V3 Voltair V3TEC120-FC01 CPU TEC Cooler Review

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surprise surprise, an undersized air tower can't cool the Peltier (TEC) unit they attached it to.

I think the only thing surprising is it even managed to keep up at all with those "real" cpu coolers. The problem with using Peltier based cooling is typically if you want to cool 80W of power you need to be able to disperse around 160W-240W of heat energy; it's clear they went with an under powered peltier to avoid condensation, but of course that defeats the whole purpose to one as well; because then you end up with a cooler not strong enough to cool on one side and too hot to cool on the other (with the undersized heatsink)

really the only sensible use for a peltier in a computer would be through some sort of heat exchange method, like paired with a large custom water loop, and lots of radiator space, while at the same time, insulating the connection point and BACK OF THE MOTHERBOARD to prevent condensation damage to your system.

throw in the fact that Peltier or TEC cooling wears out over time, and this just looks like a terrible product. too little radiator space, too little voltage going into the Peltier, too much noise generated by the undersized fans, not enough cooling ability... just a mediocre product
 

PaulBags

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Several times now I've read in a tom's review references to past experience with big coolers coming loose and/or damaging boards. Would you mind linking us to those examples?
 

atheus

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Several times now I've read in a tom's review references to past experience with big coolers coming loose and/or damaging boards. Would you mind linking us to those examples?
I know this is not what you're asking for, but after building a computer for a friend and shipping it across the country I'm fairly convinced that at least when designing a computer that you intend to ship it's probably best to use a closed loop liquid cooler. I just had a Hyper 212 EVO mounted on an ASUS Z97 GRYPHON, and evidently the USPS dropped it from a substantial height, causing the heat sink to break free and damage the CPU, plus the graphics card tore the PCIE slot in half. I think from now on any time I ship a computer that has a big air cooler, I'll remove the cooler (and graphics cards, if any) and pack them separately. For someone who doesn't have the skills to mount a CPU cooler, I'll just have to stick to closed loop water.

USPS eventually paid for the damaged computer ($1300), but it took over a month to get the check, and there were tons of hoops she had to jump through. For a while it was even starting to look like they weren't going to pay up. Not worth the headache. From now on I'll make sure any computer I ship is ready to be dropped from an airplane at 500 MPH without a chute, as much as possible.
 

Crashman

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Linking you? You do know that there's a real world out there, where photos of damaged systems that we packed could be evidence in a lawsuit. And I don't go after the suppliers of prebuilt systems when theirs arrive damaged either, because that feels like adding insult to financial injury. The only ONLINE proof that any of this has happened is in restricted-access servers, though I can't stop anyone from hacking my email ;)

Most things in this world don't happen online. I think it's nice that someone can tell me "this part got wrecked in shipping" and I can say "send it to me, I'll evaluate it before I replace it". I realize that its unbelievable to some that this still happens in the age of snapchat...

As for the less spectacular (warped board) failures, they're mentioned in an SBM article where the motherboard was a Z77 Extreme4.
 

OcelotRex

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I am not very sure you sufficiently answered his concerns with hypothetical situations that you cannot prove/disprove. I think that the OP was looking for something concrete since an occurrence has been referenced (in their experience) a few times on the same site.

I had the same concern when purchasing a larger air cooler - I had settled on the Cooler master 212 on a non-overclocked build to keep it cool/quiet but had been building with smaller, older Zalman fans. To alleiviate those concerns I when with a Silverstone case that inverted the motherboard and added an adjustable stand for the heatsink to take the vertical strain off the MB:



But to your point shipping a PC is a whole other issue as you cannot control the orientation or handling of the item throughout the process so I can see how bending/warping/snapping could happen. for such large coolers the safest bet would be to disassemble the heavy parts prior to shipping.
 

atheus

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Here you go. If it's computer snuff you want:

Yeah, that CPU fan is spinning.
 

Crashman

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I'm not trying to prove or disprove a hypothetical situation. I'm testifying to real-world occurrences. Does anyone really need the testimony of Chris and Don to prove that things he or she knows can happen, did happen?

This one shouldn't be all that controversial. It's like if I told you about that time I went to Florida and my wife fed squirrels at the park from her hand, and rather than argue about the behavior of the squirrels you began arguing about whether I'd ever been to Florida.

If I said it rained yesterday you'd probably believe it. On the other hand, if I said it didn't rain you'd probably believe that. Both solutions are equally possible, one solution is actual and the other potentially "hypothetical" (IF it hadn't rained...). The reason you'd have believed either one is that neither option is particularly controversial, and I don't have anything to gain by lying.
 

kristi_metal

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I have only one problem with this cooler: the "space" between the heatpipes that form the base of the radiator. The heat is only absorbed by the heatpipes, but the aluminium strips just keep the heat there, it is not that efficient in removing heat from the CPU.
 

rwinches

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The question I would like answered is how did the cooler with 8 thick heatpipes perform with just the fans no TEC?

It seems that it should out perform a CM 212 EVO with 4 thinner heatpipes.

Would better quality fans make a difference?

I know this is not in the scope of the review, but I would hope the designers would start with a great air cooler design and then improve it with the TEC. They don't have to exceed WCs but at least match them otherwise why bother?

They did succeed in avoiding condensation which is good. I wonder how these would work in a warm room with no air conditioning that many readers have described in their help queries?
 

Crashman

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Testing that configuration would require us to replace the TEC with a custom-fitted copper plate.

 

Ning3n

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This is just nit-picking, but....

"The TEC uses two power pins from an old drive power connector"

You mean a Molex connector.
 

atheus

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I actually tripped over that weird choice of words too. I wound up blowing up the photo just to confirm that's what he was actually talking about, rather than some other weird connector I didn't know about that wasn't Molex.
 

Crashman

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Here's the first photo from the Molex website:


I mean an ATA-style drive power connector. Molex makes all kinds of connectors. Watch me get three to five thumbs down for being specific :D

 

Crashman

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And when I'm in Georgia and I ask for a Coke they ask me if I was root beer. I prefer to be specific :)

This is actually a question of intellectual honesty for me. Do I say something that's intellectually dishonest to be better-understood, or do I take a chance by being more-specific. I used to do a lot more of the former, before the whole Shuttle Form Factor problem popped up 9 years ago.
 

knowom

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Something else interesting is they could make similar devices also to use a TEC in reverse basically as a thermoelectric generator to power the CPU fan itself from the heat it generates to save a little bit of power.

Another thing I'd love to see is a passive cooling mineral oil PC with submerged heat pipe cooled components. I would think the mineral oil would work as a lot of surface area oil covered for the heat pipes to wick away heat out into the air. They could probably even make a heat pipe box filled with mineral oil which other heat pipe components connect and mount to. Something even like a PC frame that can be filled with mineral oil in the inside of it that heat pipes connect to. Just not enough ingenuity being shown compared to what is possible.

I really like the idea of heat pipes and mineral oil though combining surface area and natural convection it's a subject that needs exploring it has potential. Passive radiant mineral oil cooling connected via flexible copper tubing to a heat pipe radiator would be sweet.
 

RedJaron

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Been there, done that. Squirrels on the UF campus aren't phased at all by humans. Saw one sitting on the edge of a trashcan that was so still I thought it was a decorative statue. Once I walked past, it twisted it's head to follow me, probably wondering why I didn't feed the adorable thing.

No, I'm not sure where you heard that from. Starting at v27.1, the FFTs were optimized for 32-bit AVX istructions ( v27.3 introduced 64-bit AVX. ) AVX support allows the threads to run much faster for people doing actual Mersenne research. However, it also taxes the CPU a lot more, meaning it runs hotter. When Thomas and I test mboards, this is the difference in the heat chart between "normal" P95 and P95 AVX.

So no, later versions of P95 aren't bad for your CPU, they'll just tax it more. So if you OC your CPU, it might be able to handle moderate loads, but throwing P95 AVX at it will show it it's really stable or not.

Been there, done that too. Weirdest thing when someone asked me what kind of Coke I wanted, and they didn't mean cherry vs vanilla vs lemon.

I don't mind being specific. "Soda" in the east means any number of carbonated beverages, but in the midwest many people think you're talking about sodium bicarbonate ( or unflavored carbonated water ). Call it a "pop" in Utah and people know what you're talking about, but say the same thing on the east coast and they might think you're asking for a sucker / lollipop. When in doubt, call the thing what it actually is, not the colloquial term.
 

Blueberries

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See, we say soda here; and where I'm from "old drive power connector" isn't specific.
 

Crashman

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Soda is wrong though. Sodas are a specific type of metallic compound. There are no sodas in soft drinks. The bubbles do, however, "pop" :)

Soda for things that have no sodas and Molex for a connector made by anyone but Molex, I'm starting to see a pattern :p
 

Simon Anderson

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Has anyone tried building a sealed housing around a CPU, and sucking all the air out? Mount a Peltier with cold side inside vacuum... hot side outside vacuum... Would that solve the condensation problem? I guess condensation would just form on outside of housing... hmm *ponder*
 
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