[SOLVED] DH-15 Chromax Black Orientation and Case Fans

Jan 8, 2021
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CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900X 3.7 GHz 12-Core Processor

CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black 82.51 CFM CPU Cooler

MB: MSI MAG X570 TOMAHAWK WIFI ATX AM4 Motherboard

Storage: Two SN750’s a 1tb and a 500gb

Case:
Phanteks Eclipse P500A D-RGB ATX Mid Tower Case

GPU: RTX 3080

Memory: 32gb 3600mhz CLC 16


Power Supply: Revolt X 1200w Platinum


So above is my build, I have chosen to go with the NH-D15 as I really love Noctua their products have always been above bar. My question is do I want both fans on the cooler or should I just go with one that blows out the rear fan?

As you can see, I am using the P500a case from Phanteks which has exceptional airflow, it comes with three 140mm fans in the front that I will use as intake fans, I am planning to throw 3 140mm on top as well for exhaust fans. My other two options are I can just use one fan on the DH-15 that blows towards the rear and use another 140mm rear exhaust fan or I can just ditch the rear 140mm and use both fans on the cooler but oriented to blow out the back of the case. Ultimately I am doing this so I do not have to worry about RAM clearance, but with the fan on the DH-15 towards the back there really isn't room for that plus a rear 140mm at least I do not think so I believe the noctua fan would be millimeters from the rear fan but any knowledge of otherwise and I would love to hear it.

As for fan choices for the top 3 140mm I am planning on using three SL140 UniFans, on the back I was thinking of using another UniFan or just ditching that and going with just the cooler.

I welcome any advice or recommendations, if you have suggestions for better 140mm fans I am welcome to listen to that as well.

Thank you in advance!
 

Phaaze88

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Lol well I did not aim to make it difficult just getting back into the game. First, an AIO is not an option I am never been a huge fan of them or water cooling in general. I prefer to set it and forget it plus I have been burned by AIO coolers before, but in the case of Noctua their products have always performed above board.
Understood.

Second, I had no clue top exhaust fans would be not a good thing. I am not looking to fill the case per se I just thought it would help with cooling. Would you choose to just leave out the top fans altogether? Would you change them from exhaust to intake? Lowering them to 2 fans on top is always an option too if that makes a difference in exhaust/intake performance or would it be better to ditch them all together?
~Ohh no. This is something you have to pick. I'm just pointing out the tradeoff.
That's why I said pick your poison.
No fans up top: benefits tower coolers, but it takes longer for the gpu exhaust to get out, especially if using the dual and triple fan air cooled models; they dump their heat in the chassis.
Fans up top: benefits those gpus I just mentioned but at the cost of cpu cooling. It MIGHT be the better option overall due to the kind of heat that gpu produces, but I've also read that Ryzen 5000 has a high temp range for its boost algorithm.


I know my H500P Mesh doesn't represent everyone's chassis, but with it I found that even the single top exhaust fan in the back doesn't do anything with the NH-D15, and I've found that it's because of the 'folds' on the sides of the heatsink.
They promote more uniform front to back airflow, but reduces the effect of fans above them.
That's why that old pic didn't have any top fans, but unlike most systems, mine has a hybrid cooled gpu in there; a straight up front to back airflow setup.
 
Jan 8, 2021
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No yea that build is typically what you see and for sure the normal method there is room, but my goal is to not cover the RAM with that second fan (yes I got a good deal on some RGB RAM and would like it to pop a bit instead of just be covered). The middle fan is perfectly fine but in his pictures the second fan is towards the front of the case. If you move that second fan to the rear combined with that rear fan they would be very close to touching and if the second Noctua fan is that close and using it as an exhaust then why have the rear fan ya know?

I was more looking for anyone that set their DH-15 up the way I am wanting and if they kept both fans or picked one over the other and the reason they chose to do so, but thank you so much for the reply.
 
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Phaaze88

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View: https://imgur.com/txhPbhe

^Older picture, but I'm just showing you that I do have one, but it's a D15S.

You've certainly made this more difficult than it needed to be.
1)Both fans is preferred over just one for maximum performance, but there isn't that big of a temperature delta between them - up to 3C with high power cpus.
So just running single fan is an option, but - BUT! You will make that delta worse than that by adding top fans; taking away cool air before it can even reach the single fan.
Same deal with dual fan mode, but not quite as bad, because the front fan is a little more 'forward'.
Top exhaust fans is to the benefit of gpus, not the case with that tower cooler.
It's best not to have any fans above the NH-D15... but whatcha gonna do? People like to fill stuff out regardless of performance changes. ¯\(ツ)

2)Moving the 2 fans behind their respective towers would be an alternative, but there's a problem with noise.
There's this high pitched sound produced by the fans above 600rpm... so that's no good.

3)Get a 360mm liquid cooler, and you can have the 3 fans up top and the ram clearance... but there will be drawbacks elsewhere.


Pick your poison, and set it up how you want.
 
Jan 8, 2021
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View: https://imgur.com/txhPbhe

^Older picture, but I'm just showing you that I do have one, but it's a D15S.

You've certainly made this more difficult than it needed to be.
1)Both fans is preferred over just one for maximum performance, but there isn't that big of a temperature delta between them - up to 3C with high power cpus.
So just running single fan is an option, but - BUT! You will make that delta worse than that by adding top fans; taking away cool air before it can even reach the single fan.
Same deal with dual fan mode, but not quite as bad, because the front fan is a little more 'forward'.
Top exhaust fans is to the benefit of gpus, not the case with that tower cooler.
It's best not to have any fans above the NH-D15... but whatcha gonna do? People like to fill stuff out regardless of performance changes. ¯\(ツ)

2)Moving the 2 fans behind their respective towers would be an alternative, but there's a problem with noise.
There's this high pitched sound produced by the fans above 600rpm... so that's no good.

3)Get a 360mm liquid cooler, and you can have the 3 fans up top and the ram clearance... but there will be drawbacks elsewhere.


Pick your poison, and set it up how you want.
Lol well I did not aim to make it difficult just getting back into the game. First, an AIO is not an option I am never been a huge fan of them or water cooling in general. I prefer to set it and forget it plus I have been burned by AIO coolers before, but in the case of Noctua their products have always performed above board.

Second, I had no clue top exhaust fans would be not a good thing. I am not looking to fill the case per se I just thought it would help with cooling. Would you choose to just leave out the top fans altogether? Would you change them from exhaust to intake? Lowering them to 2 fans on top is always an option too if that makes a difference in exhaust/intake performance or would it be better to ditch them all together?

The noise issue is not something I have come across in my research and something to keep in mind for sure.
 

Phaaze88

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Lol well I did not aim to make it difficult just getting back into the game. First, an AIO is not an option I am never been a huge fan of them or water cooling in general. I prefer to set it and forget it plus I have been burned by AIO coolers before, but in the case of Noctua their products have always performed above board.
Understood.

Second, I had no clue top exhaust fans would be not a good thing. I am not looking to fill the case per se I just thought it would help with cooling. Would you choose to just leave out the top fans altogether? Would you change them from exhaust to intake? Lowering them to 2 fans on top is always an option too if that makes a difference in exhaust/intake performance or would it be better to ditch them all together?
~Ohh no. This is something you have to pick. I'm just pointing out the tradeoff.
That's why I said pick your poison.
No fans up top: benefits tower coolers, but it takes longer for the gpu exhaust to get out, especially if using the dual and triple fan air cooled models; they dump their heat in the chassis.
Fans up top: benefits those gpus I just mentioned but at the cost of cpu cooling. It MIGHT be the better option overall due to the kind of heat that gpu produces, but I've also read that Ryzen 5000 has a high temp range for its boost algorithm.


I know my H500P Mesh doesn't represent everyone's chassis, but with it I found that even the single top exhaust fan in the back doesn't do anything with the NH-D15, and I've found that it's because of the 'folds' on the sides of the heatsink.
They promote more uniform front to back airflow, but reduces the effect of fans above them.
That's why that old pic didn't have any top fans, but unlike most systems, mine has a hybrid cooled gpu in there; a straight up front to back airflow setup.
 
Jan 8, 2021
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3
35
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Understood.


~Ohh no. This is something you have to pick. I'm just pointing out the tradeoff.
That's why I said pick your poison.
No fans up top: benefits tower coolers, but it takes longer for the gpu exhaust to get out, especially if using the dual and triple fan air cooled models; they dump their heat in the chassis.
Fans up top: benefits those gpus I just mentioned but at the cost of cpu cooling. It MIGHT be the better option overall due to the kind of heat that gpu produces, but I've also read that Ryzen 5000 has a high temp range for its boost algorithm.


I know my H500P Mesh doesn't represent everyone's chassis, but with it I found that even the single top exhaust fan in the back doesn't do anything with the NH-D15, and I've found that it's because of the 'folds' on the sides of the heatsink.
They promote more uniform front to back airflow, but reduces the effect of fans above them.
That's why that old pic didn't have any top fans, but unlike most systems, mine has a hybrid cooled gpu in there; a straight up front to back airflow setup.
Example Build
Example Build 2


What do you think of this persons setup, I was able to find it on PCPartPicker same cooler, case and MB and CPU. I believe if I am seeing it correctly he has the three front intake fans at 140mm has zero top fans and no rear exhaust but he is using the DH15 fans the direction I was thinking to exhaust out the back.
 
Jan 8, 2021
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That setup is totally fine. Might not be the best for the gpu, but it works.
Sweet and just one final question is there anything I could do to help the GPU a bit more or like you said I have to pick my poison either help cool the CPU a bit more or help cool the GPU more.

Was not sure if there was a happy medium or if there even is a happy medium.
 
Jan 8, 2021
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Well sweet thank you for the help it saves me some cash not overbuying case fans.

Now I do have one more since you have been so helpful, I know the 140mm fans that come with the P500a case are fairly strong I believe they are rated for 1500rpm, but they are not pwm. Would it be beneficial to change those three out for 3 that are pwm and rated for 1900rpm.

I have been looking at the SL140 UniFans and was thinking about replacing the ones in front with them.
 
Jan 8, 2021
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Before that, go to where the fan settings are in bios.
For the headers that those fans are plugged into, change them to DC Mode. Are you able to control them afterwards?
I do not have it built yet, but the stock fans are 3-pin connectors so I would assume that switching them to DC mode would allow me to manually configure them.
 

Phaaze88

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I wanted to be sure, because 3pin devices are controlled by way of controlling the voltage(12v, 7v, 5v) going to it. It doesn't seem to work on my mobo - even after updating the bios.
I figure I'm doing something wrong, but ~ehh, it doesn't really bother me.
 

Prad_Bitt

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I wanted to be sure, because 3pin devices are controlled by way of controlling the voltage(12v, 7v, 5v) going to it. It doesn't seem to work on my mobo - even after updating the bios.
I figure I'm doing something wrong, but ~ehh, it doesn't really bother me.
I didn't even do a switch. I've got 2 stock black corsair case fans 120mm and 2 SP140 RGB Pros (these 4 are 3 pin) , one CM SF120R RGB (from the H212 RGB) PWM and an ippc 3000 Noctua PWM. I just plugged them in, went into bios, changed fan curves any way I wanted. It worked perfectly fine, didn't even update bios. Probably a difference of pre-installed software or settings. Smart Fan 5 is indeed Smart.
 

Phaaze88

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I didn't even do a switch. I've got 2 stock black corsair case fans 120mm and 2 SP140 RGB Pros (these 4 are 3 pin) , one CM SF120R RGB (from the H212 RGB) PWM and an ippc 3000 Noctua PWM. I just plugged them in, went into bios, changed fan curves any way I wanted. It worked perfectly fine, didn't even update bios. Probably a difference of pre-installed software or settings. Smart Fan 5 is indeed Smart.
I guess I am doing something wrong. I'm not using any software though.
 
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Jan 8, 2021
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So I have decided to go with just the three 140mm fans in the front as intake and 1 140mm in the rear as exhaust, I am going to leave the top empty and just monitor the temps and if things get to crazy on the GPU I can throw some exhaust fans on top.
 
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Viorala

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What would happen if you did the side fans like you are, put the top fans as exhaust, then used the power supply upside down so it's pulling air from the gpu?
 
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What would happen if you did the side fans like you are, put the top fans as exhaust, then used the power supply upside down so it's pulling air from the gpu?
Just from my experience the PSU is not something you would want to use as an exhaust unless you had to. I could be very wrong but the PSU seems like one of the most sensitive parts of the build and throwing extra heat through it might not be a good thing, plus graphics cards can handle heat I would rather see their temps rise a few degrees then risk overheating the PSU, but I could be very wrong.

As stated above by another poster the top fans as an exhaust would take away air from the CPU tower cooler, with the three intake fans having three exhaust would stop some of that intake air from even reaching the CPU cooler thus raising the temps. By having top exhausts you help get rid of the GPU hot air faster, but at the expense of the CPU. Neither way is wrong, but I would rather have my CPU see lower temps than my GPU and that may be different for some, but as the other poster said it is a choice you have to make pick your poison and I would rather see longevity out of my CPU.

Based on how often I upgrade which is every 7+ years with usually the only minor upgrades I do are Video Card and RAM, I want to push as much life as I can get out of the 5900x so I am wanting to keep the temps as low as I can on it.
 

Prad_Bitt

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What would happen if you did the side fans like you are, put the top fans as exhaust, then used the power supply upside down so it's pulling air from the gpu?
Then that's negative air pressure without being useful for the gpu. It would've helped the gpu by letting air in through the expansion slots but now the psu will be sucking that air in. The psu and gpu will be competing for air. It does no good. It's best when the psu has an own little ecosystem that starts and ends where the psu is.

The only case where a psu should be fan up is if your case is on top of one of those carpets with phallic pieces of cloth all over the place, where the psu intake is blocked (idk what it's called :p)
 
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