XPS Desktops

Last reply by 04-12-2021 Unsolved
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XPS 8940, Better Thermals

According to the article on Engadget (Dell XPS Desktop) the new XPS 8940 is going to have better air flow.

"In designing the XPS Desktop, Dell says its goal was to maximize performance and airflow. The computer intakes air through the front and side of its enclosure before expelling it out the back. At no point does the case recirculate air, according to Dell."

This case looks exactly like the Inspiron G5 which from what I understand doesn't have good air flow. Any thoughts on how this is going to be better?

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Also from that Article:-


"The new model affords the same amount of expandability and customization as the previous XPS Desktop but comes in a smaller, more attractive package. The redesigned enclosure features a 19L volume compared to the previous model's 23.7L capacity."


In other words, it is going to be significantly SMALLER than the existing over-cramped XPS8930!!


Don't think that I'll be in the queue to buy one!!


EDIT to add:-


Also from that Article:-

"Dell plans to give consumers the option to configure the computer with either a 360W or 500W power supply."


Given that most Users think that the XPS8930 has a significantly under-rated PSU at 460W, I'm puzzled by Dell's apparent determination to create more difficulties!!


(I detest "CAPTCHA - Photos". The Photos are always blurred & the questions refer to Americanisms - hence NOT always Internationally understandable!)

The G5 with its proprietary power supply max 460W is not an improvment.

Changing the logo of the G5 and calling it an 8940 is a disservice and slap in the face for dell users.


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In some ways, it is worst than the XPS 8930. At least the XPS 8930 uses a standard PSU, the XPS 8940 appears to have a proprietary PSU so the maximum is going to be 500 Watts. That is going to limit graphics card upgrades.

There appears to be only one case fan and no top case fan. The power switch, front audio, and front USB ports appear to be mounted on the motherboard. The one positive is that it now appears to have space to mount a larger CPU cooler.



The power switch appears to remain a discrete module.

The one case fan looks like a noisy blower.

The PSU is special.

I suspect we'll hear about its "better thermals" soon enough.


Not applicable

@GKDesigns    I suspect we'll hear about its "better thermals" soon enough.

As bad as this thing looks (see G5), at least it appears that they have finally recognized that the swing out PSU contraption was an abject failure (thermally speaking).

Is that an 80mm exhaust fan they are sticking on the back of the case 

Also, they seem to be pleased with the G5 6-pin system board power connector 

(click photo to embiggen)



@GKDesigns You are correct about the power button. The SD card slot is now mounted on the motherboard.


Are they limiting the PSU to only 500W because it generates less heat than the 850W PSU that's available in the XPS 8930, and now essential with the smaller case volume..?

But the XPS 8940 will have a 10th Gen CPU... 

Do people still need/use internal SD card readers? A $10 external USB3 (or USB-C) multi-format card reader does the job better...


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The new Dell XPS desktop - Less is More

... (and good enough for you) .

Yeah, many of the HP and Lenovo consumer-class desktops are looking similar inside and form-factors included. 

At Apple, you can get either a $1000 Mac-Mini or a $6000 Mac Pro ... so be happy with your Dell.

EDIT: I guess you can say the XPS desktop is still a fancy-looking pre-made PC with a warranty and support ... like always. Technology has made it more efficient (smaller, goes with pretty now-days) and ...
good enough for most people.

Still not sure why power-users (I'm guessing only about 10% of consumers) are so interested, even while Dell carries Alienware and nicer business-class PCs, just a click away. 


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-Good points on the shortcomings of the case.   Questionable airflow, lack of upgradeability.


-The proprietary Dell PSU is not great for higher end GPU’s and the overall stability of the machine. 


-From this thread Inspiron G5-5090 CPU Cooler.  Info here on aftermarket coolers.


List of aftermarket coolers installed on that G5 motherboard. Does require some aftermarket parts and some cutting out the backplate with some coolers.  The problem that is encountered is the backplate on the motherboard not being changeable and having to find proper sized M3 bolts and washers for the install.  Check the thread for specifics.

The motherboard looks to use the LGA 1151 socket, at least up to the 9th gen series of CPU’s.  The new 10th gen CPU uses a LGA 1200 socket which is supposedly the same size as the 1151 socket and all LGA 1151 coolers should fit the new socket.  The backplate has risers that you need to screw the new cooler into.  Problem is not all air coolers install that way.

Lesson learned here:  Order the large cooler when you get the XPS 8940 if that’s what you want. Aftermarket installs, as usual, not that easy.  Supposedly comes standard with the 9700K variant.  So –K processors come with the big heatsink, the non-K the standard OEM Intel CPU cooler.  At least with the G5.

Users on that thread have used the following:

Hyper 212 : too big
Cooler Master Hyper H412R:  okay
Cooler Master Hyper T2: okay and no cutting using 4 M3 x 10mm bolts and washers
Shadow Rock LP:  okay
Coolermaster Hyper TX3 Evo: Okay but tight, no cutting using various M3 bolts and washers, replace push pins

-Case fan upgrades: On that thread, the biggest problem seems to be finding compatible fans to replace the rear 80mm fan that comes with the unit that does not create a startup error from the chassis fan header.  The G5 comes with a version of AWCC as well.  Hopefully a list of compatible fans appears as users start to mod the case more and replacement fans for direct swap out appear.  I have a lot of fans here but no opportunity to test them.


From my post on that thread, the starting point for cooling mods would likely be

  • Adding a front intake fan to balance airflow
  • Upgrading the rear exhaust fan to 92mm or better
  • Replacing the stock Intel cooler with an aftermarket Air CPU Cooler
  • Adding a liquid cooler AIO unit if gaming at high refresh rates and resolutions or video editing


Summary using the SATA to three fan adapter to bypass AWCC and the finicky chassis fan header:

Rear exhaust 92mm: Noctua NF-A9 FLX direct to PSU, LNA to 1050 RPM
Upper front Intake 120mm:  Noctua NF-SA12 PWM direct to PSU. LNA to 900 RPM
Lower front intake 80mm:  OEM rear fan to Chassis fan header (so no startup error)

Use CRJ SATA to 3 x 4-Pin PWM Sleeved Fan Power Adapter Cable to fix the fan speed,  Makes it easier.





-CPU AIO liquid cooling. 

Motherboard looks to use the LGA 1151 socket, at least up to the 9th gen series of CPU’s.  The new 10th gen CPU uses a LGA 1200 socket.  H60 (2018) should work on both and be plug and play,  Just need to find a way to mount the radiator/fan.  No CPU bracket in the way here but the front bezel of the XPS 8940 might have stonewalled the front upper intake position.

.  At the upper front intake position.  Corsair H60 (2018) with 25m fan or 15mm fan if the 25mm fan does not clear the RAM sticks..  The only issues I see is the upper half of the front bezel on the XPS 8940 is solid while the G5 Inspiron has decent airflow across the open bezel from top to bottom.   The solid upper part of the XPS 8940 bezel may block airflow for any fan or radiator in that upper position….why they did that who knows.

At the rear exhaust position:  Has been done, but no specifics given, just a pic..  Temps reported mid 60’s which is on par with the H60 unit.   Could be better as there isn’t a lot of grillwork at that location.   Side panel should fit, needs to be double checked that it can still be installed back onto the case.  But should fit as a 120mm fan does fit up front.

Asetek also make a SFF 92mm AIO cooler.  The 645LT which should work as well in that rear position.

Pic of H60 at rear exhaust


Pic of 120mm fan fitment at froint intake



Final Connections on the motherboard for the H60 (2018) should be


1) Corsair SP120 PWM fan to CPU Fan header
2) Tach cable not connected
3) Pump Power to SATA for 100% power
4) Rear exhaust fan connected to Chassis Fan header

-Optional to fix rear exhaust speed fan if upgrading that fan to 92mm

1) Corsair SP120 PWM fan to CPU Fan header
2) Tach cable to Chassis Fan header
3) Pump Power to SATA for 100% power
4) Upgraded rear exhaust fan fixed speed to PSU using SATA fan adapter

Optional If you get an error for the fan tach cable

1) Corsair SP120 PWM fan to CPU Fan header
2) Tach cable not connected
3) Pump Power to SATA for 100% power
4) Upgraded rear exhaust fan fixed speed to PSU using SATA fan adapter
5) OEM rear 80mm fan at  lower front intake to chassis fan header (no start up error)


Perhaps they made some changes to the G5 design in creating the XPS 8940 and some of the shortcomings are addressed.

Hope this helps as a starting point when you start getting queries about the new machine! 

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