The 8 Best Fan Controllers for PC in 2021 – Guide & Reviews
A PC fan controller is an essential device that allows you to connect and control every single case fan within your setup. This way, you can provide your PC with an adequate level of cooling at any given moment as per the demands of your PC.
To help you find the best fan controller for your needs and budget, the DiamondLobby team and I have taken on the challenge to conduct all of the research for you and present you with our findings in the form of a guide and review.
The selection process was fairly straightforward. First, we conducted some community research to find the needs and pain points of the user when it comes to PC fan controllers. After that, using our findings, we created criteria, which helped us filter through all the products that we came across and find the best ones for our final selection.
We found that the average PC fan controlling device could navigate between 4 and 6 case fans at any given moment, was easy to install and could easily fit within the large majority of PC cases. The average fan controller also featured a screen where you could see the current speed of your fans and could be controlled both manually and automatically.
With all that in mind, let’s take a more detailed look at the best PC fan controllers on the market today and help you find the right one for your PC.
Before we conducted any kind of research on the topic, the DiamondLobby team and I held a meeting to find the best way to approach this guide in order to make it as informative as possible, while being 100% honest and transparent with our findings.
We came to the conclusion that in order to find the best PC fan controllers, we first had to understand what the consumers want in such a device. Using our findings, we formed criteria, which helped us to find the best fan controllers that you will be able to read more about today.
Picking a handful of the best fan controllers on the market amongst hundreds of great contenders wasn’t an easy job. The team at DiamondLobby and I considered three main points during the selection process, which allowed us to be able to present you with the best fan-controlling devices that you will see in this guide and review today.
The three aspects included compatibility, connectivity, and way of control. Read more to find out why each one is an important part of a fan controller and how it helped us pick the devices you will see today.
Most PC case fans either use a 3-pin or a 4-pin connector, both of which are widely supported by a lot of modern fan controllers. 3-pin fans often run at maximum RPM since they only have connections for powering the motors, while the 4-pins are capable of PWM control. This depends on your motherboard or temperature sensor to determine at what speed to run your fans at.
Thus, we have provided you with a wide range of devices that would suit most case fans out there on the market.
The standard gaming PC hosts anywhere from three to six fans. Thus, during our reseach, it was important to find the best fan controllers that offered flexibility as to how many fans you can plug into the controller.
Besides that, we ensured to find a decent amount of gaming PC fans that power up from a dedicated source like a SATA cable rather than the motherboard itself, which is not only going to promote consistency but will also offer a safer mode of operation.
The best fan controlling devices can manage the RPM or spin speed of your case fans manually, automatically, or both. Both have their benefits and how you choose to go about cooling your PC is a personal preference.
Thus, we have made a broad selection of PC case fan controlling devices that can guide your fans’ RPM manually, automatically, or a fine combination of both.
If you are on a budget and are on the lookout for an affordable PC case fan controller, the Electop Controller is an excellent choice.
The price at the time of writing was $11.99.
This PC case fan controller really is as simple as it can get. It doesn’t feature any sort of case or cover like the rest of the fans within our selection, which of course, doesn’t have any impact on the performance. On the positive side of things, it is much cheaper than some of the products in our selection, again, mainly because of its simple and to the point design.
In terms of connectivity, this product can handle up to 10 different case fans (both 3-pin or 4-pin connector type), which is more than the standard gaming PC can even accommodate.
Unfortunately, none of the fans connected to this controller can be manually adjusted. Your PC system will decide at what speed your fans will operate, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, especially if you aren’t too tech-savvy.
Since this fan cannot be manually controlled, you are probably thinking about how the entire process will work. This device features 1 red and 9 black ports. The fan connected to the red port will be the one controlled by the system, while all remaining fans connected to the remaining 9 black ports will quite simply copy the speed of the red port.
It may not be ideal for some; however, this affordable solution can easily sync up all of your fans to work together with your operating system to keep your PC nice and cool.
Looking for the best PC fan controller? After concluding our in-depth research, we can confidently recommend you the Corsair iCUE Commander PRO as our top pick.
The price at the time of writing was $58.99.
The Corsair iCUE Commander PRO can turn the typical PC case into a smart one by using the Corsair iCUE software, which allows this device to control up to 6 different fans and two RGB lighting channels.
This device can power up to 6 PWM (4-pin) or DC (3-pin) case fans with PMW or voltage control. While most controllers offer a case fan RPM range, this easy-to-install controller hosts the ability to turn your fans’ RPM to zero for complete silence.
If you have other Corsair products, you’d know how awesome their RGB technology is. With this controller fan, you will have access to two different RGB lighting channels supplied by the software, where you can customize the RGB lighting, monitor your CPU and coolant temperatures, and adjust the fan speeds, all from a single intuitive interface.
On top of that, you can set up custom fan curves and RGB profiles that automatically change the speed of the fan and RGB lights solely based on your systems’ temperature.
One of the coolest features that this product makes use of is the four temperature sensors, which can be strategically positioned around your PC case to accurately monitor the temperature of your system in different areas through the iCUE software.
Looking for a comprehensive controller fan that can manage the temperature of your gaming PC? Check out the Thermaltake Commander F6, which can comfortably handle up to 6 case fans at any given moment.
The price at the time of writing was $60.00.
The Thermaltake Commander F6 features a pretty standard knob overlay with an integrated RGB LCD display, which you can customize and have your current fan data and readouts displayed in 16 different colors.
The LCD screen automatically displays the current RPM of all of your connected case fans so that you know what level of performance each fan is operating at at any given moment.
One of the coolest features that this fan controller hosts is that each fan channel has a temperature sensor that can be placed anywhere inside your PC.
This will allow you to monitor your PC’s temperature in multiple key areas and have the fan automatically react depending on the temperature at any given moment.
This controller fan also comes with overvoltage, under-voltage, and short-circuit protection to keep your gaming PC and its vital components safe from damage should your power supply malfunction.
Other Great PC Fan Controllers
Didn’t quite find the device that you were looking for from our recommendations above? Let’s take a look at 5 other great fan controllers that would make an awesome addition to just about any gaming setup.
The Kingwin FPX-001 is another very affordable manual PC case fan controller perfect for someone who has more case fans without enough internal connections.
The price at the time of writing was $15.21.
The Kingwin FPX-001 hosts four LED-powered turn knobs, which can individually control the RPM speed and noise of up to four different case fans.
The flexible case compatibility and easy-to-install design also make this device a popular option on the market. It can easily fit within a single standard 3.5″ PC case front bay slot for easy access and fan speed adjustability.
If you happen to not have a case with front bay slots like myself but still want to make use of this device, you will need to be creative to not make it look ugly or out of place. Remember that this device only allows you to control your fans manually so hiding it inside your case is not an option.
Some awesome cases that this device can fit into include the Corsair Obsidian 750d and the Corsair 780T Graphite Series.
After a compact fan controller that you can tuck away in your PC case and forget about it? Check out the awesome and affordable SilverStone CPF04.
The price at the time of writing was $19.96.
The 8-Port Silverstone PWM fan controller hub is designed to allow the control of up to 8 PWM fans via a single motherboard header. This fan controller feeds from the conventional 12V SATA connector from your power supply to provide enough power for up to 8 individual fans.
In the meantime, the PWM control is taken care of by the dedicated motherboard connector to supply the needed signal and ramp up or slow down the fan RPM speeds accordingly.
While the SilverStone fan controller supports the attachment of both 3-pin and 4-pin fans, only the 4-pin variants can be controlled, leaving the 3-pins to run at maximum RPM at all times. Thus, if you wish to be able to turn them down to minimize the noise, ensure that you have 4-pin fans so that you can control their RPM speed.
Moreover, the Silverstone 8-Port PWM fan controller is also equipped with a 2200μF capacitor that filters the power supply going to each fan for that clean, stable voltage that provides consistent airflow throughout your PC case.
One thing that makes the Silverstone 8-Port PWM fan controller a great device to have is that it provides a convenient control process that you can leave entirely to your motherboard’s fan control software.
This device’s compact and minimalistic design allows it to easily be hidden away in just about any small space inside your gaming PC case.
After a super flexible fan controller? Check out the Phanteks PH-PWHUB_02, which can not only host 3 and 4-pin fan connectors at the same time but can also be used to control your fans both manually and automatically.
The price at the time of writing was $43.74.
The universal Phanteks fan controller is capable of accommodating up to 8 fans, with three ports dedicated for 3-pin fans and the rest making room for 4-pin fan connectors. This product is perfect, especially if you have a mix of fans that are powered via different connector types.
When it comes to controlling your PC case fans, you can either do that automatically via the motherboard PWM control or via the handy remote module. Should you decide to go for the automatic mode of control, you can set the fan’s RPM to a corresponding temperature, along with PWM readouts to keep track of fan speed.
On the flip side, if you go for the remote module, you will be able to pick from three different speed presets, which include a silent mode, balanced mode, and performance mode. As you could imagine, if you were doing light work, going for the less noisy mode is ideal, and while gaming, you can easily switch it up to the performance mode.
This controller is powered through a dedicated 12V SATA connector that will generate power directly from your power supply (PSU), so you don’t need to worry about not having enough power for all 8 fans should you be using your motherboard.
In terms of installation, this fan can be conveniently installed inside your gaming PC via a magnetic housing that automatically sticks to any metal panel, so you won’t have to deal with the mess that adhesive solutions usually leave behind.
In case this device is a little too big for you, you can also check out the smaller variant, the Phanteks PH-CTHUB_DRGB_01.
The DEEPCOOL FH-10 is another affordable solution for gamers who own full tower systems that can hold a ton of cooling case fans.
The price at the time of writing was $16.99.
The DEEPCOOL FH-10 integrated fan hub controller hosts a total of 10 fan ports, which can accommodate up to 10 case fans simultaneously. It is the perfect fan controlling solution for gaming PCs who use a full tower case that may have a ton of fans that work together to cool the large system.
The PC case fan controller can operate with both 3-pin and 4-pin fans thanks to its port configuration. Still, only the 4-pin fans can take advantage of the PWM functionality to allow you to control the fan RPM speed automatically.
Should you decide to use 3-pin fans, they will run at full RPM at all times. Otherwise, you will get full control of the connected 4-pin fans via a synchronized duty cycle.
This product is powered by a 12V SATA connection that is directly plugged into the power supply, which will ensure that the fans get enough power to provide consistent performance while promoting safety at the same time. This will prevent any cases of overvoltage, undervoltage, or short-circuit issues at any given moment.
As far as the PWM signal is concerned, the controller has a dedicated motherboard connector that you can hook up to your system or CPU fan header and do all RPM control from there. This allows the case fans to ramp up or slow down in accordance with the temperature threshold that you have set in place.
The installation process is also fairly simple as the DEEPCOOL FH-10 has a pretty low-profile build that can easily be screwed onto the back of your motherboard tray or attached by making use of a double-sided adhesive.
Zerone Fan Controller
And finally, we’d like to present you with one of our top favorites, the Zerone Fan Controller, which the ideal all-in-one cooling hub solution for keeping your PC temperature in a safe range at all times.
The price at the time of writing was $42.29.
This fan controller by Zerona is capable of controlling up to 5 fans. One of the great things about this device is that you have the flexibility to decide whether you want to control your fans manually or leave it up to your system to automatically adjust their RPM as per the demands of your gaming PC.
Another awesome extra is the big LCD screen, which will display your system’s temperature, the current RPM speed of your fans, the state of your hard disk, as well as alert you should the temperature of your PC is too high or if one of your fans isn’t working.
Furthermore, you can manually set up the alarm temperature range of your PC system from as low as 40 to as high as 90 should you have more temperature-sensitive parts.
Measuring at 5.61″ × 3.03″ × 1.69″, this device can easily be fitted within most PC cases’ front bay slots.
What is a Fan Controller?
A fan controller is a device that you can plug your gaming PC’s case fans into. Thanks to the multiple points of connection, you can effectively manage your fan’s performance. This can be done either automatically or manually by setting thresholds or activating preset buttons that supply the fans with the necessary voltage for the required speed.
By using a controller for your fans, you can conveniently control all of your case fans in one place – benefitting from lower overall fan noise and optimized airflow depending on your PC’s internal temperature.
Why Do You Need A Case Fan Controller?
It’s imperative to keep your gaming PC at an optimal temperature at all times, especially when you are gaming. This will prevent your parts from damaging or failing prematurely.
Now, you may be asking yourself where the fan controller comes in since the fans operate anyway when your PC is on? The real answer is that fan controllers can be used to allow you complete control over your fans.
This way, if you are doing less performance-driven tasks such as editing documents or browsing images, you can turn the fans to an appropriate level. On the flip side, if you are gaming, your fans will be required to work extra hard to cool down your PC.
Having full control of your fans allows you the flexibility to decide when your fans should be working at full throttle and when they shouldn’t. This will not only save you move from electricity but will also reduce the noise that your PC produces when the fans are not necessary.
Picking the Right Fan Controller for Your PC
Struggling with picking the right controller fan for your PC? It’s completely normal to be unsure, especially when investing your money in such a device.
Our goal with this guide is to not only present you with the best PC fan controllers but also help you find the right one that best matches your individual needs and budget.
To do that, below we will present you with a few different scenarios alongside our top recommendation for each scenario. Thus, if you relate to any of the scenarios below, you will be directly introduced to the best device for your needs.
Scenario 1: You are on a budget and are looking for the cheapest fan controlling device that is reliable and will still do the job. You don’t particularly care about any customizations and are happy for you system to make adequate decisions as to when your fans should be powered up and when they should remain idle.
In this case, we would recommend you the Electop Controller.
Scenario 2: You are looking for a compact fan controlling system that can be installed directly into one of the frontal bays of your PC case. You’d like your fan controller to have rotation knobs, which allow you to individually adjust the RPM speed of each fan in your case. Ideally, you’d like to keep your spending to a minimum.
In this case, we would highly recommend you one of our favorite picks, the Kingwin FPX-001.
Scenario 3: You have a decent enough budget and are looking for a PC case fan controlling device that you can customize to your liking. Ideally, you’d like it to have individual fan knobs to manually make changes to your fan speed on the go and a display that can show you the current temperature of your PC and RPM readings of all your case fans.
In this case, we would highly recommend you our runner up pick, the Thermaltake Commander F6.
If you have a combination of 3-pin and 4-pin fans within your gaming PC and you don’t want to spend money on changing around your fans so they all use the same connector type, we’d highly recommend you a fan controller that can accommodate both at the same time. One great fan cooler for this case is the Phanteks PH-PWHUB_02.
The higher-priced fan controllers offer more flexibility in terms of fan compatibility as well as fan RPM-adjusting settings.
You can find fan controlling devices that can be fitted into any of your front bays, attached to the back of your motherboard, or hidden away in your PC case.
Fan controllers that are powered by your power supply (PSU) are more consistent in supplying your fans with the power that they need as compared to those that rely on the motherboard.