Sapphire Edge HD3: AMD E-450 Mini PC

Complete|Mobile Systems
Viewing page 4 of 7 pages. Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Next

Fan Control

Typical with most nettops, the Edge HD3's BIOS doesn't offer much customization — the only significant hardware option is memory speed (800, 1066, or 1333 MHz). The "PC Health Status" menu does offer a few different fan control settings, however.


BIOS "PC Health Status" menu.

The fan speed can be set with static or dynamic settings. We recommend using SmartFan as in our experience, these slim devices tend to heat up a great deal with a large difference between idle and load temperatures. A steady fan speed adequate for cooling under all conditions would create unnecessarily high noise when the machine isn't being stressed heavily.


SpeedFan with correlations entered.

Windows users have the option of using SpeedFan to control the CPU fan. To enable full control, change the F71808E chip's PWM 1 mode value from "Auto set PWM" to "Manual set PWM" in the Advanced menu. Please note that the temperature sensor labeled "CPU" is not accurate, staying at 0°C throughout testing. We found that "Temp1" seems to stay in line with the CPU temperature reported by CoreTemp, but it is consistently 6°C lower.

Thermal & Acoustic Performance

System Measurements
System State
Temps
Fan RPM
dBA @0.6m†
Power (AC)
CPU
HDD
Ext*
Off
N/A
N/A
2W
Sleep (S3)
N/A
N/A
3W
Idle
48°C
32°C
32°C
3900
25~26
14W
H.264 Playback
56°C
34°C
35°C
4320
27~28
20W
CPU Load
74°C
35°C
40°C
5580
33
29W
CPU + GPU Load
89°C
37°C
49°C
5580
33
37W
Ambient: 20°C, 10~11 dBA.
*External temperature measured using an IR thermometer pointed at the hottest portion of the chassis.
We measure SPL at 0.6m for all devices meant to be used atop a desk, as it is more realistic a distance than the usual 1m. It also corresponds to the "seated user SPL" distance specified in the computer noise measurement standard ISO 7779.

At idle, the fan spun at 3900 RPM, producing a noise level of 25~26 dBA@0.6m which is a bit high compared to other nettops. The fan could easily be dialed down a bit during H.264 video playback as well as the CPU temperature remained well under 60°C. The default fan control settings are a little aggressive when the system isn't being taxed. On load, the fan speed topped out at just under 5600 RPM, and could barely keep the CPU adequately cool when both the CPU and GPU stressed.

If used strictly as a simple web browsing or media playing system, the fan speed can be lowered to save a decibel or two without detriment, but if you're going to push the hardware, there's no way to avoid the noise. At 33 dBA@0.6m, the Edge HD3 is the loudest nettop we've tested on load.



The Sapphire Edge HD3 measured 25~26 dBA@0.6m and 33 dBA@0.6m when idle and on load respectively.

The fan noise generated by the Edge HD3 is fairly soft at idle, but a bit whiny and high pitched on load, similar to what you'd find on most notebooks.



Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Next

Complete|Mobile Systems - Article Index
Help support this site, buy from one of our affiliate retailers!
Search: