Another way they can be useful is in a light up keyboard. If I had one, I’d probably prefer it to RGB.
My motherboard came with some lighting strips and a black PCB. It does pulsate, but it’s only one color. I do keep it on, as I can see through the cheapo case I got a bit to see if the motherboard is on.
That said, I have actually seen RGB setups that looked nice. I just couldn’t justify spending extra for a case to show them off.
Stuff by major brands usually comes with software allowing you to adjust the RGB where you can then turn it off or set the color to Black. Admittedly, it can be annoying to have to install and background run a software suite just to stop your mouse from glowing. My monitor is by Dell/Alienware and the back of it is apparently designed to illuminate a runway but I was able to turn it all to black. Ironically (and irritatingly), when the PC is sleeping, the monitor’s power button loses the command from the PC to use Black as the color and then starts pulsating different colors unless I physically turn the monitor off.
I’m not really into RGB and I have a mainly opaque side panel (it has mesh but not a window) which is on my floor under the desk* so the only one who’d be enjoying the light show is my cat and my feet. While I don’t like the rainbow vomit look, I can admit that the single color illumination can look nice in a tech sorta way. Of course, that requires your case interior to be well organized and cable managed to a T, etc and I just can’t be bothered. Or practical applications for temperatures, usage, etc can be neat but I have a keyboard with a little LCD display on it to tell me those things.
*It’s off the carpet and has decent air flow, don’t worry. Usually hearing that someone’s PC is on the floor under the desk is a tech horror story.
It is dust getting into them on the floor that is a problem at work. I can take the panel off, blow into the chassis and get a cloud of dust.
Invest $20-$25 in an electric blower and use it quarterly to clean the vent filters and give the insides a little blow-out. It should never get to be an issue if you practice semi-regular PC hygiene.
This also assumes things like actually having dust filters on your intake fans which isn’t a sure thing with a work PC.
Excellent. We couldn’t keep that up on 200 PCs.
The new, smaller PCs tend to live on the user’s desk.
The thing you have to be careful about with filters is that even though they’re more accessible and easier/faster to clean, they also create the same problems, but a lot faster. The amount of time (or dust) it would take to clog up a filter and start causing problems would be a fraction of the time it would take if it were unfiltered. Not only does most of the dust that would otherwise get caught in the filter just flow right back out, the majority of dust that does stay inside the case will likely settle somewhere inconsequential to it’s ability to shed heat.
In other words, it you generally have to pull apart your computer once every year or two and clean the dust out, you might have to clean the filter every month.
And that’s not an uncommon issue. Making something easier to clean will often cause problems if it means it has to be done more often. Especially if the end user is the ‘it should just work’ type of person. In fact, I’ve talked to HVAC pros that get regularly called out to the same business over and over because a freezer/cooler isn’t working just to find the coils are filthy. Eventually they’ll try putting a filter over the coils and telling the owner to rinse off the filter once a month or so and put it back on. Of course, they forget and the HVAC guy ends up having to come back twice as often.
I just replaced one of our computers at work and I’m trying out an all-in-one where the monitor houses the entire computer. I’m interested to see how long it holds up with no fan and no easy or obvious way to get in there and clean out the dust. I have no idea if that’s something that’s going to start being a problem in a few months or if it simply won’t be an issue at all.
We just decommissioned some Dells. My problem with them is not being able to add cards.
Sure, take care of your computer. I’ve found that quarterly is more than enough for a five minute cleaning and could probably make that every six months without issue but I suppose YMMV based on how dusty your environment is, number of fans, etc.
In my case, the majority of the dust will get pulled through the two AIO radiators and, lemme tell ya, it’s a lot easier to remove and blast the front filter panel with an air duster than the radiators
My kid’s tower PC has LEDs in the fan area as well as (yes) the power supply (it illuminates the desk it stands on).
There is one definite reason for this illumination other than just looking fun, and that is, a lot of gamers / programmers / PC users like to work in darkened rooms. With the PC providing a little light, at least you can find your desk. And a backlit keyboard works wonders.