Super Flower Fan Master SF-609 Page: 1
Introduction

Just a couple of weeks ago I found myself browsing the usual retailers on the internet looking for a high quality, no thrills fan controller. It's certainly fair to say that there are plenty available from numerous manufacturers, but none seemed to be capable 'holding their own' when coupled with a pair of high-amperage draw Delta EFB1212SHE 140cfm fans.

Rated at just under 1amp each, the only controllers capable of silencing these fans appeared to be digital PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) based. For most users this is fine, but as I was also planning on using this controller with LED fans, I wasn't exactly looking forward to the 'Disco light effect' that PWM produces due to its pulsing voltage.

Answering my prayers several weeks later was our friends over at Sidewinder Computers with the offer of a 'Super Flower SF-609' rheobus based controller. These guys specialise in everything computer cooling based and stock a wide range of hard to find fan controllers and fans, all ready for international shipping.


Specifications

The following information has been taken directly from Super Flower's website:

Material: Aluminum Front Panel, Steel Body
Front Panel Color: Red, Blue, Champagne, Black, Acrylic panel, Silver
Device Space: 5.25" driver device
Function display: 4 sets of temperature display(CPU ,HDD,CASE.POWER), 4 sets of fan speed display(CPU ,HDD, CASE.POWER)
Background LCD display: Seven status colors (Red/Yellow/Green/Purple/Indigo/Blue/white)
Fan Controlling Knobs: Control CPU, HDD, CASE, POWER fan speed
Dimension: 148.5x42.5x75.8mm, 215x90x170 mm(color box)
Temperature range: 0 | C ~ 50 | C ( 32 | F ~ 106 | F )
R.P.M monitoring range: 0 ~ 9999 RPM (≦ 400RPM alarm) 30 RPM per unit
Input Power: 5V ≦ 0.5W 12V = base on the amps of the fan
Output voltage: 6V~12V
Max. amps of single fan: 1.5A
Max. watt of single fan: 9W~18W
Protection: Output voltage protection / short circuit
Audio Alarm Warning: Alarm message & Red light blinking.

One of the most impressive features of the SF-09 is its ability to power up to 4 fans rated at 1.5amps each. This is much more than most fan controllers and allows you to run very powerful fans at lower speeds for optimal airflow.


Packaging

The SF-609 comes in a fairly large double walled cardboard box printed with a red and black gradient. At the front of the box is a small plastic window so you can see what the controller looks like prior to purchase.

Super Flower SF-609 Box Super Flower SF-609 Packaging

Super Flower SF-609 Contents Super Flower SF-609 Contents

Super Flower has opted for a hard plastic shell to protect the Fan Master and its accessories from damage during shipping. Considering that the SF-609 arrived in mint condition all the way from the USA I certainly have no gripes with this.

Super Flower SF-609 Face Plates Super Flower SF-609 Face Plate

Fan & Temperature Cables Screws & Allen Key

Contained within the box are the following items:

• 1x SF-609 fan controller.
• 4x 3-pin fan extension cables.
• 4x Thermal probes with application tape.
• 4x Coloured aluminium face plates.
• 1x Clear acrylic face plate cover.
• Cable ties, screws and Allen key for removal of face plate.

A very comprehensive package from Super Flower it has to be said.



Super Flower Fan Master SF-609 Page: 2
Appearance

Monitoring temperatures and allowing the user to adjust the fan speed pretty much sums up the function of most fan controllers on the market. The only way manufacturers manage to separate themselves from the rest of the crowd is with looks - and I can certainly attest to seeing some wacky designs over the past few years.

Super Flower SF-609 Front Super Flower SF-609 Back

The SF-609 is built on a rugged steel frame with the front of the unit being a combination of clear acrylic plastic and anodised aluminium with hex bolts holding everything together. All buttons and knobs on the unit are made out of plastic, but feel fairly sturdy and don't exhibit any of the 'tackiness' often felt on other fan controllers.

SF-690 PCB SF-609 PCB

Around the back of the SF-609 we have headers for four 3-pin fans, a single floppy connector for power and an array of 6 pins for use with the included thermal probes.

Super Flower SF-609 Front Super Flower SF-609 Red

Changing the plexiglass and aluminium panels on the front of the unit is a doddle and can be performed by unscrewing the four hex bolts on the front of the display. The panels then simply lift off, making it very easy to change the look of the unit without even needing to remove it from your PC case one it's installed. The only minor gripe I have with this feature is that it's very easy for dust to find its way in between the plexiglass and aluminium panels requiring regular cleaning to look its best.


Setup

Not much can really be said about the installation of the SF-609 as it is pretty much fool proof. Simply connect your fan cables to the back of the unit, place the thermal probes in positions on around your PC where they are needed and install the screen in the same way as you would a CD-ROM drive or other 5.25" device.

Super Flower SF-609 Installed

The unit fitted perfectly flush in my Silverstone TJ03 aluminium case, and more to the point I was even still able to close the case's drive bay door thanks to the SF-609 having fairly stubby knobs. While on the subject of knobs, let's have a look at what each of the buttons and dials on the front of the SF-609 is responsible for:

T Button: Toggles between the four temperature sensors (CPU, Hard Disk, Case & Power Supply).
F Button: Toggles the RPM readout from each of the four fan headers on the unit.
C Button: Changes the screen colour. 6 colour modes, Auto mode (changes colour every 3 seconds) and Off.
T + C Buttons: Clear all custom settings and return unit back to manufacturers defaults.
T + F Buttons: Adjust alarm temperature of the four sensors. This setting is saved in the device even after power failure.
Fan Knobs: Turn clockwise or anti-clockwise to increase or decrease the speed of the fans. With the knob turned fully to the left the voltage output is ~6.0v, fully to the right gives ~12.0v.



Super Flower Fan Master SF-609 Page: 3
Night Shots

As previously mentioned, the SF-609 has a total of 6 different display colours. This is great news for those of us who have cathodes or other lighting inside our PC cases and are in need of a fan controller that matches the colour scheme.

Below are some shots of the SF-609 taken in a darkened room:

Red Pink

Orange Green

Blue Purple



Super Flower Fan Master SF-609 Page: 4
Conclusion

The SF-609 may not be the newest kid on the block when it comes to fan controllers (it's actually been around for 5 years), but it has certainly stood the test of time. The ability to change the fascia and screen colour ensures that the SF-609 will be a piece of hardware that you can install in all of your future PC's regardless of the case colour.

The biggest selling point for me however,  has to be the units ability to power four high output fans of up to 1.5a each. An impressive specification not met by many other modern fan controllers.

Couple these great features with a very reasonable price tag of $34.95 USD over at Sidewinder Computers and it's extremely hard to find fault with this great piece of kit.


Pro's
• Able to power four fans rated up to 1.5amps each.
• 5 coloured fascia's to suit all PC cases.
• Sturdy construction.
• 6 different light settings.

Con's
• Transistors on PCB get very hot during extended use.

Recommended Award

A big thank you to Sidewinder Computers for providing the SF-609 and Delta fans for this review.

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