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BUILD [Review] X11SDV-4C-TP8F - did it

Hobbel

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Feb 17, 2015
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I wonder if there's a more straightforward solution.
your board now has the original heatsink enhanced with an active cooler. nothing is easier than replacing the stock fan with any other. everything is in place and fits 100% - without any zipties or similar. ;)
 

Jessep

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your board now has the original heatsink enhanced with an active cooler. nothing is easier than replacing the stock fan with any other. everything is in place and fits 100% - without any zipties or similar. ;)

Wouldn’t it still require applying thermal paste and all? I have no idea of what to do. I wonder if there’s a step by step solution on how to do it.
 

Jessep

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From the linked diagram you should be able to unscrew the attached fan and screw down a different one.
 
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did several mods on several heatsinks. For the mentioned SNK-C0111AP4L you would have to
  1. remove the heatsink from the board (4 screws)
  2. release the metal "cage" (4 screws)
  3. release the fan (4 screws)
  4. transfer the fangrill (4 plastic "whatever it is called")
  5. assemble fangrill with new fan
  6. assemble fan onto metal "cage"
  7. assemble metal "cage" onto heatsink
  8. assemble heatsink to the board
don't forget to clean CPU and use new thermal pad / compound.

Sorry to ask what can be an obvious question, but if you already have the C0111AP4L installed, do you think I need to remove the heatsink from the board in order to install, say, the Noctua NF-A6x25 PWM? The mounting hole space of the Noctua is 50mm, and it looks very similar to the mounting hole space of the C0111APL I already have installed (this is the drawing specs of the C0111APL):

0110143_heat-sink-with-retention-back-plane.jpg


If it's just a matter of unscrewing the fan of the Supermicro cooler and screwing a Noctua fan, I'll surely do it, but I'm not sure if it will fit and if it's all it takes.

Also, will the plastic of the Noctua fan be ok attached to the heatsink? Not too warm?
 
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That looks to be a 60mm fan based on this drawing, I would suggest you measure before choosing a replacement fan
https://www.wiredzone.com/supermicro-components-processors-accessories-snk-c0111ap4l-10028110

I would suggest NF-A6x25 rated at 19dB standard and 13dB with included LNA.
https://noctua.at/en/products/fan/nf-a6x25-pwm/specification

That's the thing, the drawing doesn't show exactly what's the mounting hole space, but it look's like it's a 50mm x 50mm, which is the same as the NF-A6x25.
 

Hobbel

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Feb 17, 2015
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I would suggest to remove the complete heatsink from the board. see this picture (posted earlier in this thread):
IMG_20190730_172422.jpg


8 screws need to be removed to replace the fan. as stated before, my machine is running 24/7 and I can't measure any sizes...
perhaps you are able to release the "green" screws with the heatsink attached to the board.
 
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I would suggest to remove the complete heatsink from the board. see this picture (posted earlier in this thread):
View attachment 32588


8 screws need to be removed to replace the fan. as stated before, my machine is running 24/7 and I can't measure any sizes...
perhaps you are able to release the "green" screws with the heatsink attached to the board.

again, thanks for your help.
From that picture it looks like it would suffice to remove the red screws, no?
 

Hobbel

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From that picture it looks like it would suffice to remove the red screws, no?
The screws are mounted from the back and I see no way to get there with a screwdriver
 
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The screws are mounted from the back and I see no way to get there with a screwdriver

I see... Thanks a lot for your help and insights! I just ordered a Noctua fan and will replace the fan.
 
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The screws are mounted from the back and I see no way to get there with a screwdriver

Aaaand done! :)

IMG_1040.jpg


It wasn't necessary to unscrew the whole heatsync. It was a hard job to unscrew the cage, but it worked. The A6x25 PWM fitted perfectly - same mounting hole.

I am just not sure it was worth it, though. When the fan is at max speed, It's the same noise, or maybe a tiny bit quieter, than when I had the supermicro fan running at 2200 rpm using `ipmitool -H 192.168.1.80 raw 0x30 0x70 0x66 0x01 0x00 0x2` and full speed. Then, my temps would oscilate between 43 and 47 degrees Celsius.

Now, with the Noctua fan, when I select "optimal" and restore the full cycle, (0x64), I get 1200 rpm and an average of 56º C. And not so quiet as I thought.

Am a bit disappointed, I must say. Not the quietest machine, and now it runs a tiny bit warmer. Am almost considering going back to the Supermicro fan. But it is nice to actually not have to run a script to control the fan, as the optimal mode does it nicely.
 
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Hobbel

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Me too. Don't know the environment, but sounds not that cool. Could you post the temps of your hard drives?

The environment - my living room - is not the coldest. It's around 24/25 degrees.
The hard disks oscillates between 40 and 43 ºC, which I am hoping to fix soon with some more fans on the case. I have a hunch that I need better airflow on my node 804 case.

But in any case, next year I'll be able to move the machine to the basement, and there I think I'll just use the Supermicro fan, as it can cool the CPU better and faster, as I see it.

I also installed a Barracuda HD just for Time Machine - not a NAS-graded disk, and now I wonder if the noise difference can be blamed on the HD. I will switch it off tonight and see if I notice something.
 

Hobbel

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The hard disks oscillates between 40 and 43 ºC
would say: this is too much. try to get them under 40°C.

Now, with the Noctua fan, when I select "optimal" and restore the full cycle, (0x64), I get 1200 rpm and an average of 56º C. And not so quiet as I thought.
do you have the chassis fans connected to the board?
 
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would say: this is too much. try to get them under 40°C.


do you have the chassis fans connected to the board?

Not really. The Fractal Design case has a switch that you can use to select the speed of the fans. I have the speed set to medium, which is a good compromise for noise/cooling. But I ordered three extra Noctua fans to add to the chassis.
 

IQless

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Feb 13, 2017
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Not really. The Fractal Design case has a switch that you can use to select the speed of the fans. I have the speed set to medium, which is a good compromise for noise/cooling. But I ordered three extra Noctua fans to add to the chassis.
Do remember to up the cooling when the drives are under heavy loads, like a scrub. If you connect the fans to the MB and use one of the many Fan Scripts you can find on the forum, you could have the fans just spin up when needed, then fall back down again. This would be safer for the drives at least :)
 
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Do remember to up the cooling when the drives are under heavy loads, like a scrub. If you connect the fans to the MB and use one of the many Fan Scripts you can find on the forum, you could have the fans just spin up when needed, then fall back down again. This would be safer for the drives at least :)

I'm not concerned about the drives - for now. I've already ordered some extra fans to put on the HD zone, and will have those connected to the MB. As said, I don't have fans connected to the motherboard yet (besides the CPU fan), as those that came with the case do not have PWM and I don't think the control would be reliable.

I will go back to the Supermicro fan. It cools down better on the same RPM than the Noctua, and it's not much louder. I think it was almost at the same noise level on 2200 rpm as the Noctua at 1300 rpm. Things start to get bad at 3000 rpm - the Noctua becomes just a bit louder, while the Supermicro fan gets annoyingly loud.

So I'll use Kevin's script to control the Supermicro fan.
 
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Ok, this is embarrassing, confusing, frustrating and enlightening, all at the same time:

It turns out my judgement was being clouded by the noise the Seagate Ironwolf disks were making. So I had the impression the Noctua fans were doing a lot of noise. They simply weren't.

I turned off the FreeNAS, letting only ESXi run (FreeNAS is a VM on my machine). The machine was virtually silent, and I could basically hear only the case fans, which are not loud at all.

I then opened the case, and reinstalled the original Supermicro fan. I put on a very lower speed, and it was still audible, though bearable, and the CPU was way cooler with it, even at a lower speed. The "PUE2 (Power Utilization Effectiveness) Speed" mode works beautifully with the Supermicro fan. At the same rpm, I feel the Supermicro fan/cooler gets the CPU at least 5-7 degrees cooler. When I put the machine down on the basement in a few months, when I get proper cable there, I will surely put this fan back.

I reopened the machine, put the Noctua fan back, as the machine is staying in my living room and I do want the least possible noise, and rearranged the hard disks, such as not all of them are on the same cage. I got three hard disks there, one Barracuda and two Seagate Ironwolf. The temps are now drastically lower. I'm not even sure I'll put more fans on the machine. During a scrub, the HDD's were about 35-37 ºC. So I guess airflow was an issue here. I also am waiting for some bracket adaptors from Fractal Design, as their cage doesn't support 4-screw hard disks, so the disks are not super stable.

I guess my next upgrade - which will wait a bit - will be more silent disks. I'm not referring to the spinning, as it's quite inaudible. It's their standby noise that is a bit too loud.

Sorry if I annoyed you guys with a non-issue. I believe the Noctua fan can be a good addition if you don't mind the CPU not getting as cool as possible (ie., low 40's, upper 30's ºC, but rather 52-54 C), and the Supermicro cooler is not as bad as we might think, depending on your environment.
 
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And now for the aftermath:

Replaced the drives with WD Red, set the Noctua to run at 2100 rpm, and life is good. The machine is very quiet (silent-quiet, but quiet enough), and everything seems to be cool. I will add extra fans to the case to cool the HDD's more, and next year I will put the Supermicro fan better, when noise won't be an issue as the machine will go to the basement and that fan cools way better.
 

Hobbel

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Feb 17, 2015
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@francisaugusto thx for your write up. glad you got things sorted and solved
 
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