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 Post subject: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 6:28 am 
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Techreport has an article about the AMD SB800's internal fan controls. The chip includes some excellent features that motherboards simply are not using. Let's make some noise about this.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 7:57 am 
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I want this. A motherboard with no chipset fan and the full fan control in BIOS as provided by the SB800 would be a deciding factor. If only one manufacturer offered it I'd be buying that brand.

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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 8:59 am 
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I'd love to be able to control half a dozen fans. Most mobos have at most three controllable fans, with an extra one or two ports that only allow for RPM readings.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 9:58 am 
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I will cry tears of joy the day this is implemented.

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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:29 pm 
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I believe that Asus' AM3 'Crosshair IV' boards do implement this. They have a total of EIGHT PWM headers and the BIOS allows custom fan settings for each one.

The BIOS can also read temperatures from three thermal probes (which are included with the Crosshair IV Extreme board) to regulate fan speeds for specific components like video cards.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 3:04 pm 
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sounds impressive indeed, though frankly i'd be happy even if they take baby steps, more advanced control on even one or two fans would be greatly appreciated.

at this point we kinda have to pick up the slack ourselves by choosing specific speed fans and adding our own methods of control, with such an advanced controller though it can be all automatic with no need for extra hardware or specific fans- awesome.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 3:14 pm 
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MikeC, thanks for blogging this on the front page. That might attract a little attention.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:00 am 
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Speaking of fan control I am typing this on an Abit P35 Pro XE, this motherboard has fan control thanks to the uGuru chip and it's amazing.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:01 am 
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This is fantastic news! I hope Intel follows suit and motherboard makers realize the potential.

Also, RIP µGuru, you showed us how good things could be.

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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 11:18 am 
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It's good that AMD has done this but not sure about the market. Most people tend to dismiss advanced fan controller features as too complicated. You start to talk about programmable automated systems with features like logarithmic algorithms, thresholds, overheat protection, step functions (etc.) and people think it's too complicated or overkill.

The main (only?) group I regularly hear about who like messing about with such fan controllers (e.g. T-balancer) are people into quiet watercooling systems and that's a slowly dying group. Everyone else goes for physical controllers, which is why most motherboard manufactuers act the way they do.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:17 pm 
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This sort of automation is as simple as fan control gets. Why constantly tweak a knob when you can tweak a profile just once, and just as easily. It's bad PR and marketing if it doesn't take. Hell, you can even get premade profiles if the UI software is done right, so you don't even have to bother with the tweaking unless you want to. And seriously, 20 bucks and a lost drive bay for something your motherboard should be able to do by default - where's the sense in that?

Asus already does this with their own stuff, even though right now it is rather limited in scope (only CPU/PWM header gets user control, rest are preset profiles or nothing, no transferrable user profiles).

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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 4:18 pm 
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Das_Saunamies wrote:
Hell, you can even get premade profiles if the UI software is done right, so you don't even have to bother with the tweaking unless you want to.
Exactly. Pick your fans, tell the mobo the temps you want and enjoy the quiet. Existing boards tend to ramp up the fans at ridiculously low temperatures, and there's no sense behind it.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 5:17 pm 
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> It's bad PR and marketing if it doesn't take.

Sure poor PR and marketing play "some" part in the failure of the market to pick up new innovations, but a big reason is the market. Technology 'enthusiasts' are rather conservative (because they tend to know-it-all) unless there's a bit of hand-holding, and companies know that. Just look at the initial negative reaction to the wii, ipad etc., none of them new ideas but significant changes to what these guys were used to. You'd probably get a far less conservative reaction from middle aged mothers. Have a look at the component market and see what these guys are demanding, say PC cases. Perhaps one day these guys will start to think that there are some pretty good modern materials out there and demand it. But I doubt it. Even if a non-steel or aluminum case was put on the market and advertised they'd probably dismiss it as overpriced or similar while spending more on GPU's or just argue they could DIY. Yes it will happen, but these changes will be likely driven from elsewhere first. And it's a small market as well, so that limits the advertising break-even.

So while good programmable fan controllers, with storable profiles and all these features and more, and adjustable via the operating system have been around for a while, and advertised, it's not surprising enthusiasts tend to pick the "normal ones" where you turn a knob or push buttons. Well, perhaps what AMD is offering will be the 'handholding' needed to make this popular in this rather peculiar market.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:25 pm 
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I hate relying on physical fan controllers. I want to set up my cooling system to be automated, so I don't have to remember to reach over and turn a knob when I start doing something computationally intensive; or fry my computer if I forget.


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 9:46 am 
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AMD Overdrive already has a fan control tab but it's not implemented (by the mobo?)

Also DDR3 memory is supposed to have a temp sensor, could it be the un-implemented Temp3 = -127 in asus mobos?


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 Post subject: Re: AMD fan control at Techreport
PostPosted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 1:18 am 
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The inexpensive Biostar TA890GXE offers some kind of automated fan controller, though I'm not sure whether it is based on SB880.

Phil


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