Inspiron-3670-CPU-cooler-case-fan-upgrade-compatibility/td-p/6127094
what cools will fit?
 

Darkbreeze

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It's not a question of whether it will fit or not. Even if you get one short enough to fit, it can't be used with the fan headers on the Dell motherboard. If you read the thread I linked to in it's entirety you'll see that Dell fans don't work on standard motherboard headers and standard fans don't work on Dell motherboard headers. You either replace parts with genuine Dell parts, which are intentionally proprietary, or you toss the case, power supply and motherboard and get a standard ATX case, motherboard and power supply that you can use with standard fans and CPU coolers.

They are not meant to be "upgraded" and in most cases, can't be.
 

Karadjgne

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Not to belay the obvious, but it's not exactly rocket science to change the pinouts on the connector to make an aftermarket fan work on a Dell mobo.

Since Darkbreeze was kind enough to find the info showing how it's done.

All you'd need is a shorter cooler, such as the Scythe Mugen 5 Rev.b. The spacing of the motherboard mounts might be a challenge though, but should be atx standard for the socket. If you got the beQuiet to actually mount to the mobo, it won't be an issue.
 

Darkbreeze

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Certainly it CAN be done, but there is definitely a technical aspect involved and for a user who was unaware that there could be a height issue with an aftermarket cooler, it might be a stretch. IDK really, but it's definitely not a good sign.

Regardless, we'd need to know exactly what the height is from the top of the CPU to the side panel, before we could even begin to guess at what might fit that case. It may be that somebody out there has done the footwork to determine this already, but I didn't see anything with a quick search and I think it's probably a recipe for trouble in THIS particular instance anyhow. But hey, if the OP is capable of putting in the work required to make it happen and can get the clearance specs, then we can certainly be bothered to tell them what coolers might fit, even though that information is readily available.

Now get off my lawn.
 
Feb 14, 2020
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Certainly it CAN be done, but there is definitely a technical aspect involved and for a user who was unaware that there could be a height issue with an aftermarket cooler, it might be a stretch. IDK really, but it's definitely not a good sign.

Regardless, we'd need to know exactly what the height is from the top of the CPU to the side panel, before we could even begin to guess at what might fit that case. It may be that somebody out there has done the footwork to determine this already, but I didn't see anything with a quick search and I think it's probably a recipe for trouble in THIS particular instance anyhow. But hey, if the OP is capable of putting in the work required to make it happen and can get the clearance specs, then we can certainly be bothered to tell them what coolers might fit, even though that information is readily available.

Now get off my lawn.
I was able to put the cooler on the mobo, would it just be worth getting a new case?
 

Darkbreeze

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Moderator
You may not be able to "just" get a new case, because many of these Dell motherboards are NON-standard, and won't line up with the mounting holes OR the back I/O panel on any standard micro-ATX, ATX or mini ITX case with standard mounting patterns and I/O cluster arrangements.

It also will in MOST cases, not accomodate the proprietary power supplies that come in most Dell prebuilt systems. Without MAJOR modifications and rework, it's just about impossible to use Dell hardware with aftermarket hardware because they simply are not compatible with each other.

If you get a new case, then yes, your cooler might then fit, but you'd have to get a different motherboard and power supply to make it all work together. There are a few exceptions, with some Dell systems having standard ATX hardware, but those are not the norm. It's possible, but we'd need to know the EXACT model, and Inspiron 3670 is NOT the exact model. It's the series.

There are several different types/form factors of 3670. Generally Dell offers Desktop, Small form factor and Mini tower versions of most of it's series so knowing the form factor type or the service tag/express service tag would be helpful in determining what might or might not work.
 
Feb 14, 2020
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You may not be able to "just" get a new case, because many of these Dell motherboards are NON-standard, and won't line up with the mounting holes OR the back I/O panel on any standard micro-ATX, ATX or mini ITX case with standard mounting patterns and I/O cluster arrangements.

It also will in MOST cases, not accomodate the proprietary power supplies that come in most Dell prebuilt systems. Without MAJOR modifications and rework, it's just about impossible to use Dell hardware with aftermarket hardware because they simply are not compatible with each other.

If you get a new case, then yes, your cooler might then fit, but you'd have to get a different motherboard and power supply to make it all work together. There are a few exceptions, with some Dell systems having standard ATX hardware, but those are not the norm. It's possible, but we'd need to know the EXACT model, and Inspiron 3670 is NOT the exact model. It's the series.

There are several different types/form factors of 3670. Generally Dell offers Desktop, Small form factor and Mini tower versions of most of it's series so knowing the form factor type or the service tag/express service tag would be helpful in determining what might or might not work.
but dell might sell a case for it?
 

Albionm00n

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Jan 31, 2016
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Greetings!

Darkbreeze is correct regarding the proprietary nature of Dell systems, however if you are keeping/moving every component from the Dell, the process is not that difficult if you are handy with a simple tap and drill. If you have the BR4 installed and working, you are off to an excellent start and kudos to your tenacity.

The only real issues you will have with moving the system into another case is fitment. Being that Dell uses proprietary parts, certain things may need to be lightly modified in the case. For example, the power supply may not be a standard size or have the standard screw mounts, but often a drilled hole here and there can create a sufficient mount for the PSU.

The next hurdle as mentioned by Darkbreeze is the mobo mounting. If you are handy with a drill, you can easily just transfer the hole pattern from the motherboard to the tray of the case by marking through them with a pen/pencil and then drilling them out with a small drill bit and them tapping them for threads so that you can screw the standoffs in at the correct locations for the Dell mobo. I know that may sound like a lot, but if you are at all handy with tools, then you know this is actually like a 5 minute task, and the only thing you may need to acquire is the right size tap from the hardware store...M4 is generally the standard thread for these, but there can be variations like ASE 6-32.

The last issue would be the I/O panel. This would probably just be best solved by going without one and leaving the opening clear in the back of the case...not the prettiest, but it is in the back:p

I have transferred/modded Dells in this fashion in the past with little trouble...as long as I am keeping all the parts from the system. A case is a case, and maybe this will inspire you to consider just how creative you can get.

Just make sure to measure your motherboard with the BR4 for height before selecting a case. Cases will list their available clearances in millimeters (eg: tower cooler clearance 174mm, etc.) but that does not include the motherboard. A few moments of measuring and research and you should be good to go if you want to move the system.

I hope this helps!
 

Darkbreeze

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Moderator
I'm sorry, but I've done swaps of motherboards and power supplies (As well as swaps of OTHER hardware INTO their chassis, and other seemingly minor upgrades that have turned into nightmares) from Dell, HP, Compaq, E-machines, Gateway, IBM and others, who've all used proprietary hardware in their systems in one form or another over the years, and I can tell you that while they are all guilty of this to some degree or other on at least some of their systems, Dell is currently by far the worst offender and it is never an easy process especially for somebody who has no experience with modifications.

We can assume the level of difficulty is even higher for somebody who has admittedly already purchased a CPU cooler that was too tall for such a case. Obviously, anybody can make anything work with anything else (In most instances) if they are determined enough, have the proper tools and have a skillset that lends itself to being both handy and creative, but those are characteristics that don't apply to everybody and even when they do there are simply common sense rules that say doing so is probably not worth the end result.

The obvious and simply solution here is to simply run the system with the case side panel off, OR replace the cooler with a shorter version.

As far as the I/O goes, no idea if that is even a possibility because some of their boards don't even HAVE the I/O in the same place as a standard ATX board, instead putting it in a location that would line it up with where the PCI slot cutouts in the case would normally be or moving it just enough to not align with a standard case.

Sure, it's possible if the stars all align, but I think it's a poor idea unless you live somewhere where there is no other realistic option AND you have the tools and experience, or the assistance of somebody who has them, to do the job without a major "oops" that results in having no system at all.
 
Feb 14, 2020
43
0
30
0
I'm sorry, but I've done swaps of motherboards and power supplies (As well as swaps of OTHER hardware INTO their chassis, and other seemingly minor upgrades that have turned into nightmares) from Dell, HP, Compaq, E-machines, Gateway, IBM and others, who've all used proprietary hardware in their systems in one form or another over the years, and I can tell you that while they are all guilty of this to some degree or other on at least some of their systems, Dell is currently by far the worst offender and it is never an easy process especially for somebody who has no experience with modifications.

We can assume the level of difficulty is even higher for somebody who has admittedly already purchased a CPU cooler that was too tall for such a case. Obviously, anybody can make anything work with anything else (In most instances) if they are determined enough, have the proper tools and have a skillset that lends itself to being both handy and creative, but those are characteristics that don't apply to everybody and even when they do there are simply common sense rules that say doing so is probably not worth the end result.

The obvious and simply solution here is to simply run the system with the case side panel off, OR replace the cooler with a shorter version.

As far as the I/O goes, no idea if that is even a possibility because some of their boards don't even HAVE the I/O in the same place as a standard ATX board, instead putting it in a location that would line it up with where the PCI slot cutouts in the case would normally be or moving it just enough to not align with a standard case.

Sure, it's possible if the stars all align, but I think it's a poor idea unless you live somewhere where there is no other realistic option AND you have the tools and experience, or the assistance of somebody who has them, to do the job without a major "oops" that results in having no system at all.
Do u reckon it’s fine to leave the side panel off?
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
I wouldn't run it that way long term, simply because the side panel is there to protect components from things like kids, cats, accidental spills, drunk adults (No, really), etc. but so long as you are very careful and the case in somewhere that limits the probability of the aforementioned mishaps, it's really not going to hurt anything. We bench test in open air on box tops or cases made specifically for this purpose. The case is to keep stuff and things from getting ON the components, like your coffee or beer, whatever, and if you are the type that might accidentally do that then take steps to make sure you don't.

This can buy you some time in order to either arrange to make the modifications to the case like I and Albionm00n have mentioned or to get a different case, power supply and motherboard, or whatever you decide to do. Or, to just run it like this until at some point down the road the system forces you to upgrade by something taking a dirt nap.
 
Feb 14, 2020
43
0
30
0
Greetings!

Darkbreeze is correct regarding the proprietary nature of Dell systems, however if you are keeping/moving every component from the Dell, the process is not that difficult if you are handy with a simple tap and drill. If you have the BR4 installed and working, you are off to an excellent start and kudos to your tenacity.

The only real issues you will have with moving the system into another case is fitment. Being that Dell uses proprietary parts, certain things may need to be lightly modified in the case. For example, the power supply may not be a standard size or have the standard screw mounts, but often a drilled hole here and there can create a sufficient mount for the PSU.

The next hurdle as mentioned by Darkbreeze is the mobo mounting. If you are handy with a drill, you can easily just transfer the hole pattern from the motherboard to the tray of the case by marking through them with a pen/pencil and then drilling them out with a small drill bit and them tapping them for threads so that you can screw the standoffs in at the correct locations for the Dell mobo. I know that may sound like a lot, but if you are at all handy with tools, then you know this is actually like a 5 minute task, and the only thing you may need to acquire is the right size tap from the hardware store...M4 is generally the standard thread for these, but there can be variations like ASE 6-32.

The last issue would be the I/O panel. This would probably just be best solved by going without one and leaving the opening clear in the back of the case...not the prettiest, but it is in the back:p

I have transferred/modded Dells in this fashion in the past with little trouble...as long as I am keeping all the parts from the system. A case is a case, and maybe this will inspire you to consider just how creative you can get.

Just make sure to measure your motherboard with the BR4 for height before selecting a case. Cases will list their available clearances in millimeters (eg: tower cooler clearance 174mm, etc.) but that does not include the motherboard. A few moments of measuring and research and you should be good to go if you want to move the system.

I hope this helps!
i was thinking of just getting a new case, mobo and psu. If i do that will everything work or do some parts do i need to change? Thanks
 
Feb 14, 2020
43
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If you did that, then yes, it would work, but it might not be worth spending the money on a motherboard right this moment. Possibly though. What CPU do you have?
i have an i5 9600k, my mobo, case and psu are dell so i wanted to replace those as well as get a bigger case, another issue i may run into is the windows license since dell has that
 

Karadjgne

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Sell your Dell complete and working with nothing in the drives except a fresh copy of unliscenced win10 home.

Then start over with a full new pc, easy enough to do with pcpartpicker.com. You may have to shop around for a cooler that will fit the case or a case that fits a certain cooler, but that's far easier than trying to modify proprietary parts into universal fitments.

Sorry, left footprints on your lawn...
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Eh, personally I disagree actually. But I'm not AGAINST that idea, I just don't think it's the best or only option here. To be honest, the case, power supply and motherboard aren't worth anything to anybody really, and since the whole system was just purchased not that long ago it's CPU and memory are viable, good even. Replacing those items would cost more than you could sell the whole machine for used, so that kind of kills that idea IMO.

First thing you want to do, now, if you haven't already, is attach your Windows license to a Microsoft account that is registered to YOU. As outlined here:

How to associate your windows 10 license with a Microsoft account

Reactivating Windows 10 after a hardware change

Windows build 1607 (Or newer) and activation after a hardware change


Your biggest problem is going to be that you are in Australia, and parts are normally, under the best of circumstances, outrageously expensive.

I have some suggestions, as do others here I'm sure, but we'd need to know what graphics card you have, and how much you can throw at a case, motherboard and power supply, and I'd probably figure on including at least two additional fans because most cases only come with one or two and that is generally not sufficient for most gaming systems or enthusiast builds.
 

Karadjgne

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That's why I suggested to sell it as a working pc, he'd still get top dollar for it used. Using just a few parts like the cpu and ram and storage might save a few $, the downside being nobody will buy the rest, so no return on investment. By selling whole, I believe he could get more back than the cost of replacing just those 3 parts. It also opens up options, like switching to amd, or 10th Gen, not locking him to a 9th gen motherboard.

I'd at least surf the waters and see what he could reasonably expect vs what replacement would cost.
 

Darkbreeze

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It's possible, but since used systems are rarely worth more than 50-70% of the original purchase price, even ten seconds after you buy them, it might be a hard pill to swallow taking an instant loss on something likely purchased not all that long ago that's not old enough to even really consider an upgrade over when all it needs is maybe a couple hundred dollars worth of parts, versus 1500 to 2000 at Aus prices if he has to rebuilt from scratch. No way anybody is getting that kind of money for a used dell with an i5, so to me, it doesn't seem like a highly viable idea. I've been wrong before though.
 

Karadjgne

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Yeah, it's iffy. But between covid pricing, lack of supply, high demand etc it's all 'iffy' atm. Just depends on the market. To many ppl a fully functional upgraded 'modern' pc will look far more attractive for a quickie boost to their at home teleworking or pc gaming experience than trying to update an ancient FX platform piece by piece. Or so I would assume.

Even my wife greenlighted my idea to build a new pc, she's not happy with the old reliable 3770k/970 lol and she's as hardware literate as a stump.
 

Karadjgne

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Haha, too late, already had that conversation. It was my opening statement 🤣. Then showed a couple of speed results graphs comparing older cpus with newer ( not gaming related, all rendering and CC, compiling etc) and she was pleasantly horrified at the difference between the little iddy biddy green bar of the old i7 vrs the giant green bar of the 3950x. Settled on a 3700x as a good value compromise. Then proceeded to go shopping for the loop ➿🤗 (no noisy air coolers for me lol, my R1 Ultimate is a beast, but a HWlabs rad topped with NF-A12x25's is FAR quieter)
 

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