Replacing Noisy Bolt Fan & Power

Discussion in 'TiVo Bolt DVR/Streamer' started by Kevin Zimmerman, Oct 31, 2018.

  1. Paul1522

    Paul1522 New Member

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    Jan 22, 2019

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    Well, yeah, I guess I thought that was the point of this thread. The guy replaced his stock fan with this one. It is a 12V fan. So the stock fan is 5V? Would be good to know.
     
  2. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

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    Ashland, PA...
    I'm sure the answer could be found in this thread: BOLT Stock Cooling SUCKS
     
  3. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    The stock fan is 12 V. That's why when you power the Tivo on, it spins at max. speed. To prevent the fan from stalling, all PCs spin their fans by running them at maximum speed for a few seconds, then reducing their speeds down to whatever. You want to work with Newton's first law of motion, not against it.

    Some 12V fans are really good and can spin up at 5V. Some aren't. None are really designed to do it. Use whatever worked for others.
     
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  4. Pani

    Pani New Member

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    Jan 15, 2019
    I tried to wire the Noiseblocker fan to the 5V connector as described and pictured by Luke. I confirmed the 5V using a voltmeter. When connected the fan would not spin up on its own, but if I nudged the fan it would then continue to spin. I don't think it is a reliable solution, unless one substitutes a 5V fan.
     
  5. darrenmv

    darrenmv New Member

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    Apr 17, 2006

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    I just purchased the Tivo Bolt OTA. The noise was not noticeable to me but was driving my wife nuts. After reading many threads on the subject including this one I decided to open it up and see what the deal was. The fan itself was not noisy, but when the fan was plugged in there was an annoying buzz. I cut the plug off of the stock fan and spliced the power into the hard drive power. That eliminated all the noise. Fan seems to work just fine as does the hard drive. The stock fan is quite silent as long as you don't use the intended power source apparently.
     
  6. exdishguy

    exdishguy Active Member

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    Wondering if this is still working for you Larry? I may try this. In the interim, I'm plugged into the 5v connector on the board and the unit is stable at 60 ODT. However, I want to get the temp down even more so I picked up this USB 5v to 9/12v converter https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B074R7FDCR/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    I connected it up to the stock fan and sure enough it works and I can vary the speed by selecting 9v or 12v. Obviously it spins faster than when its powered at 5v. They also have a bare PCB module with the buck booster and a potentiometer to adjust the output. I didn't want to muck around with a bare PCB though and no case for it. https://www.amazon.com/Converter-DR...mer/dp/B07K6GRWKR?ref_=bl_dp_s_web_9119938011

    I'm going to try the packaged up version with the X2 fan later this week and see how it works. I'd like to see how it sounds at 9v and presume it will move a little more air, therefore pushing the ODT temps down to 55-57c-ish.

    Ultimately, if Larry's 100uF 25 Volt capacitor method works well, I may try that and settle on it.
     
  7. snovvman

    snovvman New Member

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    Mar 6, 2019
    The capacitor solution seems to be the easiest. I am interested in hearing feedback.
     
  8. exdishguy

    exdishguy Active Member

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    Well I have some caps arriving tomorrow and I will be trying that. I just got a blue-screen of death (yea...I said BSOD) from the Bolt that said it had to shut my unit down because it was too hot. The fan is running but it was sunny today and the sun beaming down on the thing probably made it overheat and without the fan either running faster or controlled via PWM, it overheated.
     
  9. exdishguy

    exdishguy Active Member

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    I tried the 100uF 25v cap with the factory fan and so far I'm liking it. Temps are running at 54c ODT and I can't hear it. That or I'm just tired of dicking around with it so I "think" that I don't hear the buzzing. :) I'm going to let this run a few days and see if it holds up.
     
  10. fburgerod

    fburgerod Member

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    I was also having fan noise issues. So, I unhooked the fan , left the case off and placed the bolt on 1/2 inch risers. Totally quiet now and the ODT varies between 46-50. Happy now.
     
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  11. exdishguy

    exdishguy Active Member

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    Cool (no pun intended). :)

    It's ridiculous that we even have to resort to these measures.

    I am quite pleased with results of the cap combined with the factory fan. I just transferred a show to the Bolt, was recording another show, and were using all 6 tuners and the ODT never got over 56c. Right now the transfer is completed and I'm only recording and the temp is stable at 53c.

    I thought about dropping the XS-2 back in it but at this point the Bolt is quiet as a mouse and all is working well so I'm leaving well enough alone for moment.
     
  12. Dschelsea82

    Dschelsea82 New Member

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    The bolt is great besides the noise. That being said, I replaced the fan with the XS-2 plugged into where the hd receives power and could still hear the fan from 12 ft away. I use an external 3tb drive with its own power. The only way the bolt is silent and cool is taking the top off and unplugging the fan. I mounted mine behind the TV. I'll post again if I have issues with heat. Also, I've never had the buzz just fan noise.
     
  13. exdishguy

    exdishguy Active Member

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    I gotta tell ya' - I didn't find the XS-2 to be any quieter. I guess I lucked out with the factory fan in that regard. The 100uF 25v cap did the trick for me on the buzzing and I prefer having the PWM speed up the fan when necessary given I'm running an internal WD 3TB drive. I'm running 51c ODT and no higher than 57c even with the sun beating down on it from my skylights.

    Since you are running an external drive I'm assuming you've voided warranty already. Perhaps you can try the external USB port(s) to power the fan? I bought a cheap step up converter that lets me select 9v or 12v out and it works great. Maybe try your fan at 9v so it runs slower and it quieter? I think I posted a link to the one I bought above.
     
  14. Sparky1234

    Sparky1234 Well-Known Member

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    FYI. I've lucked out with Bolt and Roamio as both are very quiet. My my Premieres have noisy fans and hard drives....
     
  15. mrbluesky

    mrbluesky New Member

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    I own an original Bolt (3 years) that is loud; Amazon sent me a replacement and it also was just as loud. I purchased a Bolt OTA a month ago and just like most people on the thread whose bolt device is loud as well. Does anyone from TiVO monitor this community forum because their engineering team should take a look at what's going on with these loud fans and fix the issue. Purchasers of these devices shouldn't have to go and engineer fixes themselves something that is a design flaw.
     
  16. RJR_22

    RJR_22 New Member

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    Sorry if this is a dumb question but how did you connect the step up converter to the stock fan? The link you provided looks to have a normal DC connector and not a fan connection. Do you use some type of adapter or did you cut the wire to make a direct connection?

    I tried both the stock fan and XS2 on the 5V and neither spun fast enough to keep it below 70 and I'm worried the external USB will be the same unless I step up to 12V.
     
  17. exdishguy

    exdishguy Active Member

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    Actually I used the XS2 for my testing and some jumper cable to connect to this nifty little gadget that allowed my to plug in the step converter. They are available on Amazon.

    Velleman CD017-1 DC Jack to Screw Terminal, 2.5 mm x 5.5 mm Size (Pack of 3)

    That said, I ended up using the stock fan with a Panasonic FR Series Capacitors - 25V 100uf Ultra Low ESR so that the fan speed is still variable. I didn't end up using the step up converter. I can verify it worked as advertised when I connected it to the XS2 so if you really want to use the USB method this should do the trick to get your XS2 moving more air.
     
  18. RJR_22

    RJR_22 New Member

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    Apr 14, 2019
    Wow that's pretty slick I've never seen an adapter like that. Thanks for the info I may grab that as well as the capacitor and see which option works better for my Bolt. It's the original 500gb bolt and it's always been borderline too loud since day 1. About a month ago it seemed to get even louder so I started researching solutions.

    For the capacitor solution do you just push the ends down into the fan pin holes after connecting the fan to the normal fan connector on the board? I'm hoping no soldering is required.
     
  19. exdishguy

    exdishguy Active Member

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    You could probably do it that way. I know there are proper EE's on this forum that will vehemently disagree. :) There is enough room in the connector to try that - be mindful of the polarity and it should work. If the fan whining noise is very noticeable on your Bolt I think you'll hear the improvement right away.

    I just rolled back to TE3 last night and my ODT is running at 51c. I think on Hydra I tended to run at 54c.
     
  20. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    I'm a proper EE and have no problem with that. You're not trying to be accurate and you're not transmitting RF energy there.
     
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