Lamptron FC-2 Rheobus Fan Controller

Packaging & Appearance

Packaging & Appearance

The Lamptron FC-2 is presented in a rather compact single walled cardboard box with a windowed panel that allows the Aluminium front plate and knobs to be displayed in their full glory. The primary colours of the packaging are black and an electric blue which is quite appealing and will undoubtedly make the device stand out on retailers shelves.

lamptron FC-2 Box Front Lamptron FC-2 Box Front

Lamptron FC-2 Box Side Lamptron FC-2 Box Side

While the front and top of the packaging don't really give away many details about the FC-2, the sides of the packaging have been kitted out with feature and specification lists in 'English' language only. Interestingly a blurb not found on Lamptron's website has been placed on the side of the box:

Lamptron Innovative Fan Controller is a working result of Lamptron end users and Lamptron Design Group to address the needs of enthusiasts that need to controlled more than four fans and fans of high wattage like Delta fans. The Control Panel is made from CNC milled from blocks of 3/4" thick solid aluminium. Each Channel supports 45 watts, significantly more than others. The knobs are all LED lit a blue colour. This is the unit to get if you want smooth speed control and you will be adjusting your fans often. The Lamptron FC2 is meant for the power user who wants the best!

Not really anything that we didn't know already, but the specific reference to Delta fans by Lamptron is something that will be of importance to us in the testing phase of the review.

Lamptron FC-2 Unboxed Lamptron FC-2 Unboxed

Opening up the box you are presented with the FC-2 sandwiched in between two styrofoam cutouts. This should be enough to ensure the the fan controller does not get damaged during shipping, but it would have been nice to see the controller its self placed inside a plastic bag to prevent any moisture from damaging the components. Also included in the box are six 3-Pin fan extension leads and a pack of screws. The bare minimum by all accounts.

Lamptron FC-2 Front Lamptron FC-2 Front On

Lamptron FC-2 Side Lamptron FC-2 Up-Close

It's very rare that something as basic as a fan controller could get us all excited, but as we're sure many enthusiasts will agree: the FC-2 looks awesome. It may not have all the bells, whistles and fancy LED readouts found on some of the digital fan controllers, but the simplicity of FC-2's design and that huge lump of milled aluminium at the front just goes to show that not everything exported from China is cheap and tacky.

Lamptron FC-2 Rear Lamptron FC-2 PWM

Lamptron FC-2 Rheobus Lamptron FC-2 Power

Around the back of the FC-2 we can see just how Lamptron have managed to tame those high powered fans. A series of six mosfets are lined up at the rear of the PCB, each with its own small black aluminium heatsink attached. The rheobus controls at the front of the device are merely an interface to the mosfets as they themselves are far too small to take any real current.

As there is potential for a total of 270w to be passing through the FC-2, Lamptron have used binding posts to connect two heavy gauge wires to the molex connector. Considering that the power passing through this connector is well above the consumption of some high-end graphics cards, it will certainly be interesting to see if a standard molex can cope.

Lamptron FC-2 Front LED Lamptron FC-2 Dark Shot

There is however a chink in the FC-2's armor. Switching off the lights and viewing the controller in complete darkness we can see that the outer edges of the fan controller are not lit. Initially we thought this was down to a faulty unit, but after further investigation and indeed re-reading Lamptron's specifications, the FC-2 only features 10 LED's for the 6 control knobs which leaves the outer two knobs only half illuminated. Poor show Lamptron!
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Most Recent Comments

08-12-2008, 15:21:59

JN
Looking for a fan controller capable of taming even the most powerful fans? We check out the 45w per channel Lamptron FC-2.

http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/artic...203617541s.jpg

Lamptron FC-2 Rheobus Fan Controller

08-12-2008, 15:23:45

Luigi
This is a very nice read, such a big shame it didnt live up to its claimes.. I would love to have my pc kitted out with deltas quietly purring, then jam them up and suck my room in!

08-12-2008, 15:43:57

monkey7
Good, easy to read review, thanks

Shame its performance sucks though. I was looking around for a good fancontroller, but this one is certainly not on the shortlist.

08-12-2008, 15:52:02

Bungral
Audio link on page 3 is dead mate...

Shame the controller doesn't really work... Would be nice to be able to tame Deltas down to a half reasonable level.

08-12-2008, 16:23:53

JN
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Bungral'
Audio link on page 3 is dead mate...

Shame the controller doesn't really work... Would be nice to be able to tame Deltas down to a half reasonable level.
Well spotted. Will fix that in a sec.

Yeah I'm mass disappointed to. I really wanted to use a pair of these in my next build, but as I've got a box full of about 20 Delta's here which sound absolutely awful when hooked up to this controller, it gets a big fat thumbs down from me.

08-12-2008, 17:19:45

Bungral
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Jim'
Well spotted. Will fix that in a sec.

Yeah I'm mass disappointed to. I really wanted to use a pair of these in my next build, but as I've got a box full of about 20 Delta's here which sound absolutely awful when hooked up to this controller, it gets a big fat thumbs down from me.
Is there any voltage you reckon that Deltas will still run but be near silent?

If so then someone coming out with a seriously good fan controller would be well worth the effort. Whack them up to hurricane for benching and then back down for normal use.

If you come across a good controller for Deltas, let me know and I'll buy some fans off ya

08-12-2008, 17:30:37

JN
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Bungral'
Is there any voltage you reckon that Deltas will still run but be near silent?

If so then someone coming out with a seriously good fan controller would be well worth the effort. Whack them up to hurricane for benching and then back down for normal use.

If you come across a good controller for Deltas, let me know and I'll buy some fans off ya
I wouldnt say 'near silent' but they can push a bit more air than your average fan with the same level of noise when turned down a tad. It does depend what ones you get though. It seems like some are just designed to be noisy. Personally i like the tri-blade ones.

The only things I've found that really work for adjusting the Delta's speeds is 50w rheostats. The only problem is they are pretty large (each one is about the size of your thumb and forefinger made into an O) and they aint pretty either:

http://rocky.digikey.com/weblib/Ohmi...S%20SERIES.jpg

09-12-2008, 08:07:34

Rastalovich
This is my issue with mobos not adopting the control of fans.

If ur controlling fans outside of regular pc use, for ur rad etc, then fair enough. But if u need one of these to control ram, pwm, nb, drive, etc fans, then frankly ur mobo is pos, imo ofc.

Tack on the cost of the controller and get a decent mobo

09-12-2008, 11:31:57

Skiddywinks
I'm really disappointed, it has to be said. I am looking for a simple fan controller to stick my push-pull configuration on (whether it be six individual rheobuses or whether I have to daisy chain them on to less doesn't really bother me), and with the high amperage of this I figured it would be perfect for either situation.

Looks like they really dropped the ball with this one.

09-12-2008, 11:43:01

Luigi
Have you looked at the Mcubed t-balancer?? If you dont need all of those fans Ill buy a couple off you and try them out

09-12-2008, 13:28:37

Bungral
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Skiddywinks'
I'm really disappointed, it has to be said. I am looking for a simple fan controller to stick my push-pull configuration on (whether it be six individual rheobuses or whether I have to daisy chain them on to less doesn't really bother me), and with the high amperage of this I figured it would be perfect for either situation.

Looks like they really dropped the ball with this one.
For 6 normal fans and a simplistic classy look then this is always a contender.

15-12-2008, 08:28:42

JN
Conclusion page updated guys with a response from Lamptron.

Unfortunately it doesn't look like the issues we experienced while using Delta's on the FC-2 are going to be resolved as it is being put down to the use of PWM for controlling fan speed.

15-12-2008, 20:28:06

shadowfish
The FC2 can be adjusted from 0-12V including all the fans. Cause the different starting Voltage of fan has different revolving angle. So the starting Voltage lower and the revolve angle will be small.
Reply
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