Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
Fan controllers are nothing new. At some time, we have all had knobs, sliders, or switches to set the fan control to one or many fans in a chassis, but what NZXT did is a bit over the top. Starting off with what is essentially the GRID+ fan hub from a year or so back, and is offering it now in a digital form. So, not only can you hide the fan controller and not have it protruding from the chassis, but it also offers a finite control with more ease that any solution we have seen to date.
Taking a couple of extra controller chips and soldering them onto the back of the inner PCB allows the PC to gain control of the device via a USB 2.0 port on the motherboard. Finite control over each channel is offered via the NZXT CAM software, which we got friendly with when we reviewed the latest Kraken AIO coolers. It turns what used to be just a fan hub into an actual fan controller this time, all in the same pretty little package we know from the original GRID+.
Today, we are about to get up close and personal with the GRID+ V2 digital fan controller. We will be going over this controller with a fine-toothed comb, and diving deep into the software with a multimeter in hand to see just what settings do what. We'll find where the maximum and minimum voltages lie and explain why a device such as this is the way to go, especially considering that ODD bays in cases are going the way of the Dodo bird. In that instance, and in any chassis really, NZXT is offering a much easier to use and much cleaner and hidden option to the utmost in fan control.
The GRID+ V2 is also found looking up the AC-GRDP2-M1 model number to be certain you are getting the digital version. This device is only 73mm square and is only 18mm in thickness, so it can go almost anywhere, even behind most motherboard trays. The casing that houses the PCB is made of black plastic, and you will need to download the CAM software, and potentially a USB driver as well if Windows does not pick it up.
Along with the fan controller, you also get some extra goodies in the box. There are five zip ties to help manage the fan wiring, and to help even more, two Y-splitter cables with a 3-pin and 4-pin are included on each of them. NZXT also ships a Molex to phone jack power adapter and a Micro-USB to native USB 2.0 cable included too. They also make sure the mounting is not an issue with some 3M Dual Lock pads they include to hold this 94.2-gram device in place.
We also see that this controller offers a total of six channels. The six channels overall are rated to handle 30 Watts in total. While it may not seem like much, when most case and AIO fans draw less than a Watt each, you start to get a sense of just how many fans you can use. The last thing any potential customer would want to know is that this device also carries a two-year warranty.
Finding these controllers is pretty easy at the moment, but only a few locations seem to have the GRID+ V2. The NZXT Armory Store has them of course at the $29.99 MSRP, and without placing an order, we have no idea if there is shipping involved in that purchase. However, you can go to Amazon right now and find these in stock there for the same price. And it is even offered with free shipping to boot (edit: at the time of editing, the price increased to $36). Considering it costs near that to get a good looking, yet still very basic bay fan controller, when you see just what all this fan controller offers, you too will see the value in this deal.
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