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 Post subject: Anyone know if a 3pin fan to 4pin GPU fan adapter exists?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 11:28 pm 
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Anyone know if a standard 3pin fan plug to 4pin GPU fan adapter exists?
Or anywhere that sells the plug and pins?


Picture of the 4pin GPU fan plug below:

Image

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 3:31 am 
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Hi, i think it's possible an adaptor exists but don't know where you'd get it.
You could cut the original one off and plice/join/solder the wire for new fan in to it. You could see is can get another stock heatsink off ebay to take fan connector off if don't want to damage your own otherwise think you may need to look to electronic supplies to find the header and make your own cable.
I believe the 4pin connector on the video card is a "proper PWM" controled header, If you connect a 3pin fan to it it will run full speed all the time and not be controlled by the video card. You'd get the same effect plugging the fan in to a molex->fan adaptor or use a motherboard header (which maybe speed controlled)
I believe you could use a 4 pin PWM fan and then the card could control the speed.
You might find if you remove the plug and then the white plastic surround to leave the bare pins that you can then jam a "normal" sized fan header on to it. Will bend the pins a bit but they should be OK. Over doing it may lossen the pins but they can be re-soldered without too much trouble or special equipment. (I know cause I've been there and done it! - at least with 2/3 pin fans)
Good luck, Seb

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:47 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2009 9:14 am
Posts: 28
Location: UK
Hi

it is possible to use a 4 pin PWM fan such as the arctic cooling ones that they supply with the arctic freezer pro 7. From this article http://www.xlr8yourmac.com/Graphics/8800GT_TR_HR-03_with_Fan.html they say that the order of which the wires are:

NVIDIA <---------------> Arctic Cooling
mini-PWM connector <-> standard PWM connector
black = black (ground)
yellow = red (12 V)
green = yellow (sense)
blue = blue (control)

Though im not sure if it is specific to Nvidia or even just the series of gfx cards. I ended up just controlling the fan on the gfx card via my motherboard. but just upgraded it to water cooling ^^

Hope this info helps

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:28 am 
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the speed of a three pin fan is controled by the voltage supplied to the fan, but a four pin fan is controled by PWM. if you could hook the three pin fan up to the GPU fan header it would probably run at full speed all the time.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 2:13 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2003 5:17 pm
Posts: 268
Location: Canada
SebRad wrote:
Hi, i think it's possible an adaptor exists but don't know where you'd get it.
You could cut the original one off and plice/join/solder the wire for new fan in to it. You could see is can get another stock heatsink off ebay to take fan connector off if don't want to damage your own otherwise think you may need to look to electronic supplies to find the header and make your own cable.
I believe the 4pin connector on the video card is a "proper PWM" controled header, If you connect a 3pin fan to it it will run full speed all the time and not be controlled by the video card. You'd get the same effect plugging the fan in to a molex->fan adaptor or use a motherboard header (which maybe speed controlled)
I believe you could use a 4 pin PWM fan and then the card could control the speed.
You might find if you remove the plug and then the white plastic surround to leave the bare pins that you can then jam a "normal" sized fan header on to it. Will bend the pins a bit but they should be OK. Over doing it may lossen the pins but they can be re-soldered without too much trouble or special equipment. (I know cause I've been there and done it! - at least with 2/3 pin fans)
Good luck, Seb

eit412 wrote:
the speed of a three pin fan is controled by the voltage supplied to the fan, but a four pin fan is controled by PWM. if you could hook the three pin fan up to the GPU fan header it would probably run at full speed all the time.


Thanks for the info guys.
I didn't want to cut the plug on my stock heatsink for warranty purposes.
I have a Scythe Musashi on a 4870 and I wanted the card to control the fans automatically...
I can't think of any slim fans that are PWM either.. I guess it can't be done.. :cry:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 2:16 pm 
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Posts: 268
Location: Canada
spartan117 wrote:
Hi

it is possible to use a 4 pin PWM fan such as the arctic cooling ones that they supply with the arctic freezer pro 7. From this article http://www.xlr8yourmac.com/Graphics/8800GT_TR_HR-03_with_Fan.html they say that the order of which the wires are:

NVIDIA <---------------> Arctic Cooling
mini-PWM connector <-> standard PWM connector
black = black (ground)
yellow = red (12 V)
green = yellow (sense)
blue = blue (control)

Though im not sure if it is specific to Nvidia or even just the series of gfx cards. I ended up just controlling the fan on the gfx card via my motherboard. but just upgraded it to water cooling ^^

Hope this info helps


Sounds like a good idea except my case SG05 doesn't have enough space for a thicker fan. Max fan thickness that will fit is 12mm or possibly 15mm.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 8:02 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:37 pm
Posts: 27
Location: Texas
I m looking for the same thing, or a 4-pin MB-style to 4-pin GPU-style adapter. I can't believe they are not out there, but I've been Googling and browsing for one for two nights already and haven't seen one.

I have an Accelero S1 r2 on my Sapphire 4870 board, something I did because the board's own control lets the temp get way too high for my comfort (of course later I discovered the BIOS hack to fix this...doh). Had a 120mm all ready to go on this new heatsink, but as a self-preservation mechanism the card won't emit video unless it sees some fan RPM on that port (at least my testing with the stock heatsink indicates this).

I guess I'll cut the one off the stock heatsink :(


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 8:11 pm 
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coreyography wrote:
I m looking for the same thing, or a 4-pin MB-style to 4-pin GPU-style adapter. I can't believe they are not out there, but I've been Googling and browsing for one for two nights already and haven't seen one.

I have an Accelero S1 r2 on my Sapphire 4870 board, something I did because the board's own control lets the temp get way too high for my comfort (of course later I discovered the BIOS hack to fix this...doh). Had a 120mm all ready to go on this new heatsink, but as a self-preservation mechanism the card won't emit video unless it sees some fan RPM on that port (at least my testing with the stock heatsink indicates this).

I guess I'll cut the one off the stock heatsink :(


I gave up looking. I had an old x850xt stock heatsink lying around so I cut the 3pin plug and made my own.

I have it on a 4870 connected to 2x 120mm Scythe Slim 1200rpm fans on a Scythe Musashi.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2009 5:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:37 pm
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Location: Texas
spartan117 wrote:
Though im not sure if it is specific to Nvidia or even just the series of gfx cards. I ended up just controlling the fan on the gfx card via my motherboard. but just upgraded it to water cooling ^^


Turns out this color scheme:

Code:
ATI 4870              Std fan              Signal
mini PWM connector    PWM connector
---------------------------------------------------------
black                 black                ground
yellow                red                  +12 V
green                 yellow               RPM sense
blue                  green                PWM control


seems to work on Radeon 4870 boards at least. I just hacked up an adapter cable from the plug on the old heat sink to a standard 4-pin fan plug. The PWM 120mm fan I'm using spins up to max RPM when the card is powered up, then slows back down, just like the stock fan did.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 12:16 am 
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Location: Greece
Another possible color for the ground cable is white.

There is a slim pwm 12cm fan, the fan on the low profile nexus heatsink in the smallish cooler roundup.

Unfortunately it`s not sold on it`s own and it`s not a very good fan either. The heatsink is good though.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 7:38 am 
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think u can use only the 12V and the ground (red and black cables) an force them on to a 3 pin. i did this with my 4670


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 7:29 pm 
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Location: Texas
Hmmm...more testing reveals that even with the proper homemade adapter cable, my aftermarket cooler/fan solution is not going to cut it. I still couldn't get the 4870 to survive a soft reset without the red temp fault light going on and video output going off. I tried running the fan full out, with only the RPM signal going to the GPU, but that didn't work, either.

I am totally at a loss how people put aftermarket coolers on these things. Maybe the problem I am seeing is only a symptom of the Sapphire board I have (lucky freakin' me). But I've spent too much time and blood pressure on it already. I ordered some thermal pad material for the RAM and am going to reinstall the sucky stock heatsink. If it cooks, it cooks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 03, 2009 10:40 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:37 pm
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Story continues (as if anyone cares :))...

I was going to put the original heatsink/fan back on the 4870, but the screws decided they didn't ever want to be that hot again and made a break for it. They are still hiding....

In the meantime, I did some more digging on SPCR, and basically came to the conclusion that my VRMs might not be getting cooled enough with one 120mm fan, even full blast. The stock VRM heatsink isn't very big, and the stock GPU/RAM heatsink and shroud served to duct air over it. So I put the Accelero back on and stuck it back in the case, this time with two (!) 120mm fans blowing on it, lower on the card this time so as to cover the VRMs.

Lo and behold, it's been on for two hours and no problems. It has survived a couple of soft reboots. Apparently the card was just getting too warm after power-up, but power-cycling allowed it to cool enough to come up.

I also found out that the A-C 12025 PWM fan I bought doesn't seem to put out much air. Contributing factor maybe, but I still believe you need a fan right over the top of those VRMs.

I haven't really stress-tested the thing yet, and will be looking for some better PWM fans to let the card regulate its own temps, but for now it works.


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 Post subject: No-solder adapter cable
PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2009 3:45 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2009 2:58 am
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Location: USA
Thanks for the good info, esp. on PWM wire colors and mappings. Here's me trying to give back a little to this forum:

Can't find adapter cable
I also failed to find an adapter cable (4-pin "mini PWM" plug to 4-pin standard fan PWM socket) online; I tried newegg, digikey, buy dot com, nextag, etc. I considered cutting the white plug from the stock cooling fan to solder into a custom cable, but I wanted to keep the stock cooling system intact as a backup if silent cooling didn't work.

Sound Blaster audio cable(s) to the rescue
I found that a Sound Blaster (SB) internal audio cable, the kind that shipped with virtually every sound card and CD-ROM in the early/mid-1990s, has a white plug that fits the mini PWM jack. The other end of the SB cable is a black 4-pin square pin connector ("4-in-a-row"), identical to a PC speaker's internal connector that attaches to square pins on a motherboard.

Adding a 4th wire
The only catch is SB cables have only 3 wires. To get the 4th wire, steal a wire from a second SB cable: use a small flat-blade screwdriver to pry plastic clips and pop out the wire along with its square pin headers on both ends, then slide in the headers into the empty slots on the original SB cable to complete your 4-pin adapter cable. No soldering required. The only caveat is the cable has excessive length.

The white plug goes to the GPU board; the black plug fits snugly into the new PWM fan's 4-pin "extension socket" (I have an Arctic Cooling 12PWM with shared PWM). With all 4 wires connected, the video card sees fan control and sense lines, so it can control fan speed based on temperature.

Sound Blaster cable suppliers?
If you don't have any SB cables lying around, you can get 2 of them shipped for $2.38 (total for both cables, including shipping) from "Monoprice dot com", part #694, "Sound Blaster/MPC-2, Audio cable". Disclaimer: I've never ordered from Monoprice, so I don't know whether they're reliable.

At least you can search other vendors for "Sound Blaster audio cable" or "MPC-2".

Hope this helps. :-)[/u]


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 Post subject: Re: No-solder adapter cable
PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2009 5:18 am 
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Location: Twin Cities
dahdoo wrote:
"Monoprice dot com", part #694, "Sound Blaster/MPC-2, Audio cable". Disclaimer: I've never ordered from Monoprice, so I don't know whether they're reliable.
[/u]


I have ordered from Monoprice a handful of times and never had a problem. They have good prices on Cables.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 24, 2009 7:28 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 2:35 pm
Posts: 808
Location: Greece
http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=52630

This little gadget can use a pwm signal to control a normal 3 pin fan. It could be useful in your case because it would give you a wider selection of fans to use. Most pwm fans end up a little too slow when controlled by the gpu header which is designed to work with very high rpm blower fans.

A 8 or 9 cm fan will be a little quieter compared to a 12cm fan at the same rpm. Since the problem in this case is cooling the vrms, a smaller fan might be a better choice, giving you more focused airflow at the same noise level.

Using the base of the stock cooler along with the accelero should also help in cooling this spot, I`m pretty sure I`ve seen someone doing it online with good results. Hopefully you can find those screws...

Finally, the easiest solution to plug a normal header on the gpu board might be removing the male header from the board and pluging the fan directly, slightly bending the pins. People replacing their psu fans usually have to do the same and I`ve done the same trick on my gpu with success (only three pins though).

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