Josh (the blog)

Hey there. I’m Josh, a SydneyCanberra-based maker of Internets. I don’t update this very often.


New PSU and un-working fans

My old OCZ 520 died a few months back, sadly, and I’d been running on a cheap and nasty power supply ever since (mostly on account of it being all I could afford at the time, and that the power supply conked out just when setting up for something!)

It was super nice and super shiny and under a super 5 year warranty, but only if I shipped it back to the US, at a cost of around $150. Crazy, huh? I’m sure there were cheaper options, but I couldn’t find them. And they probably involved boats, which just take too long :P

Anyway, I went to buy a video camera yesterday and sort-of-impulse-bought (coz I was at the store and had been thinking I really should get a decent PSU before something bad happens for a few months) a Corsair HX-620W. It had great reviews and was meant to be super quiet which is mostly what attracted me to it — I mean, sure, reliable power is great… but quiet PCs are better! I could’ve gone the Seasonic S12 but it’s not modular, or the M12, but it’s louder (extra 6cm fan)… so the Corsair, despite probably being manufactured by the same company and sharing a lot of identical design features, won.

It’s modular, which the OCZ wasn’t. Not a massive deal, but nice nonetheless. Makes for a tidier case:

You can see the modular connectors here:

I’m not using any of the SLI power at the minute (probably ever) but, again, nice to have in a future-proofing kind of way.

It’s also got one particularly massive fan. The OCZ had two 80mm fans that were super efficient and barely ever made any noise at all, but bigger typically means slower rotation & less whining noises, so it has to be a good thing. My HSF is massive enough and you can see even it’s small in comparison.

I also took advantage of the cleaning-up-the-insides to properly attach a few CCFLs that’d been lying around. Finally, the UV-responsive motherboard can glow properly!

I know, IDE cables suck… I’ve only got one IDE drive left, and it’s actually just there as a spare. Should take it out but haven’t had a chance just yet.

Anyway, whilst I was doing all this I realised my graphics card fan wasn’t spinning at all. It’d been making some funny noises when I’d done some stuff inside the case in the past, but I’d always dismissed it because nothing was crashing and I hadn’t changed anything to do with the graphics card. Turns out it hadn’t actually been spinning for ages and the fan had the driest bearings I’ve ever seen. The heatsink was plenty hot, but nothing was crashing. My system (CPU + memory) runs about 15% above clock but I’ve had no real cause to overclock the graphics card (Fury aside, but it needs more than just a faster clock!). So, consider this research that a cheap and nasty Palit GeForce 7600 GS can run with only passive cooling!

Ironically, that fan has the newest bearing in the system.

After I’d put everything back together I realised the chipset fan could probably do at the very least with a clean, but had rebooted by then and left it well enough alone.

Singer Oil is great, but I tried some spray Aquatec lubricant also which seems to be a little finer and would probably work quite well. The graphics fan squeaked a little when it started up… not quite sure why! It was pretty well oiled, but maybe it was still just working through the bearings completely.

Anyway… I think this computer’s nearly ready for summer’s soaring temperatures and increased power instability.