Troubleshooting Loud Fans

The room that I have my computer in is only partially air conditioned, so when the rest of the house is 74, it is perhaps 78 or so. I built a new PC shortly before spring and everything has been working fine for the most part, until this summer. Now when I play games such as Skyrim, after about 20 minutes some fan in the machine is spinning up to a much louder speed. Exiting out of the game, EVGA Precision shows that my GPU is at 49 degrees Celsius, and the fan is at 48% speed (base speed under no load is 40%), my CPU shows as being 28 degrees Celsius and the motherboard is reading 31 degrees Celsius. If I let the machine sit for a few minutes, the GPU will drop down to 40% fan and around 39 degrees in temp, and the CPU and Motherboard will drop to around 25 degrees, yet the fan doesn’t quiet down. To get the fan back to a normal speed I need to power off the machine for a few minutes.

I have yet to have the fan spin up and then see any video distortion or performance degredation, the noise just is really annoying. Any advice is appreciated.

The video card has been the noisiest part in my box for at least a decade. Other than going with liquid cooling I have found myself being annoyed with turbulence and bad air cooling design. The market for a manufacturer who gets fluid flow and heat transfer is sadly mostly untapped.

Is there a way to lock the video card fan at 40%? Sorry, I haven’t had this problem myself, just thinking it should be possible. I would lock it at 40% and see what the temp is going to be and whether I start seeing any problems. :)

Sorry I guess I should be more clear…I don’t believe the GPU fan is what is being loud, as when it slows down the noise does not, it is as if some fan is still on overdrive, but I can’t figure out which one it is.

Use SpeedFan to figure out which fan (if your mobo has decent fan sensors/headers) is throttling up and staying up. Sounds like CPU heatsink + fan.

I’ll second speedfan. Once you figure out which fan it is, be prepared to go down the rabbit hold of quiet(er) fans, ginormous heatsinks, and/or liquid cooling. However, I can attest that you can get your PC pretty damn quiet if you’re willing to spend a little coin.

Best brands for quiet cooling from most expensive to least:

  1. Noctua
  2. Nexus
  3. Arctic Cooling
  4. Scythe

Vantec, Thermaltake are shit. Zalman is not great but overpriced.

Quiet PSU brands from costly down:

  1. Seasonic
  2. Corsair (guts made by Seasonic)
  3. certain Antec ones (with guts made by Seasonic)

Don’t forget to check your power supply. It should have fans, too! That is the loudest part of my current PC, because I have a Sapphire HD3850 that is passively cooled…the case fan + power supply fan had to spin up to compensate whenever I game.

Yeah right now I am running stock fans that came with my HAF X and a Cooler Master EVO 212 for CPU cooling (I believe that is the model), and in the winter and spring when the ambient temperature was around 19 degrees Celsius I could play Skyrim for hours without the fans ever spinning up to where I could hear them.

Probably. ATI at least has the capacity in it’s normal control panel…