NZXT GRID+ Fan Controller Review

The test rig consists of the following parts:

Processor: Intel Core i7 3770K
Motherboard: Gigabyte G1.Sniper3
Video Card: EVGA GTX 690
Memory: Samsung Green MV-3V4G3D/US – 16GB
Power Supply: Enermax Maxrevo 1350W
Storage: OCZ Vertex 3 240 GB raid 0 Running Windows 7 64bit
Cooling: Deepcool Maelstrom 240
Case: Phanteks Enthoo Luxe
Fan Controller: NZXT Grid +

Only having three fans connected to the Grid+ we know that we should not be stressing the Grid+ very much. But we mostly figure that as a second generation unit this hub should have no problem delivering the desired power. Mostly we are interested to see how the Grid+ functions with the CAM software.

After firing up the test rig, we initially found that the hub runs the fans at full speed before the CAM software is initialized. Once connected the software immediately changes the speed to speed selected in the settings. Within CAM you will find a separate panel for the Grid+. Selecting this panel you will find a good array of information and options.

On the left panel there is a graph showing your current fan profile. Opposite this panel on the right, is a listing of all six fans. These can be individually named, and below the name is the current speed and wattage. The center panel is where all the action happens. You will find three settings for fan speed: Custom, Silent, and Performance. Custom is a fan speed curve you create yourself, Silent keeps the speed as low as possible for as long as possible, and Performance tolerates noise pollution in favor of cooler temperatures. Above these settings is the current fan speed in %. Beside that on the right the aggregate temperature of either your CPU or GPU can be displayed and finally below is the total wattage the unit is outputting.

NZXT GRID+ Software

In addition to the automatic profiles we outlined the fans can also be set to a certain percentage of power manually and left there. This ranges from 40% to 100% fan power. Optimally, we would have liked to see the setting go lower than 40%. There are quite a few users who like to make their machines really quiet, and this simply won’t support that. Finally one thing we were hoping for but were disappointed to find is the lack of individual fan control. Having individual control would have completely removed any need for a traditional front panel fan controller.

NZXT GRID+ Software

NZXT GRID+ Software

We found that when running at 100% the unit was only outputting 6 W out of the claimed 30 W. This was likely a result of our 14cm Akasa Apache Blacks running at their limits. Even with limited fans it seems that this unit has plenty of headroom to push more fans or more powerful fans.

We also aimed an infrared thermometer at the Grid+ after an hour of 100% fan speed. The recorded temperatures were in the 85°C range which is totally acceptable.