Help Cooling Build-in Cabinets

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Damon Neth, Jul 26, 2001.

  1. Damon Neth

    Damon Neth Auditioning

    Joined:
    May 31, 2000
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have build-in cabinets that house all my gear. The cabinets themselves are made of wood, with wooden shelves and glass doors. The issue is that the cabinet tempterature often exceeds 100 degrees during the summer(highest I've seen is 110). I live in a really old house, therefore there is no air conditioning. I have three 2-inch ventilation holes cut in the top of the two cabinets that house the gear, but this obviously is not doing much to help.
    So here are the options. I have purchased two 4 inch AC power fans that can be plugged into the switched outlets on the back of my receiver. However, in testing these proved to be a little noisy. I saw another post that recommended buying an extension cord with a dimmer switch on it. This may work. If this does, one option is to simple put the fan in the cabinet to circulate air. The other would be to place it on top to pull the hot air out. One other option may be to vent it to the outside since the back of the cabinets backs to an exterior wall. Has anyone seen something that might be more like a bathroom fan that could be employed in this situation to provide good ventilation, while moving the fan out of the room? Any other suggestions?
     
  2. Roy-BE

    Roy-BE Auditioning

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2001
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I would recommend an exhaust fan, towards the top of the cabinet.
    Reason being that heat finds its way up, and if your hot equitment (amp) is at the bottom, it will enjoy the coolest air in the enclosure.
    Pushing the hot air out will even contribute to slightly lower temprature in your room.
    In addition, from experiance (I've been overclocking my PCs for years now) a 25% decrease in revolution speed of the fans will result in whisper quite operation.
     
  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hi Damon. Welcome to HTF!
    Do your shelves have openings at the back so air can flow from the bottom to the top of the rack, or is each component enclosed in it's own "cubbyhole"?
    You may have to drill/cut vent slots in the shelves if they do not already have openings.
    You have some options for installing fans:
    - Go to ebay and search for "fan shelf" or "cooling fan". There was a guy that sold a special shelf with cooling fans and vents. This thing slipped into a rack in place of a shelf and moved air below and above. He had some that ran on 220v so they ran at half-speed with 110 (so they were very quiet).
    - Go to buy some 12 volt DC fans, not the AC type. Then get a "battery Eliminator" from Radio Shack and use it to power the fans. The "Battery Eliminator" allows you to change the voltage from about 3 v to 18 volts. Simply reduce the voltage until the fans are slow enough that you dont hear them.
    - Go to a electronics site likewww.sacelectronics.com and look at their "muffin fans". They have some AC fans, but they list how noisy they are. Buy some of the quiet ones and hook them up. Note: they also sell filters that snap-on over the fans so this will help filter the dust out of your cabinent.
    Good Luck.
     
  4. Damon Neth

    Damon Neth Auditioning

    Joined:
    May 31, 2000
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks for the response. The shelves at 2 inches shorter than the back of the cabinet. The back of the cabinet itself is solid except for some holes that wires come through. I will check out the places you recommended.
     
  5. GregoriusM

    GregoriusM Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2000
    Messages:
    278
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I click on the sacelectronics link and I get German. Is there another site in English?
    ------------------
    .... "just me up on my pony on my boat".
     
  6. Mike Bushroe

    Mike Bushroe Auditioning

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2000
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Damon,
    I have a similar problem a small video cabinet with glass doors. I got a 120V muffin 4 inch muffin fan that claimed 30DB noise on the package, but when installed registered more like 55DB on my SPL. I have purchased, but not yet installed, a 3 inch to see if I can get it quiter. May also try in line resistor to slow the fan down. The salesman also said 220 fans at half speed are very quite and last forever.
    Mike
     
  7. Darren Hunt

    Darren Hunt Agent

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2001
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    When I built my room, I designed an exhaust system into the equipment rack. Since you already have a rack built, you probably won't be able to do what I did, but for your info...
    My equipment rack is essentially a wooden shelf unit built into the wall. I have a rear entrance into the back to do cabling and such, and access through some glass doors at the front for changing DVD's, etc. Within the cabinet, I have perforated the left side with 1/4" holes (5 rows across, ~2" apart from top to bottom. On the other side of this I have attached ducting that is sealed to the unit, and runs out of the theater room into the adjacent room through the ceiling. There is probably 20 feet of ducting between the two ends, with many twists and turns due to the ceiling and wall situation. At the far end, I have attached a quiet bathroom fan. This fan is controlled by a electronic thermostat that has its thermister attached to the top of the cabinet. I have the ability to set the thermostat to any temperature range, and have the bathroom fan automatically activate and deactivate when these temperatures are reached. The fan is far enough from the room that you can't hear it, and the cabinet is kept quite cool with no supervision. Every thing is automatic. The total cost of this little project broken down:
    ~$120 for the bathroom fan (it was the quietest one I could find with good airflow)
    ~$80 for the thermostat
    ~$20 worth of ducting
    In the end, it was probably more expensive then I had wanted, but in the long run, I have a system that works great and doesn't add any sound to the room at all.
    Darren
    ------------------
     
  8. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

Share This Page