The Lab

Various prototypes, DIY and other fun hardware mods. 

[smarter desktop cooler parts]

[smarter desktop cooler parts]

A DIY Smart (& cheap) Desktop Cooler

This desktop cooler utilizes an inexpensive mini Arduino-compatible ATmega 328P microcontroller connected to one of the desktop PSU's 5V rails, one or more temperature & humidity sensors, one or more relay-connected fans and a set of large RGB LEDs. Having multiple temperature sensors and LED's allows us to "color code" regions of the chassis by temperature and trigger fans in those zones as needed. Connecting the prototype pictured here is an improvised network cable (not recommended).

How it works: The Arduino board is programmed to switch the fans on at a pre-set temperature with optional logging. It can even be programmed to shutdown the computer. The RGB LED's light up your window-fitted tower, providing an uber "cool" yet meaningful temperature indicator by changing colors with increasing heat i.e. green to red from 20 to 60C.

Wiring diagram and Arduino code coming shortly.

Parts  List:
  • 1x Arduino compatible ATmega 328P
  • 1-3x DPDT electro-mechanical relay
  • 1-3x DHT11 temperature probes
  • 1-3x Large (5mm) RGB LEDs w/ 200 ohm resistors
  • 1-3x 5V or 12V computer fan
  • 1x Breadboard OR prototyping PCB
  • 1x Project box
  • Spool of electric cable (approx 3m)