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-- A Guide To Peltiers
-- 1.13.2001
-- By: Winterstick

Warning:  Using a peltier can be dangerous if done incorrectly, and I will not be held responsible if you damage anything in your computer.

   Before we show you how to add one of these bad boys into your system, we are going to educate you about peltiers.  How they work, how to choose the right size, and what you need to have to have one running on your system, along with some other goodies…

   The Theory Behind Peltiers:

   French physicist Jean-Charles-Athanase Peltier first discovered the peltier effect in 1834, when he connect two pieces of copper wire to a length of bismuth wire to a battery.  Peltier noticed were the current passed from the copper to the bismuth the temperature increased, and were the current passed from the bismuth to the copper the temperature decreased.  This effect is called the Peltier effect and is the principle that all peltiers work off of…  This effect is amplified when two different semi-conductors are used. 

    How a peltier works:

   It is simply a “heat pump” that pumps heat from one side to the other when an electrical current is applied to the peltier.  A peltier itself is made up of paired up p- and n- type semi-conductors wired in series that are sandwiched between two ceramic plates.  As an electrical current is applied to the peltier one side gets very cold while the other side gets extremely hot.  It is not uncommon that there will be a 65şC difference between the hot side and the cold side of any peltier without a load.

   So what does this mean for us overclockers?  Well it means you can finally go after that gigahertz machine that you always wanted to have.  It also means a lower operating temp, which also increases your CPU’s life span so you can have your gigahertz machine longer.

   How to Power a Peltier:

   Not only will your chip now consume more power when you overclock it but now you have a peltier leaching off your power supply as well.  Chances are that your peltier will consume 60+ watts (depending on how big your peltier is, take the wattage rating of the peltier is how much power you peltier consumes.) out of you power supply so if you have a 300 watt power supply, your out of luck as soon as you kick on your peltier you will probably experiencing brown outs.  “So no problem” you say “I’ll just slap in an old AT power supply that I just have lying around”.  Sorry  that won’t work either.  Peltiers require a power supply that can supply at least 14 amps at 12 volts to work efficiently; most AT power supplies won’t supply the required 14 amps at 12 volts.  So what do you have to do now?  Get another power supply, there a lot for sale on the internet that will provide the need 14+ amps at 12 volts, hell I’ve seen an AT power supply that can supply a whopping 24 amps at 12 volts!!!

   Note: I am currently powering a 72 watt peltier with my 400 watt power supply that produces 15 amps @ 12volts with no problems what so ever.

So how big of a peltier do I need? >

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