BOLT Stock Cooling SUCKS

Discussion in 'TiVo Bolt DVR/Streamer' started by CIR-Engineering, Feb 10, 2018.

  1. Apr 28, 2018 #61 of 108
    SkyCar

    SkyCar New Member

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    My room temperature is 74 F.

    I have now tried something different, turning the laptop cooler upside down so the fans blow up. I elevated it on some bottle caps so it doesn't lie flat on the shelf. So now, the score is:

    Tivo BOLT on wooden shelf: 70 C
    Elevated on wire rack: 68 C
    BOLT on laptop cooler: 66 C
    Upside down laptop cooler on bottle caps: 59 C
     
    Mikeguy likes this.
  2. Apr 28, 2018 #62 of 108
    BigJimOutlaw

    BigJimOutlaw Well-Known Member

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    On-Die temperature -- temperature taken on the CPU itself
    Motherboard temp -- temperature taken somewhere on the motherboard, which is always cooler.
     
  3. Apr 28, 2018 #63 of 108
    Skanter123

    Skanter123 Member

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    Strange - I’m at 54 with fan right-side up. Which Bolt? Mine is 1T, maybe different HD? No bottle caps.
     
  4. Dec 30, 2018 #64 of 108
    perrykperry

    perrykperry New Member

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    MBT = Motherboard Temp
    ODT = On-Die Temp
     
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  5. Dec 30, 2018 #65 of 108
    JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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  6. Dec 30, 2018 #66 of 108
    SkyCar

    SkyCar New Member

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    Mine is TiVo BOLT 1000 GB . It's still running on the inverted laptop cooler. Today's ODT is 55 C. It's nine months later, and I'm still happy with this cooling situation. That little cooler has been running 24/7.

    It seems like the Bolt is designed to have airflow from the bottom towards the top. So, by turning the laptop cooler fans so they blow upward, they are working with the designed airflow, instead of against it.
     
  7. Dec 30, 2018 #67 of 108
    elorimer

    elorimer Member

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    The internal fan exhausts air down out of the case. More effective than pushing air in. Slots on the right side are the inflow. So a laptop fan blowing up might help push air in on the right, but will stall the fan on the left. In any case, you don't want a fan on the left blowing air up.
     
  8. Jan 3, 2019 #68 of 108
    tommiet

    tommiet Well-Known Member

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    I placed a laptop fan upside down under my BOLT and lowered temp 10 (to 49.) I also raised the laptop fan about 4 inches and place a 1/2 inch spacer on the bottom of the BOLT. My temp was not high, but had a spare laptop fan and used it anyway....
     
  9. Jan 3, 2019 #69 of 108
    BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    I agree, sort of. The worse problem is the hard drive on the front left-hand side. Air is supposed to go in the front left corner, flow over the hard drive, and go out the back left corner. Lowering the ODT by 10 C while unknowingly increasing the hard drive temperature makes for a LESS reliable system.

    Solutions where the fan is sideways on the left side of the Tivo blowing air across it are harmless yet appear to provide decent results.
     
  10. Feb 14, 2019 #70 of 108
    Qnapfan

    Qnapfan Active Member

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    ... I haven't spec'd out the internals our mount points yet, but my first kneejerk idea to solve the design ... flaws ... is to actuall ditch the case itself in favor of a roomier (and satisfyingly rectilinear) HTPC case. I've worked with a few such AV console sized cases before and given the size of the Bolt ... don't see obvious show stopping mounting problems. Plenty challenges/work to be sure like aligning (if possible) input output to standard PC IO bezels ... actual mount points shouldn't be to bad with screw in board standoffs (screw tapable to the metal base plate) add infinitum ...

    ... but advantages too ... the primary being a case actually designed for potential air flow throughput with better themal conductive properties to boot. Heck, now that I think of it ... less work with just removing the cover and mounting the top 'nude' Tivo into a somewhat taller HTPC case ... with the IO leads merely wired to mountable extensions to the HTPC IO bezel or generic PCI expansion port plate cover? add to this IIRC the Tivo bolt has an external power brick? if so, that could als be incorporated into the case to make it neater for unit placement and or install (mount it in the same spot the normal internal PSU would be placed WITH fans hahahahahaha.) ... hmmmm the HDD could bay mountable lockable cartridge style! (most htpc cases have at least one standard 3.5 inch bay usually used for optical drives)
    Lastly a mod name ... Tivo Zeus! hahahaha ... tagline ... we don't force you to put it on top ... but you'll want to.
     
  11. Feb 14, 2019 #71 of 108
    richsadams

    richsadams Well-Known Member

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    Ha! Great minds think alike. I've actually considered gutting one of our old TiVo Series3's and popping in the Bolt+ innards for the same reasons; form factor, improved cooling, etc. Our Bolt+ is still under warranty so I'm not going to take it apart just yet, but I'd wager it could be done without a lot of hard breathing and frankly I'd be perfectly happy with how it would look.

    Tivo Bolt+ and Series3.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2019
    Qnapfan likes this.
  12. Feb 14, 2019 #72 of 108
    Qnapfan

    Qnapfan Active Member

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    Brilliant ... I had totally forgotten that I have an unused THD (lapsed plan) and XL (still usable but meh internals) ... much closer fit by design and even compatible product aesthetics ... Code Named: Stealth Bolt Black - Special "Aliens Edition" XD

    Me likey.
     
  13. Feb 14, 2019 #73 of 108
    JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    My basic Roamio lives on top of a basic Premiere. The Premiere is not run much, but I would not hesitate to change it to a Bolt. There is room plus you need to consider the external connections. With enough space extensions would be easier and the external fan could be improved. Just a thought. I'll have to consider this when we have the next sale.
     
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  14. Feb 14, 2019 #74 of 108
    Qnapfan

    Qnapfan Active Member

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    +1 to you and Rich ... I've anguished over my past Tivos ... and now this potentially provides a mod path that would allow the equivalent of 'organ donation' to retain some initial value to those purchases (not to mention recreational fun) ... thumbs up.
     
  15. Feb 15, 2019 #75 of 108
    richsadams

    richsadams Well-Known Member

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    This probably belongs in another thread at this point, but I thought I'd follow up here since the concept of "transplanting" a Bolt into a Series3 (or THD, etc.) case should address the Bolt's heat issues and possibly some others like adding/replacing the HDD and the Bolt case's, um, unusual form factor.

    So I pulled everything out of our old Series3 and confirmed what I suspected, there's more than enough room inside the Series3 case for A Bolt, in fact I can put our Bolt+, case and all, inside it and still have the original Series3 HDD intact! The Series3 HDD sled is 7" x 5" so even with that left inside there's room for the Bolt's innards.

    I found all of the assorted extensions for HDMI, USB, RJ45 Ethernet and coax. There are numerous holes in the back of the Series3 case to accommodate them. Since there's so much room I'm thinking about adding a normal cooling fan inside the case and I might even mount a new 3.5" HDD on the Series3's sled connected either via eSATA or maybe to replace the existing 2.5" HDD completely.

    There is one head-scratcher though... the remote/receiver. We use Harmony 650 remotes to control TiVo and our components. With the Bolt basically hiding inside the Series3 case, what's the best option to get the signal "inside"? An old-school IR blaster? I removed the front panel and with a little work I might be able to slip an IR receiver in there. Thoughts?

    TIA!

    TiVo Series3 Inside 1.jpg

    TiVo Series3 Rear.jpg
     
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  16. Feb 15, 2019 #76 of 108
    Qnapfan

    Qnapfan Active Member

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    ... brings the a tear the the eye, a diamond in the rough right there ... good job! Hmmmm, I am presently thinking that with the add on IR blaster would be the way to go ... Now this would lead me to ponder, is there a spot in/on the case where I could mount it to both look good and provide wide reception coverage ... or possibly hook it up in the traditional add on manner with the installation of a sub mini port in the back? It has also just occurred to me that I've used a number of IR blasters in the past with different shapes and designs ... some formed along the lines of USB receiver stands for media accessories. Some 'tipping' points to consider...

    Do you want a tidy compact unit in addition to the unit having a good fixed strategic mounting spot?
    Do you want additional versatility in design for a 'floating' IR unit that can be moved? Maybe a combo internal/external with switch?
    How much additional time do you want to invest into the construction aspect?
    What IR blasters types do you have available for usage?

    I think answering these questions, would narrow the field down to a design you would be generally happy with ... cheers.
     
  17. Feb 16, 2019 #77 of 108
    richsadams

    richsadams Well-Known Member

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    All good points. The Bolt sits inside a cabinet with glass doors, so esthetically it doesn't have to look super streamlined or anything. In fact I've considered simply pulling the upper case and running it "naked". However it would be nice to reclaim the space above it for the tuning adapter and our Apple TV.

    Also I don't want to go back to using two separate remotes, but the Bolt's remote can be RC or IR. RC would solve the remote problem completely of course.

    To alleviate the heat issue originally I installed this fan over the vent slots in the bottom of the cabinet. It pushes fresh air up to the bottom of the Bolt. That dropped the average temp from about 62c to 58c or so. Putting the Bolt inside the Series3 case with an added exhaust fan may bring it down some more. Plus I'm intrigued by the thought of keeping the Series3's HDD mount in place and adding a 3TB or 4TB 3.5" HDD. I'm sure the quality of 2.5" HDDs have improved over the years, but I think that addressing the heat issue and employing a more robust 3.5" HDD to buffer 6 HD channels might be a better way to go in the long run.

    Thanks for the input! I'll have to give this some more thought, but I'm glad there are some options. Takes me back to the good ol' days when I used MFSTools to add a second HDD to our original Series1!
     
    Qnapfan likes this.
  18. Feb 16, 2019 #78 of 108
    Qnapfan

    Qnapfan Active Member

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    Hmmmm ... good point on the number of remotes ... Loving the direction you are taking it ... and also particularly buzzed about the possibility of keeping the much better hdd cage structure from the series 3 (one of the more painful flaws of the the present Bolt design). Likewise, I've dusted off the THD for initial prep work for THE transplant (just waiting for the excuse sale of say the base Tivo Bolt model that has the OTA antenna option as well. Lastly, was considering (if the the Bolt rear interace bezel was detachable -looks like it) ... to incorporate that into an aluminum conversion plate to cover the existing unused port punchouts. Oh, and completely frivolous addition of no actual value (except as an inside joke maybe) ... put a high quality sticker over the "HD" model name and replace it with "UHD" ... an inside joke that would make enthusiast friends chuckle inwardly ... in the form of ... a model that TiVo should have had ... last minute thought ... possibility of a shucked WD white ... say 8tb? Its widely held that the drive has the same lineage as the famed WD red series ... which would address issues on power usage, drive strain and longenvity ... not to mention very good performance intrinsic to the large platter nas drives of today.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2019
  19. Feb 17, 2019 #79 of 108
    davahad

    davahad Member

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    Running Bolt on the top shelf without cover and fan blowing across the surface and ODT is 35.
     
  20. Feb 17, 2019 #80 of 108
    richsadams

    richsadams Well-Known Member

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    Not sure if the rear panel is removable on the Bolt. I was just planning on keeping everything intact, just removing the upper plastic case parts. Rather than perform any mods on the S3 box itself, I'd just opt to run a few extension cables from the various jacks out through the openings in the back. Since it's hidden away, no one would appreciate the effort in my case, but customizing would certainly take it to the next level!
     

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