Lamps Electronics Cold Cathode Fan Grill review
Everyone who regularly visits Hardware/Case modding sites will have already seen a couple of Cold Cathodes, and most of you will have one or maybe even more in your cases. Cold Cathode fan grills also aren't new anymore, they already exist for a few months. But now Lamps Electronics comes with a much cooler looking version of the Cold Cathode Fan, they bring us the Cold Cathode Fan grill with 2 CCFL's in it!
This clear box arrived a few days ago. In it, I found the Cold Cathode fan grill with the inverter, a Velcro, and 4 screws. The back of the package learned me that Lamps Electronics has a lot more nice-looking Cold Cathode Fan Grills, they are available in white, purple, red, blue, UV, yellow, green, red and blue, blue and green, green and red, and some more. The version I got was Green and Red.
Now lets have a look on its specifications
Dimensions : 84mm x 4mm-34mm x 4mm
Tube Voltage: 180V-1000V
Average Brightness : 29000cd/m²
Average life : 30 000 hours.
Here we have the CCFL Fan Grill and the inverter. Unlike some other Cold Cathode Fan Grills kits this one does not include a fan.
The two CCFL tubes are exactly the same ones like Lamps Electronics his normal Cold Cathodes. This means that they are very bright! The ones from Lamps Electronics are the brightest that I have ever seen by the way. The tubes are housed in a clear acrylic housing, but you're able to take them out. One of the things I noticed was that the 4 wires from the two round Cold Cathodes generate a lot of cable mess, maybe they should give them some sort of cable sleeving, or you could fix this with some tape, heatshrink or cable sleeving.
Here we have the inverter, it provides power to two Cold Cathodes, and its exactly the same like the ones they use with normal Cold Cathodes. It's semi-transparant so you can easely see the PCB board with all his components on it, also it has six airholes on top to allow the hot air to flow away. The inverter has a passtrough Molex-connector and has a rocket switch so you can turn it on or off.
In this bag I found a Velcro to mount the inverter in your case, and 4 screws with stand-offs.
Now I plugged the inverter into one of my Molex connectors and turned this thing on! The lamps are very bright. Even in daylight, they are fucking bright! I got the green/red version of their Round CCFL Fan grills like you can see in the photos. One thing that disappointed me, however, the 'red' doesn't look red, it looks more like pink/orange. This is a problem I noticed with a lot of Cold Cathodes, however..
Now let's move on to the fun part! I mounted the Cold Cathode Fan Grill on a LED fan. I did encounter some little mounting problems however, I'm using the fan in my Antec PlusView 1000 AMG case, and this case has some handy 80mm fan holders. The only way I could get the fan with CCFL Fan Grill into an Antec Fan holder was by placing a little round screw on both sides of the fan grill, and not the whole through the fan like Lamps Electronics intends you to do with their screws. Another solution would be to use some shorter screws.
These were some shots with the Cold Cathode Fan Grill mounted on the top LED Fan in my case, lets turn this thing on!
Damn these thing are BRIGHT! The Cold Cathode Fan Grill simply drowns the TriLight LED fan with his very bright light!
In these two pictures, you can see that it's very capable of lighting up your whole case as good as a normal Cold Cathode, it even says 'Halo' to my wall through the fan grills on the back ;) Very nice I'm amazed by the amount of light that this Cold Cathode Fan Grill gives me!
This product surprised me a little! I really didn't expect that this product could light up my case that much. Maybe these Cold Cathodes Fan Grills are something for you if you don't know where to put or don't have a place for a long 30cm Cold Cathode in your case! Just attach it to one of your fans on the back of your case and I'm sure your case will be lighted up pretty good. The Cold Cathodes from this kit generates some heat, they aren't really 'cold', but with the fan running you'll barely notice this. I didn't found any serious flaws with this product, only some little things like that it doesn't really fit for 100% in an Antec style fan holder with the provided mounting tools, and that the four wires from the two round Cold Cathodes generate some cable mess, maybe they should give these a nice cable sleeving, or you could do it yourself of course.
The Cold Cathode Fan Grills from Lamps Electronics are avaible from SVC and from Xoxide. Prices vary from $9.95 to $12.99
The Good Stuff
- Very bright
- It's able to light up your whole case
- Looks very cool
- Comes with a clear inverter (looks a bit less boring than a black or blue one)
- Avaible in many different colors and color combinations.
The Bad Stuff
- You can encounter some little mounting problems
- The red color isn't very intense it looks more like pink/orange.
Just two little shots from Lamps Electronics that show you some of their different Cold Cathode Fan Grills.
Added: April 30th 2003
Product reviewed: Lamps Electronics Cold Cathode Fan Grill