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Author Topic: Fan Speed vs Heat  (Read 3013 times)
Bitcoin_Silver_Supply
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July 15, 2011, 06:58:22 PM
 #1

I'm wondering whether one should go for higher fan speed or higher heat in trying to get the longest life span out of a miner. I currently have two 5830s running at 67C with fans at 76% and I'm wondering if it's better to run the fan harder or let the cards go a little hotter... Any opinions?
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July 15, 2011, 07:26:55 PM
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Most people run their cards at 90% fan speed and have no issues. I'd imagine higher temps are worst than high fan speed

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July 15, 2011, 07:27:13 PM
 #3

Higher fan speed from an external table-top fan.

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bitcoin0918
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July 15, 2011, 07:27:47 PM
 #4

Fans do not last forever. Presumably the longer you run them at high speeds, the shorter the fan's lifespan will be.

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July 15, 2011, 07:54:16 PM
 #5

As with most things in life, the best is probably the middle ground. 67C is quite cool, and 76% fanspeed is rather high. Probably something like 75C and 40-50% fanspeed would last you quite a long time. You can reapply lubricant to the fans bearings every couple of years to increase the lifespan of the fan as well, assuming you do it properly, as that is the main issue fans running constantly run into. The MTBF for fans is typically something like 40,000 - 50,000 hours for cheapo fans like GPUs use, so expect 4-6 years of 24/7 use if properly kept up.
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July 15, 2011, 07:58:38 PM
 #6

I just let the fan auto-adjust to temps by whatever the default settings are.... works fine for me.
Bitcoin_Silver_Supply
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July 15, 2011, 08:30:43 PM
 #7

As with most things in life, the best is probably the middle ground. 67C is quite cool, and 76% fanspeed is rather high. Probably something like 75C and 40-50% fanspeed would last you quite a long time. You can reapply lubricant to the fans bearings every couple of years to increase the lifespan of the fan as well, assuming you do it properly, as that is the main issue fans running constantly run into. The MTBF for fans is typically something like 40,000 - 50,000 hours for cheapo fans like GPUs use, so expect 4-6 years of 24/7 use if properly kept up.

Good advice, thanks. I guess the main tradeoff is short term mhash vs longevity then. I can hold 74C at 61% fan speed which I assume is a tad better than where I was before.

Also, I do have a table fan blowing directly onto the cards but they are so close together that they're harder to cool.
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July 15, 2011, 08:31:51 PM
 #8

I just let the fan auto-adjust to temps by whatever the default settings are.... works fine for me.

I find the auto fan option on Trixx doesn't pick up fan speed enough at high temps. I came home once after my apartment heated up to see the temp at over 85C with the fan at a relatively low speed and that always scares me a bit.
SgtSpike
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July 15, 2011, 08:45:10 PM
 #9

I just let the fan auto-adjust to temps by whatever the default settings are.... works fine for me.

I find the auto fan option on Trixx doesn't pick up fan speed enough at high temps. I came home once after my apartment heated up to see the temp at over 85C with the fan at a relatively low speed and that always scares me a bit.
The only time I'm concerned with temperature is if the GPU is clocking itself down because it got too hot (> 90c).  Then I start losing Mhashes.  But even an overclocked 5830 won't go past 90c at full load with the fan not spinning (it'll clock itself all the way down to 150/300 if it has to), so I wouldn't worry yourself too much.  These things are good over 100c, probably up to 110 or 120c before you start seeing any hardware-killing issues crop up.
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July 15, 2011, 09:28:31 PM
 #10

I use cables, keeps things way cooler and you don't even need to mess with fan speeds.

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July 18, 2011, 10:53:37 PM
 #11

I use cables, keeps things way cooler and you don't even need to mess with fan speeds.

wat? cables?

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SgtSpike
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July 18, 2011, 10:59:23 PM
 #12

I use cables, keeps things way cooler and you don't even need to mess with fan speeds.

wat? cables?
:facepalm:  Of course, cables!  I should have thought of that for my cooling methods as well!
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July 19, 2011, 09:13:32 AM
 #13

I use cables, keeps things way cooler and you don't even need to mess with fan speeds.

wat? cables?
yes, cables!
ensign_lee
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July 19, 2011, 06:13:04 PM
 #14

I'd say leave it the way it is. You have a pretty nice balance of fan speed and temps atm.

My 5870, by comparison, bounces between 85 and 90 celcius at 96% fan speed.

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Xephan
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July 19, 2011, 06:26:32 PM
 #15

I'm wondering whether one should go for higher fan speed or higher heat in trying to get the longest life span out of a miner. I currently have two 5830s running at 67C with fans at 76% and I'm wondering if it's better to run the fan harder or let the cards go a little hotter... Any opinions?

You can usually change a fan and/or heatsink for less than the price of the card so it's always better to trade off the fan's lifespan to extend the GPU. That said, 67C is really cool for these things. They are pretty OK to run at 70+

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July 19, 2011, 06:37:46 PM
 #16

The fact is, that running your computer 24/7 actually makes it last longer than turning it off and on.

The reason being is that heating and cooling of materials degrades them over time (just like bridges, roads, etc up here in Canada) ... if your rig simply stays at 80 degrees celcius forever it will hardly even know it was turned on.

The high speed of the fan could eventually wear down the ball bearings and stop spinning. Therefore it may be beneficial to run your fan at a lower speed and simply accept the higher temps.
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July 19, 2011, 06:53:30 PM
 #17

The fact is, that running your computer 24/7 actually makes it last longer than turning it off and on.

The reason being is that heating and cooling of materials degrades them over time (just like bridges, roads, etc up here in Canada) ... if your rig simply stays at 80 degrees celcius forever it will hardly even know it was turned on.

The high speed of the fan could eventually wear down the ball bearings and stop spinning. Therefore it may be beneficial to run your fan at a lower speed and simply accept the higher temps.

Sorry but the video comment is misleading. While it's quite true that maintaining the chips at some constant temperature is likely to make it last longer than daily on/off cycles (due to expension/contraction cycles as well as inrush stress), the qualifier here is thermal damage at the temperature does not exceed the damage of the on/off cycles. Rule of thumb is every 10C halves the life of a component so at some point, the GPU despite being at a constant temperature, will die really fast. So it's always about finding a good balance point and if necessary, sacrifice some of the cheaper component's life in favour of the more expensive item.

Of course, if they do keep up improvements to the GPU, then all this simply may not matter. You just to keep it alive long enough to be profitable to replace it with a better unit Cheesy

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July 19, 2011, 06:55:56 PM
 #18

Fan speed should be kept as low as possible. On the other hand, GPU don't really care about heat until it's over the threshold (somewhere around 108C)

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SgtSpike
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July 19, 2011, 07:23:19 PM
 #19

The fact is, that running your computer 24/7 actually makes it last longer than turning it off and on.

The reason being is that heating and cooling of materials degrades them over time (just like bridges, roads, etc up here in Canada) ... if your rig simply stays at 80 degrees celcius forever it will hardly even know it was turned on.

The high speed of the fan could eventually wear down the ball bearings and stop spinning. Therefore it may be beneficial to run your fan at a lower speed and simply accept the higher temps.

Sorry but the video comment is misleading. While it's quite true that maintaining the chips at some constant temperature is likely to make it last longer than daily on/off cycles (due to expension/contraction cycles as well as inrush stress), the qualifier here is thermal damage at the temperature does not exceed the damage of the on/off cycles. Rule of thumb is every 10C halves the life of a component so at some point, the GPU despite being at a constant temperature, will die really fast. So it's always about finding a good balance point and if necessary, sacrifice some of the cheaper component's life in favour of the more expensive item.

Of course, if they do keep up improvements to the GPU, then all this simply may not matter. You just to keep it alive long enough to be profitable to replace it with a better unit Cheesy

I would love to see proof of said "rule of thumb" actually being true in real life.

IMO, heat is way overblown.  GPU's are safe up to 90c EASILY, and I've only ever heard of a GPU dying from heat over 110c.  Keep it below that, and in all likelyhood your card will be absolutely fine.
Bitcoin_Silver_Supply
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July 19, 2011, 08:06:51 PM
 #20

Based on the mix of comments I have gone with a moderate approach with slightly higher temps and lower fan speeds. On hot days I'm running about 73-75C with fan speeds between 62-65. I have had a few "device driver errors" causing the screen to go black and reset, but typically this has been while trying to watch a video with the GPUs going overclocked.

Also, having a mining PC beside your bed is a bitch.
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