Well, I guess not all PWM fan hubs are created equally...

Discussion in 'Overclocking & Cooling' started by MrDeaf, May 2, 2018.

  1. MrDeaf

    MrDeaf Limp Gawd

    Jun 9, 2017
    Maybe mine is exceptionally shoddy, but this $16 thing attempted to kill my $2000+ system.

    It wasn't working correctly when I installed it and when I went to check it, it sparked and took out one of my HDDs.
    (The fans didn't spin, or they would spin at full speed, so I could tell there was an issue with the PWM feed)

    Quite furious, especially because I have to get into the bowels of the system to remove it, I took it out and attached it to this old PSU, so I could take some video footage of it sparking at the solder joint.

    Well, I got a bit more than I was hoping for.
    (Take note that the fan attached to the hub doesn't move until after I touch the power cable feeding the hub)

    Silverstone Technology 1-to-8 PWM fan hub (CPF04), bought directly from amazon.ca

  2. Araxie

    Araxie [H]ardness Supreme

    Feb 11, 2013
    That's why before buy anything you should read about it, that hub isn't actually meant to run with nonPWM fans (you are using 3 pin fan so no pwm).. and when you use 3 pin fan speed detection and control are disabled (will run at full speed) that hub is meant to run only with 4 pin (pwm) fans and speed detection will only work with 4 ports.

    Also the hub have to be connected to the motherboard 4 pin PWM fan header, in the video I can't see where it is connected, but I can assume isn't the mobo..

    It probably have a factory issue, but I also see possible user error there.
  3. MrDeaf

    MrDeaf Limp Gawd

    Jun 9, 2017
    uhhh, I think you have no idea what you are talking about...
    Like, really, how have you been on HardOCP for so long and not even have a basic grasp of how DC fans work?

    The only thing the PWM cable does is give PWM signal rate to the fan. It doesn't matter if you connect a 4pin, 3pin or 2pin fan to it, so long as you properly observe the connection.
    12V goes to 12V, Ground goes to Ground, Tachometer goes to Tach, PWM goes to PWM.

    If there is no PWM signal, the fan will run at full speed and there's zero problem in doing that.

    The only thing a PWM fan hub does, is draw power from the PSU directly, while also splitting the PWM signal to however many fans.
    What this hub did was short out the 12V line when the cable was wiggled. I.E. very poor soldering job

    It WAS attached to the mobo prior to this, but it didn't supply power to the fans correctly, thanks to the piss poor soldering job. In fact, it was even sparking right at the solder joint and I, specifically, took this part out of my machine to get a video of said sparks happening. Then I got this to happen instead.

    There is ZERO, absolutely ZERO user error.
  4. hititnquitit

    hititnquitit Limp Gawd

    Apr 16, 2018
    hot damn, ill bet that smells good! sorry i had to. thats not something you expect to see from a silverstone product. your lucky it only cooked a hdd! well the good news is you now have an incendiary device perfect for burning down that certain someones house haha.
  5. nightanole

    nightanole [H]ard|Gawd

    Feb 16, 2003
    Yup the only thing that fan controller did was play with the 4th PWM pin. 12v Power and ground where directly connected from the source and not touched by the hub.

    Still i wonder what was killing the power supply. We are talking about even a 200 watt supply being able to sustain 10's of amps on the 5v and 12v rails. You would think the power supply could send the hub into meltdown and still keep chugging.

    Looking at it more, this "hub" should literally have no circuitry. All it does is enable the mobo fan header to just supply the pwm signal, and the hub powers the fans from the 12v sata power cable, so the poor mobo header doesnt have to supply several watts.
  6. doyll

    doyll Kyle's Thermocouple is HOT

    Feb 4, 2012
    MrDeaf, what are the specs of fan you were using on the SilverStone PWM hub?

    Some of what Araxie said is true, some is not. Plugging a 3-pin fan into a PWM fan splitter hub means fan is supplied with constant 12v power. Only one fan on any fan spiltter or fan hub sends rpm signal through hub to motherboard.

    Basically what nightanole saiid, except I don't know what you mean by 'was play with the 4th PWM pin'. Maybe the fan MrDeaf is trying to run has a higher amp rating than circuit can handle, maybe startup jumper is wrong, maybe it's just dying of old age.

    My experience with Silverstonetek is their products all decent. Some not the best while some are extremely good, but none that were bad.
  7. Skylinestar

    Skylinestar Limp Gawd

    Jun 14, 2011
    Reminds me of the era before PWM fans are popular. Buying a fan controller sure needs some technical knowledge on the design. Sunbeam was popular back then.