Question Fan Controller Question

Wingmore

Prominent
Oct 11, 2021
4
0
510
0
I've searched all over the web and still need some advice:

I would very much like to control all the fans in my pc via one place, probably using SpeedFan or Fan Controller. However I discovered that some of my fans right now do not have pwm and are being directly driven by the psu or the system fan header which both seem to run at 100% all the time.

My question is, if I buy a fan controller, am I A) able to adjust these fans using software, and B) able to control the speed of fans independently of each other.

Also would welcome any advice on which fan controller to buy,

Thanks!
 
I've searched all over the web and still need some advice:

I would very much like to control all the fans in my pc via one place, probably using SpeedFan or Fan Controller. However I discovered that some of my fans right now do not have pwm and are being directly driven by the psu or the system fan header which both seem to run at 100% all the time.

My question is, if I buy a fan controller, am I A) able to adjust these fans using software, and B) able to control the speed of fans independently of each other.

Also would welcome any advice on which fan controller to buy,

Thanks!
SpeedFan is way out of date, I doubt it can control anything any more.
You shouldn't mix PWM and DC fans on same connector or hub. in best case they should be controlled in DC mode.
Don't control CPU cooler fans together with case fans, keep them on CPU_FAN header.
Any fans connected to PSU, you don't have control over.
What headers do you have on the MB and do those fans connected to PSU have any other connectors ?
 

Wingmore

Prominent
Oct 11, 2021
4
0
510
0
SpeedFan is way out of date, I doubt it can control anything any more.
You shouldn't mix PWM and DC fans on same connector or hub. in best case they should be controlled in DC mode.
Don't control CPU cooler fans together with case fans, keep them on CPU_FAN header.
Any fans connected to PSU, you don't have control over.
What headers do you have on the MB and do those fans connected to PSU have any other connectors ?
Can I just power all my fans in DC mode then?
I only have two fan headers on my MB, the CPU one and a system fan one hence why I need a fan controller/hub. And currently, no the fan connected to my PSU has no additional connector (might solder a header to it instead though)

Also was planning on getting a fan controller with SATA if that works.
 

Paperdoc

Polypheme
Ambassador
You don't need a fan CONTROLLER, but you probably need a very particular fan HUB. To be sure we get it right, tell us these:

What mobo - maker and exact model? We can look up its details.
CASE fans - what makers and models - you have a mix, I see. How many of each type?

With that we can figure out how to get all your case fans controlled automatically by the single SYS_FAN header.

You may need to custom-modify the Molex connector on the end of the fan cables with those. Can you do relatively simple cut-and-splice work with wires? If not, for each fan with only a larger Molex connector you need a rare adapter cable like this one

https://www.performance-pcs.com/cables/usb-cables/internal-usb-cables/4-pin-molex-to-4-pin-fan-adapter-cable-mdy-4pm-4ff.html

This has a normal 4-pin female fan connector on one end that you can plug into a mobo male header or a fan Hub male output port. On its other end is a female 4-pin Molex connector where you could plug in the male connector on your fan's cable. This converts that fan to be able to plug into a standard male fan port or header.

I have never dealt with (or heard of) this on-line supplier, so I can't tell you about them. I just found that they have the right adapter listed.
 
Last edited:
Reactions: CountMike

Wingmore

Prominent
Oct 11, 2021
4
0
510
0
Oh thought hub and controller were the same thing

My MB is a BIOSTAR A320MH
Case fans is a mix, no idea what models but I have one with a 3pin connectors and one which hooked to the psu (I'm guessing that one is molex)
I want to add more so yeah looking into getting a fan hub.

Yep I can easily cut and splice wires so dont worry about adapters.

My only concern is can you use the software to control the speed of the fans connected to a fan hub.
 
Oh thought hub and controller were the same thing

My MB is a BIOSTAR A320MH
Case fans is a mix, no idea what models but I have one with a 3pin connectors and one which hooked to the psu (I'm guessing that one is molex)
I want to add more so yeah looking into getting a fan hub.

Yep I can easily cut and splice wires so dont worry about adapters.

My only concern is can you use the software to control the speed of the fans connected to a fan hub.
A fan hub treats all the fans connected to it as one fan, has to be connected to a fan header on the MB to be able to control from BIOS or SW. Mixing 3pin and PWM or even differnt fans with same connectors can confuse the heck out of any control. Another problem could arise if you connect too many fans to one MB header,typically headers are good to 1A and that means not more than 3 x 120/140MM fans. For any more you would need a powered hub that gets power from PSU but fans are controlled from MB. You also can't connect and control fans with only Molex connector. For fan control it needs to have RPM sensor in it, without it,it would just spin full speed no matter what.
 

Paperdoc

Polypheme
Ambassador
Mostly right above, but a couple changes.

There are three types of devices for controlling fan speeds. A SPLITTER merely connects all its fans in parallel to the power source and signals from one fan header, so the header does not even know more fans are connected. A HUB does a similar job BUT with an important difference. It gets power for all its fans directly from the PSU (and that means it requires a connection to a PSU output), so the 1 A max current limit of the header does not matter. The Hub gets the PWM control signal from a mobo header and shares that out to all its fans. BUT that means those fans MUST be of the newer 4-pin PWM style that can use that signal. (There is ONE Hub that is different in this matter.) A CONTROLLER similarly gets power from the PSU, but has all its own "smarts" needed to do the control function and does not use a mobo header's signal. Many Controllers are used in conjunction with a software tool to tell it what to do, and that communicates with the Controller box via a cable connection to a mobo USB2 header. But some Controllers come with hand-held boxes with buttons for you to make manual settings, and some come with none of that and you must use buttons on the controller box itself.

To control the speed of older 3-pin fans a header must supply the fan with a VOLTAGE that varies from 12 VDC (full speed) down to about 5 VDC for min speed without stalling. The newer PWM type fan with 4 pins instead always receives the full 12 VDC power supply but also receives the new PWM control signal from Pin #4. It has a special chip that uses that signal to modify flow of current from that power source through its windings to alter speed. An older 3-pin fan connected to that set of signals "sees" a constant 12 VDC power supply and has no way to use a PWM control signal, so it always runs full speed. A normal HUB merely takes the host header's PWM signal and shares it out to all its fans, so a 3-pin fan cannot be controlled that way.

A fan generates a speed signal (5 VDC pulses, 2 pulses per revolution) and sends it back to the host header on Pin #3 for counting. The header can show you that for interest, and does use that to monitor the fan for possible failure (no speed signal). But it does NOT need or use that for controlling speed. In fact, the automatic speed control system on a mobo header only cares about the TEMPERATURE at a sensor (either inside the CPU chip or on the mobo) and it manipulates the fan speed to keep the temp on target. It really is a TEMPERATURE Control System - it does not focus on controlling fan SPEED.

A fan with only a 4-pin Molex connection to the PSU draws its power from two lines of that connection (+12 VDC and Ground), and has no way to send a speed signal back to anything. So its speed cannot be "seen" anywhere, and cannot be controlled from a power supply that never changes. BUT if you re-wire it to power it from a mobo header AND that header is using the older method of speed control for 3-pin fans (called Voltage Control Mode or DC Mode), then its speed CAN be controlled that way, even though it still cannot send any speed signal out.

Because the two fan types require different types of control signals you cannot mix them on one fan header easily. In your case, though, you CAN get a mixture of both fan types to work for case ventilation with the only SYS_FAN header your mobo has. The mobo manual indicates that header only functions in the new 4-pin PWM Mode. You need to buy a particular Hub, the Phanteks Universal Fan Controller model PH-PWHUB_02

https://www.amazon.com/Phanteks-Universal-Fan-Controller-PH-PWHUB_02/dp/B07NHQRCRM/ref=sr_1_1?crid=F4NT406IWGL5&keywords=phanteks+universal+fan+controller&qid=1661347461&sprefix=phanteks+universal+fan+controller,aps,101&sr=8-1

It can work with input signals from a mobo header of either type - in your case, it will be the PWM type. You connect a line from the SYS_FAN header to this Hub's input port, and a cable from the Hub to a mobo SATA power output connector. It has two different groups of output headers for fans. Four are for 4-pin fans only and use the PWM signal system. Three are for 3-pin fans, and the Hub "translates" the PWM signal from the mobo header into Voltage Control Mode signals for these fans. Port #1 can work with either fan type but you most plug a fan in there - it is the only output port that will send its speed signal back to the mobo header for counting.

Using this Hub you CAN let the mobo SYS_FAN header control the speeds of all your case ventilation fans according to the temperature measured by the mobo sensor. Just plug each fan into the correct type of Hub port.

Now, how to modify your fan(s) with a wide Molex connector. I fully expect that the connector has Black and Red wires only. Further, when you plug that into a Molex output from the PSU you will see that the Black wire mates with one of the two middle Blacks from the PSU, and the Red wire mates with a Yellow from the PSU. Now look at the connector on the one 3-pin fan you have already. Note that ONE side of it has ridges down the side. The wires will be Black on one end, Red in the middle, and Yellow on the other end. On the 3-pin fan's connector, Black = Ground, Red = +VDC power supply, and Yellow = Speed pulse signal. For the fan(s) with a Molex on its wires, you need to get some 3-pin female fan connectors - either salvaged from an old non-functioning fan or by buying some 3-pin fan extension cords. Cut off the Molex from a fan and one end of the replacement connector, and just splice wires together matching Red to Red, Black to Black. Tape the end of any Yellow on the new connector/wires so it does not short out and just curl it up neatly - do not connect to anything on the fan. Now you have a standard 3-pin fan whose speed CAN be controlled by varying voltage from the Hub port, but without any ability to send a speed signal back. Ta-da!
 
Last edited:
Reactions: Wingmore

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS