Posted: September 23, 2003
Continuing our look into the various cooling components offered by Speeze, we come to the EE-SC01 Fan Controller. A fan controller, such as the EE-SC01, can make the difference between a comfortable and unpleasant computing environment. With the simple turn of a dial, this straightforward device can control two fans in your computer’s case. The device also features a real-time temperature display of current case air temperatures. With the turn of the knob the test system’s Thermaltake Volcano 7 fan (model TT-8025T, rated at 12v/8.4watts) could be adjusted from 0-4800 RPM. This device and others like it assist users who want good cooling without the unnecessary noise generated by high speed fans.
Product Packaging & Specifications:
The Speeze Fan Controller came packaged in a confusing box labeled “Speeze Hard Disk Drive Cooler.” It’s possible the wrong box was used altogether and the unnecessary hard disk brackets packaged with the product can support this assumption. Despite possibly being shipped in the wrong box, the poor grammar on the packaging is worth mentioning. Unfortunately a detailed set of instructions was not included with the product. Regardless of how simple a product is, this should not be overlooked.
The following text is a “cleaned-up” version of the details found on the sides of the box:
Hard Disk Drive Cooler Features:
- Provide cooler environment.
Extend the HDD life time.
- Universal form factor. Suitable for 3.5” or 5.25” HDD.
- Unique Design to reduce fan
Hard Disk Drive Cooler Installation:
- Remove the front cover from the computer and install the 3.5” HDD in the bracket with the screws provided on Both side of HDD. No bracket is needed if it is a 5.25” HDD.
- Secure the HDD in the bracket with the screws provided. Insert the HDD with bracket secured to the HDD bay.
- Snap the HDD cooler at the front of he HDD installed as above.
- Make sure the HDD cooler is secured With the 4 pcs screws as provided.
The product itself is very simple, enclosed in the packaging is the following:
41x Speeze Fan Controller (2 dials to adjust two fans independently)
41x 4-pin ATX power adapter (provides power to the fan controller)
42x 3-pin fan adapters
42x pcs hard disk brackets
44x pcs screws for mounting
From the Speeze website the following information is available:
4Dimensions: Bracket 140. 7x44x20mm (L x W x H)
4Connector: 4 pin power supply connector
4Application: 2 Fan Speed controllers
4Features: Temp. display
The construction of this device is not very impressive. It’s a simple device with a circuit board that can wiggle about a millimeter back and forth. The knobs on the fan controller however have a satisfying twist to them. The knobs have a gradual effect on the fan speed and seem to be just right.
The physical appearance of this device is a purple metal with two silver colored fan controller knobs. In the center of the device you’ll find the temperature display, which measures the case temperature every few seconds. The color will not look appropriate in many cases without modification. Some users may also frown on Speeze’s choice to include their company name and website on the product.
The installation of the fan controller itself is pretty simple. You plug in the respective fan and power wires and the device powers on. The biggest complaint about this device during installation was the inability for it to fit my Antec Performance Plus 1080AMG 5.25” Drive Rails. I’m afraid other popular cases the use drive rails will also have problems getting this device to properly install. To create the proper fit the only true solution required drilling new holes closer to the front of the fan controller. These kinds of modifications should not be necessary with a new fan controller purchase.
4Motherboard: ASUS A7V333-R
4Processor: AMD XP 2000+
4Processor Cooling: Thermaltake Volcano 7
4Hard disk(s): 2x 60GB Maxtor D740X in Raid-0, 1x 80GB Maxtor Diamond Max 9 Plus
4Memory: 512MB DDR333 PC2700 Corsair CAS2
4Video card: Gainward GeForce 4 TI-4200 w/TV Out
4Operating System: Windows XP Professional
Once installed, this device works as promised. With a clockwise-turn of the dial I could quickly increase the speed of my CPU fan for modern processor-demanding games. When I was surfing the web however or writing a computer hardware review, I opted for a quieter environment and turned the knob the opposite direction. I advise installing and always using Motherboard Monitor 5 to survey your CPU temperatures as this device will allow you to adjust your fans from full speed to completely off.
This device does have one “very hot spot” that alarmed me during the review. While organizing the wires pictured above, I was shocked when a hot component forced my hand’s reflexes to engage. I pulled out the digital thermometer (touching the hot component) and watched the temperature climb from 90 F to temperatures in excess of 165 degrees F (73.8 degrees C). I was surprised how hot this component became and later determined the problem to be the lower the fan speed. With the fan controller set to low RPM levels the components became increasingly hotter. I’m unsure if this component could pose a risk of fire, but it made me think twice about running the machine without my physical presence.
The hot component can be seen in the upper-left corner of this picture. Also note the 3 pin connectors for the fan (on the left) and the power (on the right).
After reviewing the Speeze Fan Controller I have mixed feelings. Although in the simplest ways the controller accomplishes the task at hand, it has a few major pitfalls. The controller only supports 2 fans whereas more advanced users will probably be looking for at least 4 connectors for fans. Also the air-temperature of the case might “look” cool but functionally it doesn’t help the user much. A diode that you could place anywhere in the case would be much more useful. Finally, the color of the product needs work. Purple isn’t a very common case color and won’t be appealing to most users.
On the plus side, the EE-SC01 Fan Controller carries a suggested retail price in the teens (US dollars), and look for it to cost even less when it hits the shelves of Speeze’s main U.S. outlets, Newegg and Tiger Direct.
4Cost effective 2-fan Controller
4No instructions with wattage specifications etc. included with packaging
4Purple color will not look good with most cases
4Controller will not fit cases that use drive rails (without modification)
4The very hot component on the circuit board could pose a fire hazard
Special thanks to Speeze for providing the EE-SC01 to Bigbruin.Com for review!
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