Noctua case fans on Xeon-SP Tower Server

maia

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Nov 1, 2017
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Hello all!

I know this has been talked a number of times but I'd like a concise answer if at all possible.

I'm building a Supermicro-based Xeon Scalable home server and need PWM case fans (not in a Supermicro chassis). A build-log with pictures will be posted later.

I'd prefer not to have to deal with "issues" regarding changing fan thresholds? and whatnot, so an "out-of-box" would be ideal for me.

Standard cooling performance would be more-than-acceptable I believe. It's single-CPU 85W TDP part (active-cooling PWM HSF), 2 sticks of RAM, up to 5 storage HDDs, 1 M.2 NVMe. No graphics card, no extra PCIe slots populated, no further gizmo's.

Would all-round Noctua-redux work straight through Supermicro headers? Would they stop running? Would they run full-speed all the time? Would I be better-off with any other line?

Again, I can use anything suggested by you guys, I'd just like a cost-effective, silent and plug'n'play effective solution (don't we all?).

Regards,

maia
 

i386

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Mar 18, 2016
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What mainboard do you want to use?
If it's one of the models with a "f" in the suffix it will have a bmc chip/ipmi and ramp the fans up if they hit the low treshold.
 
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alex_stief

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May 31, 2016
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...which should be 500rpm.
Avoid PWM fans with lower minimum rpm for a relatively silent plug&play experience. Which sadly excludes all "non-industrial" Noctua fans 120mm and larger.
Changing fan stalling thresholds on a Supermicro H11DSi was a piece of cake once I had figured out how IPMI works :rolleyes:
AMD Epyc build for fluid simulation
 
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maia

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Nov 1, 2017
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This is for a X11SPL-F (which I already have).

I know fiddling with thresholds should be easy, but I don't think there's any need for that. It should just "work".

So, are you suggesting the Redux line is out of question? Would I be better off with the Industrial line? Or Chomax?
 

maia

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Nov 1, 2017
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OK, to answer my own thread...

I noticed that most Noctua's idle under 500 rpm (as @alex_stief mentioned). Only the Industrial 3000 PWM is around 750 rpm, which I believe is lower still than the (supposedly) 900 rpm lower limit configured on Supermicro motherboards.

So, should one go all out to the 3000-series Industrial and let PWM do its work, or will it still required fiddeling around? Would they be relatively quiet at lower rpm? They scream at full throttle!!

Also, side question: If temps are in-check, does the motherboard have the ability to shut down fans? Or are they always spinning?

Thank you.
 

alex_stief

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The fan speed will be controlled by the motherboard, mainly based on temperatures.
But if you choose 3000rpm Noctua industrial fans, they may or may not spin at annoyingly loud rpm. Even the minimum 750rpm are not particularly quiet by my standards. And you are back at fiddling with ipmitool again, but this time without any chance for really quiet fans...
My backup solution in case adjusting fan thresholds would not work is a built-in fan controller from the case or an after-market solution.
You mentioned that this is a server rather than a workstation. Is ultra-quiet operation really that important?
 
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maia

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Nov 1, 2017
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It's not @alex_stief . Still, quiet operation and lower power consumption is better in my book.
Some swear by the iPPC3000 as they throttle down and can be very efficient, other models (standard and redux) go under 500 rpm and have low noise at the expense of air throughput and dealing with ipmi settings. There are also the iPPC2000 which are quieter but they are 450rpm idle...
Seems like I'll have to make *any* choice and deal with it. I'm the think twice, buy once type of guy. But I'm really confused as to what to choose!
 

K D

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Dec 24, 2016
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What tower chassis are you using? Since you are using an active heatsink, I'd recommend you just trying the fans that come with your chassis and see how the thermals are before changing the fans. You can use any Noctua fan not just the ippc for case airflow. I would prefer a regular Noctua F or P or even a redux variant to an ippc for a tower case fan.

Changing the fan thresholds in a supermicro board is a simple command that would have to be done just once.
 
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maia

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Nov 1, 2017
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What tower chassis are you using? Since you are using an active heatsink, I'd recommend you just trying the fans that come with your chassis and see how the thermals are before changing the fans. You can use any Noctua fan not just the ippc for case airflow. I would prefer a regular Noctua F or P or even a redux variant to an ippc for a tower case fan.

Changing the fan thresholds in a supermicro board is a simple command that would have to be done just once.
Many thanks for the input @K D,
My chassis only came with a rear (rubbish) 120mm molex fan. I was looking to exchange that rear fan and build a 2 or 3-array of 120mm fans in the middle part of the case. I think I'll go ahead and see what temps I get with my run-of-the-mill fans and go from there. I'm missing the RAM sticks which have yet to be shipped.
Thanks all and I'll report back with my build on the DIY Server Build forum!
 

K D

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Dec 24, 2016
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Try with the stock fan and if it doesn't cut it then replace it with a better fan before trying a custom fan wall.
 
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maia

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Nov 1, 2017
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OK. Will do! My chassis also has room for two 80mm side-blowing fans to HDDs, but at the moment I'll avoid those if at all possible.
 

EffrafaxOfWug

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Feb 12, 2015
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From my experiences using Noctua NF-P12 fans on the Supermico A2SDi-8C-HLN4F, they had an annoying tendency to drop below their minimum rpm, which caused them to report as running as 0rpm. This caused the IPMI to go into panic mode and run all fans on full, resulting in the common "cycling" or "surging" problem.

Even setting the IPMI fan lower thresholds all to zero didn't fix the issue as it seemed to be a problem with the way the IPMI interacted with the Noctuas resulting in them appearing to stop. I dare say the higher speed industrial Noctuas won't suffer the same problem since they won't rev down so much. I sidestepped the issue by using some different fans for the time being.
 

nthu9280

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Feb 3, 2016
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Changing the fan thresholds in a supermicro board is a simple command that would have to be done just once.
How do you change the thresholds permanently? If I use the raw command, it has to be done after each restart.



Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
 

K D

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Dec 24, 2016
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@nthu9280

Code:
ipmitool sensor thresh FAN# lower lnr lcr lnc
ipmitool sensor thresh FAN# upper unc ucr unr
lnr - Lower Non-Recoverable speed
lcr - Lower Critical speed
lnc - Lower Non-Critical speed

unc - Upper Non-Critical speed
ucr - Upper Critical
unr - Upper Non-Recoverable speed

Example :
Code:
 ipmitool sensor thresh FAN3 lower 150 200 250
Alternatively if you cannot run IPMITool from baremetal you can run the same commands from a remote system

Code:
ipmitool -H [hostname or ip] -U [USERNAME] -P[PASSWORD] sensor thresh FAN# lower lnr lcr lnc
 
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nthu9280

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@nthu9280

Code:
ipmitool sensor thresh FAN# lower lnr lcr lnc
ipmitool sensor thresh FAN# upper unc ucr unr
lnr - Lower Non-Recoverable speed
lcr - Lower Critical speed
lnc - Lower Non-Critical speed

unc - Upper Non-Critical speed
ucr - Upper Critical
unr - Upper Non-Recoverable speed

Example :
Code:
 ipmitool sensor thresh FAN3 lower 150 200 250
Alternatively if you cannot run IPMITool from baremetal you can run the same commands from a remote system

Code:
ipmitool -H [hostname or ip] -U [USERNAME] -P[PASSWORD] sensor thresh FAN# lower lnr lcr lnc
Is that change permanent or has to be repeated after each restart?

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
 

K D

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This is permanent unless you restore factory defaults. Forgot to mention that you need to reset the BMC after making this change for it to take effect.
 
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K D

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comicnerd

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Oct 4, 2020
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I am having a similar problem. I have a X11SPL-F Motherboard and using Noctua's NH-U14S DX-3647 (which has the NF-A15) as the CPU fan and unless I do "Fan Control - Full", I am continuously having the damn fan spin up, spin down ... I have set the IPMI thresholds manually as well, but they don't stick. I figured, I change the NF-A15 (4 pin PWM) to the NF-A14 FLX (3 pin) along with 3 pin case fans (Dynamic X2 GP-14 Black) and just run everything "full".
 

EffrafaxOfWug

Radioactive Member
Feb 12, 2015
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Is your problem with the thresholds restting themselves back to default or do your noctua fans actually read below the threshold (or even 0 rpm) at any point?