Dell Mini 9 Hardware and Upgrades Discuss Dell Mini 9 Hardware and Upgrades.

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nd4spdbh nd4spdbh is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 01:08 AM

i opened mine up and the stock thermal pads were aligned perfectly in place with no conflicts with stickers (i never had a heat issue before). I put it back together and used some artic silver ceramique on the exposed original thermal pads, just a lil. and then on the backside indentation for the cpu i put a tglobal gap filler square, then around every indentation i put some artic silver ceramique to make better thermal contact with the backside of the keyboard.
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Dr Some-what Evil Dr Some-what Evil is offline
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Cool Fanless or just better heat handeling? - 09-01-2009, 01:47 AM

Ive been using my Mini-9 for watching video and movies from a 8Gig SD card. It gets quite warm while I'm at work but hold it up to a vent in the van and 30-45 seconds later its much cooler. I have about the same set-up at home but the mini is sitting on a home made cooler with 2 4" fans sucking air down into a cardboard box. The hot air is then exhausted out the rear of the box. While I am at home I have no heat related issues what-so-ever. The keyboard and WiFi card stay very cool. I'm thinking of getting a store bought one just to have while at work to keep things cool BUT portability is a must.

Just adding in my 2 cents worth regarding this whole issue as I once thought it could be improved as well....perhaps it still can but I'm happy with the way things are currently with my set-up.

Good Luck to you and those who also want a cooler running netbook. Might I also recommend the extended battery since your thinking of adding in a fan.


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safemode safemode is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 12:21 PM

I think it's a good idea to use a thermal paste on the top of the heat spreader to contact the keyboard. Even though it's going to be touching plastic, this is a better interface than simply laying the keyboard on top.

My only suggestion is to look into ICD7. It's thicker (much thicker) than your regular high performance thermal pastes. This will allow it to still perform much better than a thermal pad but be able to fill the gaps we have without running. When i'm done moving, i'll be picking up a vile.

i still believe that adding the vent holes to the cross member will allow you to directly ventilate the heat spreader, and as such, is a Really Good Idea (tm). So is making the bottom door a metal grill consisting entirely of holes.

Adding fans is not really desired. We want to stay dust free, silent, and low power. That includes the use of external methods.


mini 9 : Debian Unstable : 2GB ram : Atheros wifi
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holmes4 holmes4 is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 04:01 PM

I disagree about the paste on top of the heat spreader - you want air to move.

Increasing air flow under the unit will do the most for reducing temperatures. A stand which is (mostly) open underneath will cut running temps 10C in my experience.


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Mini 9|2GB RAM|64GB RunCore|Intel 5300|Windows 10
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safemode safemode is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 05:49 PM

there's no air on top of the heat spreader, the keyboard sits directly on it. Ideally anyway the keyboard is directly conducting heat off the heatspreader, this is extremely more efficient than transferring the heat to the air and the air to the keyboard.

also, i would just assume people are taking their before and after type measurements with the bottom un-obstructed.

With an ambient temp of ~85F throttling the gpu and cpu of the mini resulted in acpi temps of 74C fairly quickly. This causes the gpu to transparently throttle down (possibly even the cpu to do so, though i think it would report that via cpufreq and no such thing was witnessed).

Fixing the thermal pads (which were installed by retarded blind chimps obviously) had the effect of cooling idle temps by about 5-8C and kept the cpu from ramping to 72C for a lot longer.

The fact that it still reaches 70+C means that the problem isn't entirely in the movement of heat to the heat spreader via the thermal pads (which are crap) but in removing the heat from the heat spreader to outside of the laptop. This means the conduction of heat to the back of the keyboard, as there is no ventilation above the heat spreader. Making sure the conduction is optimal (grease/paste) can only help. But i think ventilation is needed to remove the stagnant air insulating the inside of the netbook.

The bottom door can use some serious enhancing when it comes to ventilation, I already outlined my plan for that. It should be fairly straightforward and look fairly stock aside from it being metal.

The side vent can also be improved, there is a RF shield behind it that seriously impedes air flow. I simply bent it back and forth until it broke off at the bottom crease.

The other idea is destructive to the mini, so it's obviously the last one i would attempt. Drilling holes into the cross member above where the keyboard sits. This would provide a direct path for air to ventilate around the heat spreader, while not being really visible nor being an easy way for dust and what not to fall into the mini.

Other destructive ideas include removing the ethernet port and/or a usb port to further open up vents on the side.


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nd4spdbh nd4spdbh is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 06:05 PM

yes ICD7 is thick (i have had two tubes of it, and was in the OCForums ICD7 review for it) but any TIM ment to be sandwiched between a chip and heatsink in a thin layer is going to preform poorly if its in a thick glob. I have been round computers for a long time... have WAY to many posts over at ocforums.com.... your best bet is to replace the thermal pads would be to use better thermal pads, TGLOBAL makes some good stuff.

That being said, with my added thermal paste on the top of the heat spreader temps have definitely decreased (5-8*c in the same ambient temp) and you can feel more heat comming up through the keyboard.
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safemode safemode is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 07:01 PM

The question isn't if it will perform less than optimal or intended, but if it will perform less than a thermal pad. In the link i posted to the other forum about icd7, it's the general consensus that it does perform better than thermal pads when used in place of thermal pads (very thickly applied). That is not surprising as thermal pads are 8 times less conductive of heat on average than something like arctic silver.

Also, it would be good to make note the context of the temp decreases mentioned. Are you seeing a 5-8c decrease at idle, or are you seeing a 5-8C difference at max possible throttling (not only cpu load, but gpu load is necessary, fullscreen hulu is good for this. About 30 minutes is optimal).
Delaying your max temp is a sign of optimizing the transfer of heat from the cpu/gpu to the spreader. This can also be seen as a reduction in idle temps.
Reducing your max temp is a sign of optimizing the transfer of heat from the netbook to the environment.


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nd4spdbh nd4spdbh is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 07:33 PM

load temps are down by right at 5*C after ~ 30min of hulu playback full screen. i can definitely tell more heat comming up through the keyboard, thus more heat being expelled into the environment and out of the laptop.
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safemode safemode is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 07:47 PM

Hrm.. I should have thought of that. Luckily, you dont have to take everything apart to do it. Just undo the two screws holding the keyboard on and spread some grease around on the heat spreader. I'll be doing that asap.


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nd4spdbh nd4spdbh is offline
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Default 09-01-2009, 08:26 PM

yeah give it a shot and post up results let us know if it works.

I will say i did two things (added some AS ceramique to the stock thermal pads and the back side of the heat spreader) but i do notice more heat from the keyboard thus better transfer to it.
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