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Thread: 120 mm fan replacement: max air flow, max air pressure or balance?

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    Default 120 mm fan replacement: max air flow, max air pressure or something inbetween?

    Howdy!

    I have an Antec EA-430 R0.1 (Delta inside) laying around I’d like to use in a build. Problem is that the installed 120 mm fan has an unbearable bearing noise even at minimum speed, so it’ll have to go. The specs seem to be:

    Delta AUB1212L | 1900 rpm | 63 CFM | 1.54 mmH₂O

    Looking at these numbers, the theoretical performance appears to be lackluster indeed, certainly in comparison with various retail fans available on the market. If past experiences are anything to go by, it could be one of those units which get very loud at high rpm, but don’t actually move a lot of air in relation to the amount of noise generated. The Arctic AF12025s (1500 rpm) I once had were like that, too.

    Anyway, some numbers as an example:

    Enermax Magma Advance @ medium | 1500 rpm | 69.15 CFM | 1.4 mmH₂O
    Fractal Venturi HF-12 | 1400 rpm | 83.4 CFM | 1.22 mmH₂O
    Scythe SY1225DB12M | 1200 rpm | 68.54 CFM | 0.92 mmH₂O
    LC Power LC-CF-120-Pro | 1200 rpm | 68.4 CFM | 1.88 mmH₂O
    Cougar CF-D12HB | 1200 rpm | 64.37 CFM | 1.74 mmH₂O

    Does this mean I could substitute a modern fan design for the AUB1212; assuming they have a starting voltage of less than 5 V; despite the huge difference in max speed? Chopping off up to 700 rpm raises more than a few alarm bells in my head, given that I don’t want to create a fire hazard or reduce the life span of the components inside.

    And which property would be more important in a 120 mm PSU: max air flow, max air pressure or a balanced approach? There’s also a spare Yate Loon D12SM-12 (1650 rpm, 70.5 CFM) salvaged from an old FSP unit, which has practically no bearing noise and would be a perfect fit, however I don’t quite want to swap one simple sleeve bearing fan for another when it comes to power supplies.

    Thanks for the advice.
    Last edited by Fan-tastic; 07-12-2018 at 03:09 PM.

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    Default

    For fun you might want to try oiling the original and seeing how that works, or using a Delta AFB1212L which has ball bearings.

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    Hm, it probably wouldn't make a difference. The sound is of the production lot variation type, not terminal wear, and has been that way since new. As for the AFB1212L...well, it looks like importing one from Asia would be about as expensive as buying a quality mid-range fan locally, and it has the same lackluster performance figures as the sleeve bearing model.

    I understand that it would be a safe drop-in replacement, however if an option to get comparable cooling at a lower noise level were to present itself, I'd like to take it. Which is why I was looking at the Magma Advance in particular. Twister bearing should be pretty decent, and it's rated for a max operating temperature of 85°C along with a 160.000 h MTBF (At 85° or room temperature? Enermax doesn't say.).

    I mean, the models listed above do appear to match the 1212L on paper, but what about the max rpm? Are the advantages of modern fan blade design significant enough in real life to offset the much slower rotation speed, while still moving air just as effectively as conventional fans?

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    I use engine oil, it damps a lot of bearing vibration.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ashiekh View Post
    I use engine oil, it damps a lot of bearing vibration.
    Really?? I'm surprised. What rating? (And fully synthetic? ;-)

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    Try a San Ace 9S1212P4M011. It's PWM.

    RPM: 1850 CFM: 58.6 Static Pressure: 2.286mmH2O.

    As alternates, you can think about 9S1212M401, 9S1212F401 and 9S1212H401 for greater performance. They are running a special at Newark for the last at $11.74 each.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GDILord View Post
    Really?? I'm surprised. What rating? (And fully synthetic? ;-)

    I have a quart of fully synthetic 5W-50; also use it on all the house fans. I see that 0W-50 and 10W-60 now also exists

    For the car I'm wondering about 20,000 mi oil
    https://mobiloil.com/en/article/why-...ng-lasting-oil
    Last edited by ashiekh; 07-12-2018 at 07:30 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ashiekh View Post
    also use it on all the house fans
    I use sewing maching oil, the Singer brand specifically. (because that's what the shop had. :-)

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    The problem with engine oil (as I use) is that it has detergents that keeps particulate matter in circulation.

    But I think fully synthetic is important as I expect my fans (computer and house) to go on for decades without any further maintenance other than cleaning.
    Last edited by ashiekh; 07-14-2018 at 12:17 AM.

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    Thanks for your input.

    I’ll look into the Aces, though they have the same problem as the Delta suggestion: around here, I generally cannot get these for a competitive price (maybe used on eBay on occasion), whereas Enermax & Co are widely available. As for PWM, would that really work? I’ve found that most of the PWM fans I tried to pair with a DC controller had a pretty high starting voltage, certainly more than 5V on average.

    As for my other question, can anybody provide me with a pointer or two? My brain tells me a fan with 1200 rpm shouldn’t be able to outperform one spinning 700 rpm faster no matter the blade design, but I’ve been mistaken before. Do OEM high-performance parts tend to rated conservatively by Delta and the like, whereas retail products go in the opposite direction? Or can a modern design really have as much of an advantage as the specs would suggest?

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