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1,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is a consolidation of an earlier discussion regarding, whether by design and/or because of the firmware, the potential for the Hopper to run dangerously hot. First, this is what the inside of your Hopper looks like:

Depending on the size of your browser window, the above images will either appear side-by-side or one on top of the other. In either case, the first image is the front view.

In the recent discussion, James reported his Hopper hard drive temperatures:
James Long said:
HDD High Temp, HDD Low Temp and HDD Average Temp. Mine is currently showing 136/75/116 (degrees).
The DISH hard drive temperature reporting system uses Fahrenheit and apparently can not be changed to Celsius. Celsius is more commonly used when discussing component temperatures. The hard drive temperatures that James reported, 136/75/116 Fahrenheit, converts approximately to 58/24/46 Celsius, respectively.

As for the hard drive in the pictures, it is a Seagate. Over at the Seagate website the 2 TB Barracuda hard drive has a maximum operating temperature limit of 60° C. A temperature of 60° C converts to 140° F. You never want to see the hard drive temperature exceed 140° F.

However, that doesn't mean that just because a hard drive doesn't exceed 140° F that it's safe. Heat is the enemy of a hard drive and will cause the hard drive to fail prematurely. Lower is better. On a home computer you could typically see 86° F (30° C) to 95° F (35° C) or lower. I would get concerned if my hard drives exceed 104° F (40° C) under load.

The Hopper James uses reached a high of 136° F (58° C) and averaged 116° F (46° C). And, that is with the internal hard drive heat sensor located close to the airflow of the fan. I wonder what the temperatures are like on the opposite side.

Ambient room temperature, placement of the Hopper and other factors, such as the Hopper using 2 TB hard drives that have a questionable reliability factor; all these things will contribute to the overall health and lifespan of the Hopper. Adding to this, if the above images are correct, is what appears to be a inadequate design.

If the fan isn't wired backwards, the fan blows the air into the case. In the second image you can see the scoop that attaches to the hard drive tray. The scoop is suppose to direct the airflow under the hard drive. However, the tray doesn't appear to be notched or elevated enough to allow the air to flow smoothly.

Instead it looks like the airflow is pushed back towards the fan. This can create conflicting airflow patterns. Not only could this starve the hard drive of air, but has the potential of causing other components inside the Hopper to get a mixed current of air and potentially run unnecessarily hotter themselves. Which in turn creates a cascading effect. In addition, most likely the fans are intentionally stepped down to reduce noise through the firmware.

Obviously it's too soon to know anything definite and I freely admit that there is a lot of speculation on my part. Yet, I think the concern is a valid one and it's something that should be monitored. This is where you can help.

After running the Hopper for a couple of hours, could you please post all three Hopper temperatures. James mentioned where to find the temperatures in his post:
James Long said:
Try Menu - Settings - Network Setup - Tests - View Counters
Page down (above the guide button on the right hand side of the remote) to HDD High Temp, HDD Low Temp and HDD Average Temp.
I think if there was a wider sample taken it would be beneficial to all Hopper users. If you want to include both Fahrenheit and Celsius temperatures, this can easily be done through the Google calculator. Just go to Google and type in the search field the following:

[number] f to c

Google will immediately return the converted temperature value. Please don't forget to round up as necessary.

If it turns out that the hard drive in the Hopper is running unusually hot, this could be "fixed" with an upcoming firmware update. All DISH would have to do is change the percentages in the fan control table. Or, perhaps this information would lead to improved design changes in the rev2 Hopper.

Lastly, it could be that the Hopper that James has is an isolated situation. If his Hopper is running unusually hot, it gives him information that he can use, should he choose to act upon it, to replace it with one that runs cooler. If it was me, I'd do it now than later.


1,095 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Current Opinion
Hopper operating temperatures are high due to inadequate cooling. Firmware needs changes to the fan control table and design changes should be made to next revision Hopper.

Current Averages
High Temp: 128 F / 54 C
Avg Temp: 112 F /45 C
Low Temp: 73 F / 23 C

Individual Results
James Long:
High 136 F / 58 C
Avg 116 F / 46 C
Low 75 F / 24 C
High 125 F / 52 C
Avg 112 F / 44 C
Low ?? / ??
High 127 F / 52.7 C
Avg 111 F / 43.9 C
Low 80 F / 26.7 C​
High 122 F / 50 C
Avg 107 F / 42 C
Low 64 F / 18 C​

Hall Of Fame
2,401 Posts
barken said:
Is the laptop USB fan pulling air through the system or just cooling the bottom of the case?
It's not in a cabinet, so it's not pulling air through the whole system, just blowing on the bottom of the case. There are some holes in the bottom and on the sides, so I thought blowing onto the metal case and a little through the holes would cool it a little more than the built-in fan. It's apparently not doing much of anything judging from the other temps posted so far. It had more of an affect on my old 722k. I may turn it off and see if it makes any difference.

EDIT: I took my USB fan out. No temp difference so far. I noticed the fan in the DVR runs most of the time now. It rarely ran before. So I guess my external fan kept it cool enough that the internal fan wasn't needed.

102 Posts
High 143 F / 61.7 C
Low 87 F / 30.6 C
Avg 122F / 50 C

The Hopper is on the "outside" of the middle shelf of my entertainment system, the vent is clear of any obstructions on the fan side, on the other side of the Hopper there is 2.5 inches between it and my home theater receiver. I think I'll move it down 1 shelf where it will still be open to the air on the fan side of the Hopper and will be 3" from my PS3 system. I'll compare the temps later.

New Member
3 Posts
Installed yesterday. Hopper is in a cabinet with about 1.5 inches on either side, open front and closed back with hole for cables. Noticed it was extremely hot today.


High: 134
Low: 87
Avg: 107

I will check and see if I have my laptop fan and see if it makes a difference.

I definitely think there needs to be some adjustment for this. These temps seem way too high.

171 Posts
High Temp: 125 F / 52 C
Avg Temp: 114 F /46 C
Low Temp: 69 F / 21 C
Wow first time I've seen this thread, interesting to see the Hopper... Naked... I don't see how the heat sink on the CPU is getting any airflow at all, no temp gauge on that...
I've been running S209 software for a few days, my temps were 10 F higher with the previous version.
Joeys also I've noticed run awful hot, maybe they've improved too?

86 Posts
High 123
Low 73
Average 111

These temps are in an enclosed wood and glass entertainment center with openings in the rear of each component. I will check the other Hopper and post those temps later.

472 Posts
I have 2 Hoppers. Both on S209.

One one I'm getting:

Hi: 125
Lo: 78
Avg: 114

I'll post the temps of the other Hopper next chance I get
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