Byte Me Article 193 – Give PC fresh air as summer heats up

Give PC Fresh Air as Summer Heats Up

For this week’s article I am once again going to draw upon one of the ‘cases’ that has come in during the week.  In this instance the customer was reporting that a new PC which had been purchased from ‘down South’ was blue screening (locking up) after being run for around half an hour, especially when playing a shoot em up game.  This immediately tells us that it is likely a heat related problem and the rest of the story is quite apt for this time of the year.

The customer left his PC with us and further inspection revealed a good motherboard, a fast CPU, special high speed ram and a high end dedicated graphics card – all contained in a no name PC case.  A PC of this power calibre needs lots of cooling air flowing through the case to keep things cool and this was simply not happening.  There were no case fans and no ventilation grate in the roof of the PC, so after running for half an hour we could feel the case was already physically warm to touch.

The PC being 2 months old was still under warranty however the customer had already starting thinking that the Brisbane retailer was “a bit dodgy” and was regretting not purchasing locally.  The only solution left was to transfer everything to a new case.  We installed 2 good case fans into one of our Thermaltake cases that are already designed with good heat dissipation in mind and this put an end to any heat issues.

2014-09-27 Byte Me Article 193 - Warmer Months

Heat is the number one enemy of many electrical devices and PC’s are no exception.  With the onset of warmer months we will see an increase in the number of heat related PC problems – some of which can be avoided.  Keep your PC away from direct sunlight through windows, try to keep it well above floor level so the air passing through it is not dust laden.  Never crowd the PC tower if it is on a shelf with books against it or on top of it and allow room at the rear of the PC for exhausted hot air to escape into the main part of the room.

When purchasing a new PC keep in mind (regardless of what the ‘salesperson’ is suggesting) that a dedicated graphics card will add heaps of realism when playing shoot em up games but it will not benefit you even half a percent in normal PC use.  The ‘integrated’ graphics cards that are standard on most PC’s today will play DVD’s, YouTube Videos, surf the web and display all business applications absolutely perfectly.  They will also do all of this without producing extra heat, without burning extra power, without creating an extra point of failure in the PC & without extra cost.

During the above process we also found the high speed ram was mismatched with the motherboard and was actually running at below standard speed – and that there was no Windows Licence sticker on the case (this is illegal).  We then found that the customer had already called the seller about this problem and had been fobbed off, which had contributed to the suspicions of the seller being ‘dodgy’ – we had to agree with this diagnosis!  

Future Byte Me topics can be emailed to [email protected] and Bruce is contactable at Kerr Solutions, 205 Musgrave Street or on 49 222 400.

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