Question How to upgrade case fans?

Jul 26, 2022
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So I have been doing some upgrades to my pre-built pc and want to upgrade the case fans but have never dealt with fans before.
I have basic knowledge but that's it. I managed to put in new PSU, AIO, and GPU without to many problems and now I want to replace the case fans.

There are 4 X 120mm fans. 3 in front and 1 in back. Is it as simple as buying 4 new case fans that I want and plugging them into where the old ones were plugged into? Also the ones now are RGB fans that I control with polychrome app so will the new different RGB fans automatically work with same app?

I will try to post image below. I also noticed that the top of case is empty and wanted to add 5th fan there but not sure where I would plug it in. The fans now are kind of loud and case does get pretty warm and I just added bigger GPU so wanted to upgrade fans. Also any suggestions for good 120mm RGB fans?
 

CompuGuy71

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Jul 20, 2022
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Depends on how your fans are set up.

I'm not sure if any RGB fan will be addressable by what software and fan hub you have installed. Knowing IBuyPower it is probably a <Mod Edit> show on the backside panel where your fans are probably run
 
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Jul 26, 2022
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basics:
Case fans and s cpu fan/pump may be governed from your mobo's bios/uefi setup utility and usually some manufacturers programme designed for windows. have a look there to assess how much configuration there is possible how many fans are reported and whether their current revolution is detected continually.
find your fans plugs to your mobo/case and find any replacement you prefer with the same plugs. Usually 3 or pins. After you replace and old one with a new one recheck again if current revolution is properly detected and same range of config available.

Generally not much space for mistakes however some replacement models might have a different or not implemented Pulse Width Modulation PWM for revs management.
 
Jul 26, 2022
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from your photo:

I am afraid you may have noticed an unused place suitable for a fan because your CPU radiator is meant to be attached there and blow out hot air upwards.

Man what a mess...
 
Reactions: CompuGuy71
Jul 26, 2022
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make me happy and post a better illuminated photo of current situation🆒

have you checked your mobo manual to locate fan sockets and determine if the front trio occupies any of them or spins independently?
 
Reactions: CompuGuy71
Jul 26, 2022
11
0
10
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basics:
Case fans and s cpu fan/pump may be governed from your mobo's bios/uefi setup utility and usually some manufacturers programme designed for windows. have a look there to assess how much configuration there is possible how many fans are reported and whether their current revolution is detected continually.
find your fans plugs to your mobo/case and find any replacement you prefer with the same plugs. Usually 3 or pins. After you replace and old one with a new one recheck again if current revolution is properly detected and same range of config available.
I have noticed before that the polychrome is in bios but never looked at it. Also now I remember the 4 case fans are plugged into a port behind the side panel because the light went out on one because it had came loose. They are 3 pin connectors. That should be simple enough to just plug them in same spot but I will double check the pins before I order, thanks for help.
 
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Jul 26, 2022
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Depends on how your fans are set up.

Knowing IBuyPower it is probably a <Mod Edit> show on the backside panel where your fans are probably run
Ya your right. The lights work fine but if you barely move case the fan connectors will come out. I forgot where they were located but now I remember because they are plugged into connector in side panel with electrical tape holding them in because they fall out without the electrical tape. It came that way.

That reminds me that I have to remove side panel again to connect the new fans. When I put the new PSU in it took whole bag of zipties and alot of elbow grease to get the case to close. There is no room at all back there. Will have to have fresh cup of coffee ready for that job
 
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Jul 26, 2022
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make me happy and post a better illuminated photo of current situation🆒
Here is current setup. The PCI cables I to had run extra slack to the front of the case to get back panel closed because there is no room back there. I could clean it up in front but haven't got around to it. Also don't know if you can see in picture but GPU hangs down really bad so ordered stand for it. I think it came in today but I haven't opened the package yet.

As far as the extra case fan I feel like I could maybe fit a 5th 120mm in the top right corner of case
 

Karadjgne

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Pc fans only come in 2 varieties as far as most aftermarket goes. 3pin/DC or 4pin/PWM. Thats it.

What info you will need is Where the fans are actually plugged in and what kind of connection is used, 3pin or 4pin. That's what kind of fans you'll need for replacement.

RGB is entirely seperate issue. An rgb fan comes in 2 varieties. RGB uses a 4pin connector, ARGB/DRGB uses a 4pin connector but has only 3 pins, a middle one is blocked off.

RGB is amperage controlled and every seperate led gets the exact same color, according to the amperage used. ARGB/DRGB is digital, addressable, so is Data controlled, every seperate led gets its own address, it's own data stream, it's own color. RGB is single variable color no rainbow possible, ARGB/DRGB is variable multi color, so will do unicorn rainbow puke spinning in circles if you want it to.

To painlessly replace the fans requires knowing both the fan type and the lighting type and matching them up. Otherwise they may or may not work or work like crap, even rewired, as some motherboards do not have a jrain (ARGB) header, only jrgb headers. Some cases use a hub for both, seperated, and the push button on the top of the case controls rgb function, the motherboard controlling fan hub function.

You have to know what you have, and how it's connected before you can shop for different fans.

It's like changing the sparkplugs in your car. Very first thing is knowing if it's a diesel or gasoline engine. How many cylinders, front or rear wheel drive, what brand car, what size engine etc. Then you goto the autoparts store.
 
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CompuGuy71

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Jul 20, 2022
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Ya your right. The lights work fine but if you barely move case the fan connectors will come out. I forgot where they were located but now I remember because they are plugged into connector in side panel with electrical tape holding them in because they fall out without the electrical tape. It came that way.

Sh...t! That reminds me that I have to remove side panel again to connect the new fans. When I put the new PSU in it took whole bag of zipties and alot of elbow grease to get the case to close. There is no room at all back there. Will have to have fresh cup of coffee ready for that job
Good luck.

I personally hate zip ties I usually go for the Velcro things
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Ambassador
If anyone looking for car inspection advice read the above,
don't try to find spark plugs for diesels...
Exactly my point. There are more than a few cases out there with proprietary fan systems, they'll use stuff like 6pin connectors and a single wire instead of the standard aftermarket fan/light seperates. Those fans are impossible to exchange and use the factory hub. Requires a total rewire, starting from scratch. Some fans are molex or Sata powered and the only cable is a 2pin going to the case switch.

So it's important to know if you even Can exchange the fans without a total rework of the whole system. 😏
 

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