Richard Jones' Log: Shuttle HTPC woes, redux

Fri, 09 Jun 2006

The Shuttle PC I've had for a while now has recently taken another turn for the worse. Some readers may remember that a while back one of the fan controllers decided to stop working. To "fix" that I switched to the second fan controller. Now that one has stopped working too. Sometimes it gets stuck on "mid" speed (which is pretty noisy) and sometimes it just doesn't go at all.

In desperation, I pulled the case off and plugged the fan back into the primary fan controller. That worked (even controlling fan speed) for about a day until it cut off again. Switching back to the second controller has made it usable for another week (but stuck at the noisy "mid" speed).

I've now upgraded the BIOS to the latest version (even though the BIOS change notes mention nothing about fan control). No change.

I'm pretty annoyed at all this. Shuttles are not a cheap system. The rest of the components in the system are working fine - it's just that I can't keep it cool, even by forcing the fan to stay at a high speed.

I've done some poking around on the net and this isn't an isolated experience.

I'll definitely actively recommend against a Shuttle system to anyone I know in the future.

Next up I'm going to investigate hard-wiring in a potentiometer off of the power supply to manually control the fan speed.

Update: I've posted my "solution".

Comment by Matt Hargreaves on Wed, 16 Aug 2006

Just to let you know that I have had a smillar problem.
System - Shuttle SB61G2.

The fan stops working causing it to run too hot and switch off.

My solution was to replace the large fan with a 3rd party cheapo one, that is powered by a standard IDE-drive-power-plug. I thought it was a fan issue, and discovered later that it was the motherboard.

The thing is, of course, that it is hard to find a fan that is as thin as the shuttle one. I managed to fit the slightly larger one by bending some of the metal brackets that hold the fan.

I did notice that either the +5V or -5V rail is faulty. I'm reading something like +4.9V, -0.5V

All has been sweet for about 3 more months, but now I have a new problem. The system reboots automatically - it's as if I pressed the reset button.

I'm gonna but a replacement power supply - a PC50. Not sure if my current one is the PC50 (300W) of the PC40 (250W).

Fingers crossed.

Comment by Jacob on Tue, 22 Aug 2006

I have the same problem.... Have you solved it???

//Jacob

Comment by Richard Jones on Tue, 22 Aug 2006

Yes.

Comment by mose on Wed, 26 Sep 2007

Hello,
I also have this sort of problems with my shuttle sb61g2 v3. Bought it 3 years ago,had no problems for 1 year, then the main CPU fan stopped working. Had to plug the fan into fan3 socket. This worked for me. Last week this one stopped too. (got 100C and the XPC switched off automatically) Now the main fan is plugged into chipset fan socket. (my case is open an chipset is cooled by a heatsink only) The CPU fan works but not all the time (stops for minutes,then restarts,etc), even with XPC Tools installed an Chipset fan at max!
I will never buy a shuttle HTPC again!
Now I'm seaching for some fan control board,...any ideas?
Cheers!