Lamptron FC6 and Bitfenix Spectre Pro 200mm...

RetroFanatic

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Recently bought a fan controller (Lamptron FC6) because a pair of ports on the built-in one in my Corsair Graphite 600T case died.

I plug it in and one of the first things I notice is that it doesn't get any rpm data from the Bitfenix fan. The second is that it doesn't start until I turn the knob to at least 75% of what's possible. And even at maximum it doesn't spin very fast. With up to 20w per channel, power shouldn't a problem. The LED lights don't use THAT much? Then I connect the Bitfenix fan back to the stock control again and it starts immediately and the LED lights too. I'm aware that the Lamptron control goes all the way down to 0 RPM.

In addition, the lamptron control seems to give off some kind of mild hum but not a low frequency one.

The stock fan of the top of the case works perfectly well to control, though.

Maybe I should send the controller back and get another one? Their website gives a lot of 404s and you can't contact them. Plus their social media account seems to have died.
 

Aeacus

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Looks like a bad fan controller.

I too have Bitfenix Spectre Pro fans in use, 2x 140mm and my Aerocool X-Vision fan controller, in my AMD build (full specs with pics in my sig), controls both of my LED fans without any issue whatsoever.
X-Vision, specs: http://www.aerocoolaustralia.com.au/en/fan-controller/single-bay/x-vision

For similar looking fan controller, you can go for Thermaltake Commander F6 RGB which i'm running in my Skylake build (also, full specs with pics in my sig) and which controls my Corsair ML140 Pro LED and NZXT AER140 RGB fans without issue as well.
F6 RGB, specs: http://www.thermaltake.com/products-model.aspx?id=C_00002777

Good side about F6 RGB is that it has 6x channels that support 3-pin and 4-pin fans. And if you don't have that many fans to connect to it, channel #5 and #6 also support Thermaltake Lumi series LED strips. Since i have NZXT HUE+ with it's LED strips in my build, i don't use Thermaltake Lumi LED strips with it.

If you're interested, under the spoiler is a pic of my PCs and their fan controllers. Click on spoiler to view.
Left: Skylake build with Thermaltake Commander F6 RGB
Middle: Haswell build with NZXT Sentry 3
Right: AMD build with Aerocool X-Vision
 

RetroFanatic

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Turns out there was nothing wrong with the fan controller. It was the extension cable my Bitfenix fan didn't like. But I decided to remove the controller anyway. With their website barely working, and their soical media account dead, maybe I should look for another fan controller.

I've been looking at the Sentry V3 aswell as the ones you listed there. The Aerocool one seems kinda weak with only 8w per channel but I suppose it can still run most fans on the market. I'm not gonna get Delta fans, anyway. I don't mind some sound of air being moved but it shouldn't be hurricane level.

Do you select which fan to control before turning that knob on the X-Vision? I'd like to be able to control all fans individually.

Hmm. Read that the Thermaltake one might be a bit flimsy.
 

Aeacus

Glorious
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With X-Vision, you first press "Set RPM" button, turn the knob to set RPM target and then press "Set RPM" button again, so that the fan controller would memorize the RPM. Downside of this is that when you want to change e.g 3rd channel fan RPM, you need to go through the #1 and #2 channels first. But yes, since it's a fan controller and not a fan hub, you can control all channels individually.
Main reason why i got X-Vision for my AMD build is because it's display view angle is designed in a such way where your PC sits below your eye level. Looking the fan controller at eye level and it's LED display seems dimmed out. As seen here (German review),
youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RKLSBi8ZHI#t=4m27s

As far as Thermaltake Commander F6 RGB goes, it one of the few fan controllers out there that enables to control your fans with 0.1V steps, from 0.0V to 12.0V. Most fan controllers go as low as 40% while the next step down from there is fan off. Since i needed maximum control over my fans, my choice was either Thermaltake Commander F6 RGB or Bitfenix Recon (specs). Since my local store didn't have black version of Bitfenix Recon available, only white version, i went with F6 RGB. Then again F6 RGB is also one of the few who has 6x channels while most fan controllers have 5x or 4x channels.
I've used my F6 RGB for over a year now and i can't tell that it feels flimsy or it's build quality is low. Oh, here's small tutorial of F6 RGB as well,
youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_S-CbNXoxo

As far as NZXT Sentry 3 goes, it looks very nice with it's vibrant colors and LED touchscreen. Downsides of it is that lowest fan speed is 40% and it only has 1x temp sensor. What sets it apart is that you can link channels together and control linked channels at the same time.
When looking a fan controller for my Haswell build, i narrowed the selection down to NZXT Sentry 3 and Thermaltake Commander FT. Both are good fan controllers while in the end, i went with Sentry 3.
Sentry 3, specs: https://www.nzxt.com/products/sentry-3
FT, specs: http://www.thermaltake.com/Cooler/Cooling_Accessory_/Fan_Controllor/C_00002651/Commander_FT_Touchscreen_Fan_Controller/design.htm
 

RetroFanatic

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X-Vision don't seem to be sold over here. Too bad. It looks nice. 8w per channle do seem a bit low, though.

I can get the F6 Commander RGB here but it's a tiny bit pricey. Hmm. The lights on the display seem a bit uneven. It looks darker in the middle. Also, when selecting max speed mode on the 6th button, do you select a fan first by pressing the button and then enable max speed with button 6?

Also, I don't mind if a fan is on all the time. Don't some fans have quite high starting voltage? Like, 5V or so?
 

Aeacus

Glorious
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On F6 RGB, long press on button #6 enables the "full speed mode". What that mode does, is that it feeds full 12V to all fans for 3 seconds at PC's startup before returning set voltage levels to the ones they were on previous shutdown. Without "full speed mode" activated, on PC's startup (power on), fans receive the set voltages which were in place on previous shutdown.
This mode is handy when you've set fan voltage level e.g 6V and depending on a fan, some fans won't start before they get full 12V. I've enabled it on my setup so i can check on each startup if all my 6x fans are working properly. Of course, NZXT Sentry 3 has the same feature but that's built-in and you can't disable that.

As far as display goes, sides do look a bit brighter than the middle but on highest brightness setting, i can't see the difference.

8W per channel may look like less but in reality, it can power up to 0.65A fan. Most PC LED fans operate at max of 0.3A. If you want, you can even run Noctua industrial 140mm 3000 RPM fan off from it just fine since that fan operates at 0.55A (specs).
 

RetroFanatic

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Okay, thanks for the help. I guess it's just a matter if I want knobs or a touch-display then. And I suppose either the F6 Commander RGB or the Sentry 3 will work fine, right? I did notice that there is a very small difference in size on those.

On the Lamtron, there was a 1mm gap at the top of end of it. When it was mounted in the 5.25" drive bay, I mean. And it didn't sit straight either. I don't think the screw holes were entirely lined up. Picture yourself a straight line from above and turn it a few degrees to the left and you'll know what I mean. Also, you could move the buttons around a bit 1mm or so.
 

RetroFanatic

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Ok, thanks. One last question then. How is the Bitfenix Recon?
 

Aeacus

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Bitfenix Recon has plenty of unique features which made me to heavily consider it,
specs: https://www.bitfenix.com/global/en/products/accessories/recon/
video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6R2xoAPPQcs

Besides NZXT GRID+ V3 and Corsair Commander Pro, Bitfenix Recon is one of the few and only 5.25" external fan controller that has dedicated software to control it (at least as far as i know). You can even use the Bitfenix app in your smart phone. Besides Bitfenix app, NZXT CAM also has mobile version which has support for smart phones. But different from GRID+ V3 and Commander Pro, using Bitfenix app isn't mandatory and you can use the fan controller without the software just fine.

Another thing which i like about it, is the fan control method. Between external fan controllers, there are 3 different methods:
F6 RGB - voltage adjustment in steps of 0.1 V, from 0.0 V to 12.0 V,
Recon - fan RPM adjustment in steps of 100 RPM, from 0 RPM to the fan's max RPM, e.g 1500 RPM,
Sentry 3 - voltage adjustment in steps of 10%, which are: 0%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, 90% and 100%.

Most fan controllers that i've seen has the same percentage control as Sentry 3 while control methods which are used by F6 RGB and Recon are few and far between.

Additionally, Recon enables you to set fan to run at max RPM in 1 touch on the big fan icon. Oh, it has touchscreen controls, just like Sentry 3. There are other nice features with it as well that you can see from video review i linked above. Also, it's color theme is neutral enough to fit into any PC build where you have choice between black or white plastic frame.
 

RetroFanatic

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The only thing I don't like is that the heatsinks are glued on.

And I think the USB things need to be connected to interal USB ports for me to be able to use the App, right? Or is that just the software on the computer?

Hmm. Sentry 3 or Bitfenix Recon. Decisions, decisions.
 

Aeacus

Glorious
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With Recon, yes, you'll need to connect the included cable to the internal USB 2.0 on your MoBo if you want to use Bitfenix app with it, either on PC or smart phone. If you don't use the Bitfenix app, there's no need to connect that USB 2.0 cable.
 

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