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 Post subject: PC in an enclosed space
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 12:27 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 08, 2003 1:17 am
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Location: USA
Hi

My PC needs aren't very demanding these days. I have rather old Noise Control tower case housing an Intel P4 and an ATI Radeon 9700.

My problem is that I now ahve a desk with a dedicated closed space for my PC. Now this looks very nice but when the door is closed to the compartment housing my machine, the air-flow is almost zero. Consequently my beloved PC will kill itself if I forget to leave the door open.

I could potentially install a watercooling system and have the radioator at my feet but is this even likely to work? :shock:

Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 1:15 pm 
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Can you cut or drill it? What I'm thinking here is a rectangular hold on the bottom-front of that enclosed space, and any kind of hole at the top-rear, possibly ducted out of the case.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 2:07 pm 
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Hi, if you can make some vent holes, say in front floor and top back you may well be OK.
A Zalman reserator would be an easy and elegant, but rather pricey solution.
Seb

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 8:03 pm 
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Hi

Pictures work best...

Image

Image

Forget about anything at the fron however, as you can se from the cables, I have some room at the rear.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 8:38 pm 
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Idea:
Rear-inside: vent holes, possibly with mesh grill if they are easy to see from elsewhere in the room. Possibly a large hole with a slow 120mm fan.
Bottom: vent holes, small ones, along the bottom sides.

The reserator idea is good, too, but of course could really get in the way of working on the box if not done very carefully.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 8:54 am 
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Hi

The problem is that I need to have this machine on all the time as it runs some server software for media streamers I have.

Consequently I'm trying to work out if there is any merit in pursuing the watercooling option or if I should relocate this PC and replace it with a lower powered machine that will be able to run in this closed space for a few hours at a time... if that's even possible.

Thanks again to all for their feedback.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:46 pm 
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Even with water cooling you still have a power supply to keep cool.

If you must keep the PC in that compartment, you'll need intake and exhaust openings.

One idea I just had would be to add a shelf that would lift the case up several inches. Cut an intake hole in the back of the compartment that would correspondingly be under the shelf. Make sure the shelf is a few inches shy of reaching the door.

This would allow cool air to be pulled into the compartment under the shelf where it could be then pulled into the bottom front of the case.

For exhaust cut an opening that corresponds with the PSU and case exhaust fan locations so that heated air can be expelled.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 7:12 pm 
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ultrachrome wrote:
Even with water cooling you still have a power supply to keep cool.

If you must keep the PC in that compartment, you'll need intake and exhaust openings.


Sadly, the sliding panel at the bottom is fixed so moving the PC up would be a problem.

I may have to look for a machine that can survive in there for a few hours. The alternative is to opt for a small, good looking machine that can live on my desk.

Mac anyone...? :wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 8:09 pm 
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Kaizen wrote:
Sadly, the sliding panel at the bottom is fixed so moving the PC up would be a problem.


Add a shelf. It could be a piece of sheet plywood cut to the same width as the enclosure.

It can stand on its own legs if that's easiest and set in the bottom of the enclosure. You PC would set on top of it. The point is to make a tunnel that would allow cool air to be pulled in from the back of the enclosure and fed to the front of the case.

You draw this air in close to the floor to avoid recycling the hot air being expelled by the case fan and PSU.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 1:24 am 
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I agree with ultrachrome. Watercooling won't help, as not all heat produced by your PC will be removed by the waterblock. I also agree that there is room enough to prop your PC up on some spacers and that you should then drill some holes in the back of that cabinet.

Getting a cooler computer (a Via system or something) might make things better, but won't solve the problem. Let's face it, if you have to manually open and close the door, it's not a good system because you'll forget some time and cook your beloved beast. You WILL need to get some air circulating in there. Now it's time to use your creativity! :)

Most cabinets like yours are raised off the ground slightly. Can you drill holes in the floor of the space where the PC is and knock out the front piece at the very bottom (the bit that touches the floor)? Your pictures don't show the very bottom, so I'm just guessing as to it's construction. You should be able to do that and still have it look very professional.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 11:39 am 
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Hi

I always like to follow up on questions that I raise so that others can avoid those pitfalls I've gracefully managed to encounter.

The steps I have taken to resolve my problem are as follows:
1) Read what the very clever and dedicated people have posted to SPCR.
2) Realize you're not a PC-building God. :oops:
3) See Step 1
4) See Step 1 again.
5) Buy an Antec P150 case and a Zalman CNPS 9500 CPU cooler.
6) Move the PC out of the cabinet and let it stand elegently in the footwell of the desk.
7) Watch your temperatures drop from 68C to 39C.
8) See Step 1 for good measure.

Again, thanks to all for their patience and invaluable advice!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 1:03 pm 
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Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
I agree with the suggestions to add intake and exhaust openings, but I'd put them both in the rear and modify the PC slightly to take advantage of "U" turn airflow.

The basic idea behind "U" turn airflow is that air enters at the rear bottom and exits out the rear top. To accomplish this, you open up all of the PCI slot backplanes and fashion a cardboard partial partition along the video card slot to direct intake air forward. (If you have a large video card, it can perform this partition function itself.)

The key to making "U" turn airflow work is to make sure that the hard drive(s) get enough airflow. This can be accomplished a number of ways; the easiest is to simply jury rig a fan to blow air at the hard drive(s) from behind.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 4:02 pm 
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Location: NEW YORK WORD AND STUFF YEAH OK
I should work for zalman, or at least get some cash for marketing them.

but, your system screams for a reserator 1 tower system. You still need to cut a hole out the back of the machine as no water cooler can cool everything . But, at least 80% of the heat or so can be removed to the outside via water.

you could like..... forget the case and just drill holes in the cabinet and make the cabinet a case. :shock:


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