It's been a year and a half since I built my and after the initital construction I've had very few problems. The past couple of months however I've noticed the fans gets really noisy when playing games.
So I opened it up and gave it a good clean for the second time since purchase, this time giving it a more intense clean taking parts out to get at them properly. It took quite a lot of cotton buds to get rid of the dust. Unfortunately the clean did nothing for the noise.
I have the stock CPU cooling fan, 2 blue LED fans and a normal plastic one (which has recently started wobbling after the recent clean so I'm probably going to have to get a new one anyway) and two small side fans. I was just on wasteland 2 and it was making the loud noise since starting up so I ended up putting my headphones on to try and ignore it and I realised at this point I should probably get to the bottom of it.
After restarting and entering the BIOS the CPU temperature was hovering around 44C, with the CPU fan spinning at 1600rpm and the two Blue led fans around 1200rpm. The plastic fan and one of the side fans are plugged directly into the PSU so I presume they're on full power constantly? The other side fan isn't connected due to lack of sockets.
Case: Zalman z11+. Near the bottom of the link it lists the fans.
Thermal compound: Zalman ZM-STG2 3.5g
PSU: Corsair CX500M
So basically I'm just wondering if anyone has any advice on how to fix this, could it be the thermal compound isn't as effective anymore? Do I need a heatsink or something for the CPU? I can't even tell where the noise is coming from.
Any help would be appreciated and if you need anymore information let me know!
The CPU temp is fine. Have you tried replacing the thermal compound on the CPU and if possible the Video card heat sinks.
If your fans are now noisy all the time make sure that they are very clean on both sides or better still replace them as it is possible that dust has penetrated the bearings and they have worn and causes the noise. Make sure they are connected to the correct places on the motherboard and that the temperature sensing is working by looking at the BIOS power settings and see if the speeds are being shown and varying and that temp sensing is enabled.
Don't think your PC is overheating, 44ºC is nothing.
I'd say your Gigabyte ATI Radeon 7950 is the prime suspect (particularly you said noisy fan when gaming), locate the fan on the Graphic card, proceed with great care when the PC is operating & noisy fan is heard( wear rubber glove if you can)stop the fan for a millisecond with a finger by pressing on the fan hub or preferably using a wooden stick(or pencil) to do so.
If the noise stops instantly then you'd know who the culprit is.
As for taking the cover off, nope. I didn't even know I could do that to be honest, so I can have a go. I just basically cleaned the fans and everything else I could reach with the cotton buds, I got quite a lot of dust out so I wouldn't be surprised if there was more once once opened it up.
I haven't changed it yet, but I was thinking of it, and getting something better to cool the CPU but if the temp is fine would it have any effect? Also that temp is while I'm not playing. Didn't know I could replace the videocard heat sink either. I've yet to check what it is during as from what I've searched I have to download some program's.
The motherboard is a Gigabyte GA-Z77-DS3H.
Even at rest? The card has three fans so it may be a bit trickier to stop them all at once but I'll give it a go.
Okay ignore the previous post, I tried that without any games on and no noise stopped but that's because I forgot about the little fan in the side door, that makes quite a lot of noise at rest and is probably because it's plugged straight into the PSU (However the other PSU fan never has as far as I can tell, but thats broken now anyway).
Anyway I tried again putting a game on and noticed the temperature above the graphics card was quite hot near instantaniously. To me that doesn't seem right since as soon as I switch the game off it's almost completely cool above it again. I tried the fan stopping trick and it seemed to work, the noise went down drastically.
So I think I'm going to get a fan controller as my motherboard only has 3 sockets. Then remove/replace the little fan or get an adapter so I can plug that into the controller and replace the wobbly fan as well.
The graphics card however is a different matter, could it just need a clean without the case on, or will it need a new heatsink? If so how much do one of these cost?
I second the compressed air or get a compressed air machine to save money in the long run. Using cotton buds will effectively get what you can see but compressed air will dislodge the stuff you can't.
My PC has mesh filters over the vents, I went for my quarterly clean and it looked pretty clean inside. A quick blast of my compressor however revealed that several big clumps of dust were hiding in my CPU cooler's heatsink.