- Introduction, Packaging and Specs
- Closer Look and First Impressions
- Fan Control and Display Impressions
- Online Purchase Links
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The front is a horizontal brushed black coloured finish on the aluminium plate with a couple of grooves on the side. This fan controller is made to fit in a 5.25″ bay. In a way I am happy there’s no branding on the front side bezel. Behind the controller, there are two layers of PCB and the touch screen. As you can see, it uses the four-pin Molex to power up and control the six 3-pin headers.
Just below the Molex connector, there are a set of six pins to connect the thermal probes and also two pins for activating the alarm by using the provided jumper. The alarm turns on if any temperature emitted from the probe reports 70 degrees Celsius and if the fans are not operating when its voltage is over 6.5v. That said, all fan headers need to be used or else the alarm will continuously ring. The only other way is to reduce all the non-connected fan profiles to less than 6.5v. Providing an onboard alarm control on the screen would be more useful as accessing the PCB can be frustrating.
The fan controller uses ARM STM32 CPU which uses Cortex-M3 core. This controller acts as a PWM controller for all the connected fans. Hence, if the connected fan does not have a PWM chip to regulate the RPM, the fan controller takes care of it.
The extension wiring could have been longer, considering one or two of the fans would be from the rear section of the case. Note that most prefer to hide the excess cables in today’s system and, therefore, routing them around will require an added length. While this may not be an issue with fans with longer fan cable length like with the IndustrialPPC series, it might not be the case with others especially since pre-bundled non-pwn fans in some cases are annoying short with a 3-pin to molex converter. It might be a pain if it’s a large XL-ATX type cases. These cable extensions measure 50 inches. I have another fan controller which is a 4-pin lead is 64 inches long.
At one point, manufacturers (and users) used to consider braided cable as ‘the best thing’ but as time passed and as people started to see the light. It makes it difficult to bend, provides no real world benefits, and adds unnecessary weight to it. Such were the counterpoints typically with braided mice. In terms of these cables, the conventional cabling is a much better option. This is compared with another extension cable. It’s black and, therefore, makes it easier to hide and it uses the same plastic sleeving that wires typically use. Braided cabling on the fan extensions provides unnecessary thickness. They already have similar cabling for the temperature probe. Molex wires are individually sleeved.
The header placements on the PCB are done in a way that it’s towards the left. The temperature probe is 70 inches long. It is preferred that you connect the cable extensions first and then install it on the case.